Additional $125 Million in Funding Provided by American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021 for Eligible Child Care Programs
The Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) announced today that it will open the application window for the second and final round of Child Care Stabilization Grants on January 3, 2022. MSDE will distribute more than $125 million in funding, made available through the American Rescue Plan (ARP), to child care programs in Maryland. Along with a simplified application, MSDE is providing a new system of supports during the month of January to assist providers with the application process. The funds will help address the financial burdens and operational challenges faced by child care providers during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
This funding follows the first round of approximately $158 million distributed in ARP grants to eligible child care providers in October. All Maryland child care providers are invited to apply for round two of funding once the application window opens on January 3, including providers that were awarded funding in round one, as well as new providers. Grant funds may be used to support the developmental and learning needs of children, promote equitable access to high-quality child care, and support a professional workforce that is fairly and appropriately compensated for their essential skilled work.
“MSDE recognizes the critical role our child care provider community plays in early childhood care and education, and the challenges and hardships they faced during the pandemic. Our providers need these emergency grant resources now. No timeline is fast enough, so we are delivering an expedited plan to release the federal stabilization funds to our providers,” said State Superintendent of Schools Mohammed Choudhury. “We want our providers to know that when we say that we’re here for them, we mean it; we intend that this funding round matches action with words. During the application process, MSDE remains committed to supporting our child care professionals with transparent communication, technical assistance and hands-on application support.”
In this round of funding, all eligible providers will receive a base grant of $10,000 and eligible providers will receive additional funds, per licensed child care slot based on criteria outlined in the Child Care Stabilization Grant guidelines. Any unspent funds after the initial grant disbursement will be distributed to all grant-awarded providers evenly, per licensed slot.
“The Maryland State Family Child Care Association (MSFCCA) would like to thank MSDE for the grant money that provides the needed assistance to Maryland family child care providers,” said Ruby Daniels, President of the Maryland State Family Child Care Association. “As you know, providers have been hit badly by the pandemic and this grant money will help us in our recovery. My special thanks to State Superintendent Choudhury and his staff for expediting the release of grants and for working closely with the child care community. I want to thank MSDE for their transparency and expediency in next steps toward the ARPA child care stabilization grants that are desperately needed. We appreciate the preparation and the urgency and look forward to more opportunities in the future,” said Chris Peusch, Executive Director of the Maryland State Child Care Association.
In advance of the application window, today MSDE released grant guidance documentation, the grant application template, and its plan for a series of virtual customer service support sessions. Providers are encouraged to take the next week to review the attached material and prepare for the customer service support sessions.
“In challenging times, people come together to find solutions for struggles. On behalf of all my colleagues, including family and center childcare providers, I want to thank MSDE leaders for understanding the importance of releasing the second stabilization grant. This will greatly aid childcare providers with much needed financial support. Working together will always make a difference,” said Carolina Reyes, Director of the Arco Iris Bilingual Children’s Center.
- January 3 – 23, 2022: Application window open for second batch of payments; MSDE will review and process applications on a rolling basis
- January 4 – 22, 2022: Virtual customer support meetings will be held three times a week throughout the application window (Registration required)
- January 23, 2022: Applications due by 6:00 p.m. EST
- By March 4, 2022: MSDE will process all payments and have processed payment information sent to the Comptroller’s Office for the distribution of funds to providers.
Please monitor the MSDE Division of Early Childhood website for updated information pertaining to the grant program, technical assistance meeting and payments. A recording of the technical assistance meeting will be posted on the website.