Clark, Young Push for Child Care on College Campuses

Washington, D.C. -- Congresswoman Katherine Clark (D-MA) and Congressman Don Young (D-AK) introduced the Child Care Access Means Parents in Schools (CCAMPIS) Reauthorization Act. The bipartisan legislation increases access to on-campus child care for student parents. Parents seeking a degree to advance in their careers now account for 1 in 4 American college students. Despite the growing number of parents enrolled in postsecondary education programs, access to affordable on-campus child care services has dwindled since 2003. The CCAMPIS Act would help reverse this trend by reauthorizing and fully funding the only federal program that supports on-campus child care services. The act also supports on-campus child care for tribal colleges and universities.

“For millions of parents, the crippling costs of child care represent an end to the college education they need to learn their craft and earn bigger paychecks,” said Congresswoman Clark. “Increasing access to high quality child care creates a stronger workforce and a stronger economy in which more families have a shot at success.”

“I am pleased to support this bill.  For Congress to uphold the federal trust responsibility to our first peoples, we must ensure that Alaska Natives and American Indians have a fair chance to obtain a quality education. The reality is that too many will not have an opportunity to do so if not for legislation like this,” said Congressman Young. “These funds will be vital to making sure tribal colleges and universities can support students who are raising children of their own. This is particularly critical in Alaska where access to affordable, high-quality childcare is often limited.”

Student parents already graduate with much higher levels of debt compared to non-parent students because financial aid offerings do not cover the full cost of their educations by leaving out child care. Over the last 15 years, the number of parents enrolled in college has grown by 50 percent while on-campus childcare facilities have closed and services have been dropped. This leaves student parents in a financial bind as they face exorbitant education costs and a lack of options for safe and affordable child care on their schools’ campuses.

The new proposal would permanently reauthorize the U.S. Department of Education’s CCAMPIS program at a funding level of $67 million per year and require the Department of Education to work with stakeholders to strengthen oversight and data collection. Lastly, this legislation would, for the first time, direct the Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Education to establish a plan for how the Department can better serve and support the unique needs of the 4.8 million student parents in the U.S. President Trump has proposed elimination of the CCAMPIS program.

Members of the Student Parent Policy Working Group, which consists of nearly 20 leading national child care and higher education advocacy groups, have endorsed the Clark-Young CCAMPIS Reauthorization Act, as have partner organizations including Access and Success, St. Catherine University, the American Indian Higher Education Consortium, Adult & Nontraditional Student Center at Austin Peay State University, American Association of University Women, Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), Child Care Aware® of America, Clearinghouse on Women’s Issues, Colorado Center on Law and Policy, Endicott College, Feminist Majority Foundation, National Center for Student Parent Programs, National Organization for Women, National Women’s Law Center (NWLC), Partners for Education at Berea College, Services for Students with Children, Portland State University, Women Employed, and Young Invincibles.