NCSL Early Care and Education Quarterly E-Update


In This Issue

Recent NCSL Early Care and Education Publications.

NCSL’s Early Care and Education project periodically hosts webinars, creates new reports, new webpages and pens articles. Here are some of the recent products that might be helpful and relevant to the work you do.

New Web Page | Early Care and Education State Budget Actions FY 2017
NCSL surveyed 50 state legislative fiscal offices on their FY 2015, FY 2016 and FY 2017 state appropriations for various early care and education programs—child care, prekindergarten, home visiting and other related programs. Early Care and Education Budget Actions FY 2017 provides a snapshot of state funding investments from 36 states that responded to the survey in these areas. In this new web brief, view specific changes to appropriations for child care, prekindergarten, home visiting and other early childhood programs that occurred from FY 2016 to FY 2017.

2016 Enacted Legislation on Early Care and Education Report
During the 2016 legislative session, state lawmakers addressed an array of policy issues related to young children introducing nearly 1,000 bills with approximately 120 bills signed into law in 38 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. The 2016 Enacted Legislation on Early Care and Education Report is an annual report that provides an overview of significant 2016 legislative enactments in the following major topic areas: child care, early childhood workforce, prekindergarten and school readiness, early childhood governance and systems, early childhood services, data strategies, home visiting and parent education, finance strategies, and appropriations. 

Archived Webinar | Brain Science: Interventions and Policy Implications
Access an archived version of NCSL’s Brain Science: Interventions and Policy Implications webinar from April 2017. During the webinar Dr. Sarah Watamura highlighted the latest brain research and the science behind the critical development taking place during the early years. Watamura also mentioned policy opportunities to help mitigate the effects of toxic stress and support healthy development, which can result in better outcomes for our youngest children and their families.

Archived Webinar | Understanding Adverse Childhood Experiences
Access an archived version of NCSL’s Understanding Adverse Childhood Experiences webinar from May 18, 2017. Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are potentially traumatic events that can have negative, lasting effects on health and well-being of children. These experiences range from physical, emotional, or sexual abuse to parental divorce, economic hardships, or the incarceration of a parent or guardian. Multiple ACEs can lead to potentially negative consequences of riskier behavior and poorer health outcomes. NCSL staff provided an overview of ACEs and Representative Joan Ballweg (R-Wis.) and Representative Ann Pugh (D-Vt.) shared how their states are tackling ACEs across child welfare, health and other policies.

Early Care and Education Webinar Series
This spring and summer NCSL’s Early Care and Education project will host a monthly webinar series. Mark your calendar and register online for one of or all the upcoming webinars. All webinars will begin at 2 p.m. ET. Thursday, June 22, Integrating Early Childhood Data; Thursday, July 20, State Preschool Programs: Annual Yearbook Update and Thursday, Aug. 24, Young Dual Language Learners. 

Legislative Session Update.

Young boy playing with alphabetical wooden blocksThe early care and education database tracks early care and education legislation from the 2008-2017 legislative sessions for the 50 states and territories. Issues include child care and child care financing, governance and data strategies, 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 every week, is made possible by the generous support of the Alliance for Early Success.

Visit the early care and education database to view all introduced and enacted bills from 2008 through 2017. View the full 2017 legislative session calendar for information on legislative sessions in each state, district and territory.

2017 Enacted Bills of Note
Indiana HB 1004 Representative Robert Behning (R) | Allows the division of family resources to award an early education matching grant to a provider that submits a specified expansion plan, amends provisions concerning eligibility of a child for the early education matching grant and pilot programs.

North Dakota SB 2038 Establishes a task force on children's behavioral health, relates to behavioral health training for educators and early childhood service providers and to emergency hold limitations for mental health examinations, provides for a report to the governor and the legislative management, repeals provisions relating to professional development training regarding the prevention of bullying and youth suicide.

Tennessee HB 872 Representative Raumesh Akbari (D) | SB 1394 Senator Reginald Tate (D) | Prohibits the suspension or expulsion of students in prekindergarten and kindergarten unless the student's behavior endangers the physical safety of other students or school personnel.

Utah SB 135 Senator Luz Escamilla (D) | Requires the Department of Health to study the use of evidence-based home visiting programs in Utah and report its findings to the legislature. Creates the home visiting restricted account and specifies how money in the account may be used

Utah SB 100 Senator Ann Millner (R) | Requires the Department of Workforce Services and the Office of Child Care to conduct a study concerning services and resources for children five years old and younger and their families. Describes the information that should be included in the study and the deadline for providing the study to certain legislative committees.

Wyoming H 211 Representative Lloyd Larsen (R) | Amends provisions related to developmental preschool payment calculations, and relates to individualized education program and individualized family service plan.

The 2017 Enacted Legislation on Early Care and Education Report will be available during the winter of 2017. 

Information Request of the Month: Child Care Inspection Requirements.

young children looking at a book togetherInquiry

What states require public inspection records of child care facilities that involve substantiated complaints?


