Two-hundred more child care spots at 12 State University of New York campuses are now available for use, Gov. Kathy Hochul's office announced Tuesday.
The expansion of child care accessibility is made possible due to $1.72 million in additional funding for improvements.
The SUNY community colleges that were awarded funds include:
- Hudson Valley
- Niagara County
- Suffolk County for two locations
“Quality child care is the cornerstone of a child’s development and is a crucial investment in the success of our future generations,” Hochul said in a statement. “Investing in child care centers on SUNY campuses empowers our students, staff and faculty to pursue a higher education with ease while supporting working families.”
Demand for child care spots have risen significantly. According to the governor's office, on campuses, as many as 80% of students with dependents report they have trouble meeting their child care needs.
During the 2022-2023 academic year, SUNY offered approximately 4,500 child care slots across the 46 SUNY campuses that have a child care center onsite. The centers served 795 student-parents, as well as faculty, staff, and local community members. SUNY campuses invest about $6 million annually to provide child care services. Last year, $10.8 million was allocated to SUNY to address child care deserts as well as fund improvements and expand capacity.
"Having that college degree is more important than ever to compete for good jobs in New York’s rapidly evolving workplaces, and for many of our students, services like child care are essential for them to earn their spot at graduation," SUNY Chancellor John B. King, who visited Niagara County Community College on Tuesday, said.
“The ability to have affordable and accessible child care right near you ... that's incredible," said Clarissa Walsh, a nursing student picking up her 3-year-old daughter from NCCC’s John R. Oishei’s Child Development Center. "I think it's great."