Measuring Costs to Support Quality in Early Care and Education Centers

Measuring Costs to Support Quality in Early Care and Education Centers

OPRE Brief #2022-20
Published: Jan 31, 2022
Publisher: Washington, DC: Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, US. Department of Health and Human Services
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Associated Project

Assessing the Implementation and Cost of High Quality Early Care and Education (ICHQ)

Time frame: 2014-2022

Prepared for:

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation

Clients
OPRE Logo
Authors

Theresa Schulte Neelan

Key Findings

ICHQ cost measures are built from data collected from 25 ECE centers in three states that varied in the following characteristics:

  • Licensed capacity (a proxy for size)
  • Ages of children served
  • Funding sources
  • Profit status
  • Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) ratings

This brief, part of a series of research briefs presenting findings from a multi-case study, focuses on the cost measures. The multi-case study helped us develop draft measures and explore how well they are working to summarize implementation, estimate costs, and identify ways centers can achieve quality. The multi-case study included 30 ECE centers, 25 of which completed all the cost data collection. The measures are being further tested and validated in a field test with a larger sample of centers in 2021.

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