The state of New York offers a variety of child care programs, all of which are regulated by the Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS). To help families in their search for child care, OCFS has partnered with the Early Care and Learning Council, Inc. to provide a form that can be sent to any child care provider they may be interested in. Programs for Parents (PfP) is a non-profit organization that works to ensure that children have the best possible start in life by promoting quality child care services within the community.
When it comes to selecting the right parent involvement program for your child, there are several options available. Family child care homes are one type of program, where providers care for small groups of children in a residential building. This type of care often has one or two caregivers and may offer non-traditional schedules. It is important to ask a family child care provider or check with your local child care resource and referral agency to see if your provider should be licensed.
Family child care homes can also be classified as large or small family homes, depending on the number of children under guardianship. Child care centers can be either non-profit or for-profit, and may be owned by an individual, a church, a public school, or a government agency. Preschool programs are typically offered for children ages 3 to 5 and can be offered through a school, faith-based organizations, non-profit organizations, and child care centers. Some family child care providers and child care centers also offer care for school-age children. Other programs, such as parks and recreation departments, community programs, and churches can also provide this type of care.
It is important to ask your child care center or check with your local child care resource and referral agency to see if your provider should be licensed. The Office of Family Care and other basic agencies certify both the person providing the services and the occupied accommodation. All licensed child care programs must be inspected at least once before each license renewal. Key referral sources, including health care providers, social service providers, child care providers, EIP service providers, and a variety of professionals involved in the care of young children, should refer children at risk or suspected of having a disability to EIP, unless parents object to the referral. In addition, several people can refer a child to the Preschool Special Education Committee (CPSE), such as the parent, doctor, court official, designee in a public agency, or someone from an early childhood counseling center, an approved preschool program, or the Early Intervention Program (EIP). The CCA will also help you with assistance with fees if the family and the child care program they select are eligible. When it comes to selecting the right parent involvement program for your child in Central New York, it is important to ask the right questions.
Family child care homes may have different names depending on where you live and the regulations in your state. It is also important to research each program thoroughly before making a decision. Be sure to ask about licensing requirements, fees, hours of operation, staff qualifications and experience, safety protocols, curriculum offerings, and any other questions you may have.