PORTLAND, Ore. – What’s more important: college or day care?
It’s a question some parents may have to ask themselves.
A new report by Child Care Aware of America shows Oregon is the most expensive state in the country for a two-parent family to spend on child care. For many families, it’s more than a year in public college.
Jennifer Ferrero co-owns Purple Moon Child Development. She doesn’t deny that day care is expensive, and says a lot of the high cost has to do with meeting parents’ requests these days, like the music program at Purple Moon, for example.
“And so we unfortunately have to pass that price on to our parents,” said Ferrero.
She says more than ever, parents want to know about their teachers’ skill sets.
“Actually, half of our staff, have masters in education,” she said.
That means higher pay rates, and Ferrero has to have enough teachers for the kids enrolled. In Oregon, the ratio is one teacher for every four infants.
And when it comes to food at Purple Moon, Ferrero serves up organic, which costs more.
“We are a very Portland school; we’ve always been this way.”
The result? Parents pay around $1,100 per month to send their kids there full-time.
New York, Minnesota, Massachusetts and Colorado round out the top five most-expensive states for child care. Washington made the top ten at number nine.