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Pathways to high-quality child care: The workforce investment credit

A well-trained and qualified early care and education (ECE) workforce is essential to produce desired results: children eager to learn, happy, healthy, and well-prepared to succeed in school and life. Attracting and retaining such a workforce is a longstanding challenge in the United States because pay is based on what parents can afford. This limitation impacts the ability of early childhood educators to advance their education and training and acquire research-based skills and competencies that best promote early learning in young children. This brief discusses (1) the state of the ECE workforce, including low compensation, and (2) how one state's approach using a refundable tax credit links professional development with a modest wage increase. (author abstract)
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