Washington Watch: Apply for CCAMPIS grants

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Institutions can now apply for fiscal year 2022 grant funding from the U.S. Education Department (ED) for projects that support campus-based child care for low-income students through the Child Care Access Means Parents in Schools (CCAMPIS) program.

The deadline to submit applications is July 11. Community colleges appear to be in a strong position to effectively compete for funding, given fund availability. 

Congress authorized an 18.2% funding increase to the CCAMPIS program for FY 2022 in March for a total of $65 million in appropriated funds. ED estimates that 83 new awards will be available, ranging in size from $90,000 to $1 million annually. The average award amount is expected to be around $465,000.

Changes to the cap

The appropriations bill also lifted the statutory cap on the amount of grant funding that can be awarded to institutions. Previously, awards could not exceed 1% of the institution’s total Pell Grant funds awarded to students. This year, ED has set the annual maximum award amount at 3% of the institution’s total Pell Grant funds. This will make for larger grants. 

Colleges are eligible to apply if their students were awarded a total of $250,000 or more in Pell Grant funds during fiscal year 2021. Under the CCAMPIS solicitation, the projects proposed in the applications receive an absolute priority if they “leverage significant local or institutional resources” to support campus-based child care and use a sliding fee scale for child care services, based on need.

The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) has been a supporter of increased funding for the CCAMPIS program in order to provide community colleges with adequate resources to address the child care needs of their students. AACC will continue to advocate for more funding and statutory changes that increase the availability of child care to community college students across the country. Despite the importance of child care to student success, many campus centers have closed in recent years. 

Previous efforts

Several bills have been introduced in recent congresses with a goal of developing a more robust CCAMPIS program and increasing access to on-campus child care. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Illinois) re-introduced legislation last August to permanently re-authorize the CCAMPIS program and increase its funding to $500 million, as well as raise the maximum grant amount to $2 million and streamline program requirements so that it is easier for child care providers to apply for grants. In 2019, Rep. Katherine Clark (D-Massachusetts) led a bipartisan bill that would re-authorize the program and increase its funding to $200 million, and it would offer the potential for additional payments or a continuation of grant funds to eligible institutions.

Again, AACC encourages its members to apply for a CCAMPIS grant and take advantage of the additional funding provided by Congress this year. The association will continue to provide any information ED makes available to facilitate applications. 

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About the Author

Alexis Gravely
Alexis Gravely is a legislative analyst at the American Association of Community Colleges.