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Purpose and Authority

§ 3310.1. Statement of Intent.

This chapter establishes the foundational standards necessary to protect the health, safety, well-being and the rights of all children who receive care in Pennsylvania’s family child care homes.  These regulations are the baseline requirements that must be satisfied in order to obtain and maintain a certificate of compliance.  Regulatory requirements have been established to support high quality early childhood education programs that:

(a) Recognize parents/guardians as a child’s primary teacher and advocate.

(b) Provide care that promotes the development of the whole child.

(c) Promote school readiness which can lead to improved educational outcomes for young children.

(d) Recognize and reflect the diversity within the Commonwealth and contribute to equitable practices in early childhood education.

§ 3310.2. Applicability.

(a) This chapter applies to family child care homes.

(b) Child care facilities that meet the requirements of this chapter are eligible to be issued a certificate of compliance after the Department measures and determines compliance as prescribed under this chapter.

(c) This chapter does not apply to:

(1) Activities provided pursuant to a written agreement between the Department and a relative of the child that permits care by a grandparent, great-grandparent, aunt, uncle or sibling of the child who is 18 years of age or older and does not reside within the same household as the child.

(2) Activities furnished in places of worship during religious services.

(3) Activities provided in drop-in locations that do not have a routine schedule for the days or hours of care provided the parent(s)/guardian(s) remain on-site.

(4) Activities provided in a facility to older school-age children that does not have a routine schedule for the days or hours of care for children in attendance provided the children are older school-age.

(5) Activities provided in a facility where the parent/guardian of a child is always present and available when child care services are being provided.

(6) Activities provided during the hours of instruction when the child is required to attend public, nonpublic or private schools.

(7) A facility or a space in a facility in which care is provided exclusively to school-age children, including the following:

(i) A part-day, school-age program that operates for less than 90 days per calendar year from the date the program opens to the date the program closes. This clarification does not apply to a legal entity that has a certificate of compliance to operate a family child care home and that increases its enrollment to include school-age children in the summer and on school holidays.

(ii) A part-day, school-age program that operates 2 hours or less per day.

(d) A legal entity seeking to operate a family child care home as defined in this chapter shall apply for a certificate of compliance in accordance with the requirements established in this chapter and Chapter 20 (relating to licensure or approval of facilities and agencies).

(e) In addition to the requirements in this chapter, the facility shall follow applicable provisions of Article X of the Human Services Act (62 P.S. §§ 1001—1088).

§ 3310.3. Definitions.

The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

ACIP—The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, United States (U.S.) Department of Health and Human Services.

ADA—The Americans with Disabilities Act.

Age level—The grouping category appropriate for the child’s age.

(i) Infant—A child from birth through 12 months of age.

(ii) Young toddler—A child from 13 months through 24 months of age.

(iii) Older toddler—A child from 25 months through 35 months of age.

(iv) Preschool child— A child from 3 years of age and older and 5 years of age and younger but does not fit the definition of young school-age child as specified in this chapter.

(v) Young school-age child—A child who is attending a public, nonpublic or private school system and is between the ages of 5 until the date the child starts the 5th grade of a public, nonpublic or private school system.  A child who is 5 years of age, but who is not attending a public, nonpublic or private school, is considered a preschool child.

(vi) Older school-age child—A child who attends the 5th grade of a public, nonpublic or private school system through 15 years of age.

Appeal—A written, signed and dated statement requesting reconsideration or modification of a Departmental decision that negatively affects the certificate of compliance of the facility. An appeal is made by the facility operator or by the facility’s legal entity.

Applicant—A legal entity that applies to operate a certified family child care home.

Body of water (or bodies of water)—A natural area or human-made area or device that contains or holds a depth of more than two inches of water. Examples include swimming pools, ditches, canals, fishponds, water retention areas, excavations, and quarries.

CACFP—Child and Adult Care Food ProgramThe U.S. Department of Agriculture’s sponsored program whose child care component provides nutritious meals to children enrolled in child care facilities throughout the country.

CPSC—The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

CPSL—Child Protective Services Law—Title 23 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Chapter 63 (relating to the Child Protective Services Law).

CRNP—Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner.

Career pathway level— Refers to the level of qualifications and competencies needed for each role within the ECE profession located online.

Certificate of compliance—A document issued by the Department to a legal entity permitting the entity to operate a specific type of facility at a specific location for a specific period of time according to applicable Department regulations.  A certificate of compliance approves the operation of a facility subject to Article IX of the Human Services Code (62 P.S. § §  901—922) or licenses the operation of a facility subject to Article X of the Human Services Code (62 P.S. § §  1001—1088).

Certified spaceThe indoor and outdoor space on the family child care home premises approved by the Department for the purpose of providing child care services.

Child—A person whose chronological age is under 16 years of age.

Child abuse and neglect—Child abuse as defined in 23 Pa. Code Chapter 63.

Child care experience—Care for a child in lieu of care by the parent/guardian for part of a 24-hour day. The term includes care of foster children in a court-supervised arrangement. The term does not include care of related children who reside with an individual; online-only experience; or supervised onsite training in the case of a student who is fulfilling the requirements of a secondary or postsecondary child care training or educational curriculum.

Child with a developmental delay, disability or individual care plan—A child with one or more of the following as identified on one or more of an IFSP, IEP, individual care plan, written behavioral plan, service agreement, or special needs assessment in place for the child as determined by a licensed physician, physician’s assistant, CRNP, licensed psychologist or certified behavior analyst:

(i) A significant delay, for children under 9 years of age, in one or more of the following areas:

(1) Physical development.

(2) Cognitive development.

(3) Communication development.

(4) Social or emotional development.

(5) Adaptive development.

(ii) A condition that makes it more difficult for the child to do certain activities or effectively interact with the world around them. The nature of the conditions may be cognitive, developmental, intellectual, mental, physical, sensory, a combination of          multiple factors, or otherwise unknown.

(iii) An increased risk for having a chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, or emotional condition and who also require health and related services of a type or amount beyond that required by children generally.

Communicable diseaseA disease as defined in the Department of Health’s regulation in 28 Pa. Code 27.1.

Continuity of careThe practice in which primary caregivers and children stay together for as long as possible, preferably for the children’s first three years, creating opportunities for caregiver-child, caregiver-family, and child-child relationships to develop and deepen over time. Continuity of care seeks to minimize the number of transitions that children experience over the course of the day, week, program year, and to the extent possible, during their enrollment, with special attention on children from birth through three years of age.

CurriculumA written plan that reflects the program’s philosophy, goals and objectives for the children in care as well as guidelines to target the children’s development in areas relating to cognitive, social-emotional, language, and fine and gross motor domains.

DEPThe Department of Environmental Protection of the Commonwealth.

DOHThe Department of Health of the Commonwealth.

DepartmentThe Department of Human Services of the Commonwealth.

Developmentally appropriateRefers to one or more of the following:

(i) Interactions with children that recognize and respect the child’s chronological and developmental age.

(ii) Interactions and activities that are planned with the chronological and developmental age and needs of the individual child in mind.

(iii) Reflects the developmental level of the individual child.

(iv) Reflects knowledge about how children grow and learn.

Drop-in facilities—Child care facilities that do not have a routine schedule for the days and hours of care for the children in attendance provided the parents/guardians remain on site.

ECE—Early childhood education.

ELS—Early Learning Standards—refers to the Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood, which reflect standards that are research-based according to age and development, and form the foundation for curriculum, assessment, instruction and intervention within ECE programs. The standards provide a framework for learning and the foundational information for what children should know and be able to do.

Electronic recordA record generated, communicated, received or stored by electronic means for use in an information system or for transmission from one information system to another.

Emergency preparedness and response planA written plan demonstrating a continuous cycle of planning, organizing, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating, and taking corrective action to ensure effective coordination in case of emergencies or during incident response. Includes the procedures used to call for emergency medical assistance, to reach parents/guardians or emergency contacts, to arrange for transfer to medical assistance, and to render first aid to the injured person.

ExpulsionRefers to the permanent removal of a child from a child care program for reasons relating to a child’s developmental delay, disability, individual care plan or other behavioral issues.

Facility—A family child care home.

Facility personAn individual who volunteers at or is employed by a child care facility.

Family child care homeAs defined by Article X of the Human Services Code (62 P.S. §§ 1001—1088), refers to a home other than the child’s own home where child care is provided at any one time to four, five, or six children unrelated to the operator.

Family engagement and partnership—Consistent with Pennsylvania’s Family Engagement Birth through College, Career, Community Ready Framework, refers to effective interactions with families that:

(i) Are intentional, meaningful, and impactful.

(ii) Value and support families in their role as their child’s primary teacher.

(iii) Recognize the value of partnerships between a child’s parents/guardians and the operator that are strengths-based, inclusive, culturally and linguistically responsive, and that rely on two-way communications and interactions, all with a focus on the shared goal of positive learning and developmental outcomes for children.

Fire safety professionalAn individual knowledgeable and competent in fire inspections, fire detection, fire suppression systems and practices, fire service training, emergency preparedness planning and emergency evacuation whose competence is demonstrated by membership in a professional organization which promotes fire safety education.

Fiscal yearJuly 1 through June 30.

Good repairMaterials and components are unbroken and can be used by children as intended by the manufacturer or builder.

HygieneProtective measures taken by individuals to promote health and limit the spread of infectious diseases.

IEPIndividualized Educational ProgramA written document, derived from Part B of IDEA 2004 that is designed to meet a child’s individual educational program needs. The main purposes for an IEP are to set reasonable learning goals and to state the services provided as defined in 22 Pa. Code §§  14.101 and 14.131—14.13.

IFSPIndividualized Family Service PlanA written document derived from Part C of IDEA 2004 that is formulated in collaboration with the family to meet the needs of a child with a developmental delay or disability, to assist the family in its care for a child’s educational, therapeutic, and health needs, and to deal with the family’s needs to the extent to which the family wishes assistance as defined in 22 Pa. Code §§ 4226.5 and 4226.71—4226.77.

ImmunizationsVaccines that are given to children and adults to help them develop protection (antibodies) against specific infections. Vaccines may contain an inactivated or killed agent or a weakened live organism.

Inaccessible to childrenRefers to preventing a child from reaching, entering, using, or getting to items, areas, or materials of a child care facility.

Individual care planA document that provides specific health care information, including any medications, procedures, precautions, or adaptations to diet or environment that may be needed to care for a child with chronic medical conditions or special health care needs. Care plans also describe signs and symptoms of impending illness and outline the response needed to those signs and symptoms. A care plan is completed by a health care professional and must be updated as specified in this chapter.

InfantA child from birth through 12 months of age.

Initial provisional certificate of compliance—A one-time certificate of compliance issued by the Department to a new facility that has not yet begun to operate as consistent with Article X of the Human Services Code (62 P.S. § 1008(b)).

Inspection—A review of facility operations to determine compliance with applicable laws or regulations, conducted by an agent of the Department.

Inspection summaryA document prepared by an agent of the Department describing each regulatory noncompliance item confirmed as a result of a facility inspection.

Legal entityA person, society, corporation, governing authority or partnership that is legally responsible for the administration and operation of the facility.

Maximum capacity—The maximum number of children authorized by the Department to have in care at any given time. Includes any children on-site at the family child care home and any children in transit to or from the program or other activities such as field trips while the children are signed into the care of the program.

Medical marijuana—Medical marijuana as defined by and authorized under the Medical Marijuana Act (35 P.S. §§ 10231.101—10231.2110).

Negative sanction—A negative action taken by the Department under the authority of Chapter 20 and applicable sections of the Human Services code against the legal entity of a child care facility when the legal entity either has or is applying for a certificate of compliance under this chapter.

Non-traditional careCare provided between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. on weekdays and anytime on the weekends.

Nonrenewal—The written refusal of the Department to issue a certificate of compliance to a legal entity previously granted a certificate of compliance at the same location.

Older school-age childA child who attends the 5th grade of a public, nonpublic or private school system through 15 years of age.

Older toddlerA child from 25 months through 35 months of age.

Operating hoursThe hours listed in the child care program’s family handbook when the program is open and providing care and services to children.

OperatorThe legal entity or the person designated by the legal entity as the teaching staff person having responsibility to ensure compliance with the Department’s requirements under this chapter and under Chapter 20.

PA PSCECE—The Pennsylvania Professional Standards and Competencies for Early Childhood Educators—The general knowledge and skills that educators must know and be able to demonstrate. They are not the standards and competencies needed for specific professions and occupations within the ECE field.

PDEThe Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Parent/guardianThe child’s natural or adoptive mother or father, guardian, or other legally responsible person.

PestAn animal, plant, or insect that has a harmful effect on humans, food or living conditions.

PesticidesA chemical used to kill pests, particularly insects.

PetA domestic or tamed animal, reptile or bird kept for companionship or pleasure.

