Policy Strategies & Innovations Link copied!
|Innovation Name||Innovation Type||Innovation Subtype||Features at a Glance||Strategy Summary|
|North Carolina Early Childhood Integrated Data System||Infrastructure Systems||Data Systems||
Early Childhood Integrated Data System
Created in 2012, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services' North Carolina Early Childhood Integrated Data System(NC ECIDS) is a warehouse for data on education, health, and social services provided to children from birth to age 5. The warehouse, which began as a federated system (i.e., a data sharing system that does not consolidate all data in one warehouse), integrates demographic, program, and individual data on education, health, and social services to children birth to age 5 (e.g., data from NC Pre-K, Child Care Financial Assistance, NC Infant Toddler Program, Food and Nutrition Services, Child Protective Services, Work First Family Assistance, Head Start, Preschool Exceptional Children's Program, etc.). NC ECIDS provides individual data using unique identifiers to agencies or to qualified researchers or institutions that have requested data. It also provides public demographic and program data on the state’s Early Childhood Data Dashboards by program, fiscal year, gender, race, ethnicity, age, and county. NC ECIDS supports the state’s P-20 longitudinal data system.
The system has received federal funds from the Race to the Top–Early Learning Challenge Grant and Preschool Development Grant Birth Through 5 (PDG- B-5).Learn More: North Carolina Early Childhood Integrated Data System
|North Carolina Education Lottery Fund||Dedicated Funding Streams||Lottery Revenue||
In fiscal year 2022, the lottery contributed $69 million to support pre-K
In 2006, the North Carolina State Lottery was established and signed into law by the state legislature. The lottery proceeds include an Education Lottery Fund (about 20% of the overall proceeds), a portion of which is dedicated to Pre-K. In fiscal year 2022, 7.4% of lottery revenue, or just under $69 million, was directed toward funding preschool in the state.Learn More: North Carolina Education Lottery
Source: North Carolina Education Lottery. (2022). History of Lottery Fund Assignment.
|Infant-Toddler Educator AWARD$ Plus||Workforce||Bonuses and Supplemental Pay Professional Learning||
$600 to $4,000 per educator per year, with an average supplement of $2,576
North Carolina’s Infant-Toddler Educator AWARD$ Plus program provides supplemental pay to infant-toddler educators based on their education level and commitment to their early education program. This program is designed to retain and support the professional development of early childhood educators; in turn, this creates a more stable workforce with the skills needed to support young children's healthy learning and development. It also responds to inequities within the early education system, where infant and toddler teachers typically receive less financial and professional support than their colleagues who work with older children. Bonuses range from $600 to $4,000 per educator per year, with an average payment of $2,576. Amounts increase as educators obtain more formal education, and educators must remain in their early education program for at least six months to qualify for an award. In FY22, Infant-Toddler Educator AWARD$ Plus North Carolina provided supplements to 1,337 educators; turnover among recipients was 16%, which is lower than the estimated 26-40% turnover rate among educators in licensed child care programs nationwide.Learn More: Infant-Toddler Educator AWARD$ Plus
Child Care Services Association. (n.d.). Infant-Toddler Educator AWARD$ Plus.
|Child Care WAGE$ North Carolina||Workforce||Bonuses and Supplemental Pay Professional Learning||
$450 to $6,250 per educator per year, with an average supplement of $2,406
Child Care WAGE$ North Carolina provides supplemental pay to early childhood educators based on their education level and commitment to their early education program. WAGE$ is designed to retain early childhood educators and support their professional development; in turn, this creates a more stable workforce with the skills needed to support young children's healthy learning and development. Bonuses range from $450 to $6,250 per educator per year, with an average payment of $2,406. Amounts increase as educators obtain more formal education, and educators must remain in their early education program for at least six months to qualify for an award. In FY22, Child Care WAGE$ North Carolina provided supplements to 4,018 early educators; turnover among recipients was 14%, which is lower than the estimated 26-40% turnover rate among educators in licensed child care programs nationwide.
This program is part of the national Child Care WAGE$ project and is available in many counties across the state.Learn More: Child Care WAGE$®
Child Care Services Association. (n.d.). Child Care WAGE$ Results.
Demographics Link copied!
10,698,973 Source U.S. Census, 2022
33.3% Source U.S. Census, 2020
66.7% Source U.S. Census, 2020
Number of children age 0-4
589,463 Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
Poverty levels – children 0-8 below 200% poverty
43% Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
Median family income among households with children
$77,500.00 Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
3.9% Source U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, December 2022
Unemployment rate of parents
3% Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
Children under age 6 with all available parents in the labor force
66% Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
Children living in households with a high housing cost burden
25% Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
Child population by race and ethnicity Source KIDS COUNT, 2021
Race and Ethnicity
- American Indian and Alaska Native (1%)
- Asian (4%)
- Black or African American (22%)
- Hispanic or Latino (17%)
- Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander (.5%)
- Two or More Races (5%)
- White, not Hispanic or Latino (51%)
Political Landscape Link copied!
Early Childhood Education Programs Link copied!
Percent of 3-Year-Old Children Enrolled in Public Early Childhood Education Programs Source: NIEER 2023
- 3-year-old children enrolled in state-funded public pre-K (0%)
- 3-year-old children enrolled in Head Start (6%)
- Other/none (94%)
Percent of 4-Year-Old Children Enrolled in Public Early Childhood Education Programs Source: NIEER 2023
- 4-year-old children enrolled in state-funded public pre-K (19%)
- 4-year-old children enrolled in Head Start (5%)
- Other/none (76%)
Workforce Link copied!
2017–2019 Median Hourly Wages Source CSCCE 2018, 2020
- Child care workers
- Preschool teachers
- Preschool or child care center directors
Funding Sources Link copied!
Federal and State Early Childhood Education Funding (in millions) Source First Five Years Fund, 2022
- Head Start and Early Head Start Funding ($229.3)
- CCDBG & Mandatory Funds ($310.3)
- CCDBG State Match ($18.6)
- CCDBG COVID Relief Allocations – CARES, CRRSE, ARPA (CCDF & Stabilization) ($1800)
- State-Funded Pre-K ($185.4)
- MIECHV ($3.7)
- IDEA Part C ($20.4)
- IDEA Part B, Sec 619 ($17.9)
- TANF Early Learning and Care Expenditures ($318.5)
- Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five ($17.4)
The COVID Funding Cliff
All federal COVID relief allocations, including funding authorized by the CARES, CRRSE, and ARPA bills, must be fully spent by September 2024. An analysis from the Century Foundation shows this loss of funds could cause more than 3 million children to lose access to child care nationwide – including more than 155,000 children in North Carolina.