Increasing Access to High-Quality Early Childhood Care

Milwaukee has roughly 47,000 children under the age of 6, half of whom are estimated to lack equitable access to high-quality early care and education services. Additionally, the cost of early childhood care and education is almost triple the national average, with Milwaukee families paying 20 percent of their income or more for these services. Early childhood care and education deserts are found predominantly in historically segregated and underinvested communities, neighborhoods in which education, economic, and housing inequities have endured for generations. In response, city officials are working to lift, scale, and sustain language and literacy rich spaces in every neighborhood to ensure Milwaukee’s children are prepared for academic, social-emotional, and lifelong success.

To support these efforts, Milwaukee’s Office of Early Childhood Initiatives will partner with FUSE Executive Fellow Greg St. Arnold for one year to increase residents’ access to prenatal care, childcare, and learning-rich environments. Greg will focus on key zip codes and neighborhoods, forming action plans and concrete metrics for improvement and developing a cohesive response to early childhood care and education deserts in the city.