Governor Shapiro Announces Plans to Expand Keystone Early Learning Center
May 30, 2023
The Shapiro Administration Expansion Project Will Help More Commonwealth Employees Access Critical Childcare Services, Doubling the Number of Spots Available
Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Josh Shapiro announced plans to expand the Keystone Early Learning Center, a year-round childcare center for Commonwealth employees, and visited with state workers at the Center to discuss the Shapiro Administration’s investments in Pennsylvania families.
The Keystone Early Learning Center currently serves more than 60 children and has a growing waitlist of families who need childcare. The expansion, which is expected to be complete in early summer 2024, will double the number of families the Center serves, helping even more Commonwealth employees get access to childcare services. The funding will be provided through the Department of General Services and the project is estimated to cost up to $1.3 million.
“We can’t ignore the fact that it’s hard for parents to get to work in the first place if they don’t have affordable childcare options,” said Governor Shapiro. “By expanding the Keystone Early Learning Center, we can make sure more children have safe, high-quality care and help their hardworking parents rest easier as they serve the Commonwealth day in and day out. Expanding access to affordable childcare opens new opportunities for children and their parents alike, and helps address critical workforce shortages, which is why my budget increases funding for childcare and helps recruit more teachers and professionals to fill shortages across the Commonwealth.”
Ensuring that Pennsylvanians have access to affordable childcare is an important part of supporting their careers and livelihoods. According to the Pennsylvania Chamber, Pennsylvania’s economy loses nearly $3.5 billion a year because of a lack of childcare options – and in any given year, over a third of Pennsylvania parents report that childcare problems impacted their job.
The Governor’s proposed budget provides investments up to $66.7 million in childcare services for low-income families, an increase of $30 million for the Pre-K Counts program to give more parents access to stable childcare for their kids, and $2.7 million in funding for the Head Start Supplemental Program to help address staffing shortages in early childhood education programs.
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