How Childcare Aware of America is Changing Public Childcare Policy with Michelle McCready


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Do you struggle to cover the cost of your childcare? Do you provide childcare services and find yourself struggling to keep your business open? Childcare, as an industry in America, is woefully under-funded.

In this episode, Andrew talks with Michelle McCready, Deputy Executive Officer at Childcare Aware of America to discuss how we can affect change in Childcare Policy.

Michelle McCready. M.P.P., currently serves as the Deputy Executive Officer at Child Care Aware® of America (CCAoA). In this role, Michelle works with the executive team to oversee and manage all aspects of operations, set comprehensive goals and metrics for performance and growth, and establish policies that promote CCAoA’s culture and mission. Michelle joined CCAoA at the beginning of 2011.

In this episode, Andrew and Michelle discuss:

  • How Childcare Aware is affecting change in Childcare policy
  • The intentions behind childcare policy advocacy
  • How you can use your story and voice to impact policy change
  • What are the primary intractable barriers in childcare
  • Why is childcare a fundamental public good
  • How history has played a role in childcare inequities
  • Which communities are getting childcare policy right

What Michelle thinks it takes for a community to thrive fully?

Understand the needs, barriers, the wants of each family member and knit together this whole neighborhood, whole community approach to supporting those.

How do you help your community to thrive?

Your voice matters.  Find what you are passionate about and get involved

More About Michelle McCready and Childcare Aware of America

Michelle McCready formerly served as the Chief of Policy at CCAoA and provided vision, leadership, and management to the Policy and Evaluation Division, which covered federal policy, state initiatives, and advocacy. She partnered with board members, executives, staff, national and local coalition partners, and the community, to make sound policy decisions that help children and families. She successfully executed the national advocacy movement, Child Care Works, which led to the attainment of the 2016 MarCom Award. She also secured several core contracts and grants for the organization, including: emergency preparedness; health and wellness; multiple state advocacy initiatives; and increased federal training and technical assistance work. In addition to her leadership in developing a policy agenda that promotes CCAoA’s mission and vision, Michelle also helped develop CCAoA’s signature research reports on state child care data and the cost of child care in the United States. She is a key policy contributor to Huffington Post Politics, CNBC, and Exchange Magazine.

In addition, Ms. McCready has more than a decade of leadership experience on several presidential and congressional campaign efforts. Most notably, Michelle staffed various campaigns and efforts in Virginia with Organizing for America during the first three years of the Obama Administration, was the Field Director for Representative Gerald Connolly (D-VA), and for the past six years, and has implemented CCAoA’s policy and legislative agenda. Michelle has considerable experience working on early learning and child care policies, including the re-authorization of the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) of 2014, Labor-HHS appropriations, Head Start/Early Head Start, Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS), state and local advocacy campaigns, the Affordable Care Act, Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Response, and children’s health initiatives.

Michelle earned her master’s degree in public policy at George Mason University and a bachelor’s degree in social welfare and policy at University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her studies included considerable qualitative and quantitative research experience, focusing on a range of topics including policy analysis, race and equity disparity, conflict resolution and negotiation, and advocacy. She holds leadership roles as the Executive lead for CCAoA’s Public Policy Committee, the Public Policy Committee for Generations United, and on the Early Childhood Advisory Committee to the Arlington County School Board.

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