US Supreme Court Decisions On-Line | US Laws

§ 9401. —  Purposes.

[Laws in effect as of January 7, 2003]
[Document not affected by Public Laws enacted between
  January 7, 2003 and December 19, 2003]
[CITE: 20USC9401]

                           TITLE 20--EDUCATION
Sec. 9401. Purposes

    The purposes of this chapter are--
        (1) to increase the availability of voluntary programs, 
    services, and activities that support early childhood development, 
    increase parent effectiveness, and promote the learning readiness of 
    young children so that young children enter school ready to learn;
        (2) to support parents, child care providers, and caregivers who 
    want to incorporate early learning activities into the daily lives 
    of young children;
        (3) to remove barriers to the provision of an accessible system 
    of early childhood learning programs in communities throughout the 
    United States;
        (4) to increase the availability and affordability of 
    professional development activities and compensation for caregivers 
    and child care providers; and
        (5) to facilitate the development of community-based systems of 
    collaborative service delivery models characterized by resource 
    sharing, linkages between appropriate supports, and local planning 
    for services.

(Pub. L. 106-554, Sec. 1(a)(1) [title VIII, Sec. 802], Dec. 21, 2000, 
114 Stat. 2763, 2763A-80.)

                          Short Title; Findings

    Pub. L. 106-554, Sec. 1(a)(1) [title VIII, Sec. 801], Dec. 21, 2000, 
114 Stat. 2763, 2763A-79, provided that:
    ``(a) Short Title.--This title [enacting this chapter] may be cited 
as the `Early Learning Opportunities Act'.
    ``(b) Findings.--Congress finds that--
        ``(1) medical research demonstrates that adequate stimulation of 
    a young child's brain between birth and age 5 is critical to the 
    physical development of the young child's brain;
        ``(2) parents are the most significant and effective teachers of 
    their children, and they alone are responsible for choosing the best 
    early learning opportunities for their child;
        ``(3) parent education and parent involvement are critical to 
    the success of any early learning program or activity;
        ``(4) the more intensively parents are involved in their child's 
    early learning, the greater the cognitive and noncognitive benefits 
    to their children;
        ``(5) many parents have difficulty finding the information and 
    support the parents seek to help their children grow to their full 
        ``(6) each day approximately 13,000,000 young children, 
    including 6,000,000 infants or toddlers, spend some or all of their 
    day being cared for by someone other than their parents;
        ``(7) quality early learning programs, including those designed 
    to promote effective parenting, can increase the literacy rate, the 
    secondary school graduation rate, the employment rate, and the 
    college enrollment rate for children who have participated in 
    voluntary early learning programs and activities;
        ``(8) early childhood interventions can yield substantial 
    advantages to participants in terms of emotional and cognitive 
    development, education, economic well-being, and health, with the 
    latter two advantages applying to the children's families as well;
        ``(9) participation in quality early learning programs, 
    including those designed to promote effective parenting, can 
    decrease the future incidence of teenage pregnancy, welfare 
    dependency, at-risk behaviors, and juvenile delinquency for 
        ``(10) several cost-benefit analysis studies indicate that for 
    each $1 invested in quality early learning programs, the Federal 
    Government can save over $5 by reducing the number of children and 
    families who participate in Federal Government programs like special 
    education and welfare;
        ``(11) for children placed in the care of others during the 
    workday, the low salaries paid to the child care staff, the lack of 
    career progression for the staff, and the lack of child development 
    specialists involved in early learning and child care programs, make 
    it difficult to attract and retain the quality of staff necessary 
    for a positive early learning experience;
        ``(12) Federal Government support for early learning has 
    primarily focused on out-of-home care programs like those 
    established under the Head Start Act [42 U.S.C. 9831 et seq.], the 
    Child Care and Development Block Grant [Act] of 1990 [42 U.S.C. 9858 
    et seq.], and part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education 
    Act [20 U.S.C. 1431 et seq.], and these programs--
            ``(A) serve far fewer than half of all eligible children;
            ``(B) are not primarily designed to provide support for 
        parents who care for their young children in the home; and
            ``(C) lack a means of coordinating early learning 
        opportunities in each community; and
        ``(13) by helping communities increase, expand, and better 
    coordinate early learning opportunities for children and their 
    families, the productivity and creativity of future generations will 
    be improved, and the Nation will be prepared for continued 
    leadership in the 21st century.''