This post is a part of our series on Oregon family child care licensing. For more on licensing in Oregon, see the following posts:
To open a Registered or Certified Family Child Care in Oregon your home will have to meet certain requirements. The Office of Child Care (OCC) will inspect your home before you can become licensed. The requirements differ slightly depending on if you are starting a Registered or Certified Family Child Care Home:
Registered Family Child Care Home requirements
- Restrooms: There must be at least one flush toilet and one hand‐washing sink available to children. Steps or blocks must be available to ensure children can use the toilet and sink without assistance.
- Room Temperature: the room temperature must be at least 68°F during the hours the child care business is conducted.
- Lighting: Rooms occupied by children must have a combination of natural and artificial lighting.
- Floors: Floors must be free of splinters, large unsealed cracks, sliding rugs and other hazards.
- Telephone: a telephone in working condition must be in the family child care home.
- Parents must be given the telephone number so they can contact the provider if needed.
- Emergency telephone numbers for fire, ambulance, police and poison control and the provider’s home address must be posted in a visible location.
- First Aid: First aid supplies and a chart or handbook of first aid instructions shall be maintained in one identified place and kept out of reach of children.
- The first aid supplies shall include band-aids, adhesive tape, sterile gauze pads, soap or sealed antiseptic towelettes or solution to be used as a wound cleaning agent, scissors, disposable plastic gloves for handling blood spills, a solution for disinfecting after a blood spill, a sanitary temperature-taking device and CPR mouth guards.
- A first aid kit and a copy of each child’s emergency medical information including a medical release form shall be taken any time the caregiver is transporting child care children or taking child care children on field trips.
Exits: All floor levels used by children must have access to two usable exits to the outdoors. “Useable Exit” means an unobstructed door or window through which the provider and the children can evacuate the home in case of a fire or emergency. Doors must be able to be opened from the inside without a key.
- For homes built before July 1, 2010, window openings must be at least 20 inches wide and at least 22 inches in height, with a net clear opening of five square feet (at least 720 square inches) and a sill no more than 48 inches above the floor.
- For homes built after July 1, 2010, window openings must be at least 20 inches wide and at least 24 inches in height, with a net clear opening of five square feet (at least 720 square inches) and a sill no more than 44 inches above the floor.
- If a basement is used for child care purposes, the requirement for two usable exits may be met by one of the following:
- A sliding glass door or swinging door to the outside and a window that meets the definition of a usable exit; or
- A window which meets the definition of a usable exit and an internal stairway to ground level that has unobstructed and direct access to the outdoors.
- If a window, which meets the definition of a usable exit, is used:
- Steps must be placed under the window to allow children to exit without assistance; and
- The window must be kept in good working condition.
- If a window used as an exit has a window well, a mechanism must be in place to allow children to exit the window well.
- Child care children cannot sleep on the second floor or above;
- Care shall not be provided for infants and toddlers on the second floor or above;
- Night care shall not be provided on the second floor or above;
- Children may be allowed on the second floor to use the bathroom if the only bathroom is on the second floor;
- Care can be provided for preschool and school‐age children on the second floor or above, if:
- There are two staircases to the ground level and all children are mobile enough to exit safely; or
- The designated fire marshal has approved the use of the upper floor.
Evacuation plan: the provider must have a written plan for evacuating and removing children to a safe location in an emergency. The plan must be posted in the home, must be familiar to the children and the caregivers, and must be practiced at least every other month. It must include:
- Procedures for notifying parents or other adults responsible for the children of the relocation and how children will be reunited with their families;
- Procedures to address the needs of individual children, including infants and toddlers, children with special needs and children with chronic medical conditions;
- An acceptable method to ensure that all children in attendance are accounted for;
- Procedures for handling natural disasters (e.g. fire, earthquake, etc.) and man‐caused events, such as violence at a child‐care facility;
- Procedures in the event that children must shelter‐in‐place or if the child care home must be locked‐down so that no one can enter or leave; and
- Procedures for maintaining continuity of child care operations.
Fire and safety hazards: Children shall be protected from fire and safety hazards. Providers must have the following protections in place:
- Electric outlets and cords
- All exposed electrical outlets in rooms used by preschool or younger children must have hard‐to‐remove protective caps or safety devices installed when the outlet is not in use.
