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Department of Early Learning

RCW 43.215

The Department of Early Learning (DEL) focuses on investments and opportunities to ensure children in Washington enter kindergarten ready to succeed. DEL works to ensure safe, healthy, high-quality programs and services for young children. It oversees Early Achievers—our state’s quality rating and improvement system for early learning programs—as well as Washington’s state-funded preschool program for children from low-income families; child care licensing; Early Support for Infants and Toddlers; home visiting services; licensing subsidy policy; parent support initiatives; and other efforts to coordinate and integrate child care and early learning programs. DEL works closely with public and private partners to support healthy development of children, starting at birth; and partners with the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction on the Washington Kindergarten Inventory of Developing Skills for incoming kindergarteners and with many entities to share information and resources for families about positive parenting and child development. The Governor proposes combining the Department of Early Learning and the Department of Social and Health Services Children’s Administration program into the Department of Child, Youth, and Family Services effective July 1, 2018.

Agency Mission

The Department of Early Learning offers voluntary, comprehensive, high-quality early learning programs and services to families and early learning professionals.
Net change from current biennium
Percent change from current biennium

Operating Budget: Summary

Appropriated Funds

2021-23 Appropriations Appropriated Funds Expenditures
Amount Estimated Balance   2019-21 Actual 2021-23 Estimated 2023-25 Proposed
General Fund - Federal
Home Visiting Services Account - Federal
General Fund - Private/Local
Children's Trust Account - Nonappropriated
Indivi-Based/Portable Background Ch - Nonappropriated
Miscellaneous Program Account - Nonappropriated
General Fund - State
Education Legacy Trust Account - State
Home Visiting Services Account - State
WA Opportunity Pathways Account - State
Pension Funding Stabilization Acct - State
Total Appropriated Funds

Non-Appropriated Funds