Child Care More Expensive Than College In Most States - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Child Care More Expensive Than College In Most States

Posted: Updated:
It’s something parents all over the Inland Northwest have felt for years and now the data proves it: the average cost of daycare now exceeds in-state college tuition in 31 states, including Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon. It’s something parents all over the Inland Northwest have felt for years and now the data proves it: the average cost of daycare now exceeds in-state college tuition in 31 states, including Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon.
SPOKANE, Wash. -

It’s something parents all over the Inland Northwest have felt for years and now the data proves it: the average cost of daycare now exceeds in-state college tuition in 31 states, including Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon.

The report from Child Care Aware shows daycare is roughly $1,000-$5,000 a year more expensive than college in the four above-listed states. The rising cost of daycare is why Shawna Brogan of Medical Lake is now a stay-at-home mom.

“The childcare was $2400 a month,” the mother of four told KHQ’s Kelsey Watts. “Do the math, it makes no sense for me to go to work.”

Brogan made good money working for the state and her husband works full time at Fairchild Air Force Base, but it still wasn’t enough to outweigh the cost of childcare for their children, ages 7, 5, 3, and 2.

“That’s kind of the struggle that’s been around for years and years,” said Department of Early Learning Spokesperson Amy Blondin said. “We have resources to help very low-income families who are working toward self sufficiency, and then your higher-income families are okay –

although it’s a burden on them as well, these high costs for care –,but it’s really that middle range of folks who are priced out of some of the child care options.”

While Brogan readily acknowledges it was their choice to have a large family, paying for daycare is an issue for many single-child families as well.

Child Care Aware reports the average cost of care for a single infant in Washington is more than $1,000 every month; more than rent or a mortgage payment for many families. Making matters worse, Child Care Aware of Eastern Washington says rates in Spokane are actually cheaper than in more-populated areas, like King County, for example.

They say locally, child care centers charge an average monthly rate of $806 for an infant, $650 for a toddler, $620 for a preschooler and $433 for a school-age child. A family-based child care center is a little cheaper at an average of $650, $607, $542 and $468, respectively.

“It infuriates me actually, it really makes me mad, I just don’t think it’s right,” Brogan added. “I don’t know how long it will be before I can ever go back to work, and by then it will be so long who is going to want me? I’ll have to start back at the bottom again.”

“It’s really a conversation that’s happening at the national level as well: how do we make sure that child care is high-quality but is also something that every family can access and afford?” Blondin added. “There’s no magic answer for that yet, but it is something people and policy-makers have been struggling with for years.”

The good news for low-income families is state subsidies are available to help. To learn more and see if you qualify, visit http://www.del.wa.gov/publications/subsidy/docs/Subsidy_Eligibility_Chart.pdf.

To learn about assistance provided through Working Connections Child Care, visit
http://www.del.wa.gov/care/help/connections.aspx.

  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • Action Cam: Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream At 'The Scoop!'

    Action Cam: Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream At 'The Scoop!'

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 12:22 PM EDT2014-09-02 16:22:00 GMT
    KHQ.COM - This morning Jennifer Davis, owner of "The Scoop" ice cream shop, showed Matt Rogers how she makes ice cream with liquid nitrogen! MORE INFO: http://www.thescoopspokane.com/More >>
    KHQ.COM - This morning Jennifer Davis, owner of "The Scoop" ice cream shop, showed Matt Rogers how she makes ice cream with liquid nitrogen! MORE INFO: http://www.thescoopspokane.com/More >>
  • PHOTOS: Share your back-to-school pics!

    PHOTOS: Share your back-to-school pics!

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 12:18 PM EDT2014-09-02 16:18:59 GMT
    KHQ.COM - School is starting! Everyone knows the drill right? Before you can run out the door and jump on the bus, mom always has to snag a picture to remember her little baby growing up through the years! We want to see those photos! Whether they are from this year, last year or 50 years ago, send us the photos of your first day of school!More >>
    KHQ.COM - School is starting! Everyone knows the drill right? Before you can run out the door and jump on the bus, mom always has to snag a picture to remember her little baby growing up through the years! We want to see those photos! Whether they are from this year, last year or 50 years ago, send us the photos of your first day of school!More >>
  • Demonstrators block tracks in Everett

    Demonstrators block tracks in Everett

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 12:14 PM EDT2014-09-02 16:14:55 GMT
    EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — About a dozen demonstrators blocked railroad tracks Tuesday morning at a Burlington Northern Santa Fe yard to protest train shipments of oil and coal and proposed export terminals in the Northwest. Railroad spokesman Gus Melonas says some have chained themselves to the tracks.More >>
    EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — About a dozen demonstrators blocked railroad tracks Tuesday morning at a Burlington Northern Santa Fe yard to protest train shipments of oil and coal and proposed export terminals in the Northwest. Railroad spokesman Gus Melonas says some have chained themselves to the tracks.
    More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KHQ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.