NYC Administration for Children’s Services
Infant and Toddler Programs: New York City provides a number of free or low-cost Early Learn programs for families that qualify. These programs provide early care and education for children from birth to two years old, all year round for up to ten hours a day. Eligibility is based on family’s income and needs. If you qualify and there is a seat available, your child can begin a program anytime during the year. It is available for families that qualify for free or low-cost care.
Infant/Toddler Extended Day/Year Programs: Extended day/year programs provide early care and education services for up to 10 hours a day. These programs are available in two settings: Center-based care for children aged six weeks to four years old or Home-based care for children aged six weeks to three years old through family childcare networks.
- Child who is in foster care
- Child with an active Child Welfare case, preventive and/or protective
- Parent who receives public assistance and is compliant with HRA’s work activities
- Family whose income falls below a certain amount and have an approved “reason for care”:
- You work 20+ hours per week
- You are in an educational or vocational training program
- You have been looking for work for up to 6 months
- You live in temporary housing
- You are attending services for domestic violence.
Early Head Start programs: provide early care and education that supports the whole family. Early Head Start programs serve pregnant mothers, infants, and toddlers. Head Start programs provide services for at least eight hours a day all year round.
Your family may qualify for Early Head Start if at least one of these categories applies to you:
- You live in temporary housing
- You receive HRA cash assistance
- You receive SSI
- You are enrolling a child in foster care
- Your family income falls below a certain amount
Head Start: Head Start programs promote school readiness of children ages birth to five from low-income families by supporting the development of the whole child. Many Head Start and Early Head Start programs are based in centers and schools. Other programs are located in childcare centers and family childcare homes. Eligibility includes:
- Children with disabilities, no matter the family’s income.
- Children from families whose income is below the national poverty level defined by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- Children from homeless families
- Children from families who receive public assistance such as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Children in foster care, no matter the foster family’s income
Early Head Start services are also available for pregnant women with incomes below the national poverty guidelines
To determine eligibility for Head Start, or to find a Head Start Program near you, call toll free at 866-763-6481 or use the Locator website
Voucher Options: Interested families can apply for a childcare assistance voucher from the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS). Childcare assistance vouchers have the same eligibility requirements as extended day/year programs. Voucher availability is dependent upon funding. At this time, due to high demand, eligible families requesting vouchers will be placed on a waitlist. If your family is interested, you should complete the Voucher Waitlist Request form (Open external link).
Childcare and Development Fund: Assists low-income families who need child care due to work, work-related training and/or attending school.
- A parent or primary caregiver responsible for children under the age of 13 years of age or under 19 if incapable of self-care or under court supervision who needs assistance paying for childcare;
- Low income or very low income and;
- Either employed or in some States, enrolled in a training or education program.
Use this Locator Tool to obtain contact information for State and Territorial Child Care Subsidy Agencies