There’s a Lot to Unpack Regarding the Impact of COVID-19 Lockdowns on Child Care Centers in PA
This is one of those good news/bad news things where practicality comes up against competing principles.
It has to do with professional child care businesses, the Pennsylvania COVID-19 lockdown of businesses, property rights, family trends and more.
Pennsylvania’s already teetering child care industry fears a recent tweak in state policy will push providers over the financial brink.
It’s the latest stress the industry has faced since COVID-19 turned the child care sector upside down in March.
When Gov. Tom Wolf ordered most of the state’s child care centers to shut down for two weeks that month to slow the spread of the virus, Erinn Rinn didn’t waste any time.
Rinn, who is the operations director of child care providers in Delaware and Chester counties, spent the rest of the month frantically reading up on safety protocols and rearranging classrooms — anything she and her staff could do to safely reopen in April.
But, when April rolled around, the child care centers were still closed due to state orders. May came, then June: they remained closed.
“Every week we thought we would open soon,” Rinn said. “We were always waiting.”
The providers finally opened their doors in mid-June, but demand is nothing like it once was. Currently the two child cares, which largely care for kids from low-income families, have a combined enrollment of about 600 kids — less than a third of what it was pre-pandemic.
“A lot of people have lost their jobs,” Rinn said. “Other parents are working from home … or they are just scared.”
Rinn has received pandemic grants and loans, but her businesses’ biggest financial lifeline has a state program called “Child Care Works,” which subsidized low-income families’ child care.
There’s a lot to unpack here.
It’s long been a disturbing thing to watch the growing trend of people who let strangers raise their children. This is a consequence of toxic feminism that gave rise to two-income households, and the denigration of the critical importance of women’s roles as mothers and homemakers in favor of often pointless “careers.”
On the other hand, lawmakers have structured taxes, usurious lending and other factors to sometimes make it necessary for mothers to have to take jobs just to keep their families above water.
And professional day cares, like anything, can be used responsibly rather than as dumping grounds for children while mom heads off to an inane, 40-hour-a-week cubicle farm for their job in marketing or human resources. Sometimes mom needs a break and family isn’t available.
Then there’s the issue of the absolute insanity of the COVID-19 lockdowns, and the violation of private property rights from Gov. Tom Wolf’s orders, which is killing private enterprise and small businesses.
(As an aside, the only plus side of these lockdowns is mothers seeing how much more rewarding and fulfilling it is to spend time at home with their families rather than in some make-work job. Perhaps that’s a silver lining that will reverse some of the the career-track thinking so dominant in liberal political indoctrination.)
As usual, government overreach, regulation and policies are at the heart of all of these problems – whether it’s tax policies that make one-income households unviable, or government schools pushing feminism, or government shutting down businesses out of viral fears that have no basis in science.