(The Center Square) – Child care providers in Maryland can begin applying for stabilization grants.
Gov. Larry Hogan said Wednesday the window is now open to child care providers to apply for grants through the Child Care Stabilization Grant program. The program, run through the Maryland State Department of Education, will be dispensing $50 million in state funding to support childcare providers who have faced hardships during the COVID–19 pandemic.
“Child care has been critical to our recovery efforts in Maryland, and making sure providers have the resources they need to operate remains a top priority,” Hogan said in the release.
During the General Assembly’s session earlier this year, House Bill 89 was enacted. The bill provides grant funding over the next two years, and funds can be utilized for the developmental and learning needs of children, promoting equitable access to high-quality child care, and supporting the workforce.
“As essential partners in early childhood education, Maryland’s child care providers build the foundation for the healthy growth, development, and academic achievement of our state’s children,” State Superintendent of Schools Mohammed Choudhury said in the release. “This funding will help further strengthen the child care community, increase access to quality child care, and ensure equitable access for every child, especially those who have been historically underserved.”
To qualify for funding, child care providers, according to the release, must be able to demonstrate a financial hardship that poses a risk that the business could close in the next year; have not received a prior stabilization grant; participate in the Child Care Scholarship Program; serve primarily low-income families, and serve children that are under the age of 2.
The department, according to the release, will contact providers throughout the state to ensure it contacts as many child care providers as possible. The application deadline is Aug. 29.