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Workforce Solutions Rural Capital Area

COVID-19 Child Care Resources for Parents

Workforce Solutions Rural Capital Area (WSRCA) Child Care Services is committed to providing you the best service possible during this public health situation. As of Monday, March 23, 2020, we will be available to serve via phone, the For Child Care Portal or email only. We know you may have questions regarding your child care services and other workforce services or resources that are available. We will keep you updated through your For Child Care Account.

Please know we are here to provide support to you during this time. You can reach out to us 24/7 via your For Child Care Account, email, phone 512-260-1937 ext. 4025 or fax 855-584-7332. We ask if leaving a voicemail, to leave a phone number and email address we can respond to. We will respond as quickly as possible.

WSRCA Update on Child Care Services

WSRCA began enrolling children of essential workers in April to help address the unanticipated consequences of school closures and to help parents find temporary child care to address this gap. As the school year comes to a close, new applications for the program will only be accepted through May 20, 2020. Applications received on or before May 20, 2020, will be processed and children who are currently in child care will continue for their authorized time. Applications for enrollment into child care for essential workers will not be accepted after May 20, 2020.

However, the Governor has announced that child care providers are now able to accept more children into care. If you do not meet the deadline to apply for child care for children of essential workers, but you still need child care, please reach out directly to your child care provider to determine private payment options. If you are looking for other financial assistance for care, you may still apply for the waitlist to receive traditional child care services: click here.

TWC Update on Child Care Funding

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) will soon begin phasing out the emergency program to subsidize childcare for Texas’ essential workers. In March, TWC commissioners authorized $200 million to local Workforce Development Boards to subsidize three months of child care for essential workers, and to support the higher costs of child care during COVID as a result of smaller class sizes. This effort was intended to help ensure that essential workers who hadn’t planned for child care during public schools closures had access to this critical support service to ensure that they could continue to work and support the COVID recovery needs. TWC also waived the requirement for low-income parents to contribute to the cost of their child’s care, known as the Parent’s Share of Cost; these parents, if not considered essential workers, have been unable to access child care.

As Texas’ economy begins to re-open, TWC will begin phasing out these programs. Essential workers in need of child care during the school year were offered assistance. And, as child care reopens, child care providers are now able to resume services for all parents in need of child care.

TWC will take the following steps:

  • COVID Essential Worker Care – TWC began enrolling children of essential workers in April to help address the unanticipated consequences of school closures, and to provide parents with a stopgap measure to address this unanticipated need. As the school year comes to a close, new applications for this program will end May 20. Applications received on or before May 20 will be processed, and children previously enrolled will continue to receive their three months of subsidized child care. 
  • Parents’ Share of Cost (PSOC) for At-Risk Child Care – TWC waived the PSOC for all at-risk families, effective April 1, effectively paying 100 percent of the costs, as TWC continued to pay providers even while children may be absent. Child care facilities are now reopened to all families, and TWC will reinstitute the requirement for parents receiving financial assistance to pay for a portion of their costs for child effective June 1st. These costs may be waived, on a case by case basis, if parents continue to be unable to meet this financial obligation.

    The following links provide information on helping your child through this difficult time:

    • Fred Rogers - "Always Look for the Helpers" Video: click here.
    • COVID-19 activity book - a great way to talk to children about the virus and encourage them to talk about their feelings: click here.
    • Austin PBS has a list of resources to support caregivers in talking with their kids about COVID-19: click here.

    More Resources:

    • Child Care Services information: click here.
    • Online application for Texas Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and other various sources of assistance programs and access to health care coverage: click here.
    • 2-1-1 Texas can assist you in accessing basic needs: click here or dial 2-1-1, or 1-877-541-7905.
    • The School Meal Finder Map: click here.