Child Care and Early Education Legislation Databas

Child Care and Early Education Legislation Database

Next update scheduled for May 6,2014

The Early Care and Education database tracks and updates early care and education legislation from the 2008-2014 legislative sessions for 50 states and the territories. Issues include child care and child care financing, early childhood services, prekindergarten, professional development, home visiting, infants and toddlers, and financing early education. Legislation can be searched by state, topic, status, primary sponsor, bill number or keyword. This database, which is updated biweekly, is made possible by the generous support of the Alliance for Early Success.


The month of March represents the mid-way point for many state legislatures. By the end of April, fewer than 25 states will still be in regular session, with projected adjournments in South Dakota, Mississippi, Maryland, Virginia, Kentucky, Maine, Nebraska, Alaska and Iowa. The full 2014 legislative calendar for all states and the territories, including targeted adjournment dates, are available HERE.

For the most up-to-date status and description of early care and education legislation from the 2008 to 2014 legislative sessions for 50 states and the territories, scroll down to search the NCSL Early Care and Education Database, updated every 2 weeks starting on January 14, 2014. To read about the 2013 legislative session and 174 enacted laws on early care and education in 38 states and Puerto Rico, see the full 2013 State Legislative Action on Early Care and Education report.

Notes about the Database:

  • The 2014 database includes approximately 300 carryover bills from the 2013 session from 26 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. To ensure the bill status reflects the appropriate year, please check the “Date of Last Action” field.
  • The following terms may be inserted in the “Keyword” search field to identify bills in early literacy development, brain science/research/development, social and emotional development, and kindergarten entry/readiness assessments.
    • “early literacy”
    • “brain develop”
    •  “social emotional develop”
    • “kindergarten read”

Half way through the 2014 session[i], lawmakers in 45 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have introduced more than 550 bills on various early care and education issues. In particular, legislatures have been focusing on addressing universal pre-K access and the quality of home-based child care providers. To date, legislatures have enacted or adopted 70 bills and sent an additional 19 bills to governors for their signature. Some enacted or engrossed bills of note include:

Selected Bills of Note (enacted or engrossed):

  • District of Columbia B 311 (Rep. Catania): Allows the Office of the State Superintendent of Education Student to develop and administer academic assessments, tests or evaluations of pre-kindergarten through fifth graders. Requires principals to make decisions regarding students' grade promotion or retention and requires retained students to attend summer school. Requires schools to report names of retained students, descriptions of intervention services and reasons for retention. (Chapter 84).
  • Indiana HB 1036 (Rep. Mahan): Requires child care providers who receive federal Child Care and Development Fund payments to annually obtain at 12 hours of approved continuing education on the educational development, care, and safety of children and child maltreatment training within 3 months of employment. (P.L. 171).
  • Maryland HB 461 (House Ways and Means Committee): Adds family and school-age child care providers and private pre-K providers to the membership of the State Early Childhood Advisory Council. Requires the Council to assess and report on the availability of high-quality early childhood education and development programs for children with and without disabilities. Requires the Council to develop a statewide plan to improve school readiness, an infrastructure for continuous program improvement, an assessment of the capacity and effectiveness of higher education institutions in supporting the development of early childhood educators, and a report to the Governor and the General Assembly. (Chapter 232).

  • Maine LD 1581, HP 1152 (Rep. Berry): Requires the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a 4-step, child care quality rating and improvement system and provide tiered reimbursements – up to 25 percent of the regular rate – to providers who meet the top rankings.  Allows the state not to pay a quality differential rate for child care provided through the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families block grant. (Engrossed as of April 10, 2014).
  • Mississippi SB 2572 (Sen. Tollison): Requires the State Department of Education to establish and administer a statewide Kindergarten Readiness Assessment to kindergarteners in public schools within 30 days of their enrollment. Requires the state to establish a parental notification policy regarding the assessment and a reporting process to the State Superintendent of Education regarding assessment results. (Engrossed as of April 7, 2014).
  • Tennessee HB 839 (Rep. Weaver): Changes the date that four-year-olds are allowed to enroll in pre-K to on or before August 31 of the school year starting in 2013-14 and August 15 in years thereafter. Allows schools to enroll additional children if the number of at-risk children does not fill a classroom. (Chapter 85).
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[i] Include bills recently introduced by year-round state legislatures and states with biennial sessions. Bill summaries are current as of date of introduction and may not include provisions added, removed or amended during subsequent legislative stages.  For questions, comments, additions or corrections, please contact or 303-856-1582.

For faster performance, please use the fields below to filter your results. If nothing is picked, the default search is to include all topics and states in current session year.

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