Child Care

Children during snack timeImportant Childcare Licensing & Registration Information

The original licensing law, which was passed in 1919, placed the licensing authority with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. The Department administers the licensing law as a preventive program to assure that out-of-home care for children and maternity parents will not be expletive, unsafe, or unhealthy. Basically, the main purpose of the law is to protect the health, safety, and welfare of children receiving care away from their parents and home. It is also a consumer protection law assuring parents that the care they are paying for meets minimum standards of good care.

Children playing a gameLicensure or registration (depending on the number of children in care) is required regardless of the motivation for providing care, and whether or not there is an advertisement or payment for services. The essential fact is that a child or children are receiving care away from their own home. Registration or licensing is not required when care is provided in the child’s home, if children are cared for in the home of a relative, or if not more than two children are in care not more than 20 hours a week total time. Total is determined by adding the time each child is cared for weekly. Registration or licensing is not required for irregular care arranged between friends and neighbors on an exchange basis.

Find a Good Childcare Provider

Each community in Kansas is serviced by a child care and resource referral agency. These agencies provide helpful information on how to select a child care setting that will meet the needs of your child and of your family. They will also provide referrals to licensed or registered child care providers that have openings for the age of your child.

The Resource and Referral Agency for Meade County:

Child Care Connection Resource & Referral Agency

If you are a family needing child care call: 1-877-678-2548

Parents interested in finding out about Child Care Providers in their area visit the Child Care Aware webpage. You can see past surveys of child care providers at the KDHE child care licensing page.

For Child Care Providers to receive services and resources call: Toll-Free: 866-550-1510 or 620-275-1510

Tips for Looking for a Child Care Provider

  • Ask if the child care setting is licensed or registered. Child care regulations reduce predictable risks of harm to children cared for in child care settings.
  • Ask to see any recent inspection findings. These reports will tell you what the surveyors found on their inspection.
  • Visit different child care settings. Look and listen closely.
  • Is the child care home or center a busy, happy place with clean, uncluttered space, sturdy play equipment and a variety of play materials? Are activities conducted both inside and outside?  Are poisons and other dangerous substances locked up?  Is there room for children to engage in active play, quiet play, and rest?
  • Are children encouraged to express themselves and satisfy their curiosity? Are they actively engaged in activities? Do the children appear to be enjoying themselves? Are the children welcomed? What do the children do in a typical day? Are the children given choices among activities that are appropriate for the age range of children in care?
  • Are the adults working with the children warm, accepting, and understanding of the children?  Are the adults supervising the children well and at the same time enjoying their time with the children? Are the adults educated and trained to work with children?
  • How many children are in care? How many adults work with a group of children? A smaller number of young children in a group is most beneficial in meeting each child’s needs.
  • Are child care practices like discipline, toileting or napping similar to your beliefs and practices?  Are children encouraged to learn self-control? How often are children in diapers changed?  How do the adults in the program include you in your child’s time in care?
  • What basic services are provided by the program? What type of meals are served to the children?  Does the program provide transportation services?

Become a Daycare Provider

All three communities, Fowler, Meade, and Plains, in Meade County, always need more daycare providers. The majority of parents with young children work outside the home. On average, young children spend approximately 40 hours a week in someone’s care, other than their parents.  The first five years of life have a powerful influence on children’s development. If you would like to have a positive effect on children’s cognitive, language, social, emotional, and physical development you may want to consider becoming a daycare provider. If you would like more information check out this website and call KDHE Southwest District Office (620)682-7940