2021 Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap Released

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October 7, 2021
2021 Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap

On October 7, 2021, the second annual Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap for the 50 states and DC was released at the National Prenatal-to-3 Research to Policy Summit. 

The prenatal to age 3 period is the most rapid and sensitive period of human development, and it sets the foundation for long-term health and wellbeing. Unfortunately, many children lack the opportunities they deserve, and these disparities are often influenced by state policy choices.

The Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap is a groundbreaking look at the policy solutions that the most rigorous evidence to date shows best support and strengthen the earliest years of the developing brain and body. The 2021 Roadmap outlines five policies and six strategies that foster the nurturing environments needed for infants and toddlers, while reducing long-standing disparities in outcomes among racial and ethnic groups and socioeconomic status. When combined, the policies and strategies create a system of care that provides broad-based economic and family supports, as well as targeted interventions to address identified needs.

The 2021 Roadmap shows that few states are doing all they can, but some moved forward despite the historic challenges of the last year. Only four states—California, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, and New Jersey—have adopted and fully implemented all five effective policies, meaning that families in these areas can currently access the level of benefits that rigorous research states is necessary to impact PN-3 outcomes. Eight states have fully implemented four out of the five policies. Yet, even among states that have implemented a given policy, the generosity and reach of the policy varies considerably across states. To date, seven states—Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Wyoming—have not fully implemented any of the effective policies.

Find your state’s 2021 Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap with updated data at https://pn3policy.org/pn-3-state-policy-roadmap-2021.


Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center 

The Child and Family Research Partnership's Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center at The University of Texas at Austin LBJ School of Public Affairs translates the science of the developing child into the most effective policy actions and public investments for states. The center helps policymakers and leaders navigate the complex social, economic, and health needs of families and the evidence of what works to strengthen comprehensive prenatal-to-3 systems of care. The annual Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap shows where each state is on the most effective policies and strategies and how they can leverage multiple investments to impact child outcomes. Rigorous reviews of the evidence on state level policies and strategies can be found in the Prenatal-to-3 Policy Clearinghouse. Learn more about the importance of the prenatal to age three developmental period.

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early childhood