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Around the Army: Child care fees to be affected by new DoD policy

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Beginning Oct. 1, most Army families will see an increase in their child care fees, while others will see a reduction and some will see no change in fees for school year 2010-2011. This is a result of a new Department of Defense policy.

According to MG Reuben Jones, commander of the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command, the Army will ensure outstanding child and youth programs and a quality of life for Soldiers and families commensurate with their service.

“Army families will continue to have access to some of the best child and youth programs found anywhere in the world,” Jones said. “These programs are an important part of our military communities and will continue to be a great value for our Soldiers and their families.”

The Army Family Action Plan also played an important role in shaping the new policy. One result was an expansion in the number of income categories to better reflect the full range of family incomes found across the Army.

By law, child care fees are based on total family income (excluding certain special pay and allowances), not rank or civilian grade. In 2008, the DoD conducted an in-depth study of the child-development program fee policy. As a result, it determined current fee ranges were no longer in sync with the total family income for a majority of the users, and the fees have not kept pace with the increasing costs of providing care.

“While the cost of providing child care has risen each of the past six years, the value of the programs has also increased for Soldiers, their children and the Army,” said Peggy Hinson, Child Youth and School Services director at FMWRC.

Go to www.army.mil for more information.

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