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Regulation Raises the Standards for Child Care

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Download: Regulation Raises the Standards for Child Care PDF

How can we improve child care in Wisconsin? We improve child care through regulation, setting health and safety standards, and making sure they’re always met. That’s where DCF comes in. DCF oversees all the state’s child care regulation. Anyone providing care for four or more kids under the age of 7 needs a license in Wisconsin. This helps ensure you get care you can trust.

Why is child care regulation so important?

It helps protect children’s health and safety

You want a healthy, safe space for your child when they’re being cared for, right? So does DCF. All regulated providers must meet the minimum health and safety requirements. These include:

  • Criminal background checks for all child care program staff
  • Safety training for staff, such as:
    • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
    • First aid
    • Safe sleep practices for infants
    • Child abuse and neglect
    • Abusive Head Trauma, including Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention
  • Sanitary and building requirements, such as:
    • Preventing the spread of germs
    • Health practices for children and staff
    • Building safety and emergency planning
  • Ongoing monitoring and inspections
    • Ensuring that providers are meeting minimum health and safety requirements 

It helps ensure skilled care that supports children’s learning and development 

Regulated care allows children to learn and grow with trained professionals in a safe environment. Here’s how regulation helps make it happen:

  • All staff must:
    • Meet certain qualifications and educational requirements
    • Be trained in areas that support child development and learning
  • Regulated providers have strict staff-to-child ratios and group sizes. This limits:
    • The number of children each staff member can care for safely and effectively
    • The number of children allowed in a certain care setting