Comparing Child Care

Comparing Child Care

The State of Oregon Child Care Division has different rules and regulations for child care businesses based on the type of child care provided. This page will walk you through the differences and provide you links to the State of Oregon Child Care division website so you can learn about the standards and how different child care facilities are regulated.

Unlicensed Child Care

The State of Oregon does not require some child care businesses to be licensed with the child care division. These are typically babysitters, nannies and temporary, short-term care facilities. These child care businesses are called "unlicensed" because they are not directly regulated by the State of Oregon Child Care Division. If a child care meets all of the following criteria then they do not need to be registered with the State of Oregon:

  • Child care provider cares for three or fewer children, not including their own children.
  • Child care provider cares for any number of children from the same family, not including their own children.
  • Care is provided in the home of the child(ren).
  • Care is provided by the child(ren)’s parent, guardian, or person acting in place of a parent; or a person related to the child care children by blood, marriage, or adoption.
  • Care is provided on an occasional basis by a person, sponsor, or organization not ordinarily engaged in providing child care.
  • Facility is primarily educational and provides care to children 36 months or older, but not yet attending kindergarten for four hours or less a day.
  • Facility is primarily supervised and provides child-focused training in a specific subject that includes, but is not limited to: dancing, drama, music, or religion. This exclusion applies only to the time that the children are participating in the training.
  • Facility is primarily an incident of group athletic or social activities sponsored by or under the supervision of an organized club or hobby group. This exclusion applies only to the time engaged in the group athletic or social activities, and if the children can come and go as they please.
  • Facility is operated by a school district, political subdivision of the state of Oregon, or a government agency.
  • Facility provides care while child’s parent remains on premises and is engaged in non-work activity offered by the facility (ie health clubs).
  • Unregulated child care is typically provided by babysitters and nanny-type services.

Registered Family Child Care Home

Registered family child care homes can have up to 10 children and must pass a health and safety inspection. Here's a summary of the requirements:

  • The child care business is in the provider’s own home. License is limited to one provider per household.
  • A maximum number of 10 children are allowed in care at any one time. Of those 10 children, six children may be preschool age or younger, of which only two of the six children may be under 24 months of age. The provider’s own children are included in the number of children in care.
  • Prior to a license being issued, changing to a new home address, reopening a license after a lapse in time, or renewing a license every two years, the provider must satisfactorily complete an on-site health and safety review conducted by the division.
  • The provider, all other residents of the home, substitute caregivers, and frequent visitors 18 years of age or older must be enrolled in the division’s Criminal History Registry.

Certified Family Child Care Home

Little Feet Child Care, LLC is a certified family child care home. Certified family child care homes have the highest requirements and regulations in the State of Oregon. Health and safety inspections are more frequent and licensing requirements are higher than registered and unlicensed child care homes. Here's a summary of the requirements:

  • The child care business is in a single family home; usually the provider’s own home. License is limited to one provider per household. The provider may hire additional staff.
  • A maximum number of 12 children (16 children allowed with prior approval by the division) are allowed in care at any one time. The provider’s own children are included in the determination of caregiver/child ratio and group size.
  • A representative from Environmental Health or the Department of Human Services Health Division, as well as a Licensing Specialist from the Child Care Division must inspect and approve the home prior to a license being issued. Each agency will conduct an annual inspection at license renewal.
  • The owner, provider, all other residents of the home, substitute caregivers, frequent visitors and staff 18 years of age or older must be enrolled in the division’s Criminal History Registry.

Quality Child Care Checklist

Each child care facility has its strengths and weaknesses. As a new parent looking for child care for the first time it might be difficult to know what to look for when comparing child care. The National Child Care Resource and Referral provides a guide on what to look for when comparing child care programs.

Enrollment

Enrollment

When you're ready to enroll your child at Little Feet Child Care start the enrollment process by visiting our enrollment page.

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