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My YoungStar Technical Consultant answered all my questions and made the whole process easier.  The Technical Consultant has been wonderful!

- Kelly Rognholt, family child care provider

Eau Claire, WI

YoungStar Information For Child Care Providers

Every day, children look to you for learning, nurturing and guidance. We know how hard you work to provide them with high quality child care. That's what YoungStar is all about: making sure that Wisconsin children get the best possible start in life. We want to help you get the most from YoungStar, and help you shine as brightly as the little stars in your care.



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YoungStar Participation

The goal of YoungStar is to improve the quality of child care and reward high quality providers by:

  • Establishing a 5 Star quality rating system for all child care providers.
  • Rating providers based upon points earned across four categories: Education Qualifications and Training, Learning Environment and Curriculum, Professional and Business Practices, and Child Health and Well-Being Practices.
  • Paying Wisconsin Shares rates based upon star ratings.

Wisconsin Shares subsidy reimbursement levels are based on the child care provider's star rating.  For more information about this, please visit our Tiered Reimbursement page.

Providers can choose to have a YoungStar Technical Consultant come to their program and help them achieve their goals for higher quality and higher star ratings. Ratings are renewed annually, so their stars can rise as the quality of care provided rises.  When providers agree to participate in Technical Consultation and receive a YoungStar Micro-Grant, they must agree to the terms of the YoungStar Technical Consultation and Micro-Grant Participation Agreement.

YoungStar participation is required for providers who accept Wisconsin Shares child care subsidy payments (sometimes called "county subsidy") except Licensed Day Camps.  Licensed Day Camps will be required to participate in YoungStar as of March 1, 2014.  For more information about Wisconsin Shares and the role it plays with YoungStar, visit the YoungStar and Wisconsin Shares webpage.

Printable copy of the YoungStar brochure for providers

Keep your Registry Program Profile Updated

The Registry Program Profile (sometimes called an Organization Profile) is a place for programs to store information about education and training.  The information entered into these Program Profiles is automatically used to determine programs' star rating in YoungStar and reimbursement amounts in Wisconsin Shares.  By signing a YoungStar Contract, programs agree to keep their Program Profiles accurate and up-to-date.  Check out the link below for tips on keeping Program Profiles updated:

Maintaining Your Registry Program Profile English   Spanish

2015 YoungStar Quality Rating Indicator Information

Providers who want to participate in YoungStar must agree to accept children enrolled in the Wisconsin Shares subsidy program by completing the YoungStar Contract and submitting the form to their local YoungStar office. Providers must complete a YoungStar Contract for each individual child care site, even if they are owned or operated by the same person or organization.

Revisions for 2015

We have revised the YoungStar quality indicators slightly for 2015.  The version available below will be used for any programs with anniversary dates on or after January 1, 2015.  New programs that apply for YoungStar for the first time on or after January 1, 2015 will also be rated using these criteria.

A document outlining the changes to YoungStar for 2015 has been developed to help providers who are renewing their YoungStar Contracts:

Changes to YoungStar for 2015:   English     Spanish     Hmong

If any updates for clarification are made to the evaluation criteria within a calendar year, the updates will appear at the bottom of this webpage.

YoungStar Renewal

Providers who are currently participating in YoungStar and want information about reapplying, should not use the forms below.  Please visit our YoungStar Renewal webpage for information about reapplying.

2015 Forms for Group Providers

  • YoungStar Contract - for Group programs that have never participated in YoungStar before:  English   Spanish   Hmong
  • Instructions for completing forms:   English   Spanish
  • Points Detail for Group Providers: this document provides a high-level overview of the areas in which providers can earn points and star ratings in YoungStar.
    • English
    • Spanish - coming soon
    • Hmong - coming soon
  • Evaluation Criteria for Group Providers: this document provides an in-depth explanation of how each point in YoungStar is evaluated and scored.  This document is used by the YoungStar Raters to rate programs.  The version available now will be used for any programs that have anniversary dates on or after January 1, 2015 and also for all providers who apply to YoungStar for the first time on or after January 1, 2015.