- Extension cords shall not be used as permanent wiring;
- All appliance cords must be in good condition;
- Multiple connectors for cords shall not be used;
- A grounded power strip outlet with a built‐in over‐current protection may be used;
- Secure barriers
- A stable barrier shall be installed to prevent children from falling into hazards, including, but not limited to: fireplaces, heaters, and wood stoves that are in use when child care children are present;
- A secure barrier shall be placed at the top and/or bottom of all stairways accessible to infants and toddlers;
- Smoke detector: You must have a working smoke detector on each floor and in any area where children nap;
- Fire extinguisher: You must have a working fire extinguisher with a rating of at least 2‐A:10‐BC;
- Firearms: Any firearms, BB guns, pellet guns, and ammunition must be kept under lock, with ammunition stored and locked separately. Firearms, BB guns, and pellet guns must remain unloaded;
- Supplies & dangerous items
- Cleaning supplies, paints, matches, lighters, and plastic bags kept under child‐safety lock;
- Other potentially dangerous items, such as medicine, drugs, sharp knives and poisonous and toxic materials kept under child‐safety lock;
- Flammable and combustible liquids, such as paint thinner and gasoline, shall be stored in the original container or a safety container and, if over one gallon, kept in an unattached storage building;
- Poisonous Plants: if any preschool age or younger children are in care, poisonous plants must be kept out of the reach of children; and
- Clear Glass Doors: all clear glass panels in doors clearly marked at child level.
Hazard free: The building, grounds, water supply, and toys, equipment, and furniture used by children must be maintained in a hazard‐free condition.
- Broken toys, furniture,, and equipment must be removed from areas accessible to children.
- Both the exterior and interior of the home must be maintained in good repair.
- Painted surfaces must be in good condition, both inside and outside, to avoid exposing children to lead paint.
- The provider shall report to OCC any damage to the building that affects the provider’s ability to comply with these requirements, within 48 hours after the occurrence.
- If a caregiver is transporting children, the caregiver must have a valid driver’s license and proof of appropriate insurance.
- The number of children transported shall not exceed the number of seat belts or child safety systems available in the vehicle.
- Car seats are to be used for transportation only. Children who arrive at the provider’s home asleep in a car seat may remain in the car seat until the child awakens.
- The provider must take precautions to protect children from vehicular traffic. The provider shall:
- Require drop off and pick up only at the curb of an off‐street location protected from traffic.
- Assure that any adult who supervises drop‐offs and loading can see and assure that children are clear of the perimeter of all vehicles before any vehicle moves.
- 15‐passenger vans shall not be used to transport child care children after January 1, 2018.
- Sanitizers: Pre‐mixed sanitizers and disinfectants that are EPA registered and meet Oregon Health Authority criteria may be used in all areas of the home per manufacturer instructions.
- Handwashing: All caregivers and children must wash their hands with soap and warm, running water
- Before handling food;
- Before assisting with feeding;
- Before and after eating;
- After diapering;
- After using the toilet;
- After assisting someone with toileting;
- After nose wiping;
- After playing outside; and
- After touching an animal or handling pet toys.
- Hand Sanitizers: hand sanitizers shall not replace hand washing. If hand sanitizers are present in the home, they shall be kept out of children’s reach and shall not be used on children.
- All toys, equipment, and furniture used by children must be cleaned, rinsed and sanitized regularly and whenever soiled.
- Diaper Changing
- Diaper changing surfaces must be either:
- Non‐absorbent and easily disinfected;
- Disposed of after each use; or
- Laundered after each use.
- The diaper changing area shall be located so that hand washing can occur immediately after diapering without contacting other surfaces or children.
- Diaper changing surfaces must be either:
- The building and grounds must be maintained in a clean and sanitary manner.
- Garbage: all garbage, solid waste, and refuse must be disposed of regularly, in a safe and sanitary manner.
- Bio‐contaminants including but not limited to bodily fluids and blood shall be disposed of in a manner that prevents exposure to children.
- Water Supply: the home’s water supply must be safe to drink.
- Wading Pools: Wading pools are prohibited for wading.
Certified Family Child Care Home requirements
- The Certified Family Child Care Home shall be:
- Located in an area zoned residential or commercial
- A building constructed as a single family dwelling; and
- In space designed or remodeled for living quarters.
