FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 9, 2011
Contact Person: Erin Ramsey, Director of Public Relations: firstname.lastname@example.org or 812-549-6216
New Report: Information and Quality are Important to Hoosier Families Seeking Child Care
In Indiana, 66 % of children under the age of five are in some type of child care arrangement outside of the home. Research shows that 85% of a child’s capacity to learn is determined during the first five years of life. The brain development of young children is directly influenced by the relationships and environments that they experience. Therefore, it is essential that families have the tools, information and resources they need to make informed decisions about the child care providers they choose for their children.
The Indiana Association for Child Care Resource and Referral (IACCRR) has published Parents and Child Care in Indiana (2010), a compilation of parents’ responses regarding their success in locating and selecting child care after they accessed the services of Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agencies.
Marsha Thompson, Executive Director of IACCRR says, “We found that, first and foremost, parents want a safe environment for their children and caregivers who are experienced and trained to care for and educate their children. Parents also want information and they use it directly in how they search for care and how they select care. It is our goal that all families who are in need of child care referrals or information will access all of our free services.”
IACCRR reports the following findings from Parents and Child Care in Indiana (2010):
Child Care Resource and Referral services are valuable to families. In fact, 92% of parents responded that the local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agency helped them make a more informed choice, and 85% responded that they knew more about what to look for when trying to find high quality child care after receiving information from the CCR&R.
Parents take action based on information provided. Of families who responded, 92% intend to or have asked about caregiver training and education related to caring for children; 80% intend to or have contacted other parents for references; and 88% intend to or have checked adult-to-child ratios.
Despite the solid efforts by IACCRR and other groups devoted to Indiana’s families and children, some families still encounter challenges securing child care for their children. According to parents who were unable to obtain child care within three weeks of contacting the CCR&R, subsequent barriers included cost, availability and quality.
Child Care Resource and Referral agencies do a good job serving families. This free service offered 80% of clients between 3 and 15 child care referrals. In addition, 95% responded that their needs were understood by the CCR&R; 96% responded that CCR&R staff was knowledgeable; and 95% rated overall services provided as outstanding.
To access the full report, visit www.iaccrr.org
The Indiana Association for Child Care Resource and Referral is a 501c3 organization funded by the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration.
Note: IACCRR conducts ongoing follow-up surveys of parents who use CCR&R services across the state. A random selection of 20% of parents in each of the 11 agency areas are surveyed on a variety of topics. Oversampling is done of parents who receive an enhanced referral in order to accommodate low population and sample sizes. For this report, N=991 parents receiving referrals between October, 2009 and March, 2010. Valid responses only were used to calculate percentages and totals.