'Be vocal:' Wisconsin Policy Forum discusses child care, education concerns as schools prepare to resume

The Wisconsin Policy Forum hosted a discussion on Friday, Aug. 14 to discuss child care -- expected to be a challenge as many schools resume instruction next week.

"With school reopening plans still in flux, the lack of child care options could create more strain on family finances, as well as stress on providers scheduling for if you're a couple of days or going one week and not another week," said Betsy Mueller, a Wisconsin Policy Forum researcher.

"Families are not necessarily coming back fast enough to be able to really ensure solvency for those centers that made the decision to reopen," Emilie Amundson, Wisconsin Department of Children and Families secretary, said.

Officials said communication between schools and early child care providers will be key while entering the new school year in uncharted territory. Quality care and education was another topic of concern during the discussion.

"Losing some high-quality providers could have a damaging effect on school readiness for kids," said Mueller.

One suggestion was having employers create on-site child care for employees. Parents will be key in sharing the needs for their family and kids.

"Having parents, again, organize their peers and be vocal about 'this is what's going to help things change,'" Tim Sheehy, president of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, said.

To watch the forum's discussion, CLICK HERE.