The Effects of the Earned Income Tax Credit on Child Achievement and Long-Term Educational Attainment

Publication Summary:

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a significant source of government aid to needy families and has grown dramatically since its inception in 1975. Total outlay reached over $50 billion in 2008, with more than 97 percent of aid received by families with children (Internal Revenue Service, 2011). The largest expansion in the EITC came as part of President Bill Clinton’s Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) in 1993. At that time, more than 12 million children, one in every four, were living in poverty, making up about one-third of the total population living in poverty in the United States (Mink, 1993). The EITC gained support from many child advocates, including the National Commission on Children (1993), as the president’s plan ensured that no family with a parent working full-time would live below the poverty line (Stupak, 1993). In a congressional session addressing chil-dren’s initiatives, Congresswoman Karen Shepard (1993) stated: “If you believe that work should be rewarded and that children deserve security, you should support expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit. Plain and simple.”

Author(s): Michelle Maxfield, Ph.D.
Publication Date: September 2015
Publication Type: Policy Brief
Publication Topic: Financing
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