Start a Daycare in Oregon – Licensing – Regulations – Laws
The Oregon State is dedicated to all children and their families being able to choose appropriate quality on childcare that is secure, community based, responsive to family needs and resources which are affordable, accessible and inclusive.
Each child care center facility will always have an access with the information, training and resources to ensure quality care.
This is a startup qualifications book in which policy makers and communities will always engaged in ongoing activities to support a comprehensive system of affordable care for children and youth with disabilities.
- Oregon Law governing child care facilities requires certification and inspection for those facilities that serve thirteen or more children or serve twelve or fewer children and are located in a building constructed as other than a single-family dwelling.
- These child care facilities are exempted for certification and inspection:
- Primary Education that provides care to children 36 months or older but not yet attending kindergarten for less than four hours a day
- Child-focused training in a specific subject like dancing, drama, music and religion.
- School operated by district, political subdivision of this state or a government agency.
- Organized and operated on an occasional basis by a person, sponsor or organization not ordinarily engaged in providing child care.
- Run as a parent cooperative not more than four hours a day.
- A facility that offers or provides care while the child’s parent remains on the premises and is engaged in an activity.
- This application rule of certification for child care center was provided by the Child Care Division to set the rules and provisions for child care center operators or providers.
- Application- The application for certification will be provided by the Child Care Division (CCD). This shall be made on forms, required for child care center initial certification, renewal and change of owner or operator.
- A non-refundable of filing fee will be charged for owner or operator.
- Initial application – $100 with an additional of $2 for each certified space
- Renewal Fee – $2 for each certified space
- The application form must be completed by the applicant and approved by CCD within a year or 12 months of submission or the application will be denied. For denied application, it is required to submit a new application for certification.
- Floor Plan- required by the environmental health specialist, the fire marshal and the buildings department prior to initial construction or remodel.
- If the child care provider or applicant is a firm, association, corporation, public agency, or governmental entity, the application shall be signed by the chief executive officer or a person designated in writing to have the authority to sign for the applicant. Or if it is a partnership, the application shall be signed by each partner.
- Within the application, a management list should be attached and be updated annually. Specification of each staff is required:
- Finance and Monetary Management
- Policy Regulation and Development
- Management of Staff, Trainings and Orientation
- Building and Grounds Administration
- Meal Plan and Food Preparation
- Activity Plan and Child Program
- Provider’s validation for building codes and zoning requirements will be verified by the CCD for the initial certification and when the building or facility is remodeled.
- The child care center applicant shall be approved by environmental health specialist like the Health Division and fire state marshal. For fire safety and sanitation inspections, an appropriate fee will be charged.
- A CCD representative will evaluate the center upon receipts of completed application form and will determine if the center meets the certification requirements.
Issuance of a Child Care Certificate
The two types of certification that shall be issued by CCD upon compliance with all the requirements:
- Regular certification- valid for a year
- Temporary certification- a child care center may not operate for more than 180 day within a year. This is issued when the center is in compliance with all the requirements, no identified deficiencies by CCD and the operator demonstrates an effort to be in full compliance.
The certification is strictly non transferable to any other location or to another organization or individual. For further changes in the conditions of certification, it shall be requested in writing to CCD and approved by CCD before the condition(s) may be changed but not limited to facility, capacity, and age range of children or hours of operation.
Exceptions to Rules
- Inappropriate requirements of the facility.
- The purpose of the requirement can be met by a method not specified in the applicable rule.
- The applicant or operator shall request justification exemption and an explanation of how the center will meet the intent of the rule.
- CCD declared no exemptions if the requirement is established by statute or unless the health, safety, and well-being of the children are ensured.
- The approval, implementation and withdraw of exceptions shall received and be approved by CCD.
- The operator or provider is required to display the following near the entrance, or in some other area of the center where they may be viewed by parent(s) of children in care:
- Recent Certification Issued by CCD
- The Director’s name or substitute director
- Announcement of planned field trips with dates and place of each excursion
- Menu plan and snacks, if meals are provide by the center
- Details on how to report a complaint to CCD regarding certification requirements
- Note of parental access during hours of operation
- Note of center vacations day or closures
- The center provider or operator should have available for review on request a copy of Rules for the Certification of Child Care Center and the recent CCD sanitation and fire safety inspection reports.