2015 Forms for Family Providers

  • YoungStar Contract - for Family Providers who have never participated in YoungStar before:  English   Spanish   Hmong
  • Instructions for completing forms:
  • Points Detail for Family Providers: this document provides a high-level overview of the areas in which providers can earn points and star ratings in YoungStar.
    • English
    • Spanish - coming soon
    • Hmong - coming soon
  • Evaluation Criteria for Family Providers: this document provides an in-depth explanation of how each point in YoungStar is evaluated and scored.  This document is used by the YoungStar Raters to rate programs.  The version available now will be used for any programs that have anniversary dates on or after January 1, 2015 and also for all providers who apply to YoungStar for the first time on or after January 1, 2015.

2015 Forms for School-Age Providers

  • YoungStar Contract for School-Age programs that have never participated in YoungStar before:    English   Spanish   Hmong
  • Instructions for completing forms for School-Age programs:   English   Spanish
  • Points Detail for School-Age Programs: this document provides a high-level overview of the areas in which programs can earn points and star ratings in YoungStar.
    • English
    • Spanish - coming soon
    • Hmong - coming soon
  • Evaluation Criteria for School-Age Programs: this document provides an in-depth explanation of how each point in YoungStar is evaluated and scored.  This document is used by the YoungStar Raters to rate programs.  The version available now will be used for any programs that have anniversary dates on or after January 1, 2015 and also for all providers who apply to YoungStar for the first time on or after January 1, 2015.
  • School-age programs were added to YoungStar in 2012. Visit the School-Age YoungStar webpage for more information.

2015 Licensed Day Camps

2014 YoungStar Quality Rating Indicator Information

The YoungStar quality indicator documents are provided below. These documents are used for programs that applied for participation in YoungStar or had an anniversary date between January 1, 2014 and December 31, 2014. Programs that apply to participate in YoungStar or have an anniversary date between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015 should use the 2015 documents that are provided above.

A document outlining the changes to YoungStar for 2014 has been developed to help providers who are renewing their YoungStar Contracts:

Changes to YoungStar for 2014:   English     Spanish     Hmong

2014 Forms for Group Providers

  • YoungStar Contract - for Group programs that have never participated in YoungStar before:  English   Spanish   Hmong
  • Instructions for completing forms:   English   Spanish
  • 2014 Points Detail for Group Providers: this document provides a high-level overview of the areas in which providers can earn points and star ratings in YoungStar.
  • 2014 Evaluation Criteria for Group Providers: this document provides an in-depth explanation of how each point in YoungStar is evaluated and scored. 

2014 Forms for Family Providers

  • YoungStar Contract - for Family Providers who have never participated in YoungStar before:  English   Spanish   Hmong
  • Instructions for completing forms:
  • 2014 Points Detail for Family Providers: this document provides a high-level overview of the areas in which providers can earn points and star ratings in YoungStar.
  • 2014 Evaluation Criteria for Family Providers: this document provides an in-depth explanation of how each point in YoungStar is evaluated and scored. 

2014 Forms for School-Age Providers

  • YoungStar Contract for School-Age programs that have never participated in YoungStar before:    English   Spanish   Hmong
  • Instructions for completing forms for School-Age programs:   English   Spanish
  • 2014 Points Detail for School-Age Programs: this document provides a high-level overview of the areas in which programs can earn points and star ratings in YoungStar.
  • 2014 Evaluation Criteria for School-Age Programs: this document provides an in-depth explanation of how each point in YoungStar is evaluated and scored. 
  • School-age programs were added to YoungStar in 2012. Visit the School-Age YoungStar webpage for more information.

2014 Licensed Day Camps

Out-of-State Providers

Providers in other states (Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota) who care for children who receive Wisconsin Shares subsidies need to fill out a Wisconsin Shares Contract but not a YoungStar Contract. Out-of-state providers should send completed forms to The Department of Children and Families, Attention: YoungStar, 201 East Washington Avenue, Madison, WI 53701.

Evaluation Criteria and Point Detail Documents from previous years can be found on our Archived Criteria page.

YoungStar Newsletters


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