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Child Care Forms

Child Care Services Package --- This package includes essential forms for the promotion and proper operation of a child care service. The forms included are designed to protect the liability of the child care provider and minimize the potential for future litigation.

 

Child Care Forms by State

Child Care - How to Get the Best Care for a Child

Childcare Services

Parents and childcare providers must handle legal matters properly in selecting, using, and running business services. Child care means caring for children below the age of thirteen. Generally, the term refers to service involving care of children provided by a person other than a parent. Traditionally, when parents were busy, the role of childcare was taken up by some family member. Now, there are professional child care providers who provide child care service as a business. Orphanages also provide service of childcare, housing, and schooling for children. Some employers provide for babysitting facility in their premises.

A child care business run by a professional caregiver may be residential or non-residential. It may be center-based or home-based. Examples of center-based child care are daycare, and preschools. Home based care for a child includes the services of a nanny or family daycare/in home daycare. Family day care service is provided from a care giver's house. A nanny/childcare provider is a person who provides the service of child care. Nannies generally live in the house along with the child. Professional nannies are certified and trained in child development.

Commercial childcare centers function during specific hours. Such a child care center/child day care are involved in the standardized business of babysitting for children. Child care centers that care mainly for three to four year old children are called preschools. Most preschools administer school readiness tests before giving admission to a student. Center-based child care is more expensive to run than an in-home daycare since a home-based child care facility will have lower overhead expenditure.

Regulation of Child Care

Childcare centers/daycare services are regulated primarily on the state level, with the federal government requiring states to employ nominal regulations for private childcare centers. Thus, a provider of childcare services for compensation must comply with the provisions of childcare services stipulated by state and local laws. Local legislation stipulates the number and age of children allowed per child per care center.

The laws concerning daycare/child care facilities and caregivers vary from state to state. In some states, no licensing and background checks are required for a home child care center. Some states require licensing or certification of child-care centers. A child daycare center has to forward an application to the concerned state authority in order to obtain a license to operate in that particular state. State governments may also stipulate minimum standards for the functioning of a child care center and release requirement of a child. Some state statutes stipulate that child care providers must be trained in providing first aid. Other states stipulate strict quality standards for family child care homes and require a certificate from the authority. Some believe that child daycare is inferior to parental care and that a daycare child is less active than a child brought up by parents. However, research studies indicate that a good daycare is not harmful for a child and that more and more parents prefer professional day care services these days to babysitters.

The early years of a child's life play a significant role in providing a strong basis for character and good education. Good child care facilitates emotional and physical development of a child. Therefore, parents must be careful in selecting a child care facility for their children that meets local legal requirements.

Child Care FAQ

What does the term child care mean?

The term child care means supervising and caring for children below the age of thirteen. Child care is the service of caring a child provided by persons other than the parents. Child care services include nurturing and supervising a child. Child care providers offer service of care for babies and preschoolers all day long.

I am a single parent with a three year old child. What are the child care options available to me?

Generally, there are two types of child care options. They are:

  • Center based child care.

  • Home based child care/ in home daycare.

Examples of center based child care options are preschools, daycare centers, and crèches. Home based child care includes nanny care, babysitting or family child care. Preschools are child care centers that admit children above three years of age. Before granting admission in a preschool, they will conduct a school readiness test for students.

Is home based care for a child better than center based child care?

Home based child care is child care provided by nannies, friends or other family members either inside the child's home or care giver's personal home. The advantages of an in-home daycare are:

  • Child receives individual attention in home child care.

  • Child feels the security of his/her home.

  • Reduced exposure to illness.

  • Child will have close bonding with the care giver which helps the child in overall development.


Home child care is not always the best child care method. It is more expensive than center based childcare. Many child care experts opine that a child cared in a child care center is more active than a home daycare child. A home based daycare provider may not have any formal child care training. Caregivers in a child care center require background checks and licensing, making center based child care more reliable. Professional child care institutions will have extensive training in childcare, especially in first aid. Qualification of a caregiver plays a significant role in the quality of care a child receives.

Do home based child care business/ providers need licenses to function?

Licensing requirements are governed by state laws and they vary from state to state. An application for licensing is forwarded to the governing state authority. State governments also stipulate procedure for childcare registration and liability release. Most state statutes exempt home based child care from business licensing. Religious or voluntary day care centers are also exempted from regulations or licensing requirements. However, licensing guarantees a high standard of care since a licensed child care provider will have regular safety and health inspections and background checks.

I have a one year old child. What is the right age to get him admission into day care?

Each child will adjust to the unfamiliar environment in different ways. There is no ideal age for admission of a child in day care. Childcare experts advice that home based child daycare is ideal for babies and child day care centers are ideal for children above two years.


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