Local childcare services can’t keep up with demand

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"We all know someone who has paid more than their mortgage payment to keep their child in childcare in those early years."

NORTHWEST, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — President Joe Biden unveiled his next $1.8 trillion stimulus package on Wednesday focusing on universal preschool, free community college, national paid leave program, and child care spending caps.

While President Biden’s push for assisted childcare is a good thing for local parents, there are not enough services to meet the demand.

It is going to be between $800 and $1,000 a month for part-time childcare for two kids.

LORI LYNN TUCKER, ROGERS MOTHER OF THREE

On Wednesday, April 28, President Joe Biden proposed the American Families Plan, which would provide universal preschool to all 3 and 4-year-olds, regardless of household income.

The help with the cost of that is going to be a huge burden lifted for our family for sure.

LORI LYNN TUCKER, ROGERS MOTHER OF THREE

For Rogers mother of three, Lori Lynn Tucker, it would help put her two youngest in childcare three days a week — if she can find a place for them to go.

“We are not on any list right now,” she said. “I’m just trusting that they’ll be able to get in somewhere come August.”

Fayetteville’s Kiddie Campus Child Care Center Owner Robin Slaton said one of the issues is that many childcare providers are having trouble putting together a qualified staff.

“We get calls every day,” Slaton said. “We have a huge waiting list right now, but if I can’t find the qualified staff to bring them on board, then I can’t care for the kids.”

Even though assisted child care is not guaranteed, Slaton said it’s a step in the right direction.

As much as I’ve hated the whole COVID-19 thing… the flip side is they have learned that our industry is the industry that supports all the other industries.

ROBIN SLATON, OWNER, KIDDIE CAMPUS CHILDCARE CENTER

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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