- The provider or operator should report to CCD an accident at the center, injuries to a child, damage to the building and change in director being on site.
- The provider should have the current, complete and accurate information provided to CCD on applications or records.
- Report suspected child abuse as required by the Child Abuse Reporting Law to the Department of Human Services Child Welfare or to a law enforcement agency.
- The completion of requirements with state and federal laws related to child safety systems and seat belts in vehicles, bicycle safety, civil rights and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
- Make available information to staff, CCD and to parent(s) at the time of enrollment:
- The center name, business address and business telephone number of the person(s) who have immediate responsibility for the daily operation of the center.
- Policy for discipline and guidance
- Time record procedures
- Emergency Plan
- Field trips procedures
- Transportation policy when provided by the center
- The agencies and representative should have an immediate access to all parts of the center during the operation and the right to inspect the center.
- The child care center should comply with the Division’s administrative rules relating to:
- Children’s Immunization
- Communicable Diseases Reports
- Health policies and procedures approved by the Health Divisions or the state health department:
- Food Storage and Handling of food
- Disposal and Changing of Diaper
- Infants care for bathing
- Bed linen Care
- Hand washing rules
- Infants care regarding serving formula, storage, handling of bottles and feeding infants
- The child care center will not be given permission for parental request to waive any of the rules for the center certification.
Admission and Enrollment
The children should be admitted in accordance with the conditions of the certification but not limited to capacity, hours of operation, age range and special conditions. As stated with in the rules that all children visiting the center on a regular basis will count in capacity while children attending with a non-staff parent do not count as enrolled as long as the parent remains with and is responsible for non-enrolled children.
The center should not discriminate against any child on the basis of race, religion, color, national region, gender, marital status of parent or because of a need for special care under the state and federal civil rights and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
The provider or operator of the center should have the following current information in writing from parent(s) of each child before admission.
- Child’s name and birth date
- Child’s admission date
- Home and address, telephone number of the custodial parents
- Child’s school attended and records
- Child’s details of medical provider
- Emergency numbers to be called if the parent cannot be located
- Persons detailed to whom the child may be released
The center provider should have the following information in writing from parent(s) of each infant and toddler before admission:
- Feeding Schedule
- Food and Timetable
- Schedules for toilet and diaper change
- Napping Schedule
- Child’s Communication
- Child’s History and development
The parent(s) should submit the following written authorizations before admission:
- Permission to have emergency medical treatment for the child
- Staff accessibility
- Approval in field trips and in swimming or wading activities
The provider or center should always have a separate information and authorization form of each child care. However, a chance shall be given for each child with his or her parent(s) to have a pre placement visit to the center and for the center staff to exchange information with the parent(s). The daycare requirement is that no child under six weeks of age shall be enrolled in a center.
Policy for Arrival and Departure
- A child care center should require that the person bringing a child to the center remain with the child until the child is accepted by staff.
- A child care center should release a child only to a parent or another person named and identified by the parent(s). The provider or operator should verify the identification of any person, other than the parent, who picks up a child.
- But when a child or school-age child arrives at or leaves the center without a parent, there shall be arrangements in advance, in writing, from the parent(s) for the arrival and departure times and what to do if a child has not arrived at the center by the expected time.
The provider or operator should keep all the records for at least two years, staff and children’s records for two years after termination of employment of care.
- The provider or operator should establish a system of job descriptions, staff selection and staff evaluation.
- The center should always have staffs who meet the qualifications of director and head teacher. The person or assigned the duties of the person must meet the qualifications of the position.
- There should always be at least one person in the center at all times who has current certification in first aid and CPR.
- Any person or staff with evidence of a child care-restrictable disease, symptom of physical illness or mental incapacity that poses a threat to the health or safety of children will be relieved of his/her duties.
- The CDC may require the operator to provide information if there is evidence which casts doubt on the physical or mental competence of a person to care for children or have access to children.
- The operator should not allow access to child care children or be in the center during child care hours who has demonstrated behavior that may have a detrimental effect on a child.
Director: Qualifications and Duties
- The child care center director requirements are:
- At least 21 years of age.
