Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) Policies Database, 2008-2023

The CCDF Policies Database is a source of information on the detailed policies used to operate child care subsidy programs under the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF). Since 2008, The Urban Institute has collected, coded, and disseminated the CCDF policies in effect across the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories and outlying areas, using consistent methods across places and over time. The information in the CCDF Policies Database is based primarily on the documents that caseworkers use as they work with families and providers, as well as the CCDF Plans and amendments submitted by States/Territories to ACF, state law, and regulations used by the staff operating the program. The Database captures detailed information on eligibility, family payments, application procedures, and provider-related policies, including dates of enactment and some of the policy variations that exist within states/territories. The information collected by the project is being disseminated in different forms to meet the needs of different users – quantitative and qualitative researchers, policymakers, and administrators at all levels of government.

One product is a complete set of data files, containing the full detail of the database, periodically extracted from the database. Access to the data files allows researchers and others to address important questions concerning the effects of alternative child care subsidy policies and practices on the children and families served, specifically parental employment and self-sufficiency, the availability and quality of care, and children’s development. You can search the full database and download custom datasets using a search tool on the project’s website: http://ccdf.urban.org/ Visit disclaimer page  . All data and data documentation can be found on the project’s website. In addition, the data are archived, in various formats suitable for analysis, at the Child and Family Data Archive Visit disclaimer page .

A second product is a set of reports, or “books of tables.” Each book of tables allows easy access to key policies for all states and territories, focusing on a specific point in time. All reports and other resources can be found on the project’s website: http://ccdf.urban.org/ Visit disclaimer page  . The tables from each report are also archived, in various formats suitable for analysis, at  the Child and Family Data Archive Visit disclaimer page ; these tables are also updated to reflect any corrections made in the database after the release of the reports.

Point(s) of contact: Kathleen Dwyer and Sarah Blankenship

Related Resources

The CCDF Policies Database tracks State/Territory CCDF policies over time, with hundreds of variables tracking policies related to family eligibility, application and waiting list procedures, family copayments, provider reimbursement rates, and other provider policies. This brief serves as a companion piece to the project’s 2019 annual report, providing selected information about State and Territory policy differences using maps and charts.

The CCDF Policies Database project produces a comprehensive, up-to-date database of CCDF policies for the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. Territories and outlying areas. The database contains hundreds of variables designed to capture CCDF policies across time, allowing users to access policy information for a specific point in time as well as to see how and when policies change over time. 

If a child’s parents both work full-time and together earn $30,000 per year, can the family receive a subsidy to help pay for child care? What if one of the parents loses their job and needs child care while they look for a new job? If the family does qualify for a subsidy, how much will they have to pay out of pocket? The answers to these questions depend on a family’s exact circumstances...

The Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) provides federal money to States and Territories to subsidize the cost of child care for low-income families. The detailed policies used to administer the programs vary widely across jurisdictions, with States and Territories establishing different policies for family eligibility, family copayments, provider payment rates, and provider eligibility requirements...

The Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) provides federal money to States, Territories, and Tribes to subsidize the cost of child care for lower-income families. Detailed policies vary widely across jurisdictions, with States/Territories/Tribes establishing different policies for:

  • Eligibility requirements for families and children
  • Application, waiting list, and redetermination requirements
  • Family copayment policies
  • Provider requirements and reimbursement rates...

If a single mother earns $25,000 per year, can she receive a subsidy to help pay for child care? What if she decides to attend a training program? If she does qualify for a subsidy, how much will she have to pay out of pocket? The answers to these questions depend on a family’s exact circumstances, including...

The Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) provides federal money to States, Territories, and Tribes to subsidize the cost of child care for lower-income families. Detailed policies vary widely across jurisdictions, with States/Territories/Tribes establishing different policies for...

If a child’s parents both work full-time and together earn $25,000 per year, can the family receive a subsidy to help pay for child care? What if one of the parents is a full-time student and not working? If the family does qualify for a subsidy...

The Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) provides federal money to States, Territories, and Tribes to subsidize the cost of child care for lower-income families. Detailed policies vary widely...

If a single mother earns $25,000 per year, can she get government help, or a subsidy, to pay for child care? What if she lost her job and needs child care while she hunts for a new one? If she is eligible for a subsidy, how much will the government pay, and how much will she have to pay out of pocket...