Wait list shrinks for child care aid

SW La. benefits from one-time congressional appropriation

{{tncms-inline alignment=”left” content=”<p>For regional breakdown of assistance see chart below.</p>” id=”719d01fd-41dc-4025-a894-2d0e5372cff9″ style-type=”highlights” title=”Editor’s Note” type=”relcontent”}}

This week 4,500 children in Louisiana became eligible for child care assistance due to a recently enacted, one-time congressional appropriation. In Southwest Louisiana, 14 more children will now be served in Allen Parish, less than 10 in Beauregard, 233 in Calcasieu, 17 in Jeff Davis and 13 in Vernon. No children from Cameron Parish were on the list.

The Louisiana Department of Education oversees the waiting list for the state’s Child Care Assistance Program, which provides financial assistance for child care to low-income families with parents who are working or attending school full time.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to provide affordable child care to thousands more of the hard-working families who have patiently waited for this opportunity,” state Superintendent John White said in a news release.

Last year the LDOE formed the waiting list, which originally had about 7,000 children on it.

The program serves children from birth to age 5, therefore the newly eligible children will remain in the program until they age out or no longer qualify for services, said Sydni Dunn, LDOE spokeswoman.

‘We are grateful for the opportunity to provide affordable child care to thousands more of the hard-working families who have patiently waited …’
John White
State Superintendent of Education

Families on the waiting list were deemed eligible for services based on their application date and will receive a verification form in the mail at the beginning of this month. The form must be completed and returned within 10 calendar days of receipt; families will be able to access child care in early September.

Dunn said about 2,500 children will remain on the list, which is projected to return to at least 7,000 children next year if no further action is taken by lawmakers.

It costs about $6,300 per child each year to provide a family with assistance, she said. To completely clear the waiting list, it would cost the state nearly $16 million.

CCAP, like many government programs, has faced significant budget cuts in recent years. In 2009 the program served 40,000 children but today serves 14,600.

According to data from the state’s Early Childhood Care and Education Commission, Louisiana serves 56,588 at-risk children through a variety of programs.

As of October 2017 there are nearly 200,000 at-risk children in the state, which means about 70 percent of the population isn’t being served, Dunn said.

For more information on the Child Care Assistance Program or its waiting list, visit www.louisianabelieves.com.

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>The waiting list for a Louisiana child care program used by low income families is being trimmed by about 4,500, after a one-time injection of federal dollars. Here is how Southwest Louisiana is impacted:</p> <table border="0"> <tbody> <tr> <td> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">School System    </span></p> </td> <td> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">On wait list     </span></p> </td> <td> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Coming off wait list     </span></p> </td> <td> <p class="p1"><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Percentage     </span></p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td><strong>Statewide</strong></td> <td><strong>6325</strong></td> <td><strong>4500</strong></td> <td><strong>71</strong></td> </tr> <tr> <td>Allen</td> <td>15</td> <td>14</td> <td>93</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Beaureguard </td> <td>25</td> <td><10</td> <td>32</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Calcasieu</td> <td>305</td> <td>233</td> <td>76</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Cameron</td> <td>NONE</td> <td>N/A</td> <td>0</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Jeff Davis</td> <td>21</td> <td>17</td> <td>81</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Vernon</td> <td>18</td> <td>13</td> <td>72</td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <hr /> <p><em><strong>Source</strong>: La. Dept. of Education</em></p>” id=”44102b2d-f2c9-43c9-9b1b-567093f17df3″ style-type=”fact” title=”Child Care Assistance” type=”relcontent” width=”full”}}

The waiting list for a Louisiana child care program used by low income families is being trimmed by about 4,500, after a one-time injection of federal dollars. Here is how Southwest Louisiana is impacted:

School System     On wait list      Coming off wait list     

Percentage     

Statewide 6325 4500 71
Allen 15 14 93
Beaureguard  25 <10 32
Calcasieu 305 233 76
Cameron NONE N/A 0
Jeff Davis 21 17 81
Vernon 18 13 72

Source: La. Dept. of Education

For regional breakdown of assistance see chart below.

””Child Care Assitance

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