An Examination of Suspension & Expulsion in Community Childcare Centers Two Years into the COVID-19 Pandemic

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Suspension and expulsion have been documented concerns in childcare centers throughout the United States for nearly 20 years. This study examined suspension and expulsion practices in community childcare centers two years into the COVID-19 pandemic (May 2022). Survey data from 131 administrators of community childcare programs were analyzed. It was found that at least 67 individual children were reported expelled across 131 programs, a rate similar to pre-pandemic rates and higher than rates at the height of the pandemic. For suspension, 136 individual children were suspended from early learning programs during this time; a rate almost double pre-pandemic levels. Factors (availability of support, prior suspensions, suggesting the program is not a match, reported turnover, waiting lists, enrollment capacity, administrator reported stress, and teacher perceived stress) were examined to determine if they predicted expulsion. None of these factors significantly predicted expulsion. These results and their limitations and implications are discussed.

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Early Childhood Education Journal



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