A total of $1.5 million in grants and donations will help increase quality child care in Greater Minnesota, which has the state’s most acute child care shortages. New grants totaling $900,000 from the Department of Human Services will be combined with nearly $600,000 in private and community donations. More information is a news release.
The Guidelines for Posting of Child Care Licensing Information DHS-7698 (PDF) describe the way public licensing information for child care programs is currently displayed on the website Licensing Information Lookup (https://licensinglookup.dhs.state.mn.us/). It explains the changes and improvements we are making and when they will take effect. It also summarizes the stakeholder input we received before making the changes. (April 2018)
County licensors issue fix-it tickets rather than correction orders for 19 types of violations. The new Fix-it Ticket form has further details about the process, including:
Family child care violations eligible for Fix-it Tickets:
* Items marked with an asterisk are violations that stakeholders and/or county partners requested be made eligible for a fix-it ticket.
For additional details, see Licensed Child Care Fix-It Ticket Implementation DHS-7657 (PDF).
Family child care providers can now subscribe to receive important information, including legislative changes, from DHS Licensing.
Do not reply to emails sent to you, as they will not be read or forwarded for handling. Your email address is used only to deliver the information you requested.
DHS is preparing to implement the enhanced background studies that will impact all licensed child care programs starting this fall. This also impacts all certified licensed-exempt centers. (Non-licensed providers participating in the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) are also impacted by these changes.) These new enhanced background studies are required by changes in federal law. For more information on the new study requirements, go to Minnesota child care provider background studies.
The federal Office of Child Care has informed states that they are able to use certain child care block grant funds to help providers pay for the new enhanced background studies.
Accordingly, DHS will pay for the cost of the new background studies for existing providers and their staff/family members who already have a current background study when the new enhanced studies are rolled out. (Non-licensed providers participating in CCAP will also have their costs covered and will receive a separate letter from DHS.)
When a child is admitted in a child care program a Family Child Care Admission and Arrangement Form must be signed completed and kept in the child’s record. Within this form the license holder needs to complete the liability insurance notification, permission to obtain emergency medical care and authorization to transport a child. Prior to transporting children under the age of nine the caregiver must complete the required training.
License holders must notify parents in writing if they have or do not have liability insurance prior to admission. This notification may be included on the Admission and Arrangement form. If the license holder does not have liability insurance coverage they must provide annual notice to parents on this DHS form. If the license holder has coverage and the policy changes or lapses they must provide notice to parents on this DHS form; however, if there are no changes to the continuous coverage no further notices are required.
License holders must complete the following information for all children you have cared for over the last 12 months, whether they are still in care or not and whether they are full or part time. Evaluations will be sent to at least two of these parents.
Documentation of immunizations must be in a child’s record. An immunization print out from a medical facility is a medical record and will meet the documentation requirement. It does not need a signature. If there are medical or non-medical exemptions, section 1 parts A and/or B of the immunization form will need to be completed and a signature is required. If a child has already had chickenpox and will not be vaccinated, Section 2 needs to be completed and signed.
When a child has an allergy, the parent must complete and sign the DHS approved Family Child Care Allergy Information Form. This must be completed before the child is admitted. The signed form must be in the child’s records.
Caregivers are legally required to report suspected abuse or neglect of children. Providers are required to have a written policy regarding mandated reporting, this form may be used to fulfill this requirement.
When an infant is present in a program, parents or a physician may need to complete the following forms if they apply. The signed and completed form must be in the child’s records. See Minnesota Statue 245A.1435.
Placing a swaddled infant down to sleep in a licensed setting is not recommended and is prohibited for any infant who has begun to roll over independently. However, with written consent of the parent and a one-piece sleeper equipped with an attached system that fasten securely only across the upper torso, with no constriction of the hips or legs a license holder may swaddle an infant. The DHS required form must be completed and signed in the child’s record.
When an infant is present in the program the caregiver must place the infant to sleep on its back to sleep. An infant who independently rolls onto its stomach after being placed to sleep on its back may be allowed to remain sleeping on its stomach if the infant is at least six months of age or the license holder has a signed statement from the parent indicating that the infant regularly rolls over at home. This documentation must be in a child’s record. This form may be used to fulfil this requirement.
When an infant is present the license holder must place the infant to sleep on its back unless the license holder has documentation from the infant’s physician directing an alternative sleeping position for the infant. This DHS required permission form must be completed and signed in the child’s record.
Only when a swimming pool or wading pool is in use the following forms would need to be completed
When a wading pool is used these forms are required for each child in care. The risk sheet will be given to parents and the permission form must be signed in the child’s records.
When a swimming pool is used these forms are required for each child in care. The risks sheet will be given to parents and the permission form must be signed in the child’s records.
The licensed program must maintain annual documentation on cribs against the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission Web to check equipment for recalls. Monthly safety inspections on every crib, portable crib, mesh-sided or fabric-sided play yard, pack and play, or playpen used by or accessible to any child in care must be conducted and documented. This form may be used to fulfill this requirement.
The licensed program must have a written fire escape plan and a log of monthly fire and storm drills. This form may be used to fulfil this requirement.
