Parent and Child Care Provider Experiences During COVID-19
Throughout the pandemic, Illinois Action for Children and our partners have interviewed or surveyed hundreds of parents and thousands of child care providers in Cook County and the rest of Illinois. We captured their experiences navigating the pandemic and managing their child care programs in various reports that you can find here.
Impact of COVID-19 on Child Care Programming and Practices*
The COVID-19 pandemic created new challenges and exacerbated existing ones in the child care sector. Providers had to quickly adapt to new public health and child care licensing guidelines all while trying to keep themselves, their staff, and children safe. Through our research partnership with the University of Chicago, we interviewed 76 licensed child care providers in Illinois during the first year of the pandemic to learn about their experiences managing their programs amid change and uncertainty.
*This research was conducted as part of a larger project called “Policy Reform to Advance Equity in Illinois’s Child Care Subsidy Program” and was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Julia R. Henly, Professor, University of Chicago, was PI and David Alexander, Director of Research, Illinois Action for Children, was Co-PI for the project.
Report on Child Care in Cook County during the COVID-19 Pandemic, 2021
This COVID-19 edition of our annual Report on Child Care in Cook County documents the experiences of child care providers and families during the first year and a half of the pandemic (March 2020 through June 2021). It captures both the challenges and successes of keeping the child care system intact and families’ needs met during a period of great uncertainty.
In the Voices of Parents: Mothers Navigating the COVID-19 Pandemic
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has had a life-changing impact on many families. The Illinois Action for Children (IAFC) Research team, in partnership with the IAFC Referral and Outreach team, followed parents as they navigated financial hardships, lack of child care and other resources, and their overall well-being throughout the pandemic.
Part 1: The team conducted phone surveys of 144 parents in Summer 2020. They discussed parents’ employment status, child care arrangements, family needs, community resources, and children’s remote learning.
Part 2: In Fall 2020, the team conducted in-depth interviews with a subset of parents from Part 1 about
Part 3: In Spring of 2021, IAFC staff followed up with the mothers that they interviewed in the fall. This report captures the mothers’ experiences one year into the pandemic.