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Wisconsin Shares Subsidy Information for Child Care Providers

Child care providers interested in accepting Wisconsin Shares or who are accepting Wisconsin Shares can find additional resources by clicking on the headings below.

Temporary Wisconsin Shares Subsidy Increase for Children Ages 0-3

Note: this temporary increase ended on June 30, 2021.

Información en español.

If you have families with child(ren) aged 0-3 receiving Wisconsin Shares subsidy, those families will receive a temporary 21 percent increase in funding starting March 1, 2021. This temporary increase is effective until June 30, 2021.

The extra funds will automatically appear on their MyWIChildCare EBT card. Families do not need to do anything in order to receive the extra funds. If families receive the temporary increase, they should pay the full monthly amount to their provider that is loaded to their MyWIChildCare EBT card. If this full amount does not cover their entire parent share, families must pay any remaining parent share. 

If you have questions, please contact your local agency. For more information, see the Frequently Asked Questions below.

 

Provider FAQs - Wisconsin Shares Temporary Subsidy Increase for Children Ages 0-3

If you have families with child(ren) aged 0-3 receiving Wisconsin Shares subsidy, those families will receive a temporary 21 percent increase in funding starting March 1, 2021. This temporary increase is effective until June 30, 2021. Read through the Provider FAQs to learn more.

  1. I am a family provider. I am aware that parents have received an increased subsidy. Families have continued to pay their usual subsidy amount. What will happen to the remaining balance on the card?
    If the child attended at least once during the month and the parent made at least one payment for the month, the Department will pay any funds remaining for that month directly to you. This will only occur for the current month’s subsidy and will not include funds remaining from past months. There is nothing you need to do to obtain additional funds that are left on the parent’s card.

  2. Where will I be able to see the amounts that the Department transfers directly to me?
    Any funds that the Department transfers directly to you will display in the Child Care Provider Portal under Financial-Adjustments (YoungStar). The description for the payment will be “Other Adjustments.” If you click the Details button for the “Other Adjustments” row, you will see the case number, child name, and month that each payment is associated with.

  3. Will my YoungStar adjustment be increased too?
    No, the additional funds will be added to the final subsidy amount after any YoungStar adjustments have been applied.

  4. Do I have to raise my rates in order to accept additional funding beyond the parent’s share?
    No, you do not have to change your rates to accept the additional funding. The additional funding will automatically be made available to the parent, and you are eligible to receive all subsidy funds issued for the month if the child attends at least part of the month (for March – June 2021).

  5. Can I tell the parent to pay me the full amount on their EBT card?
    You should direct parents to the local agency or the Parent FAQ webpage for more information.

  6. How will I know if I received the 21% increase?
    The 21% increase will be included in the parent’s monthly subsidy amount. It will not display separately in the Child Care Provider Portal when the parent makes a payment. If there are funds remaining on the parent’s card at the end of the month and the parent made at least one payment during the month, any remaining funds for that month will be transferred directly to you.

  7. What do I do if the parent pays me the full subsidy amount, but the child does not attend at all during the month?
    Since these funds are tied to attendance, you may be subject to an overpayment if it is discovered that funds were paid out with zero attendance. If you would like to complete a Voluntary Repayment Agreement, please contact your local Child Care Coordinator. View the list of local Child Care Coordinators.

  8. What if the parent didn't pay their subsidy because the child didn't attend, but the funds are automatically transferred?
    Funds will only be automatically transferred if the parent makes at least one payment for the month for which funds are issued (see existing FAQ #1). If the parent does not transfer any funds because the child didn’t attend any days during the month, the department will not transfer those funds. If the parent made a partial payment even though the child did not attend at all during the month, you may be subject to an overpayment if it is discovered that funds were paid out with zero attendance (see existing FAQ #7). This is true even if the department transferred the remaining funds due to the partial parent payment. If you would like to complete a Voluntary Repayment Agreement, please contact your local Child Care Coordinator.

  9. Can parents use these funds to pay their out-of-pocket costs or past due balances?
    Yes, parents can use these funds to pay out-of-pocket costs or past due balances. You will be able to receive any additional funds remaining after the parent pays these costs.

  10. Do I need to spend the extra money paid to me on something specific? Can I spend the extra money on anything, such as fees (summer/registration) and learning adventures (phonics, music, cooking)?
    You must apply subsidy funds first to the parent’s current monthly bill, including their out-of-pocket cost, and then to any outstanding balances the parent has.

    If there are any funds remaining, the funds are intended to help with covering the true cost of caring for infants and toddlers. However, besides applying the subsidy first to the parent’s bills, there are no other stipulations for the use of additional funds.

  11. Is the temporary increase for children up to age 3 or through age 3?
    The temporary increase will be issued for children through age 3. If the child turns 4 between March – May, the subsidy for the month following their fourth birthday will not include the additional 21%. If the child turns 4 on June 2 or later, the final June subsidy will include the 21% increase.

  12. How did you communicate to parents that they should pay the full authorized amount on the card?
    This information is included on the Parent Notice for parents who received the temporary increase and on the Parent FAQ page.

  13. If parents with children older than age 3 have leftover funds at the end of the month, are they going to be released automatically also?
    No, only the funds for the child(ren) who received the 21% increase and whose parent made at least one payment for the month for that child will be automatically transferred.

  14. If children age 4 and older have extra funds, do we need to return those funds if we cannot use them?
    Subsidy received for children age 4 and older follows regular Wisconsin Shares rules. See FAQ #7.

  15. Is the expectation that parents give that money to the provider or does the parent decide how to use those funds? How do we prove to accounting that those funds should go to the center and not remain with the family?
    The additional funds are loaded to the parent’s MyWIChildCare EBT card with their regular subsidy amount, which can only be used to pay for child care for each child at a specific provider and location. The parent has no reason to “keep” the funds since they can’t be used for anything else and aren’t accessible to the parent as cash.

  16. Will the 21% increase be the same each month for that child?
    The increase will always be 21%. However, since it is based on the child’s subsidy, the actual amount of funds may vary from month-to-month if the child’s subsidy amount varies.

 

Accepting Wisconsin Shares

If you are a child care provider who wants to serve families that are eligible for Wisconsin Shares child care subsidy, visit Providers Who Want to Accept Wisconsin Shares Child Care Subsidies.

If you are an out-of-state provider, please read through the out-of-state provider information and complete all of the required steps found on the Out-of-State Providers Accepting Wisconsin Shares.

Child Care Provider Portal (CCPP)

The Child Care Provider Portal allows you to manage your child care business with the State of Wisconsin online. The Provider Portal is available 24/7, and you can access it from any computer, tablet, or smartphone with an internet connection. Information found in the Provider Portal is updated in real-time. View the training video and CCPP User Guide for further information on the portal.

To obtain access to the Provider Portal, please visit the Accessing the Child Care Provider Portal (CCPP) Page.

The Provider Portal Fact Sheet will give you an overview of the Provider Portal.

Parents Who are Child Care Providers

If you are a parent who is a licensed or certified child care provider, your child cannot be authorized to receive care at the center you operate. If you need child care for your own child, you must apply for and receive a waiver. The waiver authorizes care for your child at another provider.

Waivers must be granted for individual children under the following circumstances:

  • The parent/provider is a foster parent.
  • The parent/provider is a kinship care relative with a court order for placement and is receiving a kinship care benefit for the child.
  • The parent/provider is a legal guardian receiving subsidized guardianship payments for the child.
  • The child has a special need and the child’s parent/provider is unable to care for the child at the provider’s own home or group center, as verified by a physician or other qualified medical professional.
  • The child’s parent is a dependent minor parent who is enrolled in high school or a course that is approved by the state superintendent of public instruction for granting a high school graduation equivalency and resides with a person who is considered a parent and also a child care provider.

The waiver may be granted If you are a licensed provider requesting child care assistance and you are in another approved activity.

Local Agency Contact List

For questions pertaining but not limited to:

  • Daily rates
  • If you have more than one location and a child will be going to one of the other locations
  • Shared placement
  • Subsidy funds and when you should receive them

You can find a local child care contact by going to the Provider Child Care Contact List.

If you are a Milwaukee provider, visit the Wisconsin Shares Information for Milwaukee County Child Care Providers page.

Confidentiality

All eligibility information obtained by agencies is confidential. Therefore, local agencies are limited in their discussion of cases with child care providers. Child care providers should ask parents to contact their worker if the provider is expecting, but has not received, an authorization. Child care providers must not disclose information regarding Wisconsin Shares families for any purpose other than for the administration of the program.

Child Care Authorizations

Authorizations for child care can only be created after a family has been found eligible for Wisconsin Shares by the local eligibility-determining agency. Authorizations for child care can be delayed when the authorization worker does not receive all the necessary information from the parent.

Authorization information will be mailed to child care providers when authorizations begin, end, or change, and at least every three months. Authorization information can be viewed through the Child Care Provider Portal.

Parent Share

The Wisconsin Shares Child Care Subsidy program does not pay for the full cost of child care. It is important to discuss your price and payment policies with families.

Written Payment Agreement

All child care providers who care for families receiving Wisconsin Shares must have a written provider/parent payment agreement. Providers are required to keep a written agreement for each Wisconsin Shares family at the location where care is provided. You must keep the agreement for at least three (3) years after the child’s last day of attendance at a location where it can be made available to the Department of Children and Families within 24 hours.

Providers may use the Provider/Parent Payment Agreement form (DCF-F-5224-E) that is available on the DCF website, or they may create their own agreement in a similar format containing the same information.

If you create your own Provider/Parent Agreement form, it must include the following information:

  • Your monthly or weekly child care price
  • Days and hours of operation
  • Deposit policy
  • Any discounts or scholarships that are available to parents
  • Parent’s payment schedule
  • Payment dispute policy
  • Provider’s anticipated closure dates and policy for payments during closures
  • Payment expectations for the child’s anticipated/unanticipated absences
  • Parent procedures for termination of a child’s enrollment
  • Provider procedures for terminating a child’s enrollment

Child Care Center Transitions

In cases of ownership change, location change, or a change in the type of care provided, learn how you can ensure continuity of Wisconsin Shares authorizations by reading through the program transitions information.

Set Yourself Up for Success: Important Things to Remember

  • Review your monthly authorization list in the Child Care Provider Portal , and always care for children only at their authorized location
  • Do NOT possess or keep copies of parents’ MyWIChildCare cards, card PINs, eligibility or authorization notices
  • Require all families to sign a written payment agreement (DCF-F-5224-E)
  • Ensure the number of children in your care is within your capacity limits
  • Maintain accurate attendance records and do not round sign-in and sign-out times
  • Report changes in prices or rates to the local agency
  • Keep your YoungStar and Registry information up to date
  • Contact the local agency if a child hasn’t attended in the past 30 days
  • Store your attendance records in a place where they can be accessed within 24 hours
  • Provide care only within your regulated hours of operation
  • Ensure that children of employees do not account for more than 40% of Wisconsin Shares authorizations to your facility

Wisconsin Shares Program Integrity Training for Providers

A training video about Wisconsin Shares program integrity for Wisconsin child care providers is available! In order to be eligible to receive Wisconsin Shares as a child care provider, you must be certified or licensed, and participate in the Youngstar quality rating system. There are various rules in place to ensure that child care subsidy is available for those who need it and that the funds are being spent and paid out appropriately. Provider program integrity ensures that those rules are followed, and it includes prevention, monitoring, and identification of improper payments and fraud of the Wisconsin Shares program. Watch the Wisconsin Shares program integrity training video.

Download the Provider Program Integrity Training booklet.

Frequently Asked Questions for Providers

Copayment Chart, Maximum Rates Chart