By Marie Huey, Public Policy and Advocacy Coordinator

Are you motivated to advocate for children this year? If you’re looking to support high-quality child care in Minnesota, below are some helpful resources. From policymakers, to friends and neighbors, these recent resources can help you connect, educate, and make the case for supporting high-quality early care and education.

1. Child Care in Minnesota Flyer

Want some simple facts about child care in Minnesota to get you started? Use this helpful one-page handout. It highlights Minnesota’s early care and education assets like Parent Aware and early learning scholarships, but it also calls attention to the shortage of family child care providers. They are a crucial part of the quality child care environment, especially in greater Minnesota. The handout is perfect to reference when you’re educating someone on the issue or as information to leave behind with your legislator after a meeting. 

2. Cost of Child Care Video

One conundrum that continues to baffle people is the high cost of quality child care. A common misconception is that child care professionals must be making loads of money because tuition is very high. Yet, studies show just the opposite. The median wage for child care workers is $10.72. The cost of care is expensive for parents—especially in centers and for infants and toddlers—because it is a labor-intensive profession. Unlike the K-12 system, public investment is minimal. Parents are expected to cover the costs. This video explains why costs are high in a concise and engaging format. It also contains action steps and ideas for improvement.

3. Office of the Legislative Auditor Report

What does Minnesota’s early childhood programs landscape currently look like? How could it be improved? The Office of the Legislative Auditor (OLA) looked at both of these questions and answered them in a 2018 report to the state legislature. The report came out too late in the 2018 session for action, but it is certain to be a topic of discussion this year. Check out the summary or read the entire report. How does it fit with your work? Do you have detailed ideas or solutions that weren’t mentioned? The report is a great launching point for a discussion with your legislator. 

4. Child Care Aware of Minnesota Bill Tracker

The 2019 legislative session promises to be dynamic. A new governor, new house members, and a budget surplus mean many moving pieces and opportunities. You can home in on the early care and education realm by checking the Bill Tracker. Ann McCully, Executive Director for Child Care Aware of Minnesota, personally pours over the bills that are introduced and moved. Every week she provides a summary of each bill, along with an update on where it is in the process. We’re told the first update will be coming soon.

Bonus: If you want to stay very up-to-date on what’s being heard and discussed, subscribe to the Subcommittee on Early Childhood. You’ll receive committee agendas in your inbox. This option is not ready yet, but when it’s available you can find it HERE.

YOUR Story

Are you a parent who struggles to find affordable, high-quality child care? A child care center director who works hard to hire and retain qualified staff? Or maybe you are an advocate who cares about children and wants to make sure our system works for them. Whatever your situation, sharing your personal story and connection to the issue is a powerful tool. Bring the data. Share the facts. But don’t forget to add in the real life examples and human connection. It matters, and it helps move people. Combine your voices with others, and share your story. Here are some ideas to get you started.

There are many more tools out there—start here and add in what works for you! If there’s a great resource that you think we should highlight, let us know by emailing Marie at