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S. 294 (112th): Foundations for Success Act of 2011

The text of the bill below is as of Feb 7, 2011 (Introduced).

II

112th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 294

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

February 7, 2011

introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions

A BILL

To enhance early care and education.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Foundations for Success Act of 2011.

2.

Findings

Congress finds the following:

(1)

The United States ranks 17th in reading, 31st in mathematics, 23rd in science, and 18th in overall secondary education out of 36 developed nations, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

(2)

According to data compiled by the OECD, in 2008 the United States had a child poverty rate of 20.6 percent, which is the 4th highest child poverty rate of the 30 OECD countries that are ranked in this category.

(3)

Research conducted by the UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre supports a direct link between accessible, affordable child care and a decrease in child poverty.

(4)

According to the National Center for Children in Poverty—

(A)

at age 4, children who live below the poverty line are 18 months below normal learning achievement for their age group, by age 10 that gap is still present, and for children living in the poorest families, the gap is even larger; and

(B)

by the time children from middle-income families with well-educated parents are in 3rd grade, these children know about 12,000 words, while 3rd grade children from low-income families, with undereducated parents who don’t talk to them as much, have vocabularies of around 4,000 words, 1/3 as many words as their middle-income peers.

(5)

According to the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies—

(A)

since 2000, the cost of child care has increased twice as fast as the median income of families with children;

(B)

in 40 States, the average annual cost for center-based care for an infant was higher than the cost of 1 year of tuition and related fees at a 4-year public institution of higher education; and

(C)

the average annual cost of center-based care for a 4-year old is 40 percent of the income of a 2-parent family living at the poverty level ($18,310), while the average cost for center-based care is almost 25 percent of income for families living at 200 percent of the poverty level ($36,620).

(6)

The Department of Health and Human Services estimates that only 17 percent of eligible children receive fee assistance for child care expenses through the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 9858 et seq.).

(7)

According to pre[k]now, a campaign of the Pew Center on the States,—

(A)

only 13 States and the District of Columbia require school districts to offer full-day kindergarten;

(B)

only 3 States currently make prekindergarten available to all 4-year olds, and State-funded prekindergarten programs currently serve 3.7 percent of 3-year olds; and

(C)

Head Start programs serve less than half of the children who are eligible for early care and education under the Head Start program.

(8)

According to RESULTS Educational Fund, Early Head Start serves less than 3 percent of children who are eligible for early care and education under the Early Head Start program.

(9)

According to the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies, each day, more than 11,000,000 children under the age of 5 spend time outside the care of their parents in early learning settings that vary greatly in terms of quality.

(10)

The National Economic Development and Law Center reports that—

(A)

child care breakdowns lead to employee absences that cost businesses in the United States $3,000,000,000 annually;

(B)

in the United States, 58 percent of women with children under the age of 6 participate in the labor force;

(C)

29 percent of employed parents experienced some kind of child care breakdown in the past 3 months, and such child care breakdowns were associated with absenteeism, tardiness, and reduced concentration at work; and

(D)

a 1996 General Accounting Office (GAO) report indicates that a lack of adequate child care affects the ability of clients of job training programs to complete job training successfully.

(11)

A 2010 study conducted by the Education International ECE Task Force reports that—

(A)

in 2006, the total Federal expenditure on child care for children ages 0 through 5 was $20,400,000,000, which amounted to 0.2 percent of GDP;

(B)

Federal funding is largely targeted at children with disabilities and children from low-income families;

(C)

the Federal Government underwrites 25 percent of the costs of child care, State and local government underwrites 15 percent of the costs of child care, and parents pay the remaining 60 percent of child care costs;

(D)

on average, low-income families pay 18 percent of their total family income for each child who is enrolled in child care; and

(E)

although low-income families can benefit from free subsidies through the Child Care and Development Fund, many low-income families make use of informal, unregulated arrangements for child care.

(12)

After adjusting for inflation, in recent years, State funding for early care and education programs has declined in 24 of the 38 States that have such programs.

(13)

The average annual cost per child of Head Start or similar programs is $7,028, and the average cost of a high quality comprehensive, full-day, full-year, early child care and education program is $13,009, while the average cost per year to house a prisoner is $22,650.

