Policy Clearinghouse

This clearinghouse includes reviews of the evidence on state policies intended to improve outcomes for infants, toddlers, and their families. By following a comprehensive, systematic review method, our policy researchers identify which state policies have demonstrated effectiveness at creating the conditions in which young children and their families can thrive.

We designate state policies as effective, needs further study, ineffective, or harmful. Because of the limits of existing evidence, we are slow to call a policy ineffective or harmful until it has been thoroughly studied. We track effective policies in our annual Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap.

State Policies & Strategies

Child Allowance

Policy Goals

The science of the developing child points to the conditions in which young children and their families can thrive. We represent these conditions in our eight prenatal-to-3 policy goals, which all states should strive to achieve to ensure that infants and toddlers get off to a healthy start and thrive. To be considered effective, a policy must significantly improve outcomes related to at least one of our goals.

Access to Needed Services

Families have access to necessary services through expanded eligibility, reduced administrative burden, or programs to identify needs and connect families with services.

Parents’ Ability to Work

Parents have the skills and incentives for employment and the resources they need to balance working and parenting.

Sufficient Household Resources

Parents have the resources they need to provide for their families, including financial and material needs (e.g., housing, food, etc.)

Healthy and Equitable Births

Children are born healthy to healthy parents, and pregnancy experiences and birth outcomes are equitable.

Parental Health and Emotional Wellbeing

Parents are mentally and physically healthy, with particular attention paid to the perinatal period.

Nurturing and Responsive Child-Parent Relationships

Children experience warm, nurturing, stimulating interactions with their parents that promote healthy development.

Nurturing and Responsive Child Care in Safe Setting

When children are not with their parents, they are in high quality, nurturing, and safe environments.

Optimal Child Health and Development

Children's emotional, physical, and cognitive development is on track, and delays are identified and addressed early.

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