The New America Care Report was covered in an NPR special series on working parents:
And no wonder: The average cost of day care in the U.S. — $9,589 per year — edges out the average cost of in-state college tuition at $9,410, according to a recent report from New America, a think tank in Washington, D.C., in collaboration with Care.com, an online resource that connects families and caregivers.
To put that in perspective another way: In four states — Kentucky, Montana, Oregon and Wisconsin — average child care costs exceed median rent. In 11 states — Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, South Dakota, Vermont, Washington — and the District of Columbia, the average cost of full-time day care is more than 90 percent of median rent.
That means for many families, a significant chunk of household spending goes toward child care; in states such as Mississippi and West Virginia, child care costs account for 40 to 45 percent of total household income.