Voqal aims to educate and engage the public to foster a stronger, healthier democracy. Furthermore, we believe that the opportunity gap is the most pervasive and damaging problem in the U.S. educational system. We also believe that addressing this complex and multi-faceted problem cannot be achieved through any one solution. With this reality in mind, Voqal’s Education Opportunity Project seeks to measurably reduce educational opportunity gaps by providing capital and strategic advice to entrepreneurs and organizations working to improve educational outcomes for disadvantaged populations. This month we highlight one of those organizations, Pie for Providers.
Pie for Providers uses technology to help child care providers earn more money and to help low-income families access early care and education. It is working for a more equitable early childhood field through fair pay for caregivers, effective government funding systems, and sustainable child care business models.
Pie for Providers’ software helps family child care providers claim government subsidy funding. It aims to increase revenue and reduce administrative work for providers and open more spots for low-income families. Its subsidy management dashboard helps providers maximize and manage subsidy funding with less administrative work. Built based on years of human-centered design research, Pie for Providers’ software addresses some of the providers’ biggest daily pain points, which helps them open more subsidy spots because funding is predictable. Without this software, providers only see their reimbursement after the care is delivered, when there is little they can do to change the result.
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the clear and growing crisis of early care and education access and affordability for low-income families. Paradoxically, oftentimes educators and providers have difficulty making a living wage. A major reason for this is the heavy administrative burden and financial risk to providers that rely on child care subsidies. This difficulty results in billions of dollars in child care subsidies remaining unclaimed with only a fraction of subsidy-eligible families actually receiving the professional care they need. Fortunately, Pie for Providers is playing a key role in improving access and affordability for these families and is ensuring that providers get paid accurately for the care and education they deliver.
Expanding educational opportunities requires a holistic approach that involves every stage of our education system. Pie for Providers’ efforts to make early childcare and education more accessible to low-income families is an important piece of this puzzle. We are excited to support such an innovative and necessary organization and look forward to its continued work to make this important stage of education accessible to all.
You can learn more about the organizations the Education Opportunity Project supports on our investing for impact page.