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Building Home-Based Child Care Networks: Research & Resources for the Field

Erikson Institute’s home-based child care research team conducts research in partnership with local government entities and funders around the development, implementation, and evaluation of home-based child care networks. The team also produces data-driven products to inform program and policy administrators around building high-quality infrastructure to support the home-based child care sector.

  • Juliet Bromer , Project Director
  • Samantha Melvin , Assistant Research Professor
  • Jessica Miguel , Doctoral Research Fellow
  • Marina Ragonese-Barnes , Research Analyst
  • Leanett Reinoso , Research Assistant
  • Shiwei Zhang , Research Assistant
  • Patricia Molloy , Research Manager
  • Toni Porter , Expert Consultant, Early Care & Education Consulting


Since 2021, Erikson Institute’s HBCC Research Team has been partnering with Home Grown to develop a set of Network Benchmarks & Indicators that articulate standards and operations based on evidence from research and practice. Together, the benchmarks and indicators represent a picture of what a high-quality network strategy can look like.

This work builds on two foundational works by Juliet Bromer, the Family Child Care Network Impact Study and the National Study of Family Child Care Networks.

Benchmarks | Why - Focus on HBCC: The Network's organizational culture includes an intentional focus on home-based child care (HBCC) as a distinct, essential, and valued early care and education (ECE) setting for children and families.; Providers as Partners: The network includes providers as equal partners in network governance, decision-making, operations, and accountability.; Focus on Equity: The network demonstrates an intentional focus on equity and culturally grounded service delivery. | What - Provider Well-Being: The network offers services that promote provider well-being and attachment to HBCC work.; Finances & Sustainability: The network offers services that promote economic well-being and sustainability. ; Quality Practices: The network offers services that build on and enhance culturally-relevant and community-embedded provider practices that contribute to positive child and family outcomes. ; Comprehensive Services: The network offers holistic services for children and families beyond the supports offered for providers. | How - Service Delivery and Implementation: The network uses research evidence to inform how services are implemented including a focus on relationship to service delivery. ; Data Collection: The Network uses an intentional and collaborative approach to data collection and analysis that informs service delivery. ; Staffing: The network uses intentional staffing strategies to support providers. ; Recruitment: The network uses recruitment strategies that result in ongoing provider participation. | Positive outcomes for providers, children, and families

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Products and Resources

Conceptual Framework

Benchmarks & Indicators Framework



In 2023, we surveyed networks around the country on their use of the Benchmarks and Indicators.



We also convened focus groups of network leadership and providers from those networks to learn more about certain specific Benchmarks practices.


Learn More About the Benchmarks

Watch presentations about the Benchmarks & Indicators.


Tool Kits for Networks

Collections of real-life examples of tools networks use to support HBCC around the country.

Home Grown and the Erikson Institute’s session on the newly-released Network Benchmarks and Indicators