According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 1998, a record 59 percent of the 3.7 million mothers of infants were in the labor force (36% were working full-time); a total of 73 percent of the 31.3 million mothers of children older than one year were in the labor force (52% were working full-time). Although some working mothers cared for their children while they worked, most relied on some type of nonmaternal care, commonly known as child care or day care. The following information focuses on day care for children under five years old in three main sections: types of day care and demographic information; the effects of day care on children's development, including con cerns about health as well as cognitive and social development; and day care as a social phenomenon.
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