Archive for the ‘community impact’ Category

More “child care is economic development”

South Dakota Rural Enterprise creates new program to develop daycares.

“(Beth) Davis said, ‘Quality childcare is essential to any community realizing its dreams for the future.’”

The Community Development Society published this “Articulating the Economic Importance of Child Care for Community Development” report in Summer, 2006.

“The Cornell Linking Economic Development and Child Care project has used the symbol of the three petals of a trillium flower to represent the three most distinctive dimensions of the economic importance of child care: its implications for child development, parental labor force mobilization, and regional economic development. ”

“..the impacts on children cannot be segregated from the welfare of parents; the impacts on parents cannot be divorced from the health of the economy in which they live; and the health and sustainability of the economy cannot be separated from the prospects for its children. “

I also updated the Quick Facts page with the latest available numbers from the City of Montrose.

“Childcare is Economic Development” Research

I just ran across this story in the Ft. Wayne (Indiana) Journal Gazette about a movement there to look at the impact of childcare on local economic development. Here’s a short excerpt:

“Quality child care is an important and often overlooked tool for spurring economic development, economist Morton Marcus said Monday in a speech at the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce…

The report concludes that child care has benefits much further reaching than simply the parents of the child. Businesses benefit because parents are more productive when they know their children are cared for and safe. Child care could also be a selling point to attract young, skilled workers to the region. And children also benefit because research shows they perform better in school when they have received quality care during the first six years.”

Here’s a link to Cornell University’s database of Childcare Economic Impact Studies.

Here is a link to a report by the Upjohn Institute on the economic impact of strong preschool.

Comments are open!

Great Math: Spend $1300 to Save $1032

Over $1300. That’s what a referendum election would cost the City of Montrose, according to Carol Flickinger’s (City Finance Officer) estimates. That’s legal fees, ballots, staffing the election, etc.

On the other hand, the tax dollars that would potentially be saved by getting the City out of the Daycare business would be about $1000, based on 2006 year-to-date expenses. And the trend for the past five months has been less and less net spending per month. So the savings could actually turn into zero.

Now, I didn’t graduate from good ‘ol MHS (I’m a Canistota Hawk), but that math doesn’t seem to make much sense to me. Especially when you consider the indirect effect of closing the Community Daycare.

  • 8 jobs: lost.
  • 13 preschoolers: out of luck.
  • 24 families who need daycare service: sorry.
  • $292,077 economic impact: gone.

Where will we, the “daycare families,” enroll our kids? I don’t know. Some parents will probably haul their kids to Humbolt, Hartford, Salem or Sioux Falls (and take their payments with them). Some have told me they would consider moving away from Montrose if we didn’t have daycare for them.

What about the school? Without the daycare on campus, parents don’t get familiar with the school and the education we can provide here. If they are new to Montrose, which many of the daycare families are, they are more likely to enroll their kids at West Central or McCook Central when it’s time for Kindergarten–if that’s where they’ve become used to going for daycare.

Bottom line: It’s a big deal for Montrose, folks.

292,077 Reasons = 1

The impact study is done. You can view the figures behind it by visiting the economic impact page. Based on my analysis, using multipliers figured by a USD/Citibank study on daycares in South Dakota in 2005, our little daycare made an impact on the community of $292,077 in the past 12 months. Not a bad investment of two grand, afterall. The thing is, that nearly 300 thousand dollars is just the tip of the impact the daycare makes on our community…

There are other numbers too: 8 jobs, 24 families served, 13 preschoolers, $2.16 annual cost per resident, etc (see all the numbers). There are the businesses in Montrose that benefit directly at the cash register from the daycare, like the General Store and the Irish Pub.

To me, the most important number of all is 1. As in the only one. No other town has recognized how important quality childcare is to a community quite like us. We’re the first one to get our City Council and our Public School District together to solve a critical problem, and to work together to provide a very important service to the community.

Forget about the numbers for a minute. What we have is a great story to tell! Our community leaders–our City and our School–work together to build a better future for Montrose. The City underwrites the modest expenses (roughly 90 bucks a month), the School provides the campus and great facilities. And both win. The City gets a huge return on that $90 a month investment in the form of a $292,077 economic impact. Jobs are created. Families move in or don’t move away because we have great daycare–right on the school campus so it’s safe and convenient. The school wins because teachers have daycare available right next door. Kindergartners (my Hope is one of ’em) are better prepared, thanks to the preschool. Families from outside Montrose can choose to enroll their kids in daycare and our school at the same spot. And school officials believe kids who attend our daycare are very likely to attend our school–with open enrollment, these are big things to think about.

So, all this great stuff is, well, great. But the biggest thing is still the very fact that our daycare exists the way it does–a cooperative, community-wide effort for a stronger Montrose. It’s not about the numbers or the client-families or the jobs or the City funding–it’s about our community.

Comments are open–post away…