Brainerd Dispatch: Fixing the child care crisis: Rural MN providers talk solutions

EXCERPT: “‘We need to educate our communities, our state and our nation on what child care is.’ Sherry Tiegs hammered that message into the minds of those who attended a webinar offered by the Center for Rural Policy and Development Thursday, Feb. 18, to discuss the state of child care in rural Minnesota. Tiegs, who owns Sherry Tiegs Family Childcare & Playschool in Morris, joined Karen DeVos, owner of Little Learners Early Childhood Center in Ada, fielded questions about the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on child care in rural Minnesota and what needs to be done to save child care providers. Public funding, more government grants and discussions on the importance of child care are all part of the solution Tiegs and DeVos mentioned during the webinar. Marnie Werner, vice president of research and operations, for the Center for Rural Policy and Development, presented statistics on the child care capacity throughout the state and what those numbers mean for families and providers. Data was split between family child care providers and child care centers. Family providers are those who operate individually outside of daycare centers, typically within their own homes.” FULL STORY: