MRS Feedback Survey

The federal government has invested in improving access to child care among low-income working families, through the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF).  One requirement of receiving CCDF funding is to conduct a child care market rate survey.  States use market rate surveys to establish the maximum child care payment rates high enough to increase access to high quality, affordable child care of all types for families using subsidy.

Up until 2014, states studied prices rather than costs in the market rate survey.  However, it was learned that the costs to facilities and providers for providing affordable high quality care are often greater than the prices charged to parents.  As a result, states are now encouraged to find ways to study costs in addition to the market rates.

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is responsible for administering the federal child care subsidy funds, which are disbursed through the Office of Great Start (OGS) Child Development and Care (CDC) program.  The MDE contracted with Public Policy Associates, Incorporated (PPA) to conduct the 2017 Market Rate Survey (MRS) and analysis of the cost of providing high-quality child care.

The Department is interested in getting your feedback on the main recommendations from the most recent Market Rate Survey. 

* 1. Are you a:

* 2. Based on the data collected from child care providers across the state, Public Policy Associates identified four recommendations.  Please provide comments for each.

The State should increase the subsidy rate to meet at least the average 3-star provider rate for family and group home providers.  These changes would decrease gaps between market and subsidy rates.

 Do you agree or disagree

* 3. Since most providers ask families to pay for child care on a daily or
weekly basis, it would benefit providers to receive payments from the State at the same frequency (or similar schedule).  This may also help to eliminate the challenge of approved hours not matching the true need.  Further analysis of the subsidy data and discussion about how best to translate hourly payments and approvals into daily or weekly approaches is necessary before any changes could be made.
Do you agree or disagree

* 4. As providers struggle to invest in upgrades and other improvements that would help them to achieve higher star ratings—and qualify for higher rates the State could seek out additional funding or partner with charitable organizations to design and implement mini grants or scholarships for providers, particularly family and group homes that have fewer resources.

 Do you agree or disagree

* 5. On average statewide, the cost of registration fees was $60.  Registrations can be costly for low-income families.  The CDC program
should consider paying registration fees for low-income families.  There should be an annual maximum amount CDC would pay for registrations.  Porvider type should not be a factor in whether or not CDC would pay.

Do you agree or disagree

* 9. In 2014, the legislature provided funding to change the CDC subsidy rates based on provider type, age of the child and the provider's star rating.  Did you know that this was done after reviewing the 2015 Market Rate Survey responses?