In the United States, licensing standards for child care centers vary by each individual state. General provisions for licensing address these issues:
Health and safety requirements
Ways of dealing with a child’s negative behavior
The number of staff that are needed to safely care for the children
Training requirements for staff
Type of equipment needed
Requirements for daily program
Types of food services needed for children of different ages
Standards vary widely by each state. And how each state monitors and enforces guidelines also varies greatly.
As part of your research, find out which of your potential child care providers are accredited or are in the process of obtaining accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC), and/or the National After School Association.footnote 1 Accreditation from these organizations helps ensure that a family or group child care center meets basic quality standards, even if your state has lax licensing requirements or enforcement.