The United States House of Representatives has passed the $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Plan this morning. The bill includes $390 billion to assist families with child care needs and guarantee access to free high-quality preschool for 3- and 4-year-olds.
This legislation would create an entitlement program for child care and early learning. Key implications of Build Back Better early childhood provisions include:
- Lower families’ child care costs: Robust subsidies would ensure families would pay no more than 7% of their annual income on child care.
- Increase access to child care: Multifaceted investments would provide early care and learning opportunities for and millions of additional children.
- Implement Universal Pre-K: Federal-state partnerships would create free high-quality preschool opportunities for every three- and four-year-old.
- Create early childhood education jobs: Economists predict funding would result in over a million additional early care and education jobs.
- Fairly compensate early childhood educators: Educator pay would be commensurate with K-12 teachers.
- Spur the economy by reducing the burden of child care on working mothers: The “motherhood penalty”, or the negative impact on mothers’ earnings would be reduced.
We at Wonderschool are energized by the bill’s passage through the House. The Senate will take up the bill next, and revisions are expected in the upcoming weeks.