Tag Archives: child care centers

Five Facts about Young Children in Montgomery County, Maryland

image - boy building with blocksAs Montgomery County and the nation celebrate the Week of the Young Child, here are some facts about the County’s young children and their families.

  1.  There are over 66,000 young children under age 5 in Montgomery County.
  2. The number of families with young children in the County is growing. The number of families with children under age 6 in Montgomery County grew by 11% between 2000 and 2010, from 27,701 families to 30,680 families.
  3. Child care is a major expense for families.  The average weekly cost of full-time child care for an infant in Montgomery County is $348.00.  The average weekly cost of full-time child care for a preschooler in Montgomery County is $259.00.
  4. Child care costs represent 21% of an average family’s budget in Montgomery County.  This estimate of average family expenses is based on a family of four with an average family income within the County.  It includes the average cost in Montgomery County for full-time infant care in a family child care home ($12,452), and the average cost for full-time child care for a preschooler in a child care center ($13,451), totaling nearly $26,000 in average annual child care costs for two young children.Child Care Costs - Chart
  5. Although Montgomery County is relatively affluent, 9.7% of the County’s children live in families with incomes below the poverty level. There were 23,094 children under age 18 in poverty in the County, according to 2013 Census estimates.


The Annie E Casey Foundation. (2015). KIDS COUNT Data Center.  [Selected KIDS COUNT Indicators for Montgomery County, Maryland.]

Maryland Family Network. (2015). Child Care Demographics 2015.

For additional detail on data sources, see PDF version of this post with endnotes.




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Filed under census data, early childhood education, KIDS COUNT data, Maryland, Montgomery County

QRIS Status in the States: 37 States and DC Have Statewide Systems

The QRIS National Learning Network has a handy map showing QRIS status in the states, updated May 2013.  This map shows that:

  • 37 states and the District of Columbia have launched a statewide QRIS;
  • 2 states (California and Florida) have regional QRIS;
  • 3 states (Virginia, New Jersey, and Hawaii) have a QRIS pilot program launched or completed;
  • 1 state (Missouri) requires legislation to implement a QRIS; and
  • 7 states (Alaska, Connecticut, South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, Alabama, and West Virginia) are planning a QRIS.

Quality Rating and Improvement Systems have made great strides in the past few years; estimates from even two years ago indicated that approximately half of states had a QRIS in place.

Quality Rating and Improvement Systems provide ratings of the quality of early childhood education programs, so parents, child care providers and the state will know the level of quality of a given program.  Rating systems typically use star ratings, ranging from one to four or five stars, not unlike hotel or restaurant ratings.  The criteria used for different ratings levels are far more substantive than satisfaction ratings, generally based on research evidence and professional practice for program quality in the early childhood education field (here is a fuller definition of Quality Rating and Improvement Systems).

QRIS is a major strategy being used by states to provide better information to parents, and to incentivize providers to improve their quality, often for enhanced funding. States vary in whether QRIS participation is voluntary or required for programs, and in the range of early education programs participating (child care centers, family child care providers, pre-k and Head Start).

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Filed under early childhood education, Early Ed Quality, state policy