Nevada is currently 48th in the nation for preschool enrollment; only 36.7% of 3- and 4-year-olds are currently enrolled. Nevada ranks 41st for state spending per capita for states that offer preschool programs, currently investing $65.79, compared to the national average of $955.22.
We know that providing children with the right start will lead to less intervention and remediation in later grades – ultimately resulting in increased rates of graduation and success in adulthood. In Nevada, over 57% of children ages 0-5 live in families where all available parents are in the workforce. The average annual cost of child care in a licensed center in Nevada ranges from $8,987 for an infant to $7,340 for preschoolers (ages 3-5). The average individual income is $38,334. Only 39 of the 448 licensed childcare centers in Nevada are accredited programs. To ensure that children have access to high-quality, affordable child care, the Children’s Advocacy Alliance will work toward:
- The adoption of a state definition of “School Readiness” and a common kindergarten entry assessment.
- Enhanced qualifications and training requirements for early childhood professionals.
- Supporting and enhancing the development of the Silver Stars Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) and integration of participation with child care subsidy reimbursement to provide a quality accountability structure for the use of state dollars.
- Promoting business involvement in early learning through tax incentive programs that reward businesses that offer child care stipends for employees, site-based care, promotion and use of FSA programs, and others.
- Implementation of a coordinated early childhood data system that is linked to the K-12 data system.
- Increasing child care subsidy eligibility to ensure that more working families can afford care and increasing the state child care development fund contribution, including the use of current market rates to determine subsidy reimbursements.
The Children’s Advocacy Alliance is committed to ensuring that every child in Nevada has the opportunity to enter school ready to learn by creating a comprehensive early childhood system in Nevada.
To achieve this goal, the Children’s Advocacy Alliance supports:
- Access to high-quality, affordable child care for all children.
- Parent education and family support programs designed to improve the confidence and competency of all parents and support them in their role as their children’s first and most important teachers.
- A highly qualified and appropriately compensated early childhood workforce.