Ensuring the future of Colorado's early childhood sector after COVID-19

It is critical for Colorado to fully understand the impact of the pandemic on child care and other early childhood services. Through comprehensive data collection and analysis, Early Milestones is identifying actions that can be taken to be rebuild the sector quickly, enable families to get back to work, and prepare for future crises.

Beginning with a survey of Colorado families, child care providers, and early educators, we are engaging the research-policy-practice loop with system-level and research partners to determine sector needs and solutions. The results of this work will be made available in a dashboard and reports to inform funding, practice, and policy decisions.

Measuring Impact

We are leading a series of surveys so that the state can appropriately target rebuilding efforts across the early childhood sector. This research will be leveraged to create effective policies, pilot programs, and industry reports to support state and local decision-making.

What We're Hearing

“I’m able to work remotely but not getting paid 40 hours a week. We are unable to afford child care fees, and it doesn’t feel safe to send our little ones to child care.”

Family Survey Respondent

“So many questions remain: Is it safe to re-open? Should I limit my hours? Will the parks be open? Do I stay open if Colorado moves back to a stay-at-home order? Do I require masks if I do re-open? Do I need to wear a mask the entire school day?”

Provider Survey Respondent

“Due to the pandemic and low enrollment, my classroom has been closed down, and I have been laid off. I’m heartbroken. I’m praying that I get my job back.”

Educator Survey Respondent


Early Milestones is grateful to the following project funders, without whom this effort would not be possible. We also thank our many partners who are helping to distribute surveys, interpret data, and develop communication tools.

  • Buell Foundation
  • Colorado Office of Early Childhood
  • CO Health Foundation
  • Gary Community Investments