State law requires counties to certify providers who receive public funding, unless the provider is state licensed or established and operated by a school board. The State Department of Children and Families (DCF) establishes the standards for day care certification. You can download a copy of the certification rules at: http://www.legis.state.wi.us/rsb/code/dwd/dwd011.html.
Q: How do I become a certified child care provider?
A: To get started, you must contact the Department of Social Services at 400 East Thomas Street, Wausau, WI 54403 or you may call 715-261-7577. Staff will assist you with the certification process and answer any questions you may have.
Q: How long does it take to become certified?
A: The process can take as little as 30 days but will not exceed 60 days.
Q: What will it cost me?
A: It costs $10.00 to get the process started. It will cost an additional $85.00 for provisional certification or $105.00 for regular certification. Provisional certification does not require any formal child care training. Regular certification requires a minimum of 20 hours of formal child care training which can be completed through Northcentral Technical College. Because of this training requirement regular certified providers are reimbursed by the State at a higher rate.
Q: I’m not a homeowner, I rent. Can I still provide child care in my home?
A: Yes, with written permission of your landlord. Without permission, the state will not let us continue the certification process.
Q: How many kids can I have?
A: Please call 715- 261-7577 to discuss the ages of the children you plan to care for. There are many different situations that cannot be answered on this FAQ page.
Q: When will the county certify or visit my home?
A: The certifier will make a visit prior to you being certified. Follow-up visits will occur at least once a year. If community information is received, additional visits may be required.
Q: When do I get paid?
A: In accordance with agency policy, if you turn your attendance sheet(s) in by noon on Thursday, you will be paid the following Tuesday.
Q: How do I get referred to families?
A: Once you are certified, either regular or provisional, your name goes on the master child care provider list that we give to people looking for a provider. The Child Care Connection in Merrill will also have your name and will give it out to anyone who requests a child care provider referral.
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