The NCSL Blog


By Alison May

DID YOU KNOW: NCSL will host its annual Capitol Forum Dec. 5-7 in Washington, D.C.? The NCSL Capitol Forum is where legislators and staff come together to tackle critical state-federal issues, gain insight from national experts, and work to craft the states’ agenda. Register today.

child eating watermelonNCSL’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.

NCSL Resources

New State-by-State Child Support Data Available
States collected more than $32 billion on behalf of 15.1 million children served by child support enforcement programs during fiscal year 2017, according to a recently released report from the federal Office of Child Support Enforcement. Check out NCSL’s updated child support webpage with 2014-2017 comparison on collections, distribution and caseload information from all U.S. states and territories.

Blog Post: Neural Networks and Navigating Newborn Nutrition
Good nutrition along with nurturing relationships and strong early learning experiences play important roles in promoting positive well-being in infants and toddlers. In this blog post learn more about the importance of nutrition for young children and resources for policymakers.

New LegisBrief on Improving Early Learning
State legislatures have enacted 58 laws addressing early education in 2018. Common topics include early literacy, family engagement, dual language learners, governance, prekindergarten, professional development, school discipline and school readiness. Learn more in this October 2018 LegisBrief.

Podcast: Are Evictions Contributing to the Housing Affordability Crisis in Your State?

Listen in to this insightful conversation with Matthew Desmond, author of The New York Times bestseller “Evicted” and winner of a Pulitzer Prize. Desmond talks about the causes and effects of evictions and how policymakers can use data from the EvictionLab to address this hidden issue.

National Reports and Resources

Fostering Youth Transitions: Using Data to Drive Policy and Practice Decisions
This brief from The Annie E. Casey Foundation highlights the challenges that young people face while in and exiting care, how foster youth are faring in each state as they transition to adulthood, how older youth in foster care are — or are not — accessing resources and how foster care experiences and outcomes differ for young people of color.

2018 Home Visiting Yearbook
The National Home Visiting Resource Center has released its 2018 Home Visiting Yearbook, a comprehensive picture of early childhood home visiting across America. The publication presents 2017 data from state agencies and evidence-based and emerging home visiting models, including: where programs operate, the families they serve, and the families who could benefit but are not being reached; state, tribal, and model profiles; data tables featuring information on services delivered by state awardees of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program.

Overdue for Investments: State Child Care Assistance Policies 2018
A new report from the National Women’s Law Center shows that states made progress in key child care assistance policies between February 2017 and February 2018, but significant gaps remain. As of February 2018, a family with an income above 150 percent of the federal poverty level ($31,170 a year for a family of three) could not qualify for assistance in 15 states. Nineteen states had waiting lists or had halted intake for child care assistance. Only one state set its payment rates for child care providers at the federally recommended level.

Alison May is a research analyst with NCSL’s Children and Families Program. She covers early care and education 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.