Title 17. Education
Chapter 1. General School Law
Part X-a. Louisiana Early Childhood Education
17:407.30 Louisiana Early Childhood Education Fund
A. There is hereby created in the state treasury a special fund to be known as the Louisiana Early Childhood Education Fund, hereafter in this Section referred to as the “fund”.
B. Any appropriations, public or private grants, gifts, or donations received by the state or the Department of Education for the purposes of this Section, other than federal funds for the Child Care and Development Fund Program, shall be credited to the fund.
C. Monies in the fund shall be invested by the state treasurer in the same manner as monies in the state general fund. Interest earned on the investment of monies in the fund shall be deposited in and credited to the fund. Unexpended and unencumbered monies in the fund at the end of the fiscal year shall remain in the fund.
D. (1)(a) The fund shall be administered by the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. Subject to legislative appropriation, monies in the fund shall be awarded annually to local entities approved by the board for the purpose of funding projects that will expand the number of early childhood care and education quality slots for families who are eligible for the Child Care Assistance Program in Type III early learning centers that have at least one classroom with children age fifteen months or younger if a local entity provides funds from nonstate and nonfederal sources. No such award shall be made unless the local entity’s financial commitment to the project proposed for funding provides matching funds from nonstate and nonfederal sources at a rate of at least one-to-one.
(b) Each local entity shall establish eligibility criteria for the early childhood care and education quality slots financed by local funds that serve as the match for the award. At a minimum, only children whose family income makes them economically disadvantaged as defined by the board shall be eligible for the slots.
(2) If there is money in the fund after the board has funded every qualifying project pursuant to Paragraph (1) of this Subsection, the board may award remaining unallocated monies in the fund for the exclusive use of Type III early learning centers to provide quality care for children who are ages birth through two and whose parents are eligible for the Child Care Assistance Program. The board shall consider the following in selecting the recipients of such an award: the Child Care Assistance Program waitlist, child poverty rates, child care needs in terms of the economic development needs of the parish where the center is located, and increasing the availability of high quality early learning centers statewide.
E. Monies from the fund shall not be used to displace, replace, or supplant the amount appropriated to the Child Care Assistance Program.
F. The department shall actively solicit and use resources to fund the Child Care Assistance Program slots.
G. The State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to administer the distribution of monies from the fund to the Child Care Assistance Program.
Added by Acts 2017, No. 353, § 1. Amended by Acts 2019, No. 223, § 1.