Descriptive Title: Average age adjusted child care costs as a proportion of median household income

Geographic Unit of Analysis: Census tract

Average annual age-adjusted child care costs as a proportion of median household income (2005-2009)
NeighborhoodMedian HH incomeMOE*Average child care burdenMOE*% for infant careMOE*% for toddler careMOE*% for school-aged careMOE*
Bayview/Hunter's Point $43,151 $12,942 19% 6% 30% 9% 22% 7% 16% 5%
Bernal Heights $85,607 $20,881 10% 2% 15% 4% 11% 3% 8% 2%
Castro/Upper Market $92,237 $21,069 10% 2% 14% 3% 10% 2% 8% 2%
Chinatown $17,630 $6,737 47% 18% 73% 28% 54% 20% 40% 15%
Excelsior $67,405 $17,324 12% 3% 19% 5% 14% 4% 10% 3%
Financial District/South Beach ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
Glen Park
Golden Gate Park NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA
Haight Ashbury $85,548 $22,508 11% 3% 15% 4% 11% 3% 8% 2%
Hayes Valley
Inner Richmond $69,861 $15,851 12% 3% 18% 4% 14% 3% 10% 2%
Inner Sunset $85,696 $16,771 10% 2% 15% 3% 11% 2% 8% 2%
Japantown
Lakeshore $62,917 $23,106 13% 5% 20% 8% 15% 6% 11% 4%
Lincoln Park
Lone Mountain/USF
Marina $102,450 $23,090 9% 2% 13% 3% 9% 2% 7% 2%
McLaren Park
Mission $63,623 $13,709 14% 3% 20% 4% 15% 3% 11% 2%
Mission Bay
Nob Hill $53,283 $15,679 16% 5% 24% 7% 18% 5% 13% 4%
Noe Valley $105,797 $25,588 9% 2% 12% 3% 9% 2% 7% 2%
North Beach $70,056 $26,241 12% 5% 18% 7% 14% 5% 10% 4%
Oceanview/Merced/Ingleside
Outer Mission $79,477 $24,838 11% 3% 16% 5% 12% 4% 9% 3%
Outer Richmond $72,459 $16,736 12% 3% 18% 4% 13% 3% 10% 2%
Pacific Heights $109,307 $24,946 8% 2% 12% 3% 9% 2% 6% 1%
Portola
Potrero Hill $98,198 $31,951 9% 3% 13% 4% 10% 3% 7% 2%
Presidio ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
Presidio Heights $96,542 $42,194 9% 4% 13% 6% 10% 4% 7% 3%
Russian Hill $84,537 $25,578 10% 3% 15% 5% 11% 3% 8% 3%
San Francisco $70,040 $1,023 12% 0% 18% 0% 14% 0% 10% 0%
Seacliff $162,903 $28,970 5% 1% 8% 1% 6% 1% 4% 1%
South of Market $67,584 $31,506 13% 6% 19% 9% 14% 7% 10% 5%
Sunset/Parkside
Tenderloin
Treasure Island ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
Twin Peaks ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
Visitacion Valley $44,373 $19,971 19% 8% 29% 13% 21% 10% 16% 7%
West of Twin Peaks $125,027 $35,145 7% 2% 10% 3% 8% 2% 6% 2%
Western Addition $53,990 $11,805 16% 4% 24% 5% 18% 4% 13% 3%

Why Is This An Indicator Of Health and Sustainability?

Substantial research demonstrates that accessible high quality childcare positively affects childhood growth, physical development, and physical health, cognitive, behavioral and school outcomes.a,b High childcare costs relative to income can either limit accessibility to childcare (potentially reducing family earnings) or limit access to high quality childcare providers.

Interpretation and Geographic Equity Analysis

The map and table only display average age adjusted costs for child care centers and not family child care homes, due to space limitations in family homes and the fact that 2/3  of licensed child care slots are available in centers. The map illustrates that the financial burden of the average age adjusted child care cost for a child care center is likely to be the heaviest in the Downtown/Civic Center, Chinatown, Bayview, Visitation Valley, and Western Addition neighborhoods. This pattern corresponds to the distribution of low income households in the city.

Nationwide, infant child care tends to cost more than preschool and school-age child care.  The California Child Care Resource and Referral Network calculates that the annual average cost for full-time care for an infant in a licensed center in San Francisco is $14,939 ($11,058 in a licensed family child care home); this is higher than estimates calculated by the California Department of Education that were the basis for this analysis ($12,857.52/year). For a single parent of a preschooler who earns minimum wage, child care at a licensed preschool center would consume 52% of their budget, while housing would consume 108%. In 2010, there were 4,316 children in San Francisco on waitlists to receive a child care subsidy (2011 Child Care Portfolio Data Highlights, Accessed online on February 14, 2012: http://www.rrnetwork.org/rr-research-in-action/network-resources-publications/).