- With one year of training and experience in management and supervision of adults.
- With a background in child development for the primary ages served in the center.
- The person or director of the center shall be accountable for:
- Child center administrative functions
- Maintaining Records and Budgeting
- Ensure program activities according to age and developmental levels of children
- Staff management and orientation
- Food preparation and meal planning
- The director may serve as a head teacher for the age range of children for which she/is qualified if she/he works full-time in the center:
- When the child care center is certified for less than 40 children, the director may serve as head teacher and have regular teaching duties
- When the child care center is certified for 40 or more children, the director may serve as head teacher but will have no regular teaching duties.
- A person or director responsible for a center certified for fewer than 100 children should be in the center at least one-third of the hours that the center is in operation. The schedule and hours shall be calculated on a weekly basis except for planned vacations and emergency absences.
- A child care center director or a substitute director should be on the premises during all hours of operation.
The tasks of substitute director are:
- Should meet at least the qualifications of a teacher.
- With a knowledge or familiar with the certification requirements.
- Authorized, able and available to correct a deficiency that might be an immediate threat to children’s health or safety
- With file documentation of an orientation and training in these administrative rules and the functions and duties of a director.
Head Teacher: Qualifications and Duties
- At least 18 years of age
- Responsible for the development and implementation of the center’s program of activities
- To ensure the proper program of activities according to the age, interests and developmental level of the children.
- At least 18 years of age
- Can supervise a designated group of children
- Administer the program activities of an aide assigned to his/her group.
Aid Level 1
- At least 15 years of age.
- Directly guided and supervised within sight and sound of a staff person who meets at least the qualifications of a teacher.
Aid Level 2 (Infant/Toddler/Preschool-age programs)
- At least 18 years of age.
- Have a working experience for at least six months at the center where they are now employed.
- Have a certification in first aid and CPR.
Aid level 2 (School-age program)
- At least 18 years of age.
- Have a working experience for at least four months in the school-age program where they are now employed.
- Have a certification in first aid and CPR.
School-Age Multi-Site Programs: Additional Staff
- The provider or operator should develop a written plan which shows about the administrative functions and head teacher functions. With this, all staff of school-age multi-site program should meet qualifications for the position they hold. When the multi-site program does not have a director, the site coordinator and the site director/ supervisor should jointly perform the functions of director.
- Functions and qualification of site coordinator:
- At least 21 years of age.
- With at least one year of training and/or experience in management and supervision of adults.
- An authorized, able and available to correct deficiencies.
- Can act as a substitute teacher and be a qualified teacher.
- Functions and qualification of site director/supervisor:
- At least 18 years of age.
- A qualified teacher.
- An authorized, able and available to correct deficiencies.
- If the center is certified for 40 or more children, not have teaching duties unless the number of children on site is less than 40.
- Staff orientation within the first two weeks of employment.
- The provider or operator should have documentation for each person of the date and type of orientation received and the person providing the orientation.
- The first 90 days of employment, all staff who function as teachers and count in staff/child ratios should have a complete training on recognizing and reporting child abuse and neglect or have documentation of having complete training. The staff should complete first aid training and CPR training.
- Staff in food preparation must have food handler certification.
- All members that include director, head teacher and all teachers should participate yearly in at least 15 hours of training or education related to child care, child development or early childhood education.
Staff/Child Ratios and Group Size
|Children’s age||Staff||No. of Children||Children in a group|
|6 weeks to 23 months||1||4||8|
|24 months to 35 months||1||5||10|
|36 months to kindergarten||1||10||20|
|Kindergarten and older –||1||15||30|
The facility should at least with a minimum of 35 square feet of indoor activity area per child. A space for school-age program shall have a minimum of 50 square feet of indoor activity area per child.
The facility should have an outdoor activity area which the children can reach safely. The center should have At least with a minimum of 75 square feet of outdoor space for each child using the area at one time.
- The center should meet the requirements of the Oregon Structural Specialty Code that includes the building, occupant load and means of egress, including the number of exist, existing distances, doors and exit illumination and signs shall meet the requirements of the Oregon Structural Specialty Code.
