The start of school – either in person or virtual – is coming! As a result, families may be searching for care for school-age children during school hours. Today, an announcement from the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (ODJFS) shared that a temporary pandemic school-age center license has been created. The Controlling Board has also approved $9 million to fund licensed programs who choose to provide school-age care (more details below).
Check out this guidance document previously shared by 4C for Children for things you should consider as you think about this opportunity.
You should have received the following notice from ODJFS, but here is the full text in case you haven’t yet seen it.
The beginning of the 2020-2021 school year is here. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some schools have decided to incorporate remote or hybrid school models into their education plan. This has resulted in an increased need for school-age child care during daytime hours.
Pandemic Child Care Temporary License
ODJFS is amending the child care center licensing rules to create a temporary pandemic school-age center license for stand-alone school age only centers who are serving school-age children during the school day.
Licensed Child Care Programs
Pending Controlling Board approval on August 24, 2020 all child care programs may provide care for school age children during the time they are participating in remote learning. Child care programs who decide to accept and care for school age children during the school day would only be able to do so while the state of emergency is in place. This includes the following program types:
- Child Care Center
- Temporary Pandemic School-Age Child Care Center
- Family Child Care Home
- In-Home Aide
- Approved Day Camp (as long as it is within the allowable 15 weeks during the summer)
Publicly Funded School Age Payment and Care
Again, pending Controlling Board approval on August 24, 2020, programs may provide publicly funded child care during school hours. Payment will include time that a school-age child is participating in remote learning, remote online instruction or the remote portion of a hybrid school model (please refer to Ohio Department of Education “Planning for Blended or Remote Learning” guidance for definitions). Payment may not include care that is provided as a result of a parent opting out of the hybrid or in-person model that their school system provided. Programs will be paid the school-age rate for the care provided for publicly funded child care.
The State of Ohio defines care for school-age children during the school day to mean time that a school-age child is participating in remote learning or the remote portion of a hybrid school model. Child care providers should provide a safe and clean space for the child to engage in the remote learning but cannot provide direct instruction and/or educational services. The child care providers should only be providing support of the curriculum that is prepared and delivered by the school district.
Once the rules and FAQs are final they will posted to our provider pandemic webpage: https://jfs.ohio.gov/cdc/CoronavirusAndChildcare/.
If you have questions about payment, please contact the child care policy help desk:
- Phone 1-877-302-2347 option 4
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have questions about licensing, please work with your licensing specialist.