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Making Pre-kindergarten Work for Low-income Working Families

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As of 2006, 38 states and the District of Columbia had pre-kindergarten programs, which vary considerably in their design. While low-income children stand to gain the most from early care and education initiatives, working families may not be able to access programs that are not responsive to their needs. This paper discusses research supporting the need to review initiatives to ensure maximum access for children in working families, especially low-income children; highlights key strategies to address the needs of low-income working families; and examines the extent to which state pre-kindergarten policies currently do so.

This paper is based on research conducted for the CLASP report All Together Now: State Experiences in Using Community-based Child Care to Provide Pre-Kindergarten.