This Issue Update newsletter is part of a series that provides more information on each priority issue on the Alliance's 2022 Legislative Agenda. The Legislative Agenda is crafted annually in partnership with early childhood organizations that are advancing legislative policy solutions related to health, safety, food security, economic security, and early care and education. The nine priority issues were selected by the Alliance's 21 member Steering Committee.


Transforming Early Childhood Education (ECE): Equitable, Affordable, Sustainable ECE for Children Birth to Five

With the near unanimous passage of H.171 during the 2021 legislative session (including an increase of $12.7 million in the state’s annual investment in Vermont’s early childhood education system), the General Assembly clearly demonstrated that child care is essential to Vermont’s children, families, employers, and economy. 

However, major problems persist in Vermont’s early childhood education system. Over 60% of Vermont’s youngest children don’t have access to the child care they need, and those families that do find care may spend more than 30% of their income on child care, even with financial assistance. 

Furthermore, Vermont is facing an acute, long-term workforce crisis in child care, exacerbated by chronically low wages and the demands and pressures of providing early childhood education during a pandemic. 

To prevent program closures across the state and ensure we continue to make progress towards achieving long-term transformation in the child care system, the Alliance supports the efforts of LGK and VTAEYC in securing short-term, emergency one-time investments to provide a needed lifeline to ensure our child care system is strong and stable, and continuing on the path outlined by H.171 to permanently transform Vermont’s early childhood education system, including funding the child care financing study established in H.171.


Data and Talking Points

  • The median income of a child care worker in Vermont is only $27,600 – often without benefits.  This is less than what Vermont’s own Joint Fiscal Office says is a livable wage.
  • Families are struggling to pay for child care.  Middle-income families with two parents and two young children are spending as much as 30% of their income on child care, even with financial assistance from the state.
  • Every $1 dollar invested in strengthening Vermont’s early childhood education system generates around $3 in the Vermont economy.

Lead Organizations

Let’s Grow Kids

Known for their transformational social mission and family-friendly policies, Let’s Grow Kids staff, board of directors, and volunteers include state government leaders, national nonprofit directors, business executives, marketers, grassroots organizers, and early childhood educators and administrators with proven successes creating social transformation, advocating for policy change, and upgrading Vermont’s child care system. 


Vermont Association for the Education of Young Children

The Vermont Association for the Education of Young Children advances equity and excellence in early childhood education with early childhood educators as their foundation. As a membership organization, they provide resources and advocate for policies that move early childhood education forward now and for the future.


Resources and Advocacy Tools


The Vermont Early Childhood Advocacy Alliance is a statewide coalition formed in 2000 of early childhood professionals, parents, organizations, businesses, and strategic partners committed to improving public policies that impact young children between birth and age eight in the areas of health, safety, food security, economic security, and early care and education.

The Alliance crafts an annual Legislative Agenda in partnership with early childhood organizations, provides year-round advocacy support, and facilitates meaningful interactions with policymakers at key times during the decision making process.


7 School Street | Montpelier , Vermont 05602

The Vermont Early Childhood Advocacy Alliance is a program of the Vermont Community Loan Fund.

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