The Soapbox

Rant Alert!!! The following is a soapbox moment that I can’t help but deliver. The following headlines and articles have appeared in my daily Google newsfeed in just one week:

Childcare in Illinois Costs Nearly as Much as College
Child care costs more than college, rivals rent in Nevada, says data
Childcare costs more than college in North Carolina
It’s More Expensive for Day Care than College in New York
Childcare Costs More Than College in Maryland, Studies Show
Childcare Costs More Than In-State College in Texas
Childcare in Maryland More Expensive Than In-State Tuition To 4-Year Public College, Report Finds

All of these articles state that care and education for children aged infant through four-years-old is more expensive than college—as if this is a well-understood travesty. All I have to say is, “SO????”

Have we not determined that the most critical years for brain development are birth through four-years-old? Would we not prefer to invest in the years that are the most critical? Shouldn’t you expect a greater expense for a young child in a classroom of 5 children rather than a college student with 49 others in the class? 

Of course, I will be accused of not caring about the cost of childcare for young parents, and I do understand this point. I am the parent of a mom with young children and I see the budgeting struggle. And it is real.

However, I also see you: the early education business owners. I see the risk you have put yourself in to open a school. I see the commitment you have made in employing teachers and supporting staff. I see the stretch you make to rent equipment and buses so children can be safe and have access to high quality learning. I see you during sleepless nights worrying about making payroll and the mortgage and sacrificing your own well-being for others. I see you putting in 14 hours a day to support families. And when this negative press comes out, I see you my friends. I see you.

Meredith Martin