Prop C FAQ

Children’s Council was thrilled about the passage of Prop C in June 2018!

While the legality of the measure is under litigation currently, we wanted to keep the following information available to the public while we wait for the results of what is likely to be a multi-year lawsuit.  

We’ve received many questions about the implementation of Prop C, including when additional subsidized child care spaces and other services will be available, income requirements, and how and when to apply. 

Please take a few moments to read through these Frequently Asked Questions about Prop C.

1. When do the new services from Prop C start?

NOTE: Due to pending litigation, the funds for our “baby” Prop C will not be released by the City & County of San Francisco until further notice. We expect that a ruling on the litigation won’t be made for at least a couple years, and are advocating actively for San Francisco voters’ intent to be met through other budgetary allocations.

The timeline for implementation of Prop C funding has not yet been released. We don’t yet know how many subsidized spaces will be available, or if all income ranges will be accommodated, however we advise you to add your child to the list if you think you might qualify.  If your income is 0 – 85% State Median Income, you may apply now via  the EarlyLearningSF portal. 

2. If my income is above 85% Area Median Income, can I get on the waiting list for child care subsidies?

San Francisco’s Office of Early Care and Education has advised that this is not possible at this time.

Please note that Children’s Council serves families of all income levels with many of our programs, including playgroups, parent cafes, parent workshops and more. Sign up for our email newsletter to stay informed about all these events!

3. What kind of child care can these subsidies cover?

State and city subsidies allow parents some choices depending on the type of subsidy. We encourage you to call us at 1.415.343.3300 to learn what kind of subsidies you might qualify for and the types of child care options available with each subsidy.

Also, we encourage you to start thinking about the kind of child care or preschool that’s right for your family. Our “Choosing Infant Care” or “Choosing a Preschool” workshops can help you make an informed decision: check here for the date of our next workshop.

4. How does the Preschool for All program work? How is it different from this?

Preschool for All is currently focused on serving rising four-year-olds in San Francisco. To be eligible for preschool tuition credit, families must live in San Francisco, and their child must turn four years old on or before December 2 of the school year they will be enrolled. Tuition credits are available on a sliding scale for select locations. For more information, please visit their website here.

5. Where and how do we apply?

Learn more and apply for child care or preschool financial assistance here.

6. How do we get notified about when to apply if we cannot qualify to get on the waiting list now?

See question 2 above.

7. My children are already enrolled in child care and I pay out of pocket, can I still apply for assistance?

See question 1 above.

8. If I qualify, would my child care or preschool be completely free?

Depending on your gross monthly income, you may be required to pay a portion of your child care subsidy, called a ‘family fee’. To learn more about family fees, check here.

9. How old should my children be when I apply? If I have an infant and an older child, do we get help for both or only the younger child?

State child care subsidies are available for children up to age 13. If you receive a state child care subsidy, you can enroll any or all your children, up to their 13th birthday. Local child care subsidies are available for children up to age 6. If you have more than one child under age 6, you may qualify for assistance for all your children. We advise you to try to apply a few months before you think you will need the care. For pressing child care needs, call us at 1.415.343.3300 and we will do our best to meet your needs.

10. If one of my children has a child care subsidy, but I have another child, can I get them off the waiting list?

We give preference to siblings if you already have one child who is receiving a child care subsidy. Please call your case manager to ensure they know you have one or more siblings waiting.

11. Can I get on the list before my baby is born?

No, your baby needs to be born to get on the waiting list for child care subsidies. Once your child is born, call us back to get on the list. If you have older children (up to their 13th birthday, when they age out), you can put them on the list, and call back when your baby is born to increase your family size in the system.

12. How can I get involved? I have ideas on how child care and preschool should work in my city.

San Francisco’s chapter of Parent Voices would love to hear from you. Parent Voices is a grassroots organization led by parents working to make child care accessible to all families – learn more here. Contact us at or 1.415.343.3383.

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