Chapter 2 Types of Early Childhood Programs
Copyright Goodheart-Willcox Co., Inc.
Licensing Rules and
Licensing rules and regulations are
standards set to ensure that uniform and safe
practices are followed. Licensing rules and
regulations are typically stated in terms of
conditions that affect the safety and health of
the children. They are also designed to protect
parents, employers, and employees.
Currently, every state in the U.S. has licensing
rules and regulations to promote safe, healthful
environments for children in out-of-home care.
Many licensing systems exist because no two
states are alike. Communities have different
needs and vary considerably. These rules and
regulations change in response to research,
monetary considerations, and politics.
A child care license is a state-provided
certifi cate granting permission to operate an early
childhood center or a family child care home.
Many states require that the license be posted
in the center’s entryway. Most licenses include
the center’s name, period for which the license is
effective, and number of children permitted to
attend. Programs are typically monitored with
scheduled and unscheduled inspections. When a
violation is noted, some states require that a copy
of the offi cial violation be posted in the entryway.
Once the violation has been corrected, the posting
can be removed. This is a way of communicating
the status of the center to families, prospective
employees, and the community.
Before opening a new center, the fi rst step
is to contact the state licensing agency to obtain
an application. Not all programs need to be
licensed, however. Some licensing requirements
depend on whether the children attend full-time
or part-time. In some states, parent cooperatives,
churches, and military programs are exempt from
obtaining a license. Centers in public schools or
university laboratory schools are also exempt
in some states. It is important to carefully study
your state’s standards. Typically, the following
topics must be addressed in writing to obtain a
• admission procedures and enrollment
• physical space requirement
• written policies and record keeping
• adult-child ratios
• staff characteristics
• background checks
• personnel policies
• daily schedule
• transportation policies
• health and safety requirements
• foodservice and nutrition
• parent involvement
• staff training
You can obtain your state’s regulations or
compare regulations from different states online.
The best indicator of high-quality early care
and education is accreditation. Being accredited
certifi es that an early childhood program has
met a set of professional standards. The National
Academy of Early Childhood Programs, a
division of NAEYC, administers a voluntary
professional accreditation system. This system
has been designed for early childhood programs
and preschools serving children from birth
through kindergarten. It is also designed for
programs that serve school-age children in
before-school and after-school care.
The purpose of this voluntary national
system is to improve the quality of programs
for young children. Program accreditation
assists families in their search for high-quality
programs for their children. In addition, it helps
Workplace Connections Workplace Connections
Interview a school-age child care teacher about
the challenges of his or her job. Write your
questions prior to the interview.
1. What does a typical daily schedule involve?
2. Write a report about the interview.