License holders are required to complete the Certificate of Compliance of Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Law form with each application (initial and renewal)
License holders must have a policy that prohibits license holders, employees, subcontractors, and volunteers, when directly responsible for persons served by the program, from abusing prescription medication or being in any manner under the influence. This policy can be contained within the license holders written policies to fulfil this requirement or this form may be used.
License holders must have a program grievance procedure for parents. This policy can be contained within the license holders written policies to fulfill this requirement or this form may be used.
State law requires licensed providers to use this form to create an emergency preparedness plan.
License holders must have a written emergency plan for emergencies. This DHS required form must be completed in the license holders records and a copy provided to the parent or guardian. Keeping Kids Safe is a planning guide that can be used to help create a plan.
License holders must have emergency phone numbers of the parents and the child’s physician and dentist must be readily available. This form may be used to fulfill this requirement.
Providers are required to maintain a log of monthly fire and storm drills. This form may be used to meet that requirement.
License holders’ policies must have written information available for discussion with parents or the agency. They must contain the following information:
This document offers definitions for age groups along with a chart of child/adult ratios.
If you are requesting reconsideration of your correction order, you can complete this form to request it be reviewed more quickly.
When a fire marshal inspection is requested for a property that is not owned by the licensor holder this form must be completed.
Providers are required to obtain written permission to administer prescription and non-prescription medication. This form may be used to meet this requirement.
This is a guide to understanding safe sleep and training requirements for infants.
This form may be used to report a serious injury or death of a child in care to your county agency.
Once the viewing of the off year video training is completed you may use this document to offer verification that you met this requirement.
This form may be used to authorize permission for the provider to transport children in a vehicle, use public transportation or participate in an activity away from childcare setting.
This document is to provide best practices when using wading pools.
Minnesota law requires caregivers to take initial training prior to licensure. As a caregiver you may want to use this form to track your training here. This is not a required form.
Minnesota law requires caregivers to take ongoing training. As a caregiver you may want to track the training of your substitutes and/or helpers. This is not a required form.
Minnesota law requires caregivers to take initial training prior to caring for children. As a caregiver you may want to use this form to track your substitutes and/or helpers training here. This is not a required form.
Minnesota counties perform the major functions related to licensing of family child care programs. County responsibilities include:
Licensed Family Child Care Providers are required to follow Minnesota Statues, Chapter 245A and Minnesota Rule 9502 that is also known as Rule 2. Rules and Statues are available on-line at the following links or you may order the book. Be aware the book may change with each legislative session. Licensed Holders are responsible for understanding and following these laws:
Correction orders no longer need to be posted: As of Aug. 1, providers are no longer required to post correction orders at their program location. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 153)
Reduction in insurance paperwork: As of Aug. 1, providers with continuous insurance coverage only need to notify parents/guardians if their insurance coverage changes, instead of sending a new notice each year. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, section 7)
Additional flexibility for Class D providers: As of Aug. 1, providers with a Class D Specialized Infant and Toddler license will be allowed to flex down to one caregiver on days that six or fewer children are in care. When flexing down, the provider must follow the ratio and group size requirements for a Class B license. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, section 5)
Exemption from the Positive Supports Rule: As of Aug. 1, child care providers are not required to follow the Positive Supports Rule, including taking the training that it required. Providers who care for a child with a developmental disability or related condition must follow the child's individual education plan (IEP) and are prohibited from using certain procedures (such as mechanical restraints and seclusion). (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 163)
Background studies for children: Historically, children (ages 13 – 17) living in the household with a family child care program were required to have a state background study based on their name and date of birth. In 2017, a law change would have required these children to have a state background study based upon their fingerprints. The 2017 law never went into effect because DHS had not finished updating its computer system and did not require providers to meet the enhanced requirements.
After much conversation among providers, legislators, and DHS staff, the 2017 law was changed in 2018. Under the new law, most children (ages of 13 to 17) living in the household with a family child care program will continue to be required to have a state background study based on their name and date of birth. There are a number of circumstances in which a child living in the household would be required to have a fingerprint-based FBI background study.
A fingerprint-based FBI check will be required for children living in the household if they meet any of these requirements:
The new law also capped the cost of background studies for children at $20, unless a fingerprint-based FBI background study is required (in which case an additional fingerprinting fee is also required).
The background studies conducted by DHS are not available right now while DHS finishes updating its computer system. Providers will be given more information before they need to take any action and will continue to complete county studies until they receive further notice from DHS. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 166)
Clarifies county recommendation process for licensing actions: When county licensors believe that a family child care provider should receive a licensing action more serious than a correction order (such as a fine, suspension, revocation or conditional license), the county makes a recommendation to DHS and DHS makes the final decision. The county cannot tell the provider or anyone else which action they are recommending. This information is considered confidential. Once a county makes a recommendation to DHS, the county sends the provider a notice that says:
Fraud training: By Dec. 31, 2019, DHS must provide training to county licensors about how to identify and prevent fraud in the child care assistance program. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, section 8)
Communications from DHS in plain language: DHS must use plain language when issuing a licensing action (such as notices for license denials, conditional licenses, revocations, suspensions and fines). The notice must also explain the reasons for taking the action in plain language. Additionally, DHS must use plain language when communicating with providers about changes to law or policy. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, sections 2, 3, 4, and 6)
New information to be included in the report to Legislature: DHS must add the following information to the 2018 Status of Child Care Report, which is required to be submitted to the legislature by Feb. 1, 2019:
Information about licensing reviews and investigations on Licensing Information Lookup: DHS must comply with federal law by posting information about licensing reviews and investigations conducted at child care programs, including the date of the visit, any violations found and (if applicable) how the violations were addressed. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, section 10) Note: Beginning May 11, 2018, DHS began posting this information for family child care programs.
