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Childcare Solutions: Does My Childcare Provider Need a License?

Leave your child in capable hands! Click here to learn about childcare solutions and appropriate childcare provider licensing.

Early Childhood Education is safer and better provided for when provided by a licensed and qualified childcare provider.

Over 55% of children in Texas under six years old attend childcare, setting the style for the rest of the nation. With such high numbers of children attending childcare, it comes as no surprise that there are many childcare centers in the Houston area alone. Without childcare provider licenses, it is difficult to know which childcare center is best for your child.

Not only are licenses important, but also viewing their background clearances and certifications is imperative, too. Does my childcare provider need a license? In most cases, yes. Keep reading to learn more about the importance of the license and how to find the right one for the one taking care of your child. 

The Different Types of Childcare Solutions

The most important teacher a child will ever have is their parent.  It's a hard job to follow.  When choosing childcare there are several childcare solutions available to busy families. What is right for you? There are many things to consider.

Childcare solutions run the gamut from care in a private residence to childcare centers.  Beginning with family childcare homes, these home daycares are usually classified as large or small and are housed in a private residence. 

Childcare centers are usually found in commercial buildings.  They are divided into classrooms with many employees which are overseen by a single director. These centers can be anything from in-school centers to faith-based programs.

Pre-school programs are usually open during the school year to 3 to 5-year-olds. Normally, they are only open for a portion of the day and may not be open for the entire week. 

Head Start and Early Head Start programs are funded by the government meant to help low-income families with school readiness.  

Finally, some families have the option of having care in their own homes. This might include hiring a nanny that may come to your home part-time or full-time to care for your children.

How to Know if Your Childcare Provider Needs a License

How do you know if your childcare provider needs a license? It can be difficult finding information from state to state.  The problem can be intensified if you live in a region that is home to multiple states. 

A place to start is the National Database of Childcare Licensing Regulations. This is a great resource to look at state profiles and state standards, giving you the ability to look at licensing agencies' contact information and licensing regulations.  

This is a one-stop-shop for all things related to childcare licensing. Also available is a helpful feature that allows you to look at data related to childcare licensing. It is the first step in finding the information you need.

This database will send you to a daycare location page for your state that will help you narrow down the search. This page for Ohio, for example, allows for multiple search criteria to narrow down your search results and find the specific information you need to make the right decision.

Daycare location services are exceptionally helpful when trying to find the appropriate provider in your area. These services offer zip code-specific recommendations.

The Importance of Having a Licensed Childcare Provider

A licensed childcare provider does not always mean you are getting a quality provider.  Having a licensed provider means that they have met certain standards.  It also means that the person or facility has remained compliant with those standards throughout the licensing process. 

Childcare providers that are relatives, only have a few children, or only work a few hours a day often do need a license. These are predominantly home daycares. Again, this does not necessarily mean they are not a quality choice it simply means that they may not have met the qualifications for a license. 

A licensed childcare provider offers many positive attributes such as regulations related to staff that are accredited, the cleanliness of a facility, safety considerations and meal and snack nutritional information.  

Benefits of Using a Licensed Childcare Provider

There are several benefits to using a licensed childcare provider. As a parent, you are assured that the provider has met the safety regulations required to receive the license. This could include staff certified in CPR and first aid as well as staff who regularly take part in professional development.

Staff that are kept abreast of current trends in education and how to incorporate those trends into their classrooms, or childcare centers, are likely to best meet the needs of their kids. 

Another benefit of using a licensed childcare provider is the mandatory criminal background check and possible drug screenings. Both, add an additional layer of protection and security when looking for the right childcare provider for your family. 

Childcare Solutions and Licensed Childcare Providers

There are several childcare solutions available to families today. Is it necessary to have a licensed childcare provider? While a license does not always mean quality, it does mean that the provider has met certain qualifications. 

Even if the provider is working from a home, it may be comforting to know that a licensed provider has attended first aid classes, they have had a home inspection, a background check, and have had childcare training. 

Many states offer rating systems for licensed childcare providers. This offers a quick and easy solution to help families understand how well equipped a childcare provider may be to meet their personal needs.  

What Is the Best Choice?

There are multiple childcare solutions to meet the needs of individual families. Finding a childcare provider may seem difficult but there are many resources available to help in the process. 

Remember that every state is different, and referring to your specific state for regulations and standards will go a long way in helping you to find the right fit for your family. Contact us to help you find the right childcare provider for your family.

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