- Fire Extinguishers
- Smoke detectors
- Obstructions that include furniture shall not be placed in corridors, stairways or exit ways.
- There must be written evidence that any wood stove in the building has been inspected and approved.
Hazards and Emergencies
- Safety and protection from Hazards:
- Safety glass
- Protective caps for electrical outlets
- Handrails installed for stairways
- Hazardous location with protective barriers
- Movable barrier accessible to infants
- Protected lights from breakage
- Rooms must have adequate lighting
- Keep floor free of splinters
- Eliminate items of potential danger to children
- No lead-based paint or toxic materials
- Possession of ammunition or firearms are prohibited in the center
Preparation for Emergencies
- Have a portable emergency light source
- Accessible telephone service
- Have a system security to ensure parents have contact with facility staff at all times
- Make an emergency list of contact number posted near the phone
- Instructions for evacuating the building and map list for exits.
Guidelines for Emergency Plan
The child care center shall have a written plan for handling emergencies for fire, acute illness of a child or staff, floods, earthquakes, and evacuation of the facility.
- Ensure parents for emergency contacts
- Detailed alternate site for evacuation
- Parents should be informed where children will be located for evacuation
- Accessible file of emergency contact number for children and staff
- Assign staff to take emergency contact numbers in the event of evacuation
- Water Supply:
- The child care center’s water supply should be continuous in quantity and from a water supply system approved by the Health Division.
- Have a safe drinking water available to a child that is supplied in a sanitary manner. Drinking water should not be obtained from bathroom sinks or diaper changing sinks.
- Heat and Ventilation:
The child care center should be ventilated, by natural or mechanical means, and shall be free of excessive heat, condensation, and obnoxious odors.
- Insect and Rodent Control:
The child care center should be in such condition as to prevent the infestation of rodents and insects.
- Cleaned kitchen and toiled rooms.
- Keep the isolation area thoroughly cleaned.
- Sanitized all door knobs and cabinet pulls in toilet rooms and diaper changing area.
- Clean all linen and stored in a sanitary manner.
- Separate soiled bed linen and clothing from food storage areas and inaccessible to children.
- Fixed and in repair; the floors, walls ceiling and fixtures of all rooms.
- Clean all storage area.
- Sanitized the cribs, mats and cots at least once a week.
- Infant and Toddler Care:
Sanitized and clean immediately after use:
- Bathtub or other holder used for bathing a child
- Diaper table
- Tables and high chairs
- Infants and toddler toys
- Training sets or toilet training sets inserts
- Hand washing:
- The facility staff and children should wash their hands with soap and warm running water after using the toilet or wiping the nose, before and after eating.
- The center staff should wash their hands with soap and warm running water before and after changing a diaper, before and after feeding a child or handling food and after assisting a child with toileting or wiping the nose.
- Wash the hands of infants and children with soap and warm running water after diaper changing.
- If the center has a hand sanitizers but it should not replace hand washing, they should be kept under child-proof lock and not be used by children.
- Waste Disposal:
- The Department of Environment Quality requires that all sewage and liquid wastes shall be collected and disposed.
- Dispose all solid waste at least once a week.
- Garbage should be kept in washable containers with close-fitting lids.
- Disposal container must be approved by the environmental health specialist.
- Clean all the garbage storage areas and containers.
- All garbage storage is inaccessible to children.
- Toilets- should provide privacy for school age children
- Hand washing sinks- should have faucets
- Bathrooms-should have smooth, washable, easily-cleanable walls and floors.
- Flush toilet for toddler or older toddler
- With dishwashing area, storage and preparation for food.
- All the utensils and equipment used for food service must be easily cleanable and maintained clean.
- Children should not be allowed in the kitchen except for a supervised learning activity.
- All furniture must be durable, clean, safe and in good repair.
- All tables and seats shall be scaled to the height and size of a child.
- Have a safe, washable cot or rest mat for each toddler and preschool age child.
- All mats used on napping should be covered with a waterproof cover.
- Have individual bedding for each child.
- Have a proper storage for mats, cots and bed linen as recommended by the environment health specialist.
Infant and Toddler Furniture and Equipment
- Each child or infant should have a crib or play pen with a clean, non-absorbent mattress.