Guidelines for the Posting of Child Care Licensing Information: DHS is required to provide each licensed child care provider with a printed copy of the Guidelines on the Posting of Child Care Licensing Information DHS-7698, which includes information about what licensing data will or will not be posted on the Licensing Information Lookup website. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, section 10) In May 2018, a copy of the guidelines was mailed to every licensed family child care provider in the state.
Regional meetings for providers and county licensors: DHS must hold regional meetings with child care providers and county licensors to discuss the changes to the information that is being posted online and to gather input about potential future enhancements to the Licensing Information Lookup website. (Minnesota Laws 2018, Chapter 200, section 10)
Second adult caregivers are used 30 or more days in a 12-month period. They are required to:
Substitute means an adult at least 18 years of age who assumes the responsibility of the provider. Substitutes that are used 31 hours to 30 days in a 12-month period are required to:
Substitutes (also known as Emergency Substitutes) that are used 30 hours or less in a 12-month period are required to:
Helper means a person at least 13 years of age and less than 18 years of age who assists the provider with the care of children. A helper can never be left alone with children. Helpers are required to:
Helpers who assists with care on a regular basis (at least monthly) must complete six hours of training within one year after the date of initial employment.
This 4-page fact sheet, Training Requirements for Licensed Family Child Care Providers DHS-7672 (PDF), answers questions providers may have, including requirements for different roles, initial training requirements ongoing training requirements, definition of "annual", training not required annually, and resources.
Sixteen hours per licensing year must be completed.
Child Development and Learning or Behavior Guidance is required each licensing year. You can choose one or the other from the following to meet this requirement: 1) Knowledge & Competency Framework (KCF) I; 2) Knowledge and Competency Framework (KCF) II.C
Sudden unexpected infant death (SUID) training and Abusive head trauma (AHT) training is required for all license holders, staff persons, caregivers, and helpers who assist in the care of infants. All Achieve Minnesota Center for Professional Development (MNCPD) approved training counts; on-line or classroom.
Active Supervision (also known as Supervising for Safety). There are several options to meet this two hour per year requirement. Most course titles start with "Active Supervision" however; Health and Safety I or II count toward this requirement in the year it was taken.
Health and Safety I must be completed by 12/31/2022 and then every five years thereafter.
Health and Safety II must be completed by 12/31/2022 and then every five years thereafter.
Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) videos
The Department of Human Services has approved the following series of videos to meet the SUID component when individuals are not receiving face-to-face, classroom, or online SUID training. All videos must be viewed to meet the SUID training requirement.
Please Note: The videos below include portrayals of infant sleep environments in private, non-licensed, homes that are not subject to the requirements of Minnesota Statutes, section 245A.1435. Licensed child care providers must comply with statutory safe sleep requirements when sleeping infants including nothing in the crib except for an infant’s pacifier. In addition, attachments or modifications to the crib are prohibited.
Abusive Head Trauma (AHT) videos
The Department of Human Services has approved the following series of videos to meet the AHT component when license holders are not receiving face-to-face, classroom, or online AHT training. All videos must be viewed to meet the AHT training requirement.
While no specific method of verification is required, you may print and sign the Family Child Care SUID/AHT 'Off-year' Video Training Verification DHS-3803 (PDF) to document that you watched each of the videos to fulfill your training requirement
CPR every two years that must include techniques for infants and children.
First Aid every two years
Child Restraint Systems (C.A.R.S.) training must be completed every five years if transporting children under the age of nine. If you are not transporting children you do not need to complete this course.
Provides financial assistance to help families with low incomes pay for child care. For more information, visit the department's child care and early education webpage, email email@example.com or call 651-431-3809.
Expands access to high quality programs by partnering with local entities to renovate or construct new early learning facilities. Grants are provided under a competitive request for proposals process administered by the department's Office of Economic Opportunity. For more information call 651-431-3808 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Child Care Aware of Minnesota offers a number of grants and scholarships to people in the field, including regional grants, R.E.E.T.A.I.N. Bonuses, T.E.A.C.H. Scholarships, CDA Scholarships and Foreign Credential Evaluation Scholarships.
Family child care providers are encouraged to submit questions to the Licensing Division for review. These provider questions allow the Licensing Division to determine where more clarification on licensing requirements can be provided. Your question will be sent to DHS. DHS will consult with your county licensor before replying with an answer to your question. Your county licensor will be copied on DHS’ response to your question.
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