The United States military is known for providing high-quality child-care programs, but those services might not be reaching all the military families who need them, says a new study from the RAND Corp., a research organization in Santa Monica, Calif.
The Department of Defense now spends $480 million a year to provide care for 175,000 of the nearly 1.3 million children of military families, the report says. Subsidized care is provided in child-development centers or in family child-care homes on military bases, but those providers tend to have long waiting lists.
The report suggests allowing military members to obtain vouchers that they could use off base. Better information is also needed to determine whether the child-care system is achieving the department’s goals of recruitment, readiness, and retention, the report says.
A version of this article appeared in the October 08, 2008 edition of Education Week