Wall Street Journal's Eric Morath reports that in nearly half the country, it is now more expensive to educate a four-year-old in pre-school than an eighteen-year-old in college.

According to new data from the Economic Policy Institute, in 23 states, the annual cost at a full-time day-care center is greater than the annual cost of in-state tuition at a four-year college. The numbers illustrate the rising burden faced by many families struggling to afford care for children.

In Massachusetts, the state with the highest child-care costs, care for a preschooler is $12,781 annually or almost 20% more than an undergrad’s average tuition of $10,702. Care for a 4-year old is 73% more expensive than college in Florida, the state with the largest disparity. Florida has among the country’s lowest college tuition costs but average child-care costs of $7,668 a year.

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