The Tompkins County Early Education Partnership has begun outreach to parents and employers regarding existing funding sources for child care. While the Partnership's mission is to create a community fund to serve all Tompkins County families, the Partnership recognizes that full utilization of existing resources is critical to the success of any new efforts.
- Employer Outreach Strategy. A phased strategy for publicizing subsidies, tax credits, and flexible spending accounts in Tompkins County at the appropriate time of year.
- Parent Outreach Strategy. A phased strategy. Also examines theories on outreach and methods used by other community groups and statewide programs.
- The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit: Too Little, Too Late. Discusses the history of the most wide-reaching federal child care program, the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, as an example of policy inadequacy.
Parent Outreach Materials
Parent materials were test-marketed at Cabin Fever, an annual event sponsored by the Day Care and Child Development Council of Tompkins County that attracts thousands of young children and their parents. These materials describe Flexible Spending Accounts, emergency scholarships through the Day Care Council, Department of Social Service subsidies, state and federal tax credits, Cornell's child care program for employees, and the Earned Income Tax Credit. In order to satisfy different information needs, multiple documents describe each major program or funding source for child care in Tompkins County. For instance, materials describing Department of Social Service subsidies include a fact sheet for parents, a Frequently Asked Questions resource for employers, and a flier designed to post at employment sites.
- Brochure This provides an overview of all major funding sources for Child Care in Tompkins County.
- Simplified brochure. The language is simplified in this brochure, and the comparison between child care and college education costs is removed.
- Department of Social Service Subsidies. A simple fact sheet describing eligibility and how to apply.
- Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit. Detailed information on the tax credit. 2002 tax year information is tentative.
- Flexible Spending Account: Information for Employees
- Posters or fliers for subsidies, tax credits, and Flexible Spending Accounts
Employer Outreach Materials
These materials were test marketed at a meeting of the Tompkins County Society for Human Resource Managers (SHRM) in April 2002. Though most public funds available for financing child care rely on parents' initiative, there are some programs such as Flexible Spending Accounts for which employer buy-in is critical. In addition, since employers have regular contact with parents using child care, an involved employer can provide an important information outlet. These materials are designed to convince employers of child care's benefits to them and to the business community in general, and to help employers understand what they can do.
- Overview: "Child Care Supports Workers!" Describes several ways employers can get involved in helping employees afford quality child care.
- "Fill the Gap": The Economic Impact of Increasing Subsidy Utilization
- Flexible Spending Account: Information for Employers
- Frequently Asked Questions for Department of Social Service Subsidies