In the 20th century we have witnessed the massive movement of women and young mothers into paid employment in the U.S. and other industrialized countries. By 1995 64% of married mothers with a preschool-aged child were in the labor force compared to 35% only 25 years earlier. Rising divorce rates and an increase in the percentage of female-headed households make more families dependent on the motherÆs earnings. These structural shifts, along with womenÆs growing aspirations for careers and more independence, have changed social norms. Families increasingly depend on formally provided child care.''The child care crisis is easily overlooked. It is a silent, voiceless crisis. Three-, four-, and five-year-old children cannot speak for themselves. Low- and middle-income children and mothers, those most directly affected, have little economic or political power. What choices must we as a society make to aid our nation in raising its children?''The Silent Crisis in U.S. Child Care, a special issue of THE ANNALS, addresses the important debates and questions regarding child care:''''''· Regulating Child Care Quality''· Making Child Care Affordable in the United States''+ Defining and Assessing Early Childhood Program Quality''+ Who Should Pay for Child Care''The discussion of child care not only affects our society as a whole, but also influences the decisions of policymakers and politicians. The articles in this special issue are valuable to scholars, researchers, policymakers and those working in and with the child care system who seek to find answers and solutions to this timely and important problem.
Barbara R. Bergmann
Making Child Care "Affordable" in the United States
Suzanne W. Helburn
Sandra L. Hofferth
Child Care, Maternal Employment, and Public Policy
Defining and Assessing Early Childhood Program Quality
The Kellogg Child Development Center: High-Quality Child Care
Margaret R. Burchinal
Child Care Experiences and Developmental Outcomes
Susan D. Holloway and Bruce Fuller
Families and Child Care: Divergent Viewpoints
William Gormley, Jr.
Regulating Child Care Quality
John R. Morris
Market Constraints on Child Care Quality
Child Care Workers: High Demand, Low Wages
Hiring a Nanny: The Limits of Private Solutions to Public Problems
Wolfgang Tietze and Debby Cryer
Current Trends in European Early Child Care and Education
Paula England and Nancy Folbre
Who Should Pay for the Kids?