FY23 Budget Update: Under 3 DC

May 10, 2022
Blog Post

In its first and most consequential vote on the 2023 fiscal year budget that begins October 1, the DC Council agreed to build on investments made in the Birth-to-Three for All DC (B-T-3) law during recent years. It increases public funding to programs that support infant and toddler developmental and behavioral health. It also secures funding and updates legislative language for the District’s Pay Equity Fund, which increases wages for early childhood educators.

Today’s vote also approved near-final legislative language to authorize OSSE to implement the permanent Early Educator Equitable Compensation program. While this language will undergo a final vote later this month, we don’t anticipate much change before that vote. When the language is final, OSSE can then begin planning for implementation so that DC early educators can finally receive compensation on par with other teachers in the District.

As our early childhood system continues to recover from two years of pandemic setbacks, child care providers, families and members of the broader community continued to show up in big numbers during this year’s budget hearings. They demanded better oversight and additional public investments to strengthen the quality,  accessibility and sustainability of important family health programs that help DC young children thrive.

In the future, we must continue to fight for additional funding and resources to support the complete implementation of each B-T-3 program. We plan to continue engaging councilmembers to improve and expand the law where needed and address gaps.

Fiscal Year 2023 Funding for the Birth-to-Three for All DC law 



FY23 Budget Ask



Early Educator Compensation (OSSE)

Increasing early educator compensation to parity with DC public school teachers, based on credentials and experience.

$73M $73M Preserves $73M in the Pay Equity Fund to increase wages for early childhood educators
Healthy Steps (DC Health) 

DC’s Healthy Steps program integrates a licensed child-development health professional in pediatric primary care settings to help parents adapt to life with a new baby, and get connected to infant-toddler resources that can help families thrive.

Additional details on the District’s Healthy Steps Program can be found here.

$300K $300K Provides DC Health with additional funds to establish and administer a new Healthy Steps site in Ward 5, 7 or 8 this year.
Healthy Futures (DBH)

Healthy Futures provides child-focused behavioral health counseling tools and techniques to educators in child care settings. Licensed behavioral health clinicians collaborate with early educators and families of infants and toddlers to equip them with the skills and strategies to promote healthy social-emotional development and address challenging behaviors.

Additional details on the District’s Healthy Futures Program can be found here.

$700K $700K Provides DBH with additional funds to expand existing Healthy Futures services to 25-3500 child care programs participating in the District’s child care subsidy program.
Help Me Grow (DBH)

A telephone referral line that connects families to the services and supports to address their needs and concerns about their child’s health and development. More details here.

$581K $581K
Home Visiting (DC Health)

Early childhood home visiting programs provide personalized care and guidance to new parents to meet their family and child development goals. More details here.

$369K Restored one-time $150K Restores one-time funding in the amount of $150K for the First Time Mother’s Home Visiting Program.

Ignored request for a 15% increase to cover increased program costs and a pay raise for home visitors.

Home Visiting (CFSA)

Early childhood home visiting programs provide personalized care and guidance to new parents to meet their family and child development goals. More details here.

$70K $70K Provides CFSA with additional funds to support increased costs, adjust for inflation since 2019 and to enable programs to adapt to the increased demands on their workforce and resources to support families during this pandemic.
Lactation Certification Preparatory Program (DC Health)

This program equips people of color to become international board-certified lactation consultants in order to help more DC families meet their breastfeeding goals.

$103K  $103K Provides DC Health with additional funds to support the DC training and coursework provided through the Lactation Certification Preparatory Program.