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Noting that one of the objectives of the Learning between Systems project was to design family loan programs as a potential form of financing to help families pay for early care and education, two studies examined the feasibility of such loan programs. First, focus groups were conducted in five American cities, wherein parents were asked to comment on the feasibility of adapting higher education finance approaches to early care and education; they were also asked to react to a plan that would increase the quality and price of early care and education and offer new loan programs to assist families in meeting expenses. Second, U.S. Census Bureau data on incomes and characteristics of families with children were analyzed to determine how much a family might reasonably afford to borrow under various circumstances. Focus group findings indicated that parents agreed unanimously that loans for early care and education currently were both infeasible and unnecessary. Most parents saw their child's level of care as adequate and viewed additional early care and education expenses as unnecessary when compared to higher education expenses. Findings from the Census Bureau analysis indicated that it would be very difficult for many families to rely on loan programs to help cover early care and education expenses. It was concluded that using long-term, low-interest loans to help parents pay for early care and education represents a viable strategy for only a very limited number of families with young children, with those families with incomes between $60,000 and $100,000 most likely to benefit. (Questions and loan scenarios used in the focus groups are appended.) (KB)

Descriptors: Day Care, Early Childhood Education, Family Financial Resources, Financial Aid Applicants, Financial Support, Focus Groups, Parent Attitudes, Student Financial Aid

Lumina Foundation for Education, P.O. Box 7039, Indianapolis, IN 46207-7039. Tel: 800-834-5756 (Toll Free). For full text: http://www.luminafoundation.org./Publications/research.shtm.









Autor: Davis, Jerry S.; Wohlford, Jill K.

Fuente: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=6878&id=ED456899



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