(14)

Based on the work of James J. Heckman, the Henry Schultz Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago and director of the Economics Research Center and the Center for Social Program Evaluation at the Harris School for Public Policy—

(A)

investments in early care and education promote schooling, reduce crime, foster workforce productivity, promote health through several channels, and reduce teenage pregnancy;

(B)

the rate of return for investing in early childhood programs is in the range of 6 to 10 percent;

(C)

districts can anticipate savings from decreased grade retention and special education placements, improved graduation rates, and greater success in institutions of higher education and adulthood;

(D)

remedial programs cost more to produce the same level of skill attainment as early care and education programs;

(E)

of those students retained at the same grade level more than once, 80 percent dropped out of school, and of those retained at the same grade level in both elementary and middle school, 94 percent dropped out of school;

(F)

school dropouts are 8 times more likely to be incarcerated, 82 percent of incarcerated individuals are high school dropouts, and the United States has the highest prison population in the world (748 incarcerated individuals per 100,000 people) (International Center for Prison Studies at King's College London);

(G)

family environments of young children are major predictors of cognitive and socioemotional abilities, as well as a variety of outcomes, such as crime and health;

(H)

family environments in the United States have deteriorated over the past 40 years;

(I)

a greater proportion of children are being born into disadvantaged families, including minorities and immigrant groups; and

(J)

disadvantaged families are least likely to have the economic and social resources to provide the early developmental experience that every child needs as a basic opportunity for future success in school, higher education, career, and life.

(15)

It is the Government’s moral, ethical, and fiscal responsibility to offer the option to parents of a high quality early care and education program for their young children that promotes self-development, academic achievement, and active engagement in learning for all children.

(16)

Providing children with universal access to early care and education programs shall—

(A)

promote continuity of care;

(B)

support whole-child development, parent employment, and economic development;

(C)

strengthen program alignment and accountability; and

(D)

improve coordination across all State and Federal services that provide for the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional needs of the child.

3.

Purpose and Model

(a)

Purpose

The purpose of this Act is to provide grants, on a competitive basis, to States to enable such States to establish a State Early Care and Education System, which will provide all children in the State, ages 6 weeks to kindergarten, with access to a full-time, high quality, developmentally appropriate, early care and education program in order to—

(1)

support the needs of working families in the United States, and those families unable to afford access to high quality early care and education programs that provide comprehensive child and family-focused services designed to foster the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional needs of children; and

(2)

ensure that all children are prepared to enter kindergarten ready to learn and reach their maximum potential.

(b)

Model for National Implementation

(1)

In General

The 10 States that are awarded grants under section 4(a)(1) shall serve as a model for national implementation, demonstrating the development of successful, evidence-based, statewide, universal access, Early Care and Education Systems.

(2)

Long Term Goal

The long term goal is for every State to receive the information and funding needed to redesign early care and education programs serving children from birth through age 6 into a comprehensive and viable statewide system that provides universal access to high quality early care and education programs.

4.

Grant Program

(a)

Program Authorized

(1)

Phase 1

The Secretary of Education, in coordination with the Assistant Secretary of the Administration for Children and Families of the Department of Health and Human Services, (referred to in this Act as the Secretaries) shall award a grant to 10 States, through a competitive grant process, to enable each State to establish and support an Early Care and Education System, which shall—

(A)

provide all State residents with the opportunity to enroll children, ages 6 weeks to kindergarten, in an early care and education program on a full time basis;

(B)

provide access to an early care and education program that gives each child an opportunity to develop physical, social, and emotional skills; and

(C)

improve school readiness by contributing to the cognitive development, character skills, and physical development of each child.

(2)

Phase 2

(A)

In General

The Secretaries shall, beginning 3 years after the date of enactment of this Act, award grants to additional States through the same process, for the same purpose, and with the same specifications as the grants described in paragraph (1).

(B)

Grants per year

The Secretaries shall determine the number of States that will be eligible to receive a grant under this paragraph for each year, and the Secretaries shall continue to make grants available under this paragraph until each State has had an opportunity to receive grant funding under this Act.

(b)

Duration

A grant awarded under this Act shall be for a period of 10 years.

5.

Applications

(a)

In General

To be eligible to receive a grant under this Act, a State shall submit an application to the Secretaries at such time, in such manner, and containing such information as the Secretaries may require.

