frequently asked questions
Family child care FAQ
Family child care is the provision of child care in the home of the child care provider. The child care provider’s home is not transformed into a day care centre. Instead, the children spend time in the atmosphere of a family home. Child Care may be offered in the entire home, or may be provided in a designated space, such as the downstairs portion of the home.
Family child care is community-based and flexible enough to meet a variety of families’ needs. Child care providers may contract directly to parents or may be affiliated with a supervising agency. Family and Child Care Connections is a licensed family child care supervising agency in St. John’s, NL.
In Newfoundland and Labrador, family child care providers are self-employed individuals whose family child care is their home-based business. They are not considered employees of Family and Child Care Connections but are approved under the family child care agency license. To become an approved child care provider of Family and Child Care Connections’ Family Child Care Agency, they must follow the regulations outlined in Newfoundland and Labrador’s Child Care Legislation.
Family child care providers work in partnership with the parents of the children in their care. The child care provider’s role is to provide a healthy, safe, developmentally enriched environment, to develop a warm and secure relationship with each child in her or his care and to meet those children’s individual and group needs.
Regulated Child care – Regulated family home child care means the child care provider holds an approval certificate for their home that has been issued by Family and Child Care Connections. They are supported by agency monitors who ensure legislation is being followed. It can also include family child care providers licensed by regional child care services staff. A regulated child care provider will own an approval certificate or license which must be displayed for parents to see.
Registered child care – A child care provider who is registered may be registered with their municipality, meaning they have received approval to operate a business in their town. It does not necessarily mean they are regulated and may not be following government legislation.
Approved child care provider – An approved child care provider is a child care provider who is approved with Family and Child Care Connections and have met all legislative requirements. They hold an approval certificate that is displayed for parents to see.
A family child care agency in Newfoundland and Labrador is a not-for-profit organization that recruits, screens, supports and monitors family child care providers. The agency approves family child care providers and acts as a directory for families seeking child care in these family child care homes.
Family and Child Care Connections is a licensed family child care agency.
The Operating Grant Program for child care providers offers parents more affordable child care while subsidizing rates through the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Early Learning and Child Care Agreement. Parents pay a set fee per day; child care provider fees are then topped up according to a set rate. Find out more about the Operating Grant Program.
Participation in the program is optional for child care providers. Ask your provider if they are a participant. In the provider directory, participants are noted in the listings.
Family child care providers who are regulated are permitted to care for up to 7 children in their family child care home. This includes their own children who are under the age for attending school.
There are several stipulations when caring for children depending on the capacity and age range:
- When caring for 7 children, no children can be under the age of 2
- When caring for 6 children, only 2 children can be infants, and only 2 children can be toddlers
- When caring for 5 children, 2 can be in the infant age range and 3in the toddler age range
- When doing infant care, 3 children can be in the infant age range. No other children may attend.
A child care provider who has 3 or more of her own school age children, only 2 of those children will not be counted towards the number of children participating.
In an unregulated setting, the number of children allowed is 4, including the provider’s own children up to the age of 12.
You do not need to own your own home to be a regulated child care provider. You can use a rental as long as you have the permission of the landlord to operate a business in the dwelling. The space you are using must meet regulatory requirements, or be able to be renovated to meet requirements. The child care provider must, however be living in the home that is being used for child care.
Family child care providers who wish to be regulated do not have to be early childhood educators. The educational requirement for a regulated family child care provider is the completion of the Family Child Care Orientation Course. This training can be accessed from Family and Child Care Connections through a self-study process with your home visitor or online (this is in process and should be available in the fall). Completion of this training will give you a trainee level of certification with the Association of Early Childhood Educators of Newfoundland and Labrador (AECENL).