Education & Childcare


Boston is expanding its Tuition-Free Community College Plan to all Boston residents, regardless of age or immigration status.

Last-reviewed: 9am, May 26, 2023

Key Resources:


The Basics

  • Parents and caregivers who receive SNAP and participate in a SNAP Path to Work program can get 12 months of free child care. Find more information here.
  • For the 2022-2023 school year, MA is offering universal free school meals.
  • As a result of recent court orders, the US Department of Education (ED) is blocked from implementing its student loan debt relief program. The Federal Department of Education extended the pause on federal student loan payments and collections until 60 days after the court case is resolved, or 60 days after June 30, 2023, whichever is earlier.

The Breakdown

  • The Tuition-Free Community College (TFCC) Plan pays for up to 3 years of tuition and fees for Boston residents pursuing an associate degree or certificate program at a partner college. The Plan is expanding its eligibility to all Boston residents regardless of age, income, or immigration status. More information here.
  • The Fiscal Year 2024 budget announced by the Healey-Driscoll administration includes funding for MassReconnect program to cover community college costs for certain MA residents, and additional funding towards education and workforce development programs. Read more here.
  • The Biden administration extended the student loan repayment pause until 60 days after the federal student debt relief program is implemented or the debt relief program litigation is resolved, or 60 days after June 30, 2023, whichever is earlier. Borrowers can learn more at
  • Parents who participate in a SNAP Path to Work program, DTA’s Employment and Training programs for SNAP households, can now get a child care voucher for eligible kids under age 13. The voucher lasts 12 months even if parents begin working during that time. Find out more here.
  • The EEC provides child care financial assistance to families that meet income-based and activity requirements. Call Mass 211 or your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agency for more information.
  • SNAP recipients are now categorically eligible for Head Start early childhood programs, without having to meet separate criteria. Read the FAQs here. Visit this Head Start/Early Head Start page for more information about the federal programs.
  • If a K-12 student has difficulty getting to and from school, they can contact their District. If their District does not fix the issue, they can file a complaint with DESE online or by calling 781-338-3700. Students with disabilities also have a right to adequate transportation to and from school.
  • All MA school children whose schools participate in the National School Lunch Program will get free school meals during the 2022-23 school year. Even though meals will be free for all such students, it is important for families to complete the household Application for Free and Reduced Price Meals. Learn more here.

The Bottom Line

  • Care teams can empower parents to advocate for their child(ren) by taking advantage of available benefits and resources for their family’s needs.