MinnPost: How Minnesota’s child care industry has managed to hang on amid the pandemic

EXCERPT: “Lynn Barten has been a family child care provider for 22 years, a mainstay in an industry that has a shrinking workforce.  Barten first ran the business out of her Alexandria home, but then bought a second house to have more space for the operation. She has earned child care credentials, an associate’s degree, and is a state-approved instructor for other providers. Yet the COVID-19 pandemic nearly forced her to close permanently. When parents began keeping their kids at home, the lost tuition — along with the increased costs of buying outbreak essentials like cleaning supplies — forced Barten to dip into her savings. She went months without a salary until she qualified for a state grant. ‘I was very close to leaving the profession, I really was,’ Barten said in an interview last week as children played with bubbles and picked tomatoes in her leafy backyard.” FULL STORY: https://fluence-media.co/3gAkr2u