Help Guide for Early Childhood and Out-of-School Time Programs
At Child Care Answers, we know the rewards and challenges of working in quality child care, preschool, and school-age settings. Our job is to connect you to resources so you can do your job better – and to ensure the children in your care receive the highest quality experience possible. Scroll down to view our top resources for child care professionals like you.
Opening a Child Care Business
You know one thing – you have a passion for children and want to make a career of it. We’re here to connect you to what comes next. Exciting changes are happening now with our partners at the Office of Early Childhood and Out-of-School Learning. Connect with us today, and we'll make sure you get to the right place!
Your connection to
Resources for child care professionals
There are so many great organizations in central Indiana to help support you on your journey as a child care professional. If you’re looking to grow in any of the following areas, reach out to one of our partners!
Paths to QUALITY™ is a great way to get recognized and rewarded for operating a quality program and working to continuously improve it. The program helps you provide high quality care and education through free resources and cash and non-cash incentives..
On My Way Pre-K
On My Way Pre-K provides grants for four-year-olds from low-income families, so they may have access to high-quality pre-K programs the year before they begin kindergarten. You can apply to become an On My Way Pre-K program at any time, as long as you meet the eligibility requirements.
SPARK's coach team can come onsite to your program or connect with you virtually to assist with any area that support is needed. SPARK also offers group coaching, virtual coaching opportunities for programs to gain knowledge around various topics with the help of a coach and peers.
As an early childhood education and care professional you work hard every day for Indiana children and families. SPARK Learning Lab is here to support you by providing training, resources, and more!
Credentials and Certifications
Credentials and certifications can help you learn more about targeted areas within the field. When you have one, current or potential employers see you as dedicated to growing in your career. Licensing and Paths to QUALITY may also accept or require certain credentials like the CDA to participate.
Early Childhood Mental Health
If you work with infants and toddlers, consider investing in yourself through training and certifications for early chidhood mental health.
Staff Recruiting and Retention
Whether you own a family child care home with one other caregiver or manage a staff of dozens in a child care center, it’s important to consider how staffing affects your program, and ultimately, the children you serve.
Laws, Rules, and Related Policies
The Indiana Office of Early Childhood and Out-of-School Learning establishes rules and guidelines for child cares that participate in the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF), as well as additional requirements based on child care type.
If you have specific questions about any licensing rules or requirements, your licensing consultant can help. Don't know who your consultant is? Check out this list by county.
The Indiana Provider Web website was developed primarily to offer hands on, user friendly information to Indiana CCDF child care providers about the child care attendance information that is recorded in your Point of Service (POS) device and used to calculate your CCDF payments.
If you have any questions about the CCDF voucher program, connect with your county's CCDF policy consultant as listed on the map.
The Early Learning Marketplace makes it easy for you to market your program and available openings directly to families in need of care. You can maintain your program profile and highlight unique offerings, communicate directly with families, schedule tours, begin the enrollment process and more.
We know that families may come to you seeking additional help with social supports and information. Through our partnership with findhelp, we can connect families to supports based on their need.
Self-care is so important for early childhood professions! Consider options for free, short-term counseling, legal and financial consultation, worklife
assistance and crisis intervention services.
Child Care Answers Services
Our job is to make sure that you have the resources to do your job. Keep an eye on our events calendar for an upcoming provider resource fair where you can connect with support organizations and other child care professionals. If you operate a licensed family child care home, look for more information soon about family child care home networks.
As we connect families looking for child care to your program, you will also hear from us about keeping your program’s information up-to-date in our databases. We know how busy things can get, so feel free to fill out our provider update form to keep us aware of your openings, rates, and other information.
Stay in the know
Our team is always keeping its eyes and ears open for resources that will be helpful to experienced child care professionals and those just starting out. We make sure you’re aware of the latest child care grants, professional development opportunities, and regulatory guidance. Sign up today to receive our newsletter every three months in your inbox to keep up on the latest.
Program Resource Navigators
We grow with your child care program
Our team of program specialists are in your corner, every step of the way to get you connected to resources or provide any of our free services. Fill out our provider information form in English or Spanish or call 317.636.5727 to get connected.
As a professional, I have found Child Care Answers to be a place of guidance, information, and resources. I am a better educator and parent because of Child Care Answers.