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Report Number P70-70
Kristin Smith
Component ID: #ti1731564515

Introduction

Interest in child care intensified as more women entered the labor force and sought to balance both family and work. The need for child care may increase further as welfare reform encourages recipients, who often have young children, to seek work.This report shows the number and characteristics of children in different child care arrangements (including those in more than one type of arrangement) and the characteristics of their families. The data come from the fall 1995 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) and continue a series that dates back to 1985.

Past reports presented only the primary child care arrangements of employed mothers. New information in this report shows child care arrangements while the designated parent (see box for definition) is not at work nor in school.1 Additional new information shows specific types of arrangements such as Head Start, enrichment activities, and self care. The child care module in SIPP was redesigned for the fall 1995 survey to collect this new information.

The report contrasts child care arrangements for preschool- and grade-school-age children. These two age groups differ in their needs and activities in that the primary focus of child care for infants and preschoolers is on meeting their basic needs. For older children, more attention is on structured activities, educational programs, and socialization.

Component ID: #ti244399401

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1 The child care questions in this survey capture the arrangements that families use in a typical week and not necessarily those used consistently on a regular basis in the past month. For this reason, usage rates for particular child care arrangements may be higher than expected.

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