PhysicianAn individual licensed to practice medicine or osteopathy as consistent with the requirements specified in 1 Pa. C.S.A. § 1991.

Potentially hazardous foodA food that consists in whole or in part of milk or milk products, eggs, meat, poultry, fish, shellfish or other ingredients capable of supporting rapid and progressive growth of infectious or toxigenic microorganisms.

PremisesThe certified and uncertified space at the certified address, including the buildings, land and residences.

Preschool childA child from 3 years of age and older and 5 years of age and younger but does not fit the definition of young school-age child as specified in this chapter.

Preservice trainingRefers to the professional development standards or requirements that must be completed:

  • Prior to issuance of a certificate of compliance under this chapter.
  • Prior to working unsupervised with children.

Professional developmentA continuum of learning and support opportunities designed to prepare individuals for work with and on behalf of young children and their families, as well as opportunities that provide ongoing experiences to enhance this work. These opportunities lead to improvements in the knowledge, skills, practices, and dispositions of ECE professionals. Professional development programs encompass both education and training programs.

Professional development planA plan developed in collaboration between the operator and any additional teaching staff utilizing available sources of evidence that outlines or details necessary professional development to enhance the effectiveness of the teaching staff.

Program agreementA document entered into and executed by each of the operator and a child’s family that outlines the agreed-upon terms and conditions of the child’s enrollment, and the extent to which services are to specifically be provided.

Provisional certificate of complianceA certificate of compliance indicating substantial, but not complete, compliance with program licensure or approval regulations that has been issued by the Department following the issuance of a negative sanction as consistent with Articles IX and X of the Human Services Code (62 P.S. §§ 901—922 and 1001—1088).

Regional office of child care—Departmental offices responsible for certified child care facilities located in counties assigned to the regional office. A certificate of compliance is issued by a regional office to the legal entity responsible for the operation of a family child care home.

Relative—A parent, child, stepparent, stepchild, grandparent, grandchild, brother, sister, half brother, half sister, aunt, uncle, niece or nephew.

Revocation—The Department’s written retraction of a certificate of compliance which occurs prior to expiration of the facility’s certificate of compliance.

SIDS—Sudden Infant Death Syndrome—The sudden death of an infant under one year of age, which remains unexplained after a thorough case investigation, including performance of a complete autopsy, examination of the death scene, and review of the clinical history.

SUID—Sudden Unexplained Infant Death—The sudden, unexpected death of an apparently healthy infant.

SanitizeTo reduce germs on inanimate surfaces to levels considered safe by public health codes or regulations.

School-age childFor the purposes of ECE settings,  refers to a child who is attending or who has attended a public, nonpublic or private grade school or kindergarten and meets age requirements as specified by PDE.

Screen timeTime spent watching television or videos, playing video or computer games, and using the internet.  Includes passive digital media, such as noninteractive videos or streaming media, and interactive digital media, such as educational and age-appropriate technology, including programs, applications (apps), noncommercial television programming, videos, streaming media, and ebooks.

Service agreement—A service agreement as defined in 22 Pa. Code § §  15.2 and 15.7 (relating to definitions; and service agreement).

Staff:child ratioThe maximum number of children permitted per teaching staff person.

SuperviseEnsuring the health and safety of the children in care by:

(i) Scanning the environment looking and listening for both verbal and nonverbal cues to  anticipate problems and plan accordingly.

(ii) Visibly checking children repeatedly and with little time in between.

(iii) Positioning oneself to visually see all areas accessible to children.

(iv) Attending to children and being aware of what children are always doing.

(v) Being available and able to promptly assist or redirect a child as necessary.

Suspension—Refers to an action administered as a consequence of a child’s inappropriate behavior that requires the child not be present in the program or program activities for a specified period of time.

Teaching staffRefers to individuals included in the staff:child ratio who works directly with the children in care in a facility. Includes the operator and individuals qualified under this chapter as a teaching staff person.

TransitionThe process or period of time to change from one activity, place, grade level, or sleeping arrangement to another.

USDAThe U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Uncertified spaceThe indoor and outdoor areas of the premises not approved by the Department as certified space that must be made inaccessible while children are in care.

VolunteerAn individual 16 years of age or older who is not included in the staff:child ratio, who assists on a regular and repeated basis in implementing daily program activities under the supervision of a teaching staff person, and who is not paid but rather gives their time to provide services at a child care program.

WaiverRefers to the process for a legal entity to make a written request to the Department for an exemption from one or more of the requirements as specified in this chapter.

Water play activitiesActivities that involve the use of water such as sprinklers, and water play tables that are less than two inches.

WeaponAny object, device, or instrument designed as a weapon or capable of threatening or inflicting serious bodily harm or which may be used to inflict self-injury.

Young school-age childA child who is attending a public, nonpublic or private school system and is between the ages of 5 until the date the child starts the 5th grade of a public, nonpublic or private school system.  A child who is 5 years of age, but who is not attending a public, nonpublic or private school, is considered a preschool child.

Young toddlerA child from 13 months through 24 months of age.

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Partnerships with Families and Communities

§ 3310.11. Communication with families.

(a) The operator shall establish policies that ensure communications with all parents/guardians including those whose preferred language is not English or those who require alternative communication methods, including oral, written, non-verbal, or visual modes of communication(s) which are understandable and accommodating to parents/guardians, or both.

(b) Information about the child care program’s written policies under this section must be included in the family handbook.

§ 3310.12. Family engagement and program access.

(a) The operator shall establish a written plan to encourage and promote family engagement and partnership. The written plan must include documentation of outreach to families consistent with the most recent publication of Pennsylvania’s Family Engagement Birth through College, Career, Community Ready Framework. The family engagement plan must:

(1) Be reviewed at least once every 12 months and updated as needed.
(2) Be included in the family handbook. If the written plan was updated following the annual review, the family handbook must be updated to reflect the revised written plan.

(b) The operator shall maintain on file at the facility a written file that documents general announcements sent to parents/guardians to promote family participation. The written file must be updated at least once every 12 months and include documentation of at least the following:

(1) Invitation for the parent/guardian and the child, when possible, to visit the program in person or virtually prior to the child being enrolled. During any such visit, the parent/guardian and child shall be provided with information about the program. Information shall be shared with the child at an age-appropriate level. Parents/guardians and children shall be provided with the opportunity to ask questions.
(2) Invitation to meet with parents/guardians at least once every six months to discuss their child’s growth and development as documented on a Department form.

