Department of Human Services Recognizes Work of Child Care Providers, Highlights New State Child Care Tax Credit Available to Help Working Families


Read, PA – The Department of Human Services (DHS) today visited the Riverview Christian Early Learning Center to thank the daycare staff and providers who enrich young minds through early education and enable parents to go to work every day knowing that their children are safe. Tracey Campanini, assistant secretary of the Office of Child Development and Early Learning, highlighted the $25 million investment by the Wolf administration and the General Assembly in the new childcare tax credit program, which can help reduce childcare costs for working families .

“Quality early childhood education is critical to children’s learning and development,” said assistant secretary Campanini. “And for parents, knowing they have affordable, quality care for their children is immeasurable. We must do all we can to continue to support working parents in the Commonwealth, and we owe a huge debt of gratitude and appreciation to the childcare workers who provide exceptional care to our youngest Pennsylvanians every day.”

Childcare costs are a burden on working families and, when prohibitive, can keep parents away from paid employment and children away from early childhood learning programs that contribute to social, emotional and educational development. According to the Economic Policy Institute, the median annual cost of infant care in Pennsylvania is nearly $12,000. That’s why the Wolf Administration’s 2022-23 state budget includes a brand new program called the Child and Dependent Care Enhancement Program, which is modeled after the Federal Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit.

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This program benefits working families with children in care who are eligible for the federal tax credit for children and dependent care. More than 220,000 families received the federal loan in Pennsylvania, and an equal number of families are expected to qualify for this new state tax credit.

This credit can be claimed on state tax filings beginning in 2023. The credit is also refundable, meaning qualified taxpayers will not owe any state taxes on the amount received. It is estimated that the average tax credit is $171, but the tax credit families receive will be income-related. Pennsylvanians who pay for childcare services may be eligible for the following credits:

  • $180 (one child) or $360 (two or more children) for households earning over $43,000, or

  • $315 (one child) or $630 (two or more children) for households earning less than $43,000.

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Studies show that children who study in quality child care and pre-K programs perform better in school and are more likely to graduate, while quality early childhood learning programs also help students develop social and emotional skills who they need to be successful in the classroom and beyond.

During the pandemic, daycare centers and early childhood educators like the staff at Riverview Christian Early Learning Center have worked tirelessly and continue to work tirelessly to address the challenges of providing families of all backgrounds and means with an opportunity for quality and equitable childcare. The ability of childcare facilities to remain well staffed and open is critical to the health of the economy and child development for the current generation of young children.

Riverview Christian Early Learning Center (RCLEC) is a non-profit, non-discriminatory Christian center founded in 1987. Located in the community of Muhlenberg, just north of Reading, the RCELC is licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services and is a Keystone Stars STAR 4 Center certified, the highest level attainable. RCLEC provides quality year-round childcare for children aged six weeks through 6th grade.

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“It is our greatest desire and a great honor to have the opportunity to invest in the lives of the next generation,” said Jenn Angstadt, Director of RCLEC. “Our team of educational experts strive to continue raising the bar of excellence to provide our children with loving, quality care and an educational foundation for their future academic and personal excellence. It is through ongoing financial support such as family tuition costs and support programs that allows us to provide this ongoing early education service.”

To find licensed child care programs in Pennsylvania, visit www.findchildcare.pa.gov. Families who are having difficulty finding a provider or who are on lower incomes and need assistance paying for care can contact their local Early Learning Resource Center at www.raiseyourstar.org.

MEDIA CONTACT: Brandon Cwalina – [email protected]

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