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Journal Issue: Financing Child Care Volume 6 Number 2 Summer/Fall 1996

A Brief History of Federal Financing for Child Care in the United States
Abby J. Cohen

Summary

Over the past 60 years, the federal government has provided funding for child care and early education programs in fits and starts. Funding has fluctuated in amount and purpose, with the result that today's child care financing system is a confused collection of funding streams with no uniform goals, standards, or administrative structure. This article traces the history of federal funding for child care and early education programs in the United States and examines how the values of American society have shaped the federal funding of child care and early education services.