(c) The child’s parent/guardian must be permitted free access to the child care program, without prior notice, whenever their child is in care, unless a court of competent jurisdiction has limited the parental right of access to the child or unless the provisions in § 3310.34 (relating to release of children) apply. A copy of any court order impacting on parental rights must be maintained on file in the child’s records.

§ 3310.13. Family handbook.

(a) The operator shall provide the parent/guardian with the following program information:

(1) Contact information for the program, including the family child care home address and phone number, and a means for electronic correspondence, if applicable.
(2) The child care program’s days and hours of operation, including observed holidays and program closure dates.
(3) The program’s general fee information.
(4) Information on where to find lesson plans and the activity schedule.
(5) Information about the child care program’s written policies relating to communications as specified in § 3310.11.
(6) Information on the program’s written plan for family engagement as specified in § 3310.12.
(7) Outdoor policies.
(8) Any responsibilities for the parent/guardian to provide supplies.
(9) Information about sign in and sign out of children.
(10) Photography, videography, and surveillance policies.
(11) Policies prohibiting the use and possession of tobacco, alcohol, and other prohibited substances as consistent with § 3310.97.
(12) Supervision policies, including reference to the staff:child ratio requirements during normal routines, nap time, on excursions or trips outside the facility, and during transportation, if applicable.
(13) Health policies, including for when a child should be excluded from care, and for when a facility person or child becomes ill while in care.
(14) Information on how incidents and accidents that occur are documented and how the information is shared with parents/guardians.
(15) Medication administration policies.
(16) Statement allowing external professionals, such as nursing care staff, early intervention professionals, and intensive behavioral health service professionals, into the child care program to provide support services to children with a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan.
(17) Information on behavioral guidance and the program’s discipline policies, with a focus on positive behavior supports and the prohibition of corporeal punishment.
(18) Policies supporting the reduction of expulsion and suspension of children.
(19) Policies supporting the inclusion of all children.
(20) Religious and cultural activities.
(21) Policies to support children in transitions between developmental stages.
(22) Policies and procedures required under § 3310.34 for how the child care program handles situations involving when the child is late or for when no authorized person arrives to pick up a child from care.
(23) Information about how the parent/guardian can raise concerns or make complaints.
(24) Information on where the parent/guardian can access the Department’s regulations.
(25) Contact information for the Department’s regional office of child care.
(26) Emergency preparedness and response plan, including provisions regarding the means for transporting a child to emergency care, and staffing provisions to ensure continuity of care in the event of an emergency.
(27) The operator’s role as a mandated reporter, including policies and procedures for the reporting of suspected child abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, or maltreatment as consistent with the CPSL and § 3310.102 (relating to child abuse reporting).
(28) Whether weapons, firearms, and ammunition are present in the family child care home as specified in § 3310.76 (relating to firearms and weapons).

(b) In addition to the requirements in subsection (a), if offered by the child care program, the family handbook must include provisions relating to the following:

(1) Infant and toddler care, including diapering and feeding, and safe sleep requirements as specified in § 3310.65 (relating to sleep and rest).
(2) School-age child care, including homework supervision policies as specified in § 3310.31 (relating to activities and programming).
(3) Transportation policies, including information for when children are taken on off-site field trips.
(4) The presence of any animals on the facility premises, including information for how the animals are to be cared for.
(5) Water activities.
(6) Overnight or non-traditional care.
(7) Supports for children transitioning to kindergarten or for self-care.

(c) The information specified in subsections (a) and (b) shall be included in the family handbook and provided to the parent/guardian in written or electronic format. Parent(s)/guardian(s) shall sign an acknowledgement stating that they have received the information at the time of enrollment. The acknowledgement must be maintained in the child’s records.

(d) The operator shall review the information in the family handbook at least once every 12 months to ensure the information remains accurate and current. The annual reviews shall be documented with the date and name of the individual who conducted the review.

(e) When updates are made to the family handbook, the operator shall provide parents/guardians with the updated version in written or electronic formats. The parents/guardians shall sign an updated acknowledgment stating that they have received the updated information. The updated acknowledgment shall be maintained in the child’s records.

§ 3310.14. Family information.

(a) At the time of enrollment, the operator shall confer with the child’s parents/guardians to attempt to obtain information about the child and family in at least the following regards:

(1) The child’s strengths and areas for growth, including for the child’s physical development, behavior, health, linguistic development, learning patterns, and social health issues.

(2) Information about the child’s developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan, if applicable.

(3) The child’s unique characteristics, traits, fears, and concerns.

(4) The family’s routines or events, behavior management, family beliefs, culture, language, and child-rearing practices.

(5) The family’s goals for the child(ren).

(b) The operator shall ensure that information obtained in subsection (a) is shared only with the teaching staff, as applicable, who care for the child and is used to support each child’s unique characteristics, strengths, learning style and needs.

§ 3310.15. Program agreement.

(a) A program agreement shall be signed by each of the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the operator at the time of the child’s enrollment.  The program agreement shall specify at least the following information:

(1) The child’s full name, date of birth, address, and as applicable, the child’s preferred name.

(2) The parent(s)/guardian(s) full name(s), address(es), and contact information, including working telephone numbers for when the child is in care.

(3) The parent’s/guardian’s preferred language or mode of communication, or both, as specified in § 3310.11.

(4) The date of the child’s first day of attendance and, if applicable, the date of withdrawal from the program.

(5) The child’s schedule for the days of attendance, including arrival and departure times.

(6) The child’s normal tuition fees to be charged per day, week, or month, including information about the terms of payment in the event the child care program may be forced to close because of unforeseeable circumstances.

(7) The services to be provided to the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the child that are included in the tuition fees.

(8) Any optional services that may be offered to the family and the child as well as the fees associated with the additional services.

(9) The person(s) designated by a parent/guardian to whom the child may be released as specified in § 3310.34 (relating to release of children) and as specified by any custody agreements or court orders.

(10) Information related to any one or more of an IFSP, IEP, individual care plan, written behavioral plan, service agreement, Section 504 plan, or special needs assessments currently in place for the child, including whether the parent/guardian will share the respective plan with the program.

(11) The persons, organizations or agencies designated by the parent(s)/guardian(s) who can provide services, including health care, early intervention, and evaluations, to the child while the child is receiving child care services.

(b) The program agreement specified in subsection (a) shall include the following signed attestations from the parent/guardian:

(1) The parent/guardian has the legal authority to enroll the child in care and make decisions related to child care.

(2) The parent/guardian has received written or electronic information related to the program’s procedures and policies as specified in § 3310.13 (relating to family handbook).

(3) The parent/guardian acknowledges and agrees to update the program agreement and the emergency contact information every six months or as soon as changes occur.

