Washington, DC

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Strategy Name Strategy Type(s) Year Funding Amount Funding Source Features at a Glance
HealthCare4ChildCare
In 2022, the Washington DC City Council established the Early Childhood Educator Pay Equity Fund, which seeks to create pay parity between community-based early educators and their counterparts in the DC Public Schools. Pay Equity Fund dollars that are not going to wage increases are being used to fund free or reduced health insurance premiums for early educators working in the District. If licensed child development facilities opt to participate in the HealthCare4ChildCare program, their employees will qualify for free health insurance premiums for themselves and their dependents, as long as they are DC residents. Employees who are not DC residents will be able to take advantage of reduced premiums. Learn more: D.C. Continues to Make Strides Towards Compensation Equity Sources:Hsu, N. (2022). D.C. Continues to Make Strides Towards Compensation Equity. New America.DC Health Link. (n.d.). HealthCare4ChildCare Through DC Health Link.
  • Workforce
    • Benefits
    2022
    State Dedicated Funding Stream
    Health care coverage with free or reduced monthly premiums
    In 2022, the Washington DC City Council established the Early Childhood Educator Pay Equity Fund, which seeks to create pay parity between community-based early educators and their counterparts in the DC Public Schools. Pay Equity Fund dollars that are not going to wage increases are being used to fund free or reduced health insurance premiums for early educators working in the District. If licensed child development facilities opt to participate in the HealthCare4ChildCare program, their employees will qualify for free health insurance premiums for themselves and their dependents, as long as they are DC residents. Employees who are not DC residents will be able to take advantage of reduced premiums. Learn more: D.C. Continues to Make Strides Towards Compensation Equity Sources:Hsu, N. (2022). D.C. Continues to Make Strides Towards Compensation Equity. New America.DC Health Link. (n.d.). HealthCare4ChildCare Through DC Health Link.
    Early Childhood Educator Pay Equity Fund
    In 2022, the Washington DC City Council authorized the Office of the State Superintendent of Education to disburse funds that would create pay parity between community-based early educators and educators teaching in the DC Public Schools. In its first phase, the fund is disbursing quarterly payments to close the gap between an educator's current salary and a starting public-school salary. The amount depends on educators’ roles (lead vs. assistant teacher) and whether they work full or part time. Educators are eligible for payments in the following amounts:
    • Full-time lead teacher: $14,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
    • Part-time lead teacher: $7,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
    • Full-time assistant teacher: $10,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
    • Part-time assistant teacher: $5,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
    In the initiative's second phase, which is expected to begin in late 2023, educators will be paid according to a salary scale or adjusted base amount for reimbursement to programs. Educators who serve children from low-income families will receive higher payments. Education levels will also be used to determine payment amounts. This program is funded through a city tax on high-earning individuals. learn more: early childhood educator pay equity fund Sources:DC Office of the State Superintendent of Education. (n.d.). Early Childhood Educator Pay Equity Fund DC City Council. (2022). Final Report of the Early Childhood Educator Equitable Compensation Task Force. Berman, E. (2023). D.C. Is Giving Preschool Teachers A Pay Bump. Here’s How It’s Making A Difference To Them. DCist. Greenberg, E., Nelson, V., Doromal, J. B., Sandstrom, J., Bose, S., & Lauderback, E. (2023, June). Toward Pay Equity A Case Study of Washington, DC’s Wage Boost for Early Childhood Educators. Urban Institute.
    • Workforce
      • Pay Increases
        • Pay Scales and Parity
        $80 million total in 2022 and 2023 2022
        State Dedicated Funding Stream
        $5,000 – $14,000, depending on role and hours worked
        In 2022, the Washington DC City Council authorized the Office of the State Superintendent of Education to disburse funds that would create pay parity between community-based early educators and educators teaching in the DC Public Schools. In its first phase, the fund is disbursing quarterly payments to close the gap between an educator's current salary and a starting public-school salary. The amount depends on educators’ roles (lead vs. assistant teacher) and whether they work full or part time. Educators are eligible for payments in the following amounts:
        • Full-time lead teacher: $14,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
        • Part-time lead teacher: $7,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
        • Full-time assistant teacher: $10,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
        • Part-time assistant teacher: $5,000 per year, disbursed quarterly
        In the initiative's second phase, which is expected to begin in late 2023, educators will be paid according to a salary scale or adjusted base amount for reimbursement to programs. Educators who serve children from low-income families will receive higher payments. Education levels will also be used to determine payment amounts. This program is funded through a city tax on high-earning individuals. learn more: early childhood educator pay equity fund Sources:DC Office of the State Superintendent of Education. (n.d.). Early Childhood Educator Pay Equity Fund DC City Council. (2022). Final Report of the Early Childhood Educator Equitable Compensation Task Force. Berman, E. (2023). D.C. Is Giving Preschool Teachers A Pay Bump. Here’s How It’s Making A Difference To Them. DCist. Greenberg, E., Nelson, V., Doromal, J. B., Sandstrom, J., Bose, S., & Lauderback, E. (2023, June). Toward Pay Equity A Case Study of Washington, DC’s Wage Boost for Early Childhood Educators. Urban Institute.
        DC Cost Estimation Model
        Since 2015, to establish subsidy payment rates, Washington, DC, has been using an alternative methodology that was developed in collaboration with early childhood finance experts. The city’s flexible financial model incorporates a variety of assumptions and data inputs to calculate the estimated cost of delivering services at each level of the District's Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) in centers and home-based settings, and under a variety of operating scenarios. Learn More: modeling the cost of child care in the district of columbia 2021 Source: Child Care and Development Fund Plan for the District of Columbia (2021)
        • Cost Estimation and Subsidy Rates
          • Cost Estimation Model
          2015
          DC uses a cost estimation model as part of its 2022-2024 Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) State Plan
          Since 2015, to establish subsidy payment rates, Washington, DC, has been using an alternative methodology that was developed in collaboration with early childhood finance experts. The city’s flexible financial model incorporates a variety of assumptions and data inputs to calculate the estimated cost of delivering services at each level of the District's Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) in centers and home-based settings, and under a variety of operating scenarios. Learn More: modeling the cost of child care in the district of columbia 2021 Source: Child Care and Development Fund Plan for the District of Columbia (2021)
          DC Pre-Kindergarten
          Washington, DC’s Universal Pre-K program began in the 1960s and significantly expanded after the 2008 Pre-K Enhancement and Expansion Amendment Act (Pre-K Act). In 2022, 83% of the District’s population of 4-year-olds were enrolled in Universal Pre-K classrooms. DC’s universal program is made accessible through a mixed-delivery model, which includes classrooms in the DC Public Schools, public charter schools, and in community-based child care organizations. Today, the District has the highest percentage of both 3- and 4-year-olds served by a state-run program in the entire United States. The program is overseen by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE). Learn More: DC Pre-Kindergarten Sources: District of Columbia Public Schools. (2022). Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten Enrollment, Promotions, and Retentions Frequently Asked Questions for Parents and Guardians District of Columbia Public Schools. (n.d.). Early Learning National Institute for Early Education Research. (2022). District of Columbia
          • Expansion
            • Public Pre-K
              • Universal Pre-K Policy (3-Year-Olds)
                • Universal Pre-K Policy (4-Year-Olds)
                  • More Than 60% of Children Served (3-Year-Olds)
                    • More Than 60% of Children Served (4-Year-Olds)
                  2008
                  • Head Start and Early Head Start Funding
                  • CCDBG & Mandatory Funds
                  • TANF Early Learning and Care
                  • Percentage of 4-year-olds enrolled (as of 2022): 83%
                  • Percentage of 3-year-olds enrolled (as of 2022): 69%
                  • Hours of operation: 6.5 hrs/day; 5 days/wk
                  Washington, DC’s Universal Pre-K program began in the 1960s and significantly expanded after the 2008 Pre-K Enhancement and Expansion Amendment Act (Pre-K Act). In 2022, 83% of the District’s population of 4-year-olds were enrolled in Universal Pre-K classrooms. DC’s universal program is made accessible through a mixed-delivery model, which includes classrooms in the DC Public Schools, public charter schools, and in community-based child care organizations. Today, the District has the highest percentage of both 3- and 4-year-olds served by a state-run program in the entire United States. The program is overseen by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE). Learn More: DC Pre-Kindergarten Sources: District of Columbia Public Schools. (2022). Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten Enrollment, Promotions, and Retentions Frequently Asked Questions for Parents and Guardians District of Columbia Public Schools. (n.d.). Early Learning National Institute for Early Education Research. (2022). District of Columbia
                  DC Statewide Longitudinal Education Data System
                  The Washington, DC, Office of the State Superintendent of Education’s DC Statewide Longitudinal Education Data System includes public and private early learning programs. The system functions as a warehouse of data that provides demographic, program, and individual data across agencies, spanning early childhood to the workforce. The individual data is deidentified with a unique identifier. The system provides public and private portals for data. The system is funded by federal Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems grants. Learn More/source: DC Statewide Longitudinal Education Data (SLED)
                  • Infrastructure to Support Early Childhood Systems
                    • Data Systems
                    Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems Grants
                    P-20 Longitudinal Data System
                    The Washington, DC, Office of the State Superintendent of Education’s DC Statewide Longitudinal Education Data System includes public and private early learning programs. The system functions as a warehouse of data that provides demographic, program, and individual data across agencies, spanning early childhood to the workforce. The individual data is deidentified with a unique identifier. The system provides public and private portals for data. The system is funded by federal Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems grants. Learn More/source: DC Statewide Longitudinal Education Data (SLED)
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                    Demographics Link copied!

                    Demographics Data Scorecard

                    State population

                    671,803 Source U.S. Census, 2022

                    Rural %

                    0.0% Source U.S. Census, 2020

                    Urban %

                    100.0% Source U.S. Census, 2020

                    Number of children 0–4

                    40,759 Source KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Poverty levels - children 0—8 below 200% poverty

                    Not Available Source KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Median family income among households with children

                    $132,700.00 Source KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Unemployment rate

                    4.7% Source U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, December 2022

                    Unemployment rate of parents

                    6% Source KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Children under age 6 with all available parents in the labor force

                    Not Available For most states, this figure is between 65 and 75% KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Children living in households with a high housing cost burden

                    31% Source KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Child Population by Race and Ethnicity Source KIDS COUNT, 2021

                    Race and Ethnicity

                    • American Indian and Alaska Native (.49%)
                    • Asian (3%)
                    • Black or African American (52%)
                    • Hispanic or Latino (17%)
                    • Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander (.49%)
                    • Two or more races (4%)
                    • White, not Hispanic or Latino (24%)
                    Year 2023 2022 2021 2020 2019
                    Mayoral Control D D D D D

                    Early Childhood Education Programs Link copied!

                    Early Childhood Education Programs

                    Public Pre-K Program Name

                    Universal Pre-K Program Source: NIEER 2023

                    Universal or Targeted Pre-K Policy

                    Universal Pre-K Policy (3- and 4-Year-Olds) Source: NIEER 2023

                    Early Childhood Education Programs (3-Year-Olds) Source: NIEER 2023

                    Programs

                    • Percent of 3-Year-Old Children Enrolled in Public Early Childhood Education Programs (69%)
                    • 3-Year-old Children Enrolled in Head Start (1%)
                    • Other/None (30%)

                    Early Childhood Education Programs (4-Year-Olds) Source: NIEER 2023

                    Programs

                    • Percent of 4-Year-Old Children Enrolled in Public Early Childhood Education Programs (83%)
                    • 4-Year-old Children Enrolled in Head Start (1%)
                    • Other/None (16%)

                    Workforce Link copied!

                    Role

                    • Child Care Workers
                      $14.99 (2017, adjusted)
                      $15.36 (2019)
                    • Preschool Teachers
                      $18.85 (2017, adjusted)
                      $18.30 (2019)
                    • 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

                    Funding Source

                    • Head Start and Early Head Start Funding ($36.8)
                    • CCDBG & Mandatory Funds ($17.1)
                    • CCDBG State Match ($1.0)
                    • CCDBG COVID Relief Allocations - CARES, CRRSE, ARPA (CCDF & Stabilization) ($87.3)
                    • State-Funded Pre-K ($248.5)
                    • MIECHV ($1.6)
                    • IDEA Part C ($3.6)
                    • IDEA Part B, Sec 619 ($0.4)
                    • TANF Early Learning and Care ($37.4)