Archive for Thursday, January 24, 2008

Kansas gets low marks on child care

January 24, 2008


— Parents who are reassured because their child care provider is registered with the state should think again, cautions a group of child advocates.

The National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies is giving Kansas and 14 other states a score of zero for their standards and oversight of family child care homes.

The biggest concern in Kansas was a two-tiered regulation system that the group feared might confuse parents.

Providers who are registered with the state merely fill out a checklist for standards. They are not inspected and are visited only in response to complaints. Such facilities may care for as many as six children, including the provider's.

The other type of provider, a licensed home, is inspected yearly by city and county health departments. These facilities can care for up to 10 children and must meet health, safety and space requirements.

"We believe that every child care provider, whether it's a center or a home, needs to be licensed and inspected and held to certain standards," said Linda Smith, executive director of the Virginia-based referral agency.

"Our work with parents shows that parents believe 'registered' means something," she said. "They are generally surprised to find out that it doesn't mean there's been an inspection or a background check or that the person has any training to do the job."

But Joe Blubaugh, spokesman for the Kansas Department of Health and Human Services, said that while the state doesn't inspect every child care facility, it does do background checks on all registered providers.

"They're painting a picture much bleaker than it really is," he said.


Ronda Miller 7 years, 10 months ago

There is a third type of inhome facility that was not mentioned. It is the group home. This is a licensed home that can care for up to twelve children and two adults are present if the numbers are such that they are needed.

Douglas county has wonderful providers who are registered, licensed, and group licensed. The local health department, Success by Six, Douglas County Child Development Association, other area offices, as well as pre school teachers, doctors and pediatricians work well within our community to offer top notch services and training.

A lot of parents still do not ask for basic things such as referrals or check the licensing requirements. Let us put some burden back into the laps of the parent.

I know a lot of inhome providers who have degrees in child development, always attend and obtain above the required hours for re certification yearly, and who provide structured, pre school activities for the children they love and care for.

lounger 7 years, 10 months ago

You can send your child to the finest most expensive day care on the planet and the kid still will run the risk of physical and mental abuse! There are some day cares out there that are good but...why gamble with your own child?? Work it out so one of the parents stay home as long as possible-That is the best day care anywhere around! No regrets for sure that way and you get to see your own child grow!! I wouldnt trade my time watching my own kids for anything!!!!

busymom 7 years, 10 months ago

At the risk of being thumped, what solution do you give the single parents out there lounger?

lounger 7 years, 10 months ago

Yes busymom that is rough. I was there for awile and I was beyond broke but...I stuck with it and things got better. Its real hard If you dont have support from a mother or brother or whomever in the family (expecially in the same town!). I catch hell quite a bit for being mister mom and couldnt give a Sh*t less what people say when it comes to the welfare of the little ones. I know things will get better for you-probably right at the point of total exaustion!

Commenting has been disabled for this item.