- The sleeping arrangements other than cribs, portable cribs or playpens must be approved by CCD.
- Clip on tables should have straps to prevent a child from sliding out.
- Ensure at least one adult sized chair for each group of infants and toddlers.
- All the equipments must meet US Consumer Product Safety Commission or equivalent standard.
- Prohibited to use infant walkers.
Illness or Injury
- A facility should not admit a child who is diagnosed as having or being a carrier of a child care-restrictable disease.
- A child with illness should not retain in care at the center.
- Have an isolation area for sick child.
- Should have a written procedure for handling injuries.
- Have a written procedure for taking a child to emergency medical care.
- Have a schedule for treatment of minor injuries.
- Make first aid procedures for serious accidents.
Emergency and Medical care
- The center should have a licensed physician, identified hospital or clinic to be used for emergency medical care.
- For immediate medical care, the director or the substitute director is responsible for securing such care and notifying the parents.
- Administer medication with written authorization by the parent(s).
- Medications must be secured and stored in area not used by children.
- Store medications that require refrigeration or with a child-proof lock or latch.
- Advised parent(s) for daily administration of medicines to their child.
Animals in the Center
- Care for animals that show no evidence of carrying any disease and be friendly companion for the children.
- Inform parents in writing of any animal in the center.
- Have written procedures for the care and maintenance of the animals in the center.
- Animal cages and litter boxes should not be located in areas accessible to children.
- Designate staff to care for handling and feeding of animals.
- Food Selection, Storage, and Preparation
- The center should have a proper selection of food and drink, be prepared, stored and served in a sanitary manner.
- For storage- a center should have at least one refrigerator to store all potentially hazardous foods.
- For preparation-food should be prepared with a minimum of manual contact and only approved food additives or preservatives shall be used by the center.
- For service-each child should be provided with his/her own utensils for eating and drinking.
- Cleaning, Sanitizing, and Storage of Food Service Equipment and Utensils
- All tableware and kitchenware should be washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use.
- The equipments and food-contact surfaces should be washed, rinsed and sanitized after use.
- Clean all the multi-use utensils and counters, shelves, tables, refrigeration equipment and etc.
- After cleaned and sanitized, all tableware, equipment and utensils should be dried.
- The child care provider should ensure the availability of adequate and nutritious meals and snacks appropriate for the ages and needs of the children served. There are guidelines from USDA that will be used to determine if meals and snacks are adequate and nutritious.
- The water in the center should be freely available to children.
Meals and Snacks
The center should provide meals and snacks to children that meet the following requirements:
- Have a list of food services hours and be flexible.
- The food service in the center should be open morning through afternoon and snacks should be served to the children in care.
- For food and meal- the preparation must be on-site, catered and provided by the parents.
Program and Care of Children
Program of Activities for All Children
- The child care center should provide a written program of activities for each group of children according to their developmental ages, interests, and abilities. The series of activities must allow for change and flexibility and show evidence of the pre-planning.
- The plan and program of activities shall be planned to provide:
- Positive education experiences appropriate to the individual developmental needs of children in care
- Program for individual and group activities
- A stability of active and quiet activities
- The chance and opportunities for free choice by children
- Program for the daily indoor and outdoor activities in which children use both large and small muscles.
- The child care center should follow the written program of activities.
- The child care center should inform parents when children are participating in contracted services that the contracted services have not been certified by CCD.
Infant and Toddler Program of Activities
For each infant and toddler should be:
- Accept and allow the pattern of sleeping and waking periods.
- Have the opportunity during each day to move freely by creeping and crawling in a safe, clean, open, warm and uncluttered area.
- Learning experiences can be done through routine activities.
- Ensuring the child to play with a safe toys and objects.
- Have appropriate opportunities to use the five senses through sensory play.
- Give an immediate attention to emotional and physical needs of children.
- The child care staff should encourage the development of self-help skills as children are ready.
Preschool-Age Program of Activities
Preschool age children should have opportunities on a daily basis, to choose from a variety of activities and experiences which include:
- Imaginative and creative expression through the arts
- Dramatic and stage play
- Gross and fine motor development
- Activity with music and movement
- Opportunities and activity to listen and speak
- Concept and idea development
- Appropriate and suitable sensory play
- Administered and supervised nap or rest period.
