The COVID-19 pandemic continues to highlight the fragility of Nebraska’s early childhood system. Generating adequate funding to support programs is challenging but essential to keeping Nebraskans working and businesses thriving. While federal emergency funds have helped stabilize the system, these funds are only temporary. It’s important that Nebraska localities explore new initiatives to generate dedicated funding for early childhood.
First Five Nebraska partnered with the Children’s Funding Project on “Innovative Financing Solutions to Expand Quality Early Care and Education in Nebraska.” The report offers examples of financing models Nebraska stakeholders can explore to generate funding to improve quality, access and equity in early childhood programs. These include methods that require state action and partnerships and those that require private/non-governmental partnerships.
While no single financing model can fully fund Nebraska’s child care system, the report outlines new models to spark coordination and effort to build an accessible, equitable, high-quality child care infrastructure statewide.