ASPE has produced estimates of eligibility for and receipt of subsidized care through CCDF and related government funding streams for several years. ASPE has sought to make continuous improvements to the estimation model and methodology over time, and, when possible, these improvements have been applied retroactively to previous years estimates.
As a result of improvements made to the Current Population Survey (CPS), the 2006 estimate is able to include all unmarried parents living with their children when determining the eligible population. In previous estimates, only one of the unmarried parents could be considered in the eligibility determination process because of data limitations. Had the improvements made to the CPS been unavailable for the 2006 estimate, the number of children estimated to be federally-eligible for subsidies would have been 516,000 children higher (an increase of about 4 percent), and the percent served would have been 0.6 percentage points lower (16.6 percent instead of 17.2 percent). A similar increase in the number of children estimated to be eligible for subsidies based on state rules would occur if the estimation was done counting the income of unmarried partners as allowed under the improvements made to the CPS.