Washington State’s new 2015-17 $38.2 billion budget includes a historic investment in WA’s youngest children – $158 million! With it our Legislature recognizes the importance of a strong system of high-quality early learning and child care programs that allow all children and families access to diverse, high-quality programs that can lead children to success in school and beyond.
Child Care Aware of Washington thanks our legislative early learning champions for their strong, bi-partisan support of the Early Start Act – Rep. Ruth Kagi (D-Seattle), Sen. Steve Litzow (R-Mercer Island), Rep. Maureen Walsh (R-Walla Wall) and Andy Billig (D-Spokane). Their leadership paved the way for passage of this important legislation that demonstrates WA’s commitment to closing the opportunity gap.
The Early Start Act provides for:
Early Achievers, WA’s program for increasing the quality of child care and early learning programs by investing in the early learning professionals who care for our littlest learners every day.
Stability for working families by authorizing 12-month child care subsidies to provide consistency of care for thousands of children.
Continued operation of the Child Care Aware of Washington Family Center which provides free child care information and referrals to thousands of families every year.
We thank Governor Inslee for his commitment to high-quality early learning for all children.
Everyone at Child Care Aware of Washington offers our gratitude to all who contributed to the success of the Early Start Act and to the historic investment our state is making in young children and families.
To learn more about what child care providers and parents need to know about the Early Start Act, click here. You will find downloadable PDFs in both English and Spanish for providers and parents.