- A home that is not the residence of the provider or a home located in a zone other than residential or commercial shall meet all state and local planning and zoning, occupancy, and building code requirements for a child care facility.
- If there is a structural or maintenance problem that could present a health or safety hazard to children, OCC may request that the provider have the home inspected by the appropriate authority and the provider shall comply with the request.
- The provider is responsible for payment of any applicable fees for inspections.
- There shall be an outdoor activity area that children can reach safely. If the outdoor activity area is not under the control of the provider during the hours of operation of the home, written approval to use the area by OCC is required.
- Square feet per child: A home shall have an outdoor play area of no less than 75 square feet for each child using the area at one time.
- The outside activity area shall be:
- Suitably surfaced and well drained. Playground equipment, such as slides, swings, climbing structures, and other elevated equipment, shall be surrounded by a resilient surface of an acceptable depth or by rubber mats manufactured for such use, according to standards of the US Consumer Product Safety Commission;
- Kept free of litter, solid waste and refuse, ditches, or other conditions presenting a potential hazard; and
- Equipped to provide age‐appropriate activities for gross motor development.
- Barriers: the outdoor activity area of the home designated for use by child care children shall be enclosed by a barrier (fence, wall, or building) at least four feet high. The spacing between vertical slats of a fence shall be no greater than 4 inches. Fences must meet applicable local codes.
- Poisonous plants: the provider shall be aware of and protect children from any toxic or other harmful plants, shrubs, or trees.
- Swimming pools: the use of swimming pools shall comply with OAR 414‐350‐0380. Portable‐style wading pools are not permitted.
Square feet requirements
- If the provider is certified to care for 12 children or fewer, there shall be a minimum of 35 square feet of indoor activity area per child.
- If the provider is certified to care for more than 12 children, there shall be a minimum of 35 square feet of indoor activity area per child for 12 or fewer children, and 50 square feet of indoor activity area available per child for each of the additional four children.
- This space, considered in determining the capacity of the home, shall be available for use by children at all times. The following shall not be counted as part of the 35 square feet per child requirement: heating units, storage areas; large permanent equipment; any space not usable by children.
Designated area for children under 24 months: There shall be a designated area for children under 24 months of age that is developmentally appropriate and safe
Written plan: If the facility is certified to care for more than 12 children, the provider must develop a written plan showing that the space accessible to the children meets their safety needs, there is adequate supervision and there is adequate availability of toileting and hand washing for the children in care. OCC must approve the plan.
Room temperature: Activity areas shall be adequately lighted and ventilated. Room temperature shall be at least 68 degrees F (20 degrees C.) and not so warm as to be dangerous or unhealthy to children in care.
INDOOR FIXTURES AND EQUIPMENT
- There shall be at least one flush toilet and one hand-washing sink with mixing faucets available to the children at all times. If the facility is certified to care for more than 12 children, the provider must have a second flush toilet somewhere in the facility if: there are more than 15 children in care or if there are more than 12 toddlers in care. Homes with certification in effect on September 15, 2002, shall comply with the requirement for mixing faucets when bathroom facilities are remodeled.
- Easily cleanable steps or blocks shall be provided so that children can use the toilets and sinks without adult assistance.
- If bathroom facilities are not on the same floor level as the activity areas, a written plan for adequate supervision of both bathroom and child care areas shall be developed and implemented.
- Telephone service shall be available in the home at all times when children are in care.
- Telephone numbers for fire, emergency medical care, and poison control, as well as the facility address, shall be posted on or near the telephone. Portable telephones must have emergency numbers and the facility address on the phone.
- There must be a system in place to ensure that parents can have contact with the provider and staff when children are in care.
Exits: All floor levels used by children for play and napping shall have two usable exits to ground level. All rooms used by children for play and napping shall have two usable exits. Obstructions, including furniture, storage of supplies, or any other items shall not be placed in a manner that blocks usable exits.
Fire extinguisher: There shall be at least one 2‐A‐10 BC‐rated fire extinguisher on each floor of the home. Fire extinguishers shall be easily accessible, kept out of the reach of children, and located along the path of emergency exiting.
Smoke alarms: You must have smoke alarms on each floor level of the home and in any area where children nap; they must be maintained and in operating order.
Candles or other open flame decorative devices are prohibited, except for the brief use of celebratory candles. Matches and lighters shall be kept in locked storage when not in use.
A portable light source, to be used in emergencies, shall be available in all activity areas used by children, in working condition, and stored in an easily accessible place.
Items of potential danger (e.g., cleaning supplies and equipment, paints, poisonous and toxic materials, plastic bags, aerosols, detergents) shall be:
- Kept in the original container or labeled;
- Stored under child‐proof lock; and
- Kept away from food service supplies.
Barriers: A rigid screen or guard shall be installed to prevent children from falling into a fireplace or against a heater or wood stove;
- A movable barrier, such as a mesh‐type gate, shall be placed at the top and/or bottom of all stairways accessible to infants and toddlers. Gates and enclosures should have the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Assn. (JPMA) certification seal to ensure safety;
- Child‐proof latches shall be installed on all cupboards, closets, and drawers that contain hazardous objects and may be accessible to preschool‐age and younger children;
Firearms: Firearms, ammunition, and other potentially hazardous equipment, such as darts, other projectiles, power tools, and knives shall be kept under lock:
- Firearms, pellet or BB guns must be unloaded and kept in areas not used by child care children; and
- Ammunition shall be stored separately from firearms;
- Hot water heaters shall be equipped with a safety release valve and an overflow pipe that directs water to the floor or to another approved location;
- Unused appliances, such as old refrigerators or freezers, that present a risk for entrapment, shall be secured so as to prevent entry by children;
- Clear glass panels in doors shall be clearly marked at child level;
Electric outlets and cords
- All exposed electrical outlets in rooms used by preschool or younger children shall have hard‐to‐remove protective caps or safety devices when not in use;
- Extension cords shall not be used as permanent wiring. All appliance cords will be in good condition and multiple connectors for cords will not be used. A grounded power strip outlet with built‐in over‐current protection may be used;
- Floors shall be free of splinters, large unsealed cracks, sliding rugs, and other hazards;
- Devices which generate heat and are hot from recent use shall be inaccessible to children; and
- After painting or laying carpet, the certified home must be aired out completely for at least 24 hours with good ventilation before children are allowed to return.
Wood Stove: The provider shall have written evidence that any wood stove in the home has been inspected and approved for use by the local building official. All wood stove and fireplace flues shall be cleaned as needed or, at a minimum, once a year. A written record of cleaning shall be maintained on site.
Fuel‐fired space heaters: the use of unvented, fuel‐fired space heaters is prohibited.
Flammable and combustible liquids, such as paint thinner and gasoline, shall be stored in the original container or a safety container and if over one gallon kept in an unattached storage building.
Emergency Plan: All caregivers and children shall practice at least one aspect of the emergency plan once per month.
- Aspects of Emergency Plan include the plan for handling emergencies and/or evacuations, including, but not limited to, acute illness of a child or staff, natural disasters (e.g. fire, earthquake, etc.), man‐caused events, such as violence at a childcare facility, power outages, and situations which do not allow re-entry to the home after evacuation.
- Evacuating the home shall be practiced at least eight times per year. If the facility is certified to care for more than 12 children and more than 4 children regularly in care are under 24 months of age, evacuating the home shall be practiced monthly.
- The provider shall maintain a written record showing the date, time of day, participants, and type of emergency of each emergency plan practice session.
Evacuation Plan: The written plan for evacuating and removing children to a safe location in an emergency must be posted in the home and must be familiar to the children and the caregivers. The plan must include:
- Procedures for notifying parents or other adults responsible for the children, of the relocation and how children will be reunited with their families;
- Procedures to address the needs of individual children, including infants and toddlers, children with special needs, and children with chronic medical conditions;
- An acceptable method to ensure that all children in attendance are accounted for;
- Procedures in the event that children must shelter‐in‐place or if the child‐care home must be locked‐ down so that no one can enter or leave; and
- Procedures for maintaining continuity of child‐care operations.
Drop-off and Pickup
- Require drop off and pick up only at the curb or at an off‐street location protected from traffic.
- Assure that any adult who supervises drop‐off and loading can see and assure that children are clear of the perimeter of all vehicles before any vehicle moves.
- The home’s water supply shall be continuous in quantity and from a water supply system approved by the Department of Human Services.
