Access to General and High Quality Early Childhood Care and Education

Participation in early childhood care and education programs can have positive effects on children's cognitive, language, and social development. Access to early child care and education programs is an important factor for participation. This map shows the total numbers of accessible general (licensed) and high quality early childcare programs in each block group. (See footnotes for the definition of "high quality" and "accessible")


  • The average number of accessible Early Childhood Education (ECE) centers in each block group is 8.51, while the average of high quality ECE centers is only 1.86.
  • Most of the high quality ECE centers are clustered in the City of Boston.
  • Most of the general ECE centers are located outside the Boston city.

Map Tips:

  • Turn on and off the layers (on the left) using the check-boxes, to compare the general and high quality ECE centers.
  • Move your mouse and zoom in and out of different neighborhoods to see the total ECE centers, and whether they are general or high quality.

Definition: Number of general or high-quality (accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)) Early Child Education (ECE) providers located within the block group or within reasonable walking distance (1/2 mile) of the block group’s perimeter.

Data Source: National Association for the Education of Young Children Accredited Program Database, 2016; Mass Department of Early Education and Care, 2016

Footnote: Early Child care centers are facilities that provide care for infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and/or school-age children during all or part of the day. Those licensed ECE programs across the state are published by the Department of Early Education and Care. NAEYC's national accreditation system has its standards for early childhood education programs, allowing families to find high-quality programs for their children. The known “10 Early Learning Program Standards” addresses four key groups of early childhood education stakeholders: children, community partners, teachers, and administrators. More here:

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