On-Demand Child Care
Child Care is an ongoing challenge for student-parents. Having experienced a significant drop in female student enrollment due to Child Care issues, MiraCosta College Technology Career Institute in San Diego decided to go beyond just offering on-site care and be the first college in the country to provide a flexible Child Care benefit from TOOTRiS.
MiraCosta's unique accelerated learning programs position students for career advancement; however, in recent years, Child Care has created a barrier for female students to enroll. To resolve the issue, MiraCosta College has selected TOOTRiS to provide cutting-edge Child Care benefits to all its TCI students.
Under the partnership, TOOTRiS will provide MiraCosta access to the largest network of licensed Child Care providers, enabling student-parents to search, vet, compare, and enroll in real time. The technology platform also enables them to find slots for temporary care, drop-ins, and non-traditional work schedules. This provides significant value for students who have widely varying schedules.
"Our goal is to provide the quickest way for students to go from learning to earning," said Linda Kurokawa, Executive Director of MiraCosta College. "Our 3-6 month accelerated learning programs provide a lot of flexibility; however, post-pandemic we are still seeing student-parents — especially the female population — struggle to come back to those programs due to Child Care issues. Partnering with TOOTRiS helps us solve that problem by providing students with the most affordable Child Care options that fit their specific needs."
MiraCosta is not alone when it comes to challenges for students with children. According to estimates by National Center for Education Statistics, more than one-fifth of all college students are student-parents. That's nearly four million college students with children who are trying to balance taking classes and studying while holding part-time or full-time jobs, as well as providing the day-to-day care and support their kids require.
Sadly, according to CalMatters, more than half will drop out before attaining a degree. Colleges and universities need to find ways to support these hard-working students and make it possible for them to succeed.
"Costs and access to Child Care have always been the biggest hurdles for student-parents, and until now, colleges and universities have had limited options — such as on-site care — which only serves a few students and has long waitlists," said Alessandra Lezama, TOOTRiS CEO and a select member of the ReadyNation CEO Task Force on Early Childhood. "With TOOTRiS, public and private higher education institutions like MiraCosta are now able to offer their entire population of student-parents and faculty real-time access to affordable care at a fraction of the cost of other options."
MiraCosta College Technology Career Institute is taking a strong leadership position to reduce the barriers facing its student-parents. But with many student-parents across the country being single, female, students of color, and from low-income backgrounds, more higher education leaders, as well as federal and state policymakers, need to address the challenge.
TOOTRiS is the first and only universal Child Care platform that converges private and public Child Care stakeholders — Family Child Care Homes and Center-Based Providers, Parents, Agencies, and Employers — into a unified, real-time technology platform enabling employers and higher education institutions to offer turnkey Child Care Benefits to their workforce and student populations with the flexibility and family support paramount to increasing retention, productivity, and ROI. Visit tootris.com/employers for information.
About MiraCosta College
For more than 80 years, the MiraCosta Community College District has served students throughout North County with a wide array of educational offerings on multiple campuses. The college has more than 19,000 credit students annually in over 70 disciplines enrolled in associate degrees, university transfer and workforce readiness certificate programs. There are also about 7,000 students who take part in programs for adult education, community education, basic skills and ESL (English as a Second Language). The college is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
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Original Source: College, First in the Country, Offering Student-Parents TOOTRiS Child Care Benefits