- If drinking water is from a private source, the provider shall provide evidence of bacterial and chemical analysis which establish safety of the water;
- The tests shall be conducted by the local health department, the Department of Human Services, or an approved commercial laboratory;
- The bacterial analysis shall be done quarterly;
- The chemical analysis shall be done only once for a well and yearly for other water sources;
- The provider shall have drinking water available to children that is supplied in a safe and sanitary manner. If drinking water is obtained from bathroom sinks or sinks used for hand washing after changing a diaper, the sink must be sanitized after each handwashing.
- Caregivers and children shall wash their hands with soap and warm running water after:
- nose wiping
- after using the toilet
- before and after eating;
- before and after changing a diaper
- before and after feeding a child or handling food
- after assisting a child with toileting and nose wiping;
- after handling animals or cleaning cages;
- Infants’ and children’s hands shall be washed with soap and warm running water after diaper changing;
- Commercial products labeled “hand sanitizers” shall not replace hand washing. If hand sanitizers are present in the home, they shall be kept under child‐proof lock and shall not be used by children;
- When hand washing is not possible, e.g., on field trips or the neighborhood park, moist towelettes shall be used.
- The building, toys, equipment, and furniture shall be maintained in a clean, sanitary, and hazard‐free condition:
- Kitchen and bathrooms shall be cleaned when soiled and at least daily;
- Floors, walls, ceilings, and fixtures of all rooms shall be kept clean and in good repair;
- All kitchen counters, shelves, tables, refrigeration equipment, sinks, drain boards, cutting boards, and other equipment or utensils used for food preparation shall be kept clean and in good repair;
- All food storage areas shall be kept clean and free of food particles, dust, dirt and other materials;
- Cloths, both single use and multiple use, used for wiping food spills on utensils and food‐contact surfaces shall be kept clean and used for no other purpose. Clothes that are reused shall be stored in a sanitizing solution between uses.
- The isolation area shall be thoroughly cleaned after use and all bedding laundered after each use;
- A diaper‐changing table shall:
- Have a surface that is non‐absorbent and easily cleaned;
- Be cleaned and sanitized after each use;
- Not be used for any purposes other than diapering, including food or drink preparation or storage, dishwashing, storage of food service utensils, arts and crafts supplies or products, etc.; and
- Comply with the requirements for diaper changing area
- Bathtubs, showers, sinks, bassinettes, or other receptacles used for bathing children shall be cleaned and sanitized after each use.
- Bedding shall be cleaned when soiled, with a change of occupant, or at least once a week.
- Tableware and Kitchenware: Tableware, kitchenware (pots, pans, and equipment), and food‐contact surfaces of equipment shall be washed, rinsed, sanitized, and air‐dried after each use. The cleaning and sanitizing of tableware and kitchenware shall be accomplished by using:
- A dishwasher that is operated according to the manufacturer’s instructions; or
- A three‐step manual process as follows:
- Washing in the first compartment;
- Rinsing in a second compartment; and
- Immersion in a third compartment or large dishpan or tub for at least two minutes in a sanitizing solution containing at least 2 teaspoons of household chlorine bleach in each gallon of warm water.
- A sink used for diapering or bathing activities shall not be used for any part of food or drink preparation or dishwashing.
- Soap, paper towels dispensed in a sanitary manner, and mixing faucets with hot and cold running water shall be provided at each handwashing sink.
- The home and grounds shall be kept clean and free of litter or rubbish and unused or inoperable equipment, utensils, and vehicles.
- Garbage: all garbage, solid waste, and refuse shall be disposed of at least once a week.
- All garbage shall be kept in watertight, non‐absorbent, and easily washable containers with close‐ fitting lids;
- All garbage storage areas and garbage containers shall be kept clean; and
- All garbage storage shall be inaccessible to children.
- Bio‐contaminants including, but not limited to bodily fluids and blood shall be disposed of in a manner that prevents exposure to children.
Insect and Rodent Control
- The home shall be in such condition as to prevent the infestation of rodents and insects.
- Doors and windows which are opened for ventilation shall be equipped with fine‐meshed screens.
- Automatic insecticide dispensers, vaporizers, or fumigants shall not be used.
This post is a part of our series on Oregon family child care licensing. For more on licensing in Oregon, see the following posts: