Governor Hochul Announces Initiative to Expand and Create High-Quality Child Care Centers Across SUNY Campuses
New York (STL.News) Governor Kathy Hochul announced the launch of an initiative to expand and create high-quality child care centers across all State University of New York campuses for students and faculty – particularly in areas where child care deserts exist. The initiative includes the distribution of $4.5 million in federal and state funding to support current centers, a program to train the next generation of child care professionals, and the development of a long-term plan to achieve the Governor’s State of the State goal to eliminate child care deserts across SUNY. The Governor’s Executive Budget includes $10.8 million to support the creation of additional child care centers on SUNY campuses.
“Child care services are a critical part of our economic recovery, providing parents much-needed support as they pursue an education or join the workforce,” Governor Hochul said. “This funding is an important step toward my administration’s goal of eliminating child care deserts across SUNY campuses statewide and adequately investing in our state’s students, faculty, and working parents.”
During the 2020-2021 academic year, SUNY served 1,200 student parents with more than 4,000 child care spots across the 46 SUNY campuses that have a child care center onsite. The centers also serve faculty, staff, and state employees, as well as the neighboring community – each utilizing about a third of total child care spots. 18 more centers are currently needed to fully cover all 64 of SUNY’s campuses statewide.
State University of New York Interim Chancellor Deborah F. Stanley said, “More limited child care presents a major barrier for our student parents and older siblings who must choose child care over classes, and even for our faculty parents. With additional federal, state, and SUNY support, we can expand our resources on campus with high-quality care, and at the same time work to train more early child care professionals for SUNY and other centers across our state. This is just the first of multiple initiatives across SUNY. We applaud Governor Kathy Hochul for recognizing the need to expand child care services further in her State of the State address, and we look forward to working together to keep all doors of opportunity open for working parents.”
State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky said, “Declining enrollment is a problem at SUNY and throughout the nation. Providing child care will enable men and women to return to SUNY, take additional classes and join the workforce. The economic and social benefits are obvious. I thank Governor Hochul for this progressive addition to the wonderful SUNY system.”
Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick said, “New Yorkers should never be forced to decide between caring for their child or furthering their education. I thank Governor Hochul for prioritizing the expansion of child care services, which will help SUNY students, faculty, and staff get back into the classroom. The added benefit to this expansion is that children of parents who attend college are more likely to pursue higher education themselves, further lifting communities up.”
SUNY distributed nearly $4.5 million in funding, including:
- $3.9 million in federal grants for all SUNY child care centers as part of the Child Care Stabilization Funds by the Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS). These funds, made available through the federal American Rescue Plan Act and the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act, help with operational costs such as personnel and training as well as support for the mental health needs of employees and their children.
- $500,000 to 16 campuses as part of SUNY’s Early Childhood Worker paid internship program. 139 paid interns who are earning their degree in early childhood studies will be hired to work an average of 20 hours a week. The new scholarship program fills the demand for additional child care support while providing each student with valuable real-life early childhood job experience to complement academic coursework.
- $80,000 to 11 campuses to achieve or maintain accreditation from nationally recognized quality organizations. Funding will go toward replacing worn classroom equipment, supplying class materials, ensuring ADA access, and paying for consulting and accreditation fees.
SUNY campuses receiving a portion of the $4.5 million funding today include:
- University at Albany
- Binghamton University
- SUNY Brockport
- SUNY Broome
- University at Buffalo (two sites)
- Buffalo State College
- Cayuga Community College
- SUNY Cobleskill
- Columbia Greene Community College
- SUNY Cortland
- SUNY Delhi
- Downstate Health Sciences University
- Dutchess Community College
- Erie Community College (three sites)
- Farmingdale State College
- Finger Lakes Community College
- SUNY Fredonia
- Fulton Montgomery Community College
- Genesee Community College
- Hudson Valley Community College
- Jefferson Community College
- Monroe Community College
- SUNY Morrisville
- Nassau Community College
- SUNY New Paltz
- Niagara Community College
- SUNY Oneonta
- Onondaga Community College
- SUNY Orange (two sites)
- SUNY Oswego
- SUNY Plattsburgh
- SUNY Potsdam
- SUNY Purchase
- Rockland Community College
- SUNY Schenectady
- Stony Brook University
- Suffolk Community College (two sites)
- Tompkins Cortland Community College
- SUNY Ulster
- Upstate Medical University
- Westchester Community College
About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory.
In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 million students in credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide were nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2021, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum.