Wisconsin Shares for Child Care Providers

mother and daughter

Parents and caregivers aren't the only ones who benefit from the Wisconsin Shares child care subsidy program. More is possible for child care providers eligible to accept Wisconsin Shares subsidies. Beyond the financial benefits of serving more families in their community with high-quality care, programs will have access to tools and resources through DCF licensing and YoungStar designed to help continually improve their business.

How do Providers Get More?

Quality child care nurtures growth — and so does Wisconsin Shares. Providers eligible to accept subsidy payments benefit in ways that promote growth for their business and community. Below are just a few of the many benefits.

  • Improve your program's quality with help from YoungStar
  • Increase enrollment numbers by accepting families utilizing Wisconsin Shares

Accepting Wisconsin Shares

If you are a child care provider who wants to serve families who 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.

Accepting to Maintaining Wisconsin Share Eligibility Overview

DCF has created a series of infographics to help walk you through accepting families who receive Wisconsin Shares child care subsidy, from eligibility to maintaining your status. If you have any questions, you can also refer to our Providers Who Want to Accept Wisconsin Shares Child Care Subsidies page or contact your local agency. However, if you live in Milwaukee County, be sure to use our Milwaukee Early Care Administration (MECA) Provider Resources page.

Child Care Provider Portal (CCPP)

The Child Care Provider Portal allows you to manage your child care business online with the State of Wisconsin. 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 Guides 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.


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.

Provider/Parent Written Payment Agreement

All child care providers who care for families receiving Wisconsin Shares must have a provider/parent written 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.

All providers must update all Provider/Parent Written Payment Agreements for new and currently enrolled families that utilize Wisconsin Shares to include all fees that they charge parents. All Provider/Parent Written Payment Agreements must be updated by January 1, 2024. If a provider’s written payment agreement already includes all fees that they charge families, they do not need to make any updates.

Providers may use the Provider/Parent Written 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 Written Payment Agreement form, it must include the following information:

  • Your monthly or weekly child care price
  • Days and hours of operation
  • Any fees that the provider charges
  • 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
  • Parent and provider signatures and date signed

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 Provider/Parent 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. 

View the Wisconsin Shares Provider Investigation and Audit Process (DCF-P-5677).

Frequently Asked Questions for Providers

Copayment Chart, Maximum Rates Chart

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