Variables for Child Care


I am looking for direction on what variables to choose for child care. Essentially I would like to look at the number of children by race and ethnicity and age enrolled in a child care center.

I’ve looked into IPUMS CPS and found a relevant variable: IMDAYCARE. However, it seems to be unavailable for all the years of the samples I’ve submitted. I’ve also looked into IPUMS USA but didn’t find any relevant variables.

Any information and advice is appreciated.

The IPUMS CPS variable IMDAYCARE is only available as part of the Immunization Supplement, which was fielded yearly from 1979-1985. There are no other variables in the CPS that relate to daycare/childcare. There are also no variables in the U.S. decennial census or the American Community Survey (the data IPUMS USA provides) on daycare/childcare.

The American Time Use Survey, a time diary study, includes information about time spent caring for children and on transportation of children. IPUMS provides this data on IPUMS ATUS. You may be able to use these data to identify children enrolled in daycare, but there would not be a way to distinguish between a formal childcare center and an informal childcare arrangement or in-home daycare.

I am not aware of any IPUMS data collections that include information that explicitly identifies children’s childcare situations. I think IPUMS ATUS would be your best starting point. Alternatively, you may look for data outside of IPUMS. The Census Bureau provides some data on childcare, and I’m sure there are other surveys on childcare as well.

Thank you for your quick response! This sounds like a good starting point.

Should I have any problems with it, I’ll return to this thread.

Once again, thank you for answering my question!