Quality Childcare and the Impact on Children
In 2013, 76% of South Dakota children under age six had all available parents in the labor force, the second highest rate in the nation. In our community, the percentage is even higher at 79%. With a high percentage of parents in the workforce today, childcare and early learning is essential for our families.
High quality and affordable childcare meets two essential needs:
1) It makes it possible for parents to work and support their families.
2) It helps children learn the necessary skills to start school ready to succeed.
Quality early childhood education positively affects a child’s cognitive development and school achievement and completion. Children enrolled in early childhood education programs show increases in reading and math scores, better language skills and are overall better prepared for school. In addition to the academic benefits, these programs help children learn to handle their emotions and work with others.
The benefits of education last well beyond a child’s early years. Children who attend quality early education programs have higher high school graduation rates and are more than twice as likely to attend a four-year college.
Providing our children with high quality early
education experiences helps to set them on a path to become successful,
productive members of their community.