Although cost is an important factor in the selection of child care, availability and location are also major considerations for many parents.  According to the 2011 California Child Care Portfolio, licensed child care is available for 45% of working parents in San Francisco County, which is considerably higher than the statewide average of 25%.  However, while there were 15,210 children under the age of two in San Francisco in 2010 and 51% of referral requests were for children under two, infant care only made up 5% of slots in licensed child care centers (only 978 slots). This number of slots for infants represents a 12% decrease from 2008 (2011 Child Care Portfolio Data Highlights, Accessed online on February 14, 2012: http://www.rrnetwork.org/rr-research-in-action/network-resources-publications/).

Methods

Average full-time annual child care costs by age group for child care centers in San Francisco were gathered from the California Department of Education website and were as follows: 0-24 months: $12,857.52/year; 2-5 years: $9.458.64/year; 5-14 years: $7,051.44/year. Average child care costs in homes is about $3,224/year less for infants, $650/year less for toddlers, and $42/year less for children five to 14.

Average age adjusted child care costs were calculated to account for the fact that certain parts of San Francisco have different age distribution of children across San Francisco is not even. For example, in the Mission Bay and Marina neighborhoods over 27% of the 0-14 year old population is less than two years old, while in West of Twin Peaks only 12% of the child care population is under two. Thus the average cost of child care is going to be greater in neighborhoods with a higher infant population than in neighborhoods with a high proportion of children five and older. To calculate the average age adjusted child care costs for each census tract, the proportion of children in each child care age group (0-23 mo. (infants), 2-4 years (toddlers), and 5-14 years (children)) was multiplied by the average child care cost for that age group and the resulting values for all age groups were summed as follows:

Average age-adjusted child care cost = (# infants/# 0-14 year olds) x $12,857.52 + (# toddlers/# 0-14 year olds) x $9.458.64 + (# children/# 0-14 year olds) x $7,051.44

The average age adjusted child care cost for each census tract was then divided by the median household income for the tract. Because median household income data comes from the American Community Survey and has a  90% margin of error (MOE) attached, margins of error for the resulting child care cost to household income ratios had to be calculated. To do this, the following formula was used:

child care cost to household income ratio 90% MOE = (household median income 90% MOE / household median income estimate) x (child care cost to household income ratio)

To determine whether the child care cost to household income ratios were statistically stable, the 90% MOE was divided by 1.645 to generate the standard error. The standard error was then divided by the child care cost to household income ratio to generate the coefficient of variation (CV). Tracts or neighborhoods with a CV greater than 0.3 were determined to be statistically unreliable and their data is not shown.

Limitations

Map and neighborhood estimates are intended to demonstrate average costs of child care relative to median household incomes.  However, it is acknowledged that the costs of child care vary by type, the availability of subsidies, the number of hours and time of day utilized, language preferences, facility location, and numerous other factors.  Also, some families do not seek child care or choose friends and relatives (license-exempt caregivers) to care for their children, and programs for school age children are often not licensed by the state.

Data Source

Average Rates for Full-time Childcare in San Francisco County. Obtained through Regional Market Rate (RMR) Survey of California Child Care Providers. California Department of Education. Accessed online on November of 2011 :http://www.cde.ca.gov/fg/aa/cd/ap/index.aspx.

Household income data from the American Community Survey, 2005-2009 5-year estimates.

Age data from the 2010 US Census.

Map and table created by San Francisco Department of Public Health, Environmental Health Section using ArcGIS software.

Map data is presented at the level of the census tract, which was calculated by using census tract level data from the American Community Survey and the US Census. The map also includes planning neighborhood names, in the vicinity of their corresponding census tracts.

Table data is presented by planning neighborhood. While planning neighborhoods are larger geographic areas than census tracts, census tracts do not always lie completely within a planning neighborhood. SFDPH chose to use the San Francisco Planning Department's census tract neighborhood assignments to calculate neighborhood values. This assignment method relies on a 'centroids within' methodology to convert census tracts to geographic mean center points. Census tracts are assigned to planning neighborhoods based on the spatial location of those geographic mean center points and neighborhood totals are calculated for the table. In a few case, certain census tracts were redesignated to different neighborhoods based on knowledge of the population dispersion in the tract.

Detailed information regarding census data, geographic units of analysis, their definitions, and their boundaries can be found at the following links:

Interactive boundaries map

http://sfindicatorproject.org/resources/data_map_method

  1. Karoly LA. Early Childhood Interventions: Proven Results, Future Promise. RAND Corporation, 2005
  2. Schweinhart LJ. The High / Scope Perry Preschool Study Through Age 40. The High Scope Press, 2004.