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Raising the future: What history can teach us about child care in the U.S.

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Publication Date: 
3 Aug 2021

There’s a national debate brewing over child care in the U.S. sparked by decades of frustration over access and affordability—issues that have been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. To understand where things stand today, we decided to explore the history behind America’s modern day child care system. Why doesn’t it meet the needs of parents, caregivers or children? We look at how caregivers’ low pay can be traced back to slavery, explore a World War II program that set up nationwide federally funded child care centers and learn about the time in the recent past when universal child care was just a presidential signature away from becoming a reality.