It is now required in federal law—Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act of 2014 (Pub. L. 113-186)—that states develop websites that include monitoring and inspections reports, substantiated complaints, and deaths and injuries in child care settings. NCSL has background and information about the timeline for states implementing the new law. According to the timeline, states have until November of 2017 to implement the website provision. States can ask for a waiver to implement certain provisions of the law, for example Hawaii and Michigan have requested a waiver for website implementation. According to the federal Office of Child Care, seven states including California, Delaware, Maine, New Mexico, South Carolina, Utah, Wisconsin and Puerto Rico report having implemented a website for licensing and monitoring child care reports. All state plans are available online.

Below are examples of recently enacted and pending state legislation.

Enacted Legislation

California’s 2014 Child Day Care Facilities Act requires the Department of Social Services to post licensing information monthly on its website for child day care facilities, including among other things, the number of citations, substantiated and inconclusive complaint inspections and noncompliant inspections.

Florida HB 7053 (Act 2016-238) adds the Office of Early Learning to the list of departments that can use the central abuse hotline and the automated abuse information system as part of the licensure or registration process for providers of school readiness services. This bill revises current statutory provisions relating to the School Readiness program by increasing health and safety standards, expanding requirements for employment history checks and child care personnel background screenings, expanding availability through a website of child care information, including inspection and monitoring reports, expanding child care and school readiness provider standards to include pre-service and in-service training requirements and appropriate group size and staff-to-child ratios, and aligning child eligibility criteria to the federal requirements. Requires the Department of Health to maintain a clearinghouse of information for parents and health care providers and to increase public awareness of developmental evaluation and early intervention programs. The Office of Early Learning will develop and implement strategies to increase the supply and improve the quality of child care and establish pre-service and in-service training requirements.

Missouri’s SB 869 (2014) requires the state Department of Social Services to establish a publicly available website that gives specific provider information such as health and licensing requirements, inspections and history of violations and compliance actions taken. The department must also establish a transparent system of quality indicators to provide parents a way to differentiate between child care providers available in their community, establish a parent complaint hotline, and minimum building and facilities requirements that child care providers must meet prior to receiving federal funds.

2017 Pending Legislation

Hawaii SB 511 | Requires the Department of Human Services to publish reports of child care facility inspections and complaint investigations on the department’s website, creates an oversight committee for implementation of and compliance with publication requirements, requires annual reporting to the legislature, makes an appropriation.

Hawaii HB 673 | Requires the Department of Human Services to publish reports of child care facility inspections on the department’s website, creates an oversight committee for implementation of and compliance with publication requirements, requires annual reporting to the legislature, makes an appropriation.

New York SB 797 | Establishes a central registry of child day care complaint investigations in New York City, provides for public access through 311 or the departments website.

New York AB 2159 | Requires the office of children and family services to post any additional relevant qualifications of child day care providers on its website.

Oregon HB 2260 | Directs the Office of Child Care to maintain a website that provides information regarding certified and registered child care facilities and regulated subsidy facilities, authorizes the office to maintain information in the Central Background Registry through electronic records systems, authorizes the office to receive and investigate complaints regarding certified or registered child care facilities, regulated subsidy facilities, preschool recorded programs or school-age recorded programs.

Infant and Toddler Project Convenes in Denver.

Nurse checking on infant that sits on mothers lapNCSL embarked on a new birth-to-three policy project for state legislators funded by the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation early in 2017. The goal of the project is to educate and engage legislators about the latest neuroscience and child development research and to explore policy options, evidence-based interventions and funding strategies that impact families and very young children.

NCSL hosted a webinar Brain Science: Interventions and Policy Implications for Serving Parents and Children featuring Sarah Watamura, Ph.D., University of Denver, Colorado in April.

NCSL hosted a birth-to-three national symposium for legislators and legislative staff May 22-24 in Denver, Colo. At the meeting members representing 13 states learned from national researchers and policy experts. Sessions included brain science, financing, home visiting and much more. Meeting information is available on our website and readers should anticipate a blog providing highlights of the content discussed.

The project will also produce a legislative infant and toddler report published during the fall of 2017.

For more information, please contact Julie Poppe at or call 303-856-1497.

Early Learning Fellows Program Continues in 2017.

Blue wavy background with a dome and words early learning fellows NCSL is proud to announce that after a competitive application process the 2017 class of Early Learning Fellows has been selected. The Early Learning Fellows Program is designed for legislators and legislative staff who are experienced or emerging leaders on early childhood and early learning issues. The program is geared toward those chairing or serving on human services, education or appropriations committees who want to expand their knowledge and learn from other legislators and experts from across the country.

The 2017 cohort of Fellows includes 29 legislators and 2 legislative staff members from 16 states and D.C. Those selected will participate in a kickoff meeting at the end of June in Omaha, two webinars in July and August and a final face-to-face meeting mid-September in Denver.

Learn more on our website where you can also access agendas and PowerPoint Presentations from the two face-to-face meetings.

NCSL Annual Legislative Summit Preview.

Summit logo including NCSL and the words Legislative Summit Boston Aug. 6-9-107Make history at the NCSL Legislative Summit, August 6-9, in Boston. Discover fresh ideas, learn from policy innovators and industry pioneers, connect with hundreds of state legislative colleagues and take home solutions that work.

