Benefits of Early Care and Education for Children in the Child Welfare System

Published: November 18, 2016
Abuse, Neglect, Adoption & Foster Care, Child Care, Early Head Start, Youth Services, Head Start, Home Visiting

This brief explores emerging evidence from social science research on the contribution of early care and education (ECE) to the child welfare system’s goals of child safety, permanency, and well-being. The examination of that evidence points to the potential value of early care and education for young children in the child welfare system, but the best available data suggests that the child welfare population tends to under-utilize ECE. The brief concludes with a discussion of several organizational practices for child welfare administrators. Those practices can help build collaborations with local early care and education service providers in order to increase the enrollment of child welfare system-supervised-children in early care and education programs.

Last Reviewed: April 29, 2019