The NCSL Blog


By Meghan McCann

DID YOU KNOW: NCSL is hosting its 2018 Legislative Summit in Los Angeles, California? NCSL President Senator Deb Peters (R-S.D.) and NCSL President-Elect Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Ill.) invite you to join them and colleagues from across the country at the NCSL Legislative Summit July 30-Aug. 2, 2018.

Family of threeNCSL’s Children and Families program covers many human services issues, including child support and family law, child welfare, early care and education, welfare and poverty.

Recent Podcast and Webinars

Podcast | The Economic Argument for Early Childhood Education: In this NCSL podcast, economist Art Rolnick explains how investing in early childhood education can pay off in big ways for the states, by closing opportunity gaps before they become achievement gaps.

Archived Webinar | Opioid and Early Adversity: Access an archived copy of NCSL’s webinar "Opioid and Early Adversity: Connecting Childhood Trauma and Addiction" from April 6, 2018. During this 60-minute webinar attendees learned about the connection between Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and the opioid epidemic. Speakers discussed how ACEs can affect later substance misuse, including the intergenerational impacts on families. Experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and legislators from Tennessee and Vermont highlighted potential policy options and innovative state strategies.

NCSL Resources

A Guide for Child Support Professionals: State legislators address issues from A-Z, agriculture to zoning. This report, "State Legislators: Who They Are and How to Work with Them: A Guide for Child Support Professionals," is designed to help child support professionals and directors understand how state legislatures work and how state legislators gather information and develop policies related to child support.

State Legislatures Articles | Foster Care: Half the states and the District of Columbia have extended foster care beyond age 18 through Title IV-E of the Social Security Act, which reimburses states to cover the costs of extended care. To learn more, read the cover story, "Ready or Not." In the same issue, "From Players to Partners" explains how states are trying to better support foster parents caring for children at risk.

2017 Enacted Legislation on Early Care and Education: During the 2017 legislative session, state lawmakers addressed an array of policy issues related to young children introducing nearly 1,200 bills with approximately 140 bills signed into law in 33 states. This report provides an overview of significant 2017 legislative enactments in the following major topic areas: child care (subsidy, quality, and access); early childhood financing; early childhood governance; home visiting and parent education; prenatal, infant and toddlers; prekindergarten and school readiness; and early childhood teacher workforce.

Child Support Digest, Vol. 6, No. 1: NCSL's quarterly child support newsletter featuring information on domestic violence and child support, our child support and family law legislation database, child support assurance, employment services for noncustodial parents and news from across the country.

Early Learning Fellows: Legislative Corner: To keep early learning fellows connected with one another and to highlight the terrific work being done in the states, NCSL staff periodically highlights a fellow and the work they are doing. This month features Representative Stephanie Hilferty (R-La.) and Councilmember Robert C. White Jr. (D-D.C.).

National Reports and Resources

The State of Preschool 2017: This newly released annual report highlights outcomes from a 2016-17 survey as well as trend data going back to 2002. Also included is a special report on state policies supporting young dual-language learners. Read the report. | Source: National Institute for Early Education Research | April 2018

Meghan McCann is a senior policy specialist with NCSL’s Children and Families Program. She covers child support, family law and anti-poverty issues.

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About the NCSL Blog

This blog offers updates on the National Conference of State Legislatures' research and training, the latest on federalism and the state legislative institution, and posts about state legislators and legislative staff. The blog is edited by NCSL staff and written primarily by NCSL's experts on public policy and the state legislative institution.