School-Age Program of Activities
- Provide an environment where adults’ actions demonstrate respect for school age children’s changing physical emotional and intellectual needs changing physical, emotional and intellectual needs.
- Activities for school age children:
- Creative and imaginative expression through the arts
- Individual projects and creations, which may include homework
- Experience and exposure to individual and team physical activities
- Opportunities to experience or learn about the tasks of adulthood (e.g., the world of work, taking responsibility, budgeting); and
- Opportunities to have a rest if tired. The child care center should provide a space that encourages rest for those children who wish to rest.
- The child care center should have age-appropriate activities and equipment for school age children.
Guidance and Discipline
A child care center should have a written policy on guidance and discipline of children. The guidance and discipline policy shall be posted in the center. All the member staff, volunteers and parents shall be familiar with the guidance and discipline policy.
The guidance and discipline policy shall:
- Serves and provide for positive guidance, redirection, and the setting of clear-cut limits; and
- Be planned to assist the child develop self-control, self-esteem, and respect for others.
Only member staff, excluding volunteers, shall provide guidance or discipline to a child. The child care center should not accept parental permission to use any form of punishment.
Equipment and Materials
The child care center should have play equipment and materials that are in good condition, proper to the development and easily accessible to the children.The appropriate play materials should be sufficient to avoid too much competition and provide a selection of choices to each child.
Drivers should be at least 18 years of age. With a current driver’s license required by the Motor Vehicles Division (DMV) and maintain a safe driving record.
The operator or provider should obtain a copy of the driving record from DMV for each staff whose job description includes driving duties.
- Night Care
A day care center providing night care to children shall meet all the requirements for child care centers the center shall comply with the following requirements:
- Staffing-Staff and child ratio maintained in the center
- Safety-authorized person shall be allowed and with provided emergency lighting in each room.
- Activities-center should provide program activities according to their ages, interest and abilities.
- Sleeping arrangements- space shall be arranged based on their age and need for rest.
- Personal hygiene-each child should have an individual washcloth, comb or brush and sleepwear.
- Swimming Activities
This activity will be provided on the premises of a child care center.
Health and Safety:
- Children suffering from diarrhea or who have had diarrhea within the last two weeks shall not use the pool.
- Children that are not toilet trained shall wear swim diapers.
- Children should utilize the toilet and shower before entering the pool.
- Proper supervision and administration shall be maintained
- (e) The pool maintenance or operator should maintain water quality or pool use shall cease until the water quality is restored.
- (f) Children should participate in basic water safety instruction based on their ages and developmental levels.
- Drop-in Care
- A Drop-In Center should meet all the requirements for child care centers.
- The child care center should comply with the following requirements which apply to Drop-In Care provided exclusively for drop-in children as a single primary service or as a separate component of a child care center.
- The facility area used for Drop-In Care shall not be used by the children from any other component of the center.
- The member or staff assigned to provide Drop-In Care shall not be responsible for children from any other component of the center at the same time.
- The designed attendance for a child in Drop-In Care shall not exceed two and one half full days per week, or twenty-five hours per week.
Denial and Revocation of Certification
- The child care center certification may be denied or revoked if a center fails to meet requirements, provide CCD with information requested, allow an inspection, correct deficiencies, or is operated or maintained in a manner which is harmful to the health, safety or wellbeing of children in care.
- Revocation of Certificate- The director will received notification of deficiencies, has adequate time to make corrections and fails to do so.
- The facility provider has the right to appeal any decision to deny or revoke the certification.
- An operator or provider whose certification has been revoked shall not be eligible to reapply for three years after the revocation is effective.
Suspension of Certification
Suspension for child care certification- without prior notice, The Child Care Division (CCD) may immediately suspend the child care certification when, in the opinion of CCD, such action is necessary to protect the children from physical or mental abuse or a substantial threat to health, safety or well-being.
- An operator or provider will be notified verbally or in writing and all parents of the suspension.
- 2. An operator or person whose certification has been suspended must post the suspension on the main entry door where it can be viewed by parents and others.
The operator or person has the right to appeal any decision to suspend the certification.