(4) The parent/guardian has received a copy of the agreement.

(c) The program agreement shall include a list of optional activities the program offers.  The parent/guardian shall indicate consent or decline consent for each of the following optional program activities:

(1) The child going on excursions nearby to the facility.

(2) The child going on field trips outside of the facility premises.  Parents/guardians shall be provided with information at least 14 calendar days before going on a trip.  The information must include the date and time of the trip, the destination, and transportation arrangements.

(3) The child being transported by the program.  Parents/guardians shall be provided with information in advance of being transported that includes the type, frequency, and the destinations for when and where children are transported.

(4) The child being transported to and from the program on a routine basis in vehicles owned, operated, or contracted by the program, including to and from public school or to and from home when these are offered by the program.

          (5) The child participating in wading activities.

(6) The child participating in swimming activities.

(7) The child participating in gardening activities.

(8) The child using equipment as a part of the child care program’s activities as specified in § 3310.72 (relating to sources of heat and accessible equipment).

(d) A copy of the agreement shall be provided to the parent/guardian at the time of enrollment. The program shall retain a copy of the agreement in the child’s records.

(e) Every six months, or as soon as changes occur, the program and the parent/caregiver shall review the signed agreement and make changes as necessary.  Documentation of review shall include the date and signature of each of the operator and parent(s)/guardian(s). A copy of the updated agreement shall be provided to the parent/guardian, and a copy shall be included in the child’s records.

§ 3310.16. Emergency contact information.

(a) At the time of enrollment, the parent(s)/guardian(s) shall provide emergency contact and consent information for their child(ren) on forms provided by the Department. The forms must be completed and signed by the parent/guardian prior to the child attending the program.

(b) The emergency contact information must include the following information:

(1) The name and birth date of the child.

(2) As applicable, the home and work addresses and telephone numbers for the parent(s)/guardian(s).

(3) The name and telephone number for at least one individual, other than the parent/guardian, who shall be contacted in the event of an emergency when the parent(s)/guardian(s) cannot be reached.

(i) If more than one individual is listed, the individuals shall be listed in order of preference for contact.

(ii) If the parent/guardian cannot list or does not wish to list an emergency contact person, the parent/guardian shall verify the preference in writing.

(4) The person(s) designated by the parent/guardian to whom the child may be released, as specified in § 3310.34 (relating to release of children).

(5) The name, address, and telephone number of the child’s physician or routine medical care provider.

(6) Information on the child’s specific medical needs, including information about known allergies, known medical conditions, medications, and any medical or dietary information relevant in case of a medical emergency, including information described in the child’s individual care plan, if applicable.

(7) Information about the child’s health insurance coverage or other medical benefits, including the policy number, if applicable.

(c) In addition to the requirements of subsection (b), the parent/guardian shall provide written consent for the following:

(1) Consent to obtain emergency medical care for the child.  The consent shall include consent for the program to transport the child to and from emergency medical care.

(2) Consent for the program to administer minor first-aid procedures.

(d) Emergency contact information for each child shall be present in each child care space where children are receiving care.

(e) When children leave the facility premises, the operator shall ensure the emergency contact information is present as specified in subsection (d) for the duration of the excursion.

(f) The operator shall ensure the Department’s forms for the emergency contact information and the parent/guardian consent are reviewed and updated by the parent/guardian every six months, or as soon as there is a change in the information.

(g) Documentation of the reviews and updates specified in subsection (f) shall include the date of review and the signature of the parent(s)/guardian(s).

(h) When updates are made to the emergency contact information, the operator shall ensure the updated information is provided to any additional teaching staff.

§ 3310.17. Consent for transportation.

(a) The operator shall obtain written permission from the parent/guardian prior to transporting the child.  The written permission shall include:

(1) When and where the child is to be transported.

(2) The expected time of departure and arrival.

(3) Contact information for the individual providing transportation.

(4) Acknowledgment of the child care program’s emergency transportation plan as specified in § 3310.69.

(b) Parents/guardians may give standing written permission consistent with subsection (a), valid for up to 12 months, for the routine transportation of children to and from the program in vehicles owned, operated, or contracted by the program, including to and from public school or to and from home when these are offered by the program.

(c) Consistent with subsection (a), for a child who has a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan that may require special care or specialized equipment such as lifts, ramps, or safety vests during transportation, the parent/guardian shall provide written instruction to the operator to be implemented during transportation.

(d) Written permissions and instructions required under this section shall be provided to the operator or attendant of a vehicle transporting the child and to any additional teaching staff accompanying a child on an excursion.  The written permissions and instructions must be maintained on file at the facility.

(e) This section does not apply to parents/guardians of a school-age child who is transported to or from a child care program in vehicles owned, operated or contracted by the school district.

§ 3310.18. Inclusion of a child with a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan.

(a) The operator shall establish a written program policy to ensure the inclusion of children who may have a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan. The policy must include the following:

(1) Requirements to ensure that reasonable accommodations are offered to include a child with a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan as consistent with applicable Federal and State laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act.

(2) Requirements to ensure that adult individuals who provide services and supports for children as described in subsection (a) are permitted access to the program and to the child’s classroom and learning environment. The services and supports shall be outlined in one or more of the child’s IFSP, IEP, individual care plan, written behavioral plan, service agreement, Section 504 plan, or special needs assessments.

(3) Procedures for how the program will collaborate and work with adult individual(s) who provide services and supports for a child with a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan.

(4) Provisions to ensure that one or more of an IFSP, IEP, individual care plan, written behavioral plan, service agreement, Section 504 plan, or special needs assessments, with family permission, are shared with the program and are contained in the child’s records.

(5) Procedures to obtain written permission, signed and dated by the parent/guardian, for one or more of a child’s IFSP, IEP, individual care plan, written behavioral plan, service agreement, Section 504 plan, or special needs assessments to be shared with the program.  Documentation shall be included in the program agreement for parents/guardians who decline to share this information.

(i) The written permission shall be maintained with the child’s records.

(ii) For parents/guardians who decline to share this information, documentation of this election shall be included in the program agreement.

(b) The owner/operator shall ensure that any additional teaching staff are trained on the written program policy specified in subsection (a).

(c) The operator shall ensure that parents/guardians are contacted to discuss unexpected observations of any developmental, medical, or behavioral concerns of the child. The operator shall provide information to the child’s parents/guardians about appropriate resources and possible referrals.

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Professional Development, Training and Requirements

§ 3310.21. Teaching staff qualifications and responsibilities.

