Choosing child care is one of the most important decisions families will make. Child Care Resource & Referral is a community-based non-profit agency offering services to families, child care providers, employers and the community that improve the quality and accessibility of early childhood education and care. For assistance visit www.ccrrfoxvalley.org or call 920-886-1211 (1-800-749-KIDS) 8:00 am – 4:30 pm Monday – Friday. A Referral Specialist can answer your questions and provide a customized list of child care providers according to your family’s needs.
There are many different types of care and learning environments for children. No matter what type of child care you are searching for, there are some basic things to know when judging the quality of child care. Be sure to look for care that will allow your child to feel secure, happy, and engaged, with plenty of opportunities for play and physical activity.
Call and visit more than one provider so you can compare!
CCR&R can provide you with a helpful list of sample questions here.
Finding High Quality Care:
What to look for in a child care provider
Child / Teacher Ratio and Group Size
- Look for the number of children per adults
- In general, children do better in smaller groups than larger groups
- Clean, safe, child proof, odor-free
- Space for indoor and outdoor play, napping space, eating, toileting and hand washing areas
- Physical space should be organized so children know where things are and how they can be easily accessible
- How often do the children go outside?
- Are there enough highchairs, booster seats and child-sized furniture?
- Responsive, warm interactions between provider and children
- Do staff talk gently to the children and at the child’s eye level?
- What does the daily schedule look like? Is there a balance of active and quiet times? Free time? Flexibility?
- Does the program offer a variety of toys and learning materials that your child will find interesting and contribute to their growth and development?
- Are the meals and snacks nutritious?
- Can you bring in your own food?
- How does the program support formula fed/breastfeeding mothers and children?
- Guidance and discipline should be applied in a positive way that helps the child and does not humiliate them.
- Caregivers who use positive ways of disciplining children generally provide higher quality care.
- Open, continual communication between families and child care programs is key to ensuring consistent, quality care for all children.
- Parents should feel welcome to visit at any time while their child is in care and discuss any problems or concerns.
Look for the Stars!
YoungStar is a program of the Department of Children and Families created to improve the quality of child care for Wisconsin children.
- Evaluates and rates the quality of care given by child care providers
- Helps parents choose the best child care for their kids
- Supports providers with tools and training to deliver high quality early care
- Sets a consistent standard for child care quality
Status with Regulatory Agency
Parents should always check with the proper regulatory agency to see if there have been any complaints or concerns with the child care program.
In our area, you can search for a specific child care program by name at: childcarefinder.wisconsin.gov/Search/Search.aspx
Or you can contact the Bureau of Early Care Regulation Northeastern Regional Office at 920-785-7811 or their website at: dcf.wisconsin.gov/cclicensing/central-office
Need help with the cost of child care?
The Department of Children and Families Wisconsin Shares Child Care Subsidy Program is available to help with the cost of child care for income-eligible families.
Child care fees are tax-deductible. Check with your employer about pre-tax options.
As a parent, you know what is best for your child. Go with your gut instinct. If you don’t find the answers to what you are looking for, keep looking. The perfect provider for your family is out there!
Child Care Resource & Referral, Inc.
CCR&R is a valuable resource to help families find regulated childcare providers in Calumet, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Manitowoc, Outagamie, Sheboygan, Waupaca, and Winnebago counties.
1001 West Kennedy Ave., Suite A