Information & Services for Families
It is crucial for families to be well informed when selecting care for their children.
Finding Child Care
To search for licensed or registered child care visit http://www.greatstarttoquality.org
Child Care Licensing ~ Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA)
Michigan law requires that anyone who cares for any unrelated children in their home for more than four weeks out of the year must be licensed.
The Child Care Licensing Division, a part of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, Bureau of Community Health System (BCHS), conducts onsite inspections to determine compliance with state law and licensing rules, provides technical assistance and consultation to improve the quality of service and investigates complaints alleging violations of licensing rules or law. The Child Care Licensing Division regulates family child care homes (1 to 6 children), group child care homes (7 to 12 children) and child care centers. Call BCHS at 1-866-685-0006 to get more information on becoming licensed or visit www.michigan.gov/michildcare for more information about licensed child care.
Types of Child Care
Child Day Care Center (DC)
A “child care center” or “day care center” refers to a facility, other than a private residence, receiving one or more infants, toddlers, preschool or school age children for care, for periods of less than 24 hours a day and where the parents or guardians are not immediately available to the child.
- 0 – 2 ½ yrs. = 1 adult to 4 children
- 2 ½ – 3 yrs. = 1 adult to 8 children
- 3 – 4 yrs. = 1 adult to 10 children
- 4 – 5 yrs. = 1 adult to 12 children
- 6 and up = 1 adult to 20 children
- 13 -17 yrs. = 1 adult to 30 children
Child Care or Day Care Family Homes (DF)
A “family child care” or “family day care home” includes homes that give care to unrelated minor children for more than four weeks during a calendar year and are defined as a private home in which one but fewer than seven minor children are received for care and supervision, by one adult, for periods of less than 24 hours a day, unattended by a parents or legal guardian. Exceptions to this rule would be children related to an adult member of the family by blood, marriage or adoption.
Family Home Ratios:
- no more then 4 under the age of 30 months
- no more than 2 of those can be under the age of 18 months
- all children, less than 7, need to be included in the ratio
Group Child Care or Day Care Home (DG)
A “group child care” or “group day care home” includes homes that give care to unrelated minor children for more than four weeks during a calendar year and are defined as a private homes in which more than six but not more than twelve minor children are given care and supervision, by two adults, for periods of less than 24 hours a day unattended by a parent or legal guardian. Exceptions to this rule would be children related to an adult member of the family by blood, marriage, or adoptions.
Group Home Ratios (per caregiver)
- no more than 4 under 30 months of age
- no more than 2 of those 4 under 18 months
*Identification of these previously mentioned facilities can be determined by the two letters which precede the license number.
School Age Program
A certain school age programs are exempt from Child Care Licensing Rules. These programs are under direct supervision of local school districts. Parents may find out more about these programs from local school boards. These programs are identified on the referral list as “Exempt School Age Programs.”
In-home care is defined as a caregiver who comes to the client’s home. That State of Michigan does not license people who work from a client’s home. In this situation the client becomes an employer and will need to interview potential caregivers, make sure all the correct tax forms are filled out and possibly, do a back-ground check.