The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) released a Penn State University study about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the state’s child care industry. The study was included in legislation that passed the General Assembly this spring as part of negotiations around allocation of federal stimulus dollars.
Prior to the health crisis, Pennsylvania had more than 7,000 licensed child care providers operating. However, as of July more than 200 of those providers indicated they plan to permanently shut their doors. Further, the study estimates that about 1,000 additional providers are at risk of closure without financial assistance.
The study and recommendations will be used by Pennsylvania’s Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) to guide the distribution of $116 million in federal CARES funding for child care. The state previously released just over $100 million in federal stimulus funding specific to the Child Care Development Block Grant. The additional $116 million was secured as part of advocacy work done by the Start Strong PA and Pre-K for PA campaigns this spring.