DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The cost of childcare continues to increase, and local daycare facilities say they are battling inflation, forcing them to hike up their prices.
That is not the only reason, however. Facilities are also citing a lack of qualified workers, meaning they have to pay more to remain fully staffed.
Ashley Wenzler, the director of Wenzler Daycare and Learning Facility in Kettering, said their numbers go up and down throughout the years, but right now they are at capacity.
“Were very blessed that our enrollment is up,” Wenzler said. “Our rooms are packed.”
While the facility is fully staffed so they can operate at capacity, they say it is not easy. Wenzler says the wages offered in other industries can keep some people away from this line of work.
“Most centers have the issue of finding that staff member that’s going to stay,” she said. “I work with these kids and pay them only 14 bucks an hour. So that’s where a lot of other childcares are at that we speak to.”
More than two-thirds of non-working or part-time working Ohio moms say they would go back to work if their child had access to high quality and affordable childcare, according to a 2-year study conducted by Groundwork Ohio, a research organization that aims to advance public policy for young children in the state.
Ellen Waldron is a mom who works from home, and her daughter is currently enrolled at Wenzler, after trying out several different facilities. She said although Wenzler is more affordable and the best fit for her child, childcare itself can get expensive.
“The pricing is all over the board depending on what and what you want,” Waldron said. “To be honest, daycare is very expensive. It’s more than a mortgage. But you have to look at also what you’re getting. I do now work from home, but it’s still hard to do your job, full time job and take care of your child at the same time.”