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Child care workers eligible for $600 grants, governor says

January 20, 2021 GMT

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Employees of licensed child care facilities in Pennsylvania will be eligible for a one-time, $600 grant to reward them for providing a valuable service through the pandemic, Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration said Wednesday.

Wolf’s administration said the money is coming from a federal government program that subsidizes child care costs and leftover money initially targeted for child care providers in coronavirus relief aid legislation approved last spring by Congress.

About $20 million is available, and could provide grants to as many as 33,000 child care workers, the administration said.

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Eligible employees must have been employed by a licensed child care provider on Jan. 1, earn a gross salary of no more than $70,000 and work a minimum of 20 hours per week at the child care facility.

It will replace this year’s grants from a program designed to boost the pay of highly qualified early childhood education teachers. That program previously provided payments of about $1,000 to $3,000 to approximately 9,000 child care employees, the administration said.

The grants will be made available through the child care facilities, the administration said. Applications must be submitted to local early learning resource centers and issued on a first-come, first-served basis.

Pennsylvania last year distributed $220 million in federal coronavirus aid to child care facilities hit hard by the pandemic, and expects to receive a share of an additional $10 billion in emergency pandemic aid approved by Congress last month to support child care.