University of Wisconsin–Madison

From Unlivable Wages to Just Pay for Early Educators

Type Policy Brief or Report
Year 2019
Level City or Town
State(s) All States
Policy Areas Children & Families, Economic Justice, Education
Teaching in early care and education (ECE) programs is one of the lowest-paid occupations in the United States. This report summarizes recent research on wage standards and assesses existing initiatives intended to address the problem of low wages in ECE. It concludes that educators need reliable raises in their hourly wages. Compensation reform can be achieved through a combination of increased public funding for the early care and education system as a whole, explicit requirements for minimum compensation standards, and an organized collective voice for early educators offer the most promising way forward.

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