September 13, 2021
The Honorable Tammy Duckworth
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510
Re: Child Care Access Means Parents in School Reauthorization Act
Dear Senator Duckworth:
As organizations committed to promoting the success of college students with dependent children, we are writing to express our strong support for legislation to reauthorize the Child Care Access Means Parents in Schools (CCAMPIS) program (S.2625). The CCAMPIS program provides vital support for the participation and success of low-income parents in postsecondary education through the provision of campus-based child care, which is widely recognized as one of the most important supports for parenting college students.
Parents of dependent children make up nearly one-quarter (22 percent or nearly four million) of U.S. undergraduate students and over half of these parents have children under age six. The COVID-19 pandemic has put into stark relief the challenges that these student parents face. Most student parents are balancing child care, academics, one or more jobs, and precarious finances. Recent data from the 2020 Gallup-Lumina Student Study demonstrate that student parents have been more likely to cancel or pause their educational journeys in the last six months than students without children. Child care was the most common reason that student parents named for pausing their educational plans.
Despite the large share of college students with children and their need for child care, however, campus-based child care has been declining in recent years, most dramatically at community colleges where the largest numbers of student parents are enrolled. The child care crisis triggered by the pandemic has only exacerbated the strain on the campus child care sector. As student parents go back to on-campus learning, their need for affordable child care has never been greater.
The CCAMPIS program is the ONLY federal program dedicated specifically to providing child care assistance for students with low incomes in postsecondary settings. It helps meet the high demand for low-cost child care, enabling student parents to persist in and complete postsecondary credentials, which are critical to their families’ economic well-being. As it stands, the CCAMPIS program supports a small fraction of students’ need for affordable child care. Increasing its funding to $500 million would allow the program to provide child care support for roughly 100,000 more parenting college students.
For these reasons, we express support for the Child Care Access Means Parents in School Reauthorization Act.
Austin Community College Children's Lab School
Baruch College Early Learning Center, Inc.
Cal Poly Pomona
Center for Child and Family Studies, University of California at Davis
Central Georgia Technical College
Child Care Services Association/T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center
College of the Redwoods
Colorado Center on Law and Policy
CSUSB Infant/Toddler Lab School
First Five Years Fund
Georgia Budget and Policy Institute
Higher Learning Advocates
Institute for Childhood Preparedness
Institute for Women’s Policy Research
Joliet Junior College
LA Valley College
Lane Community College
Larissa Mercado-Lopez, Professor, California State University, Fresno