National Early Care & Education Workforce Center (ECE Workforce Center)

In February 2023, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), announced the launch of a first-of-its-kind early childhood education workforce center. [Administration for Children & Families]

The National Early Care and Education Workforce Center (ECE Workforce Center) is the result of a $30 million investment to improve the recruitment and retention of diverse and qualified early care and childhood professionals. [EdSurge]

The ECE Workforce Center will focus on improving working conditions for early care and education professionals, increasing overall compensation, and building a talent pipeline for future educators. [EdSurge]

ECE professionals, who are overwhelmingly women and disproportionately women of color and immigrants, are among the lowest paid workers in the country and often live in poverty despite having a highly specialized skillset. [Administration for Children & Families]

Since 2020, the child care sector lost over 80,000 jobs. Many organizations that provide ECE services say it is difficult to fill vacancies, resulting fewer opportunities for children to attend preschool. [Administration for Children & Families]

Child Trends, a nonprofit research organization focused on children and families, will lead the ECE Workforce Center in partnership with other organizations committed to the improvement of the ECE workforce. [EdSurge]   The ECE Workforce Center’s research and technical assistance activities will work together to: 1) build a career pipeline for the early care and education workforce, including support for pursuing credentials and degrees while maintaining the strong diversity of the early childhood sector; and 2) identify and implement sustainable approaches to increase compensation and benefits.

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