(a) The operator is the teaching staff person responsible for the general business and educational management of the child care program, including the following minimum duties:

(1) Manage the administration of programming, preparation and transportation.

(2) Manage the development of, administer, and distribute personnel and program operation policies to support understanding of program policies, procedures, roles and responsibilities.

(3) Provide support to any teaching staff in creating and maintaining teaching staff records, including a completed profile in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(4) Oversee the development of a curriculum philosophy specific to child care programs as specified in § 3310.31 (relating to activities and programming).

(5) Communicate the curriculum philosophy to parents and to all teaching staff, as applicable.

(6) Provide training for any teaching staff in the child care program’s curriculum philosophy.

(7) Plan and implement daily activities with enrolled children.

(8) Develop and provide a nurturing and responsive learning environment that includes assessment of the children’s well-being throughout the program day and that satisfies the needs of the enrolled children, including children with developmental delays, disabilities or individual care plans.

(9) Communicate with families in order to obtain necessary information to effectively understand the needs of each enrolled child and to share information on the development and learning of each enrolled child.

(10) Have knowledge and information about community resources available to families, including resources for a child with a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan, and be able to share these resources with families.

(11) When the operator is absent from the family child care home, the operator shall:

(i) Designate a teaching staff person who is responsible for compliance with this chapter.  The individual designated must satisfy the qualifications of teaching staff as specified under this section.

(ii) Provide written notification to the Department if the operator’s absence  exceeds 14 days.

(12) Ensure that a valid email address is maintained for the child care program and is on file with the Department.

(13) Be present for Department inspections as specified in § 3310.113 (relating to inspections and departmental access).

(b)  The operator shall be 18 years of age or older and shall have attained a minimum qualification level of entry level on the career pathway plus 2 years of child care experience as approved and verified on a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(c) The operator or a representative of the operator shall provide documentation demonstrating satisfaction of the qualification levels as specified in subsection (b) and include the documentation with the application in order to be granted a certificate of compliance as specified in § 3310.111 (relating to initial application).

(d) In addition to the requirements in subsection (a), the operator shall:

(1) Complete a Professional Development Plan, and document progress toward the goals of the plan at least once every 12 months.

(2) Complete and update at least once every 12 months a profile in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(3) Ensure that volunteers, if applicable, who are providing services at the child care program are supervised at all times.

(4) Ensure compliance with this chapter.

(5) Have satisfied the requirements specified in the CPSL, in § 3310.104 (relating to background check requirements), and in § 3310.92 (relating to health assessment).  Documentation must be included with the legal entity’s application as specified in 3310.111.

(6) Obtain certifications in the following:

(i) Pediatric first aid and pediatric CPR certification must be completed. Competence is the completion of training by a professional approved by the Department in the field of first-aid and CPR.

(ii) Water safety training must be completed at least once every 12 months by all teaching staff who supervise children when they are participating in water activities, as consistent with the requirements specified in § 3310.44. Competence is the completion of basic instruction in water safety from a certified lifeguard approved by the Department.

(iii) For child care programs that offer swimming activities, lifeguard training must be completed by the operator or another teaching staff person to ensure the supervision of children when swimming as consistent with the requirements specified in § 3310.44. Competence is the completion of lifeguard training by a lifeguard professional approved by the Department. The training must include first-aid training and CPR for children and infants.

(iv) Fire safety training. The operator and any additional teaching staff shall participate, at least once every 12 months, in fire safety training conducted by a fire safety professional or completed in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.  The training must include training in the maintenance of smoke detectors, the duties of the operator and teaching staff during a fire drill and during a fire, and the use of the program’s fire extinguishers, not including discharge of the fire suppressant agent. The operator shall ensure that all teaching staff are trained in the emergency preparedness and response plan as specified in § 3310.67(b).

(e) Completion of training in subsection (c) shall be documented by the signature and title of a representative of the training entity and include the date the training was completed.  Documentation of completion of training must be maintained on file in the teaching staff person’s file, including the operator’s, or maintained in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

§ 3310.22. General requirements for additional teaching staff.

(a) As applicable, any additional teaching staff must:

(1) Be 18 years of age or older and have attained a minimum qualification level of entry level on the career pathway or be an individual 16 years of age or older provided the following requirements are satisfied:

(i) The student is enrolled in a PDE-approved Child Care and Support Services program or a high school dual enrollment program focusing on early learning.

(ii) The curriculum has been accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Postsecondary Education and acceptable to the Department of Education.

(iii) The curriculum includes a minimum total of 600 clock hours, distributed as follows:

(A) A minimum of 400 clock hours of classroom training.

(B)  A minimum of 200 clock hours of supervised training in a child care facility.

(iv) A representative of the training institution certifies in writing that the individual is enrolled in the curriculum.

(v) The written certification required in paragraph (iv) shall be retained in the teaching staff person’s file or maintained in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(2) Complete the applicable preservice training requirements as specified in § 3310.28.

(3) Complete a Professional Development Plan, and document progress toward the goals of the plan at least once every 12 months.

(4) Complete and update at least once every 12 months a profile in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(5) Obtain a copy of the criminal background check determination as required under the CPSL, Chapter 3490, and § 3310.104 prior to beginning to provide services.

(6) Sign the Department’s disclosure statement indicating continuing fitness to work with children in care.

(7) Satisfy the requirements specified in § 3310.92 (relating to health assessment) prior to beginning to provide services.

(8) Be supervised at all times by the operator.

§ 3310.23. Volunteer qualifications and responsibilities.

(a) Volunteers shall:

(1) Be 16 years of age or older.

(2) Participate in training for the child care program’s emergency preparedness and response plan, and mandated reporter training as specified in the CPSL.

(3) Be supervised at all times when working with children by the operator or an individual qualified under this chapter to work as the operator.

(4) Not be counted in the staff:child ratio.

(b) The operator shall ensure that volunteers do not have unsupervised access to the children in care.

(c) Prior to beginning to provide services for the child care program, a volunteer shall:

(1) Satisfy the requirements specified in the CPSL and § 3310.104 (relating to background check requirements).

(2) Satisfy the requirements specified in § 3310.92 (relating to health assessment).

§ 3310.24. Staff qualifications.

Teaching staff persons employed in a child care facility prior to November 1, 2024, shall be considered qualified for the position held prior to November 1, 2024, but must satisfy all qualifications as set forth under this chapter by November 1, 2027, in order to ensure ongoing compliance with the requirements of this chapter.

§ 3310.25. Preservice training requirements.

