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News / Business / Clark County Business

Clark County, Southwest Washington child care in crisis

In wake of pandemic closures, day care centers struggle to find staff as families are challenged by costs

By Sarah Wolf, Columbian staff writer
Published: December 4, 2021, 6:01am
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4 Photos
Julian Gomez, 5, left, works with teacher Sandy Becker, red mask, as he learns the letters of the alphabet at Jack and Jill House on Thursday morning. The day care is one of Clark County's 86 licensed child care centers.
Julian Gomez, 5, left, works with teacher Sandy Becker, red mask, as he learns the letters of the alphabet at Jack and Jill House on Thursday morning. The day care is one of Clark County's 86 licensed child care centers. (Amanda Cowan/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

In early 2020, Educational Service District 112 was serving more than twice the number of students in its child care and early education centers than it is today.

Since that time, Southwest Washington has lost a higher percentage of child care capacity than any other region in the state; about 25 percent of the region’s child care capacity has disappeared due to program closures since 2020, according to ChildCare Aware of Washington.

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