(b)

Contents of Application

At a minimum, the application described in subsection (a) shall include the following:

(1)

An assurance that the State has an active State Early Childhood Advisory Council, which shall—

(A)

serve as the designated entity in accordance with section 7(a); or

(B)

advise, and coordinate with, the designated entity described in section 7(a).

(2)

A reflection of any active partnerships with, or resource commitments from, other agencies or entities that are necessary to deliver the programs and services outlined in the application.

(3)

An assurance that the State has in law, or will have in law within 1 year of receiving notice of a grant award under this Act, a requirement that each school district in the State offer full-day and full-week kindergarten.

(4)

Demonstration of a functioning P20 data system that will include data on children from birth through kindergarten, who are participating in the State Early Care and Education System, for the purpose of creating a longitudinal data system for individual participant tracking.

(5)

An identification of the designated entity that shall be responsible for program development, implementation, and oversight.

(6)

A list of annual program goals for each year of the 10-year grant period, and a timeline that illustrates the projected milestones each year for reaching such program goals, with an emphasis on the first 3 years.

(7)

An assurance that the State will submit annual summary reports that shall include any changes to the timeline described in paragraph (6).

(8)

A grant program budget that includes—

(A)

an annual budget for each year of the grant program, which shall include a detailed narrative of funding received from all sources, including Federal, State, and local contributions, and an explanation of how this money will be leveraged within the grant program;

(B)

by year 6, a consolidation of all funding streams; and

(C)

by year 8, a funding plan for program sustainability, specifically outlining how State and local contributions, as well as a determined amount of Federal funding, will be used to sustain the State Early Care and Education System.

(9)

Strategies for acquiring any additional data needed to develop an accurate budget, representative of total child participation in all early care and education programs provided by the State.

(10)

An outreach plan for increasing awareness of, and enrollment in, the State Early Care and Education System.

(11)

A transportation plan, including an assessment of existing transportation providers and projections for additional transportation providers and vehicles that meet Federal and State safety standards for the transportation of infants and toddlers.

(12)

Cost estimates for the improvement, repair, or expansion of program space and for the creation of additional program space.

(13)

Estimates of the start-up costs of developing new early care and education programs that meet the needs of a population that has, for a variety of documented reasons, no early care and education options in their community.

(14)

A plan for the continuation of services for children transitioning from receiving services under Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1431 et seq.) to receiving services under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1411 et seq.) such that there is no elimination of service, delay, or “dropped” services due to lack of funding or lack of capacity for service providers.

(15)

State child care licensing standards that address, at a minimum,—

(A)

specific staff to child ratios for each age group or level within the program;

(B)

the prevention and control of infectious diseases;

(C)

building and physical premises safety; and

(D)

health and safety training for teaching staff as mandated by State child care licensing agencies.

(16)

For the purpose of estimating enrollment and conducting a needs assessment, information regarding the following data:

(A)

The number of children, by geographic location or district, age 6 weeks through 5 years (including children who miss the cut-off date for public school enrollment in kindergarten due to birth date) who are, as of the time of the application, participating in—

(i)

early childhood development programs through assistance provided under the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 9858 et seq.);

(ii)

early childhood development programs through assistance provided under the State temporary assistance for needy families program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);

(iii)

State-supported early childhood development programs;

(iv)

Part C or Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq.);

(v)

early childhood development programs that receive funding from title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6301 et seq.);

(vi)

tribal early childhood development programs; and

(vii)

early childhood development programs located in public school facilities.

(B)

The number of early care and education programs, and the number of children, disaggregated by age and geographic designation or district, who are enrolled, at the time of the application, in—

(i)

private school early childhood programs;

(ii)

nonprofit early childhood programs;

(iii)

for-profit early childhood programs;

(iv)

Head Start and Early Head Start programs; and

(v)

unlicensed early care and education programs provided for children that are not related to the provider.

(C)

A list of home visitation programs, such as the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Grant Program, including—

(i)

the program goals of each such program; and

(ii)

the number of families, and the number of children, disaggregated by age, who are, at the time of the application—

(I)

participating in each home visitation program; and

(II)

on the waiting list for each home visitation program.