Attend and hear an update on federal activities relating to health and human services, sessions on improving children’s chances by combating early trauma, the latest data from the Annie E. Casey Foundation on their KIDS COUNT report, and much more. Access an online agenda highlighting human services sessions on our website.

Learn more and register today. We hope to see you this August in Boston. 


Federal Update and Resources.


Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Update

On March 28, the Department released Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) State Plan peer review criteria for Title I, Part A; Title III, Part A; and the Education for Homeless Children and Youth Programs under the McKinney-Vento Act. These are the only programs of the consolidated state plan which are required to be peer reviewed; for all other sections of the plan, Department staff will review the state’s submission. This document is intended to help ensure that each state submits a complete state plan, as well as guide peer reviewers in making recommendations to the Secretary on whether each state plan meets the requirements in the revised template for those programs subject to peer review. For additional information access an archived slide deck from a March webinar.

Submission dates were April 3 and the second is September 18. As of early May the following states have submitted plans: Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, Tennessee, Vermont and the District of Columbia. Department staff are checking plans to determine if they are complete and, if so, will post plans online once scrubbed of personally identifiable information. NCSL recently hosted a meeting where a representative from EducationCounsel presented on ESSA and early childhood opportunities. If you are interested in learning more, or viewing the presentation, please email

Mark Your Calendar.

2017 calendar in the shape of a circle

NCSL Capitol Forum 

The NCSL Capitol Forum is where legislators and staff come together to tackle critical state-federal issues, gain insight from national experts, and work with committees to craft the States’ Agenda. The 2017 Capitol Forum will be held Dec. 10-13 at the Hotel Del Coronado in Coronado, Calif. 






Resources of Interest

NCSL Webinar Preschool Effects: What the Research Does and Does Not Say | May 2017

Between 2002 and 2015, state spending on preschool programs nearly doubled from $3.3 billion to $6.2 billion, according to the National Institute for Early Education Research. While mostly pointing to the positive educational benefits of high-quality preschool, some educational research has found the effects may fade out over time. Access an archived NCSL webinar

Unlocking ESSA’s Potential to Support Early Learning

Source: New America & Build Initiative | Mar. 2017The paper provides an overview of the key provisions of ESSA that relate to early childhood education. The analysis discusses ways leaders can use ESSA to support early learning systems, from birth to third grade, including a specific focus on dual language learner success. Read the report.

Economist James J. Heckman: Early Education Packs a High Return on Investment

Source: Committee for Economic Development (CED) | Mar. 2017This blog from Nobel Laureate economist James Heckman posted on the Committee for Economic Development’s (CED) website is about the return on investment in early childhood education. Read the blog

Additional Resources

The State of Preschool 2016

Source: National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) | May 2017
Read the report.

Puzzling It Out: The Current State of Scientific Knowledge on Pre-Kindergarten Effects A Consensus Statement

Source: Brookings | Apr. 2017
Read the report.

Social-Emotional Skills in Early Childhood Support Workforce Success

Source: Council for a Strong America | Apr. 2017
Read the report.

State by State Fact Sheets: Child Care Assistance Policies 2016

Source: National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) | Apr. 2017
Read the fact sheets.

Early Childhood Profiles

Source: National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP) | Apr. 2017
View the recently updated profiles

Open Doors: Supporting Children and Families’ Access to Early Care and Education

Source: Early Childhood Data Collaborative | Mar. 2017
Read the report

The Years Before School: Children’s Nonparental Care Arrangements From 2001 to 2012

Source: National Center for Education Statistics | Mar. 2017
Read the report

Information and Resources to Assist States in Developing Policy on Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion 

Source: Center on Enhancing Early Learning Outcomes (CEELO) | Mar. 2017
Read the policy report

What Does Good Child Care Reform Look Like?

Source: Center for the Study of Child Care Employment (CSCCE) and the Economic Policy Institute | Mar. 2017
Read the report.  

Army Generals: Child Care Should be Priority for Georgia, as it is for Military

Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Mar. 2017
Read the article.

Why the Federal Government Should Subsidize Childcare and How to Pay for It

Source: Brookings | Mar, 2017
Read the report.

Children’s Experience with Parental Employment Insecurity and Family Income Inequality

Source: Foundation for Child Development | Feb. 2017
Read the report.

A Safety Net That Works: Improving Federal Programs for Low-Income Americans

Source: American Enterprise Institute (AEI) | Feb. 2017
This book includes chapters about Federal Early Childhood Care by Katharine Stevens and Child Care Assistance in the United States by Angela Rachidi. Access the full on-line book

State Pre-K Funding 2016-17 Fiscal Year: Trends and Opportunities

Source: Education Commission of the States (ECS) | Jan. 2017
Read the report.

Child Care: Research-Based Policy Recommendations for Executive and Legislative Officials in 2017

Source: Child Trends | Jan. 2017
Read the policy brief.

Assessment Tools Used in Kindergarten Entry Assessments (KEAs)

Source: Center on Enhancing Early Learning Outcomes (CEELO) | Jan. 2017
View the fast fact sheet

Click to View the Spring 2017 e-update as a PDF