(a) Teaching staff persons shall complete the following preservice training requirements including all federal requirements for the CCDBG health and safety training topics within 90 days of hire:

(1) Prevention and control of infectious diseases (including immunization).
(2) Prevention of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and use of safe sleep practices.
(3) Prevention of and response to emergencies due to food and allergic reactions.
(4) Prevention of shaken baby syndrome, abusive head trauma, and child maltreatment, including recognition of potential signs and symptoms of shaken baby syndrome, abusive head trauma, and child maltreatment; strategies for coping with a crying, fussing, or distraught child; and understanding the development of the brain in infancy and early childhood.
(5) Pediatric first aid and pediatric cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
(6) Recognition and reporting of child abuse and neglect (Mandated reporter training).
(7) Administration of medication, consistent with standards for parental consent.
(8) Building and physical premises safety, including identification of and protection from hazards, bodies of water, and vehicular traffic.
(9) Emergency preparedness and response planning for emergencies resulting from a natural disaster, or a man-caused event (such as violence at a child care facility), within the meaning of those terms under section 602(a)(1) of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5195a(a)(1)) that includes training on procedures for evacuation, relocation, shelter-in place and lock down, staff and volunteer emergency preparedness training and practice drills, communication and reunification with families, continuity of operations, and accommodation of infants and toddlers, children with disabilities, and children with chronic medical conditions.
(10) Handling and storage of hazardous materials and appropriate disposal of bio-contaminants.
(11) Appropriate precautions when transporting children.

(b) The operator shall provide documentation of completion of training in the topics specified in subsection (a) and include the documentation with the application in order to be granted a certificate of compliance as specified in § 3310.111.

(c) In addition to the requirements in subsection (a), the operator and any additional teaching staff persons shall complete training consistent with PA PSCECE Standard Area 1: Child Development and Learning in Context.

(d) Any additional teaching staff persons shall complete the preservice health and safety training topics specified in subsections (a)(1)-(a)(6) before caring for children unsupervised.

(e) The operator shall ensure that any additional teaching staff persons who have not completed training as required in subsection (d) are supervised at all times by the operator or an additional teaching staff person who is permitted to work alone with children.

(f) Trainings under this section and under § 3310.27 must be approved by the Department.

(g) Trainings required under this section must be renewed as specified in § 3310.27. For trainings that have not expired, documentation of completion of the training satisfies the training requirement.

(h) Individuals who have completed trainings approved under this chapter and who change employers are not required to retake such trainings provided the trainings are not expired.

§ 3310.26. On-going training requirements.

(a) The operator and any additional teaching staff shall obtain an annual minimum of 12 clock hours of training.

(b) The preservice training required in § 3310.26 may be used only once toward the annual requirement specified in subsection (a), except that training for Pediatric First Aid and Pediatric CPR, Recognition and Reporting of Child Abuse and Neglect (Mandated Reporter Training), and fire safety may also count toward the annual requirement specified in subsection (a) based on the renewal date of the training certificate(s).

(c) The operator and any additional teaching staff shall renew their certifications on or before the expiration date of the current certifications in the following:

(1) Pediatric first aid and pediatric CPR. Competence is the completion of training by a professional approved by the Department in the field of first-aid and CPR.

(2) Water safety training. Competence is the completion of basic instruction in water safety from a certified lifeguard approved by the Department at least once every 12 months.

(3) Lifeguard training, if applicable for child care programs that offer swimming activities. Competence is the completion of lifeguard training by a lifeguard professional approved by the Department.  The training must include including first-aid training and CPR for children and infants.

(4) Fire safety training. Teaching staff persons, including the operator, shall participate, at least once every 12 months, in fire safety training conducted by a fire safety professional or completed in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information. The training must include training in the maintenance of smoke detectors, the duties of facility persons during a fire drill and during a fire, and the use of the facility’s fire extinguishers, not including discharge of the fire suppressant agent.  The operator shall ensure that all teaching staff are trained in the emergency preparedness and response plan as specified in § 3310.67(b).

(d) The training topics outlined in § 3310.26 shall be completed prior to obtaining any other training topics as consistent with paragraph (e).

(e) Teaching staff persons, including the operator, who have completed training in the topics specified in § 3310.26 shall complete the following training requirements prior to any other trainings:

(1) Child Development and Learning.  Training consistent with PA PSCECE Standard Area 1: Child Development and Learning in Context satisfies this requirement.

(2) Nutrition.  Training consistent with PA PSCECE Standard Area 7: Health and Safety/ Standard 7b: Nutrition satisfies this requirement.

(3) Access to Physical Activity.  Training consistent with PA PSCECE Standard Area 7: Health and Safety/ Standard 7a: Physical Health and Safety satisfies this requirement.

(4) Early Intervention Service Delivery: Coaching Across Early Childhood Settings or other training as approved by the Department for children with developmental delays, disabilities, or individual care plans.

(f) Acceptable training topics shall be consistent with the PA PSCECE standard areas of:

(1) Child development and learning in context.

(2) Family-Teacher partnerships and community connections.

(3) Child observation, documentation, and assessment.

(4) Developmentally, culturally, and linguistically-appropriate teaching practices.

(5) Knowledge, application, and integration of academic content in the child care program curriculum.

(6) Professionalism as a child care program educator.

(7) Health and safety.

(8) Program organization and administration.

(g) Acceptable training is conducted in one or more of the following settings:

(1) By a secondary or postsecondary institution approved by the Department of Education and accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council of Postsecondary Accreditation and acceptable to the Department of Education.

(2) By an entity that is licensed or certified professionally competent in the training topic.

(3) In conferences or workshops.

(4) With audio-visual materials recognized by child care professionals.

(5) Within a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(h) When there are updates to any of the training topics specified in § 3310.26, the operator and any additional teaching staff must complete the updated training within the timeframe specified by the Department.

(i) Completion of training shall be documented by the signature and title of a representative of the training entity and include the date the training was completed. Documentation of completion of training must be maintained on file in the teaching staff person’s file, including the operator’s, or maintained in a system designated by the Department for the collection of workforce information.

(j) At least once every 12 months, the operator shall review with any additional teaching staff person the individual’s Professional Development Plan as specified in § 3310.21(f) (relating to teaching staff qualifications and responsibilities).

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Early Childhood Education Program

Programs

Program

§ 3310.31. Activities and programming.

(a) The operator shall ensure the following:

(1) A written curriculum is established that addresses all age groups served and describes the program of planned daily activities related to early childhood or child development as consistent with the Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood and the Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood-Infants-Toddlers.

(2) Lesson plans are developed using the Pennsylvania Early Learning Standards (ELS) referenced in subsection (1) as a resource to support planning and documentation of children’s learning. The lesson plans must reflect a balance of activities that support developmentally appropriate learning through play and that meets the needs of all children in care. The lesson plans must be flexible to accommodate the developmental and cultural dynamics of each group and each individual child.

(i) When a facility serves a school-age child, the operator shall ensure that homework supervision is provided in accordance with arrangements as outlined in the program agreement.

(ii) A before-school and after-school program schedule of activities must provide planned activities as appropriate for each child. Planned activities provide access to age-appropriate materials and spaces, and teaching staff provide support to foster continued growth of physical activity, indoor and outdoor recreation, completion of schoolwork, expanding individual interests, learning cultural sensitivity, exploring community resources and practicing pro-social skills.

(3) Lesson plans, teaching strategies, adult-child interactions, and activities shall be adapted as needed to support all children’s learning, including those with goals described in one or more of an IFSP, IEP, individual care plan, written behavioral plan, service agreement, Section 504 plan, or special needs assessments, and shall be consistent with the requirements specified in § 3310.18 (relating to inclusion of a child with a developmental delay, disability, or individual care plan).

(b) The operator shall ensure the information specified in subsection (a) is shared with any additional teaching staff who provide care for a child. The information must be visibly posted in each space in which children are being cared for.

(c) School aged children must be enrolled in an education program in accordance with the Public School Code of 1949 (24 P.S. §§ 1-101—27-2702).

(d) For child care programs that offer screen time to children in care:

(1) Screen time must be non-violent, culturally sensitive, and educationally, developmentally, and age appropriate.
(2) Digital media and devices must not be used during meal or snack times, or during nap or rest times.
(3) Screen time does not include time spent video chatting with a child’s family.
(4) For children between the ages of 3 years of age and older and 5 years of age and younger but does not fit the definition of a young school-age child, the total permitted exposure to digital media must be limited to 1 hour per day of educational programming. The use of passive digital media must be limited to 30 minutes per week.
(5) School age children must be permitted to use digital media to complete homework. Screen time usage must be consistent with the requirements of the ELS for school-age children.
(6) Entertainment media time may not replace healthy activities such as exercising, socializing and meals.

(e) Screen time is prohibited for children 2 years of age and younger.

§ 3310.32. Infant and toddler program activities and development.

(a) The operator and any additional teaching staff shall limit the time an infant or toddler who is awake spends in confining equipment, such as a crib, infant seat, swing, highchair, or playpen.

(b) After removing an infant or toddler from confining equipment as described in subsection (a), the child must be able to move freely in a clean area protected from foot traffic.

(c) Unless an infant or toddler is sleeping in a crib, playpen, or pack-and-play, the child must be provided with a developmentally-appropriate activity as described in § 3310.31.

(d) The operator shall promote consistency and continuity of care for infants and toddlers.

(e) The operator shall incorporate continuity of care practices into established policies and procedures to foster strong, positive relationships that will act as a basis for exploration and learning in the classroom.

(f) The operator shall establish and implement a developmentally-appropriate curriculum and lesson plans for infants and toddlers. The curriculum and lesson plans must be consistent with the Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood-Infants-Toddlers.

§ 3310.33. Outdoor activity.

(a) The operator shall ensure the following:

(1) Children are taken outdoors at least once daily, unless weather conditions pose a health risk to the children in care. The program’s policy for taking children outside must be included in the family handbook as specified in § 3310.13 (relating to family handbook).
(2) Children are dressed appropriately for the weather when going outside, and children are provided with appropriate shelter for the weather conditions, as applicable.
(3) When participating in outdoor activities during cold weather, children are dressed in outer garments to provide additional warmth.
(4) Children are protected from the sun using measures including access to shade, sun-protective clothing, and by using sunscreen with a UV-B and UV-A ray protection factor of 15 or higher. The parent/guardian shall provide written permission, maintained on file at the facility, for the use of sunscreen.
(5) Children have access to clean, sanitary water at all times as consistent with § 3310.70 (relating to water) and are encouraged to drink water while outdoors during warm weather.
(6) While outside, infants and toddlers must not be provided with water in the first 6 months of life.

(b) The operator shall monitor and evaluate weather-related conditions through several media outlets, including local e-mail and text messaging weather alerts.

(c) Before taking children outdoors, the operator shall ensure:

(1) That weather conditions do not pose a health risk to the children in care. Weather that poses a health risk to the children in care includes wind chill factors below –15°F (-26° C) and a heat index at or above 90° F (32° C), as identified by the National Weather Service.

(2) That the air quality index does not pose a health risk to the children in care.

§ 3310.34. Release of children.

(a) The operator shall release children only to the child’s parent/guardian or to an individual age 16 and older as designated in writing by the enrolling parent/guardian.  As applicable, a child shall be released to either of the parent(s)/ guardian(s), unless a court order on file at the facility states otherwise.

(b) In an emergency, a child may be released to an individual upon the written or oral designation of the parent/guardian if the identity of the individual can be verified by a teaching staff person.

(c) For children released upon the written or oral designation of the parent/guardian, the following information shall be logged in the child’s record:

(1) The name of the parent/guardian making the request.

(2) The date and time of the request.

(3) The name of the individual to whom the child is to be released.

(4) The name of the teaching staff person taking the call.

(5) The name of the teaching staff person releasing the child.

(d) Written permission shall include the date and the name and address of the individual picking up the child.  The written permission may be provided electronically.

(e) An individual authorized to pick up a child must show valid photo identification to the operator at the time the child is picked up from care.

(f) The operator shall establish policies and procedures that address:

(1) How the program will handle situations involving individuals who arrive and appear to be intoxicated or otherwise incapable of transporting the child home safely.

(2) How the program will handle situations for when no authorized person arrives to pick up a child from care. The policies and procedures shall be shared with each child’s parent/guardian during the enrollment process.

(g) Facility persons, including the operator, shall not attempt to handle situations involving an apparently unstable, intoxicated or aggressive parent(s)/guardian(s) or other individuals who attempt to enter the facility until the individual’s behavior no longer appears to pose a risk to the health and safety of the children in care.

(h) Facility persons, including the operator have the right to deny access to anyone who poses a potential risk to children enrolled in the facility, including in situations as described in subsections (f) and (g).

(i) In the event that no authorized person arrives to pick up a child, the operator shall attempt to reach each authorized emergency contact individual listed in the child’s record. If the operator cannot establish contