Despite what we know about the importance of high quality early childhood opportunities, far too many children in the United States lack access to quality care, especially poor children and other vulnerable children who stand to benefit the most. Access to high-quality early childhood opportunities is all too often determined by parental income and geography; and programs designed to support quality early childhood and development opportunities are too underfunded to serve all eligible children.
CDF-MN works to ensure that every child has a Head Start and a Strong Start in life by ensuring access to quality early childhood and development opportunities. Children’s brains are developing rapidly in their first 5 years as they build a foundation for all future outcomes in school and in life. Research shows that investments in quality early childhood programs generate an average annual return of 7-10 percent on every dollar invested.
CDF-MN is working to change this situation by supporting policies that guarantee that all children have access to a high-quality continuum of early childhood programs that can comprehensively address their needs and the needs of their families. By working to ensure access to home visiting, Part C Early Intervention, preschool, and safe, consistent, quality child care during early childhood and beyond, CDF-MN is helping to ensure that all children have a strong start to life.