University of Illinois Urbana‑Champaign

Illinois Action for Children Releases 2023 Child Care Data Report for Cook County

Published: September 11, 2023

Illinois Action for Children (IAFC) has released its 2023 Report on Child Care in Cook County. The report covers child care affordability, the pandemic's effect on child care slot availability, and trends related to some of the hardest-to-find care: infant care and care during non-traditional hours.

The report presents data on the number of available child care slots, licensed child care providers, slots by age groups, child care slots over time, and more. 

According to IAFC, highlights of the report include the following:

  • Over the last 10 years, the number of licensed child care home providers in Cook County has declined 31 percent, with the largest losses concentrated in south and southwest Chicago and central and west Chicago. 
  • IAFC estimates that infant child care slots can only serve between 10 percent to 23 percent of infants across the six Cook County regions. 
  • Families in Cook County who pay for licensed infant care in a center spend an average of 18 percent of their family income on child care. This is higher than the federal guideline of 7 percent.
  • While three regions saw their supply of center slots grow between 2019 and 2022, two regions (south and southwest Chicago and the western suburbs) lost 3 percent to 8 percent of their center slots.

For other IAFC reports, visit its research reports page.