(D)

Staff educational credentials, as described in paragraphs (2) and (10) of section 9(c).

(17)

A transition plan to ensure that kindergarten programs have access to the student records and assessments, from prior enrollment in the State Early Care and Education System, of incoming students.

(18)

A description of parent outreach strategies that kindergarten programs use, at the time of the application, to encourage engagement of parents.

(19)

A plan for a statewide entrance assessment of each child entering kindergarten, which shall be implemented no later than 1 year from the date of receiving notification of a grant awarded under this Act.

(20)

A description of parent education programs for parents of young children, existing at the time of the application, and information regarding the outcomes and success of such programs.

(21)

A requirement that all licensed early care and education programs undergo annual inspections by an entity designated by the State to conduct such inspections.

(22)

A description of a statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System, as described in section 9.

(23)

A financial statement that includes an assessment of resources existing at the time of the application, including Federal, State, local, and private funds that are spent on existing early care and education programs.

(24)

A plan for leveraging Federal, State, and local tax revenue from child care, preschool, and health and nutrition programs, as well as private funds to carry out activities described in this Act. The plan shall include—

(A)

a method, during year 6 of the grant period, for beginning to convert distinct Federal, State, and local funding streams for a range of early child care and education programs into permanent funding streams for the State Early Care and Education System prior to the expiration of the grant;

(B)

a description of the amount that will be generated through existing Federal, State, and local funding; and

(C)

a description of additional Federal funding that the State will need to ensure sustainability of the Early Care and Education System upon completion of the 10-year grant period.

(25)

If a State intends to use a sliding scale mechanism to raise additional revenue, as described in section 10(c), the State shall submit a detailed description of the sliding scale mechanism, including—

(A)

the estimated amount of revenue that the State expects to generate, or the percentage of costs of the Early Care and Education System that the revenue will cover; and

(B)

the structure of the sliding scale, including—

(i)

whether the State will require a parent or legal guardian to contribute based on—

(I)

a percentage of a parent or legal guardian's income;

(II)

a different predetermined amount; or

(III)

an alternative mechanism for calculation;

(ii)

if the sliding scale is structured as described in clause (i)(I), the percentage amounts;

(iii)

demonstrated accommodations for families earning below a set amount;

(iv)

any cap on the amount of contribution; and

(v)

any designated exemptions from contribution.

(26)

Statewide Early Learning Standards for children ages 6 weeks to kindergarten that are aligned with Head Start and Early Head Start child outcome standards in all developmental domains, including learning standards related to—

(A)

literacy;

(B)

language;

(C)

problem solving;

(D)

social development;

(E)

emotional development; and

(F)

physical development.

(c)

Incorporation of Data and Recommendations

Each application submitted under this section shall incorporate data and recommendations provided by—

(1)

the National Center on Child Care Subsidy and Administration and Accountability;

(2)

the National Center on Child Care Quality Improvement Systems;

(3)

the National Center on Child Care Professional Development System and Workforce Initiatives;

(4)

National Health and Safety Performance Standards, Guidelines for Early Care and Education Programs;

(5)

Preventing Childhood Obesity in Early Care and Education Programs;

(6)

Caring for Our Children Standards;

(7)

the Quality Rating and Improvement System Resource Guide and Cost Estimate Model; and

(8)

the Early Childhood Professional Development Systems Toolkit.

6.

Awarding of Grants

In awarding grants under this Act, the Secretaries shall select States that represent a geographic sampling, and shall include a balance of States with rural and urban populations.

7.

Authorized Activities

(a)

Designated Entity

A State that receives a grant under this Act shall designate an entity to be responsible for controlling and directing the development, funding, implementation, and monitoring of the State Early Care and Education System. Designated entities may include the following:

(1)

The State Department of Education.

(2)

An established State Department of Early Childhood Education.

(3)

The State Department of Health or the State Department of Human Services.

(4)

An active State Early Childhood Advisory Council.

(b)

Use of Funds

A State that receives a grant under this Act shall use the grant funds to pay the costs for the start-up and implementation of a State Early Care and Education System, with an emphasis on supporting participating programs in increasing their ratings according to the statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System, as described in section 9, such that the continuous improvement of program quality occurs. A State that receives a grant under this Act may use grant funds for the following activities:

(1)

To pay facility expenses, including building, leasing, or renting space, or remodeling facilities to accommodate infants, toddlers, and other preschool age children. Such facilities may be in public schools, charter schools, or State or federally funded program spaces.

(2)

To pay administrative expenses, including administrator and teaching staff salaries.

(3)

To develop and implement Statewide Early Learning Standards, as described in section 5(b)(26), for the early care and education of children ages 6 weeks through kindergarten.

(4)

To develop, implement, and assess curriculum.

(5)

To provide equipment and materials that promote the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional development of children.

(6)

For professional development, including the provision of scholarship and grant opportunities to assist early care and education teaching staff to meet qualification standards established by the State.

(7)

To coordinate with local health care providers for the provision of comprehensive services, including health, nutrition, diagnostic screenings, and counseling.

(8)

To support infrastructure for longitudinal data collection and analysis.

8.

Early Care and Education Programs

(a)

Parental Choice of Early Care and Education Programs

(1)

In General

Parents may enroll children in an early care and education program that operates as part of the State Early Care and Education System established under section 4(a), or in an independent early care and education program that operates outside the scope of the State Early Care and Education System established under section 4(a).

(2)

Tuition Payments

Parents shall be responsible for paying any tuition for enrollment in an independent early care and education program that operates outside the scope of the State Early Care and Education System established under section 4(a).

(3)

Minimum Hours

A State that receives a grant under this Act must set minimum hours, which may depend upon the age of a child, that a child who is enrolled in an early care and education program operating under the State Early Care and Education System will be required to participate in such program.

(b)

Participation of Early Care and Education Programs in the State Early Care and Education System

(1)

Option to Participate

Each early care and education program, which meets the requirements described in paragraph (2), in a State that receives a grant under this Act, may choose to operate under the State Early Care and Education System.

(2)

Requirements for Participation

In order to operate under the State Early Care and Education System, an early care and education program shall—

(A)

meet the State criteria for a good risk program; and

(B)

have a record of continuous operation for not less than 5 years.

(c)

Independent Early Care and Education Programs

Each State that receives a grant under this Act shall require each independent child care and education provider of an independent early care and education program that operates outside the scope of the State Early Care and Education System established under section 4(a) to meet the same State child care licensing standards, as described in section (5)(b)(15), as programs funded under the grant in order to receive State accreditation and to ensure consistency in program quality. The State shall designate an entity which shall be responsible for providing accreditation to independent early care and education programs.

(d)

Early Care and Education programs operating under the State Early Care and Education System

Each early care and education program, which provides child care and education as part of the State Early Care and Education System established under section 4(a), shall—

(1)

be aligned with the statewide Early Learning Standards described in section (5)(b)(26);

(2)

incorporate evidence-based teaching and learning practices that—

(A)

emphasize integrated learning structures;

(B)

create positive school climates led by effective teaching staff; and

(C)

establish high expectations and individualized achievement opportunities for each child;

(3)

provide required services for children with disabilities;

(4)

provide English language instruction for English language learners;

(5)

provide, or operate in partnership with community-based health organizations for the purpose of making a referral for—

(A)

annual vision screenings;

(B)

annual dental screenings;

(C)

annual hearing screenings;

(D)

other health care screenings;

(E)

immunizations, as needed;

(F)

mental health services, as needed; and

(G)

ongoing promotion of proper nutrition; and

(6)

provide, or partner with community-based organizations to provide, family support services, including—

(A)

access to parenting classes;

(B)

access to classes in child development;

(C)

educational classes, such as GED attainment, and vocational training programs;

(D)

job placement programs;

(E)

alcohol and substance abuse treatment programs; and

(F)

programs to help improve literacy and English language competence.

9.

Statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System

(a)

In General

Each designated entity shall develop a Quality Rating and Improvement System for early care and education programs for children ages 6 weeks through kindergarten.

(b)

Rating

(1)

In General

As part of the statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System, each State that receives a grant under this Act shall designate an entity to assign a rating to each early care and education program in such State, including such programs that are part of the State Early Care and Education System and such programs that operate independently.

(2)

Basis of Rating

The rating described in paragraph (1) shall be based on an assessment of each early care and education program in such State, and such assessment shall incorporate the applicable components and standards of the Quality Rating and Improvement System described in subsection (c).

(c)

Components of the Quality Rating and Improvement System

The statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System developed under subsection (a) shall include—

(1)

standards regarding the granting and renewal of licenses for the operation of early care and education programs;

(2)

standards regarding the educational qualifications for teaching staff and program administrators of early care and education programs;

(3)

ongoing professional development requirements for teaching staff and administrators;

(4)

standards to determine the relevancy of curriculum selected by each early care and education program to the established Statewide Early Learning Standards described in section (5)(b)(26);

(5)

classroom environmental checklists, which shall be used to determine the quality of the learning environment of each early care and education program;

(6)

a goal of national accreditation for programs, in order to reach the highest rating, in accordance with subsection (b);

(7)

parent communication strategies, including parent outreach efforts for enrollment purposes;

(8)

ongoing assessments of individual children, to be used in setting instructional goals specific to each child and monitoring the progress of each child in order to raise the quality of early care and education programs in the State;

(9)

partnerships with community colleges, institutions of higher education, or other entities approved by the State, that result in the provision of—

(A)

on-going, relevant, research-based professional development for teaching staff in a variety of early care and education settings;

(B)

infant and toddler specialists to address the unique challenges of providing group care for infants and toddlers;

(C)

specialists who work with children with special needs, that will—

(i)

support each early care and education program in providing high quality, appropriate services for children that need adaptive services and educational support; and

(ii)

provide information to the parents of such children;

(D)

mental health professionals who specialize in working with young children, who will support teaching staff in early care and education settings in providing services to children with mental health needs and their families; and

(E)

innovative use of technology to deliver professional development in early care and education program rooms to support teaching staff in real time; and

(10)

the development and implementation of a career plan for early care and education teaching staff that will ensure—

(A)

support to assist each early care and education non-lead teacher in receiving—

(i)

a Child Development Associate credential; or

(ii)

an Associate in the Arts Degree in Child Development, or Child Development Technology, or an equivalent degree; and

(B)

support to assist each lead teacher in receiving a bachelor's degree in child development, early childhood education, early childhood special education, or an equivalent degree in the field;

(C)

within 4 years of the start of each early care and education program that operates within the State Early Care and Education System, each lead teacher in such program will have, at a minimum, a Child Development Associate credential;

(D)

within 4 years of implementation of the first early care and education program that operates within the State Early Care and Education System, a minimum of 50 percent of non-lead teachers, across all programs within the State Early Care and Education System will have an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education, or a related field;

(E)

within 8 years of implementation of the first early care and education program that operates within the State Early Care and Education System, 100 percent of lead teachers, and 50 percent of program directors, across all programs within the State Early Care and Education System, will have a bachelor's degree in child development, early childhood education, or a related field determined by the designated entity; and

(F)

within 8 years of implementation of the first early care and education program that operates within the State Early Care and Education System, at least 75 percent of non-lead teachers working with children, across all programs within the State Early Care and Education System, will have, at a minimum, a Child Development Associate credential.

10.

Funding

(a)

Supplement not Supplant

Each designated entity shall provide an assurance that grant funding provided under this Act will be used to supplement, and not supplant, Federal, State, and local funds otherwise available to support early learning programs and services.

(b)

Consolidation of Funding Streams

Each State receiving a grant under this Act shall leverage existing Federal, State, and local funds, used for early care and education programs, and shall consolidate such funds into 1 general funding stream for the State Early Care and Education System prior to the end of the 10-year grant period.

(c)

Sliding Scale

Each State receiving a grant under this Act may adopt a sliding scale mechanism, which may allow for a specified amount of family contribution (which must be based on family income, wealth, or some combination of family income and wealth) to support funding and sustainability of the State Early Care and Education System.

(d)

Sustainability

Grant funding provided under this Act shall provide for implementation and initial sustainability support over the 10-year grant period. Each State that receives a grant under this Act shall demonstrate future sustainability of the Early Care and Education System before the final year of the initial 10-year grant period. After 10 years, if the State Early Care and Education System has a record of demonstrated success, the Secretaries shall continue to support the program with funds appropriated under this Act, without fiscal year limitations. The amount of such funding shall be determined 1 year prior to the expiration of the 10-year grant period and shall be determined based on factors established by the Secretaries.

(e)

Model

Each State receiving a grant under this Act shall appropriately manage, and make publicly available, data related to the State Early Care and Education System in order to serve as a model for—

(1)

implementing a State Early Care and Education System; and

(2)

effectively and efficiently leveraging the use of resources.

11.

Evaluation and Reporting

(a)

Evaluation of the State Early Care and Education System

(1)

In General

Each designated entity shall design and implement a method for evaluating the State Early Care and Education System.

(2)

Components of Evaluation

The program evaluation required under subsection (a) shall include a variety of assessment tools designed to measure, in quantitative and qualitative terms, progress in reaching the outcomes and goals established by the designated entity, including—

(A)

improvements in outcomes for children that are consistent with the Statewide Early Learning Standards described in section 5(b)(26);

(B)

improvements in teaching staff qualifications and knowledge;

(C)

improvements in compensation for teaching staff;

(D)

improvements in the number of children served, including increases in the number of children served, disaggregated by—

(i)

age (with a special emphasis on infants and toddlers);

(ii)

family income;

(iii)

English language learners; and

(iv)

disabilities or other special needs;

(E)

increase in the number of programs meeting the standards of the Quality Rating and Improvement System described in section 9;

(F)

cost-benefit data, including expenditures and cost-saving benefits, as demonstrated by such information as—

(i)

reduction in grade retention, special education referrals, supplemental educational services, incidences of school suspension or expulsion, and middle school and high school dropout rates; and

(ii)

increases in attendance, retention of teaching staff, enrollment in institutions of higher education, and student academic performance;

(G)

increase in the number of children identified with a potential developmental delay prior to school entry that received follow-up services within 3 months of identification;

(H)

increase in the number of infant and toddler specialists providing training and on-site mentoring to teaching staff;

(I)

increase in the number of mental health specialists providing training and ongoing mentoring to teaching staff, administration, and parents of young children;

(J)

increase in the number of health specialists or nutritionists providing training and ongoing mentoring to teaching staff; and

(K)

measurable changes in staffing patterns among early care and education programs that indicate age appropriate staff to child ratios, established by the State, in all age levels.

(b)

Reporting Requirements

(1)

Reports to the Secretaries

Each State that is awarded a grant under this Act shall prepare and submit an annual report to the Secretaries, which shall include the information described in subsection (a).

(2)

Reports to Congress

Beginning in the 8th year of program implementation, the Secretaries shall prepare and submit a biannual report to Congress, which shall include a cost-benefit analysis of the grant program and evidence of effective practices.

(c)

Publicly Available Data

The data from the evaluation required under subsection (a) shall be made publicly available for the purpose of informing other States about the most efficient and effective means for providing statewide universal access to high quality early care and education to children ages 6 weeks to kindergarten.

(d)

Department of Education and Department of Health and Human Services Measurements

Each State that is awarded a grant under this Act shall agree to participate in any assessments that the Secretaries may administer to grant recipients.

(e)

Center for Evaluation Support, Analysis, and Reporting

The Secretaries shall develop and implement a Center for Evaluation Support, Analysis, and Reporting for the purpose of storing and reporting data on effective and efficient early care and education programs.

12.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Full time

The term “full time”—

(A)

means, at a minimum, 8 hours per day of early care and education programs, with arrangements for additional care before and after the established hours;

(B)

means, at a minimum, 5 days per week of early care and education programs; and

(C)

includes year round provision of early care and education programs, specifically, throughout the summer regardless of whether State elementary schools are providing such programs, and such summer hours shall be consistent with regular early care and education program hours.

(2)

Good Risk Program

The term good risk program means an early care and education program that has demonstrated sustainability and continuity.

(3)

Lead Teacher

The term lead teacher means the program room educator who is primarily responsible for designing and instructing participant learning activities and assessments and ensuring they are aligned to performance measures and standards.

(4)

Non-Lead Teacher

The term non-lead teacher means staff responsible for supporting the lead teacher, such as paraprofessionals and teaching aides.

(5)

Teaching Staff

The term teaching staff means lead teachers and non-lead teachers.

13.

Authorization of Appropriations

There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this Act such sums as may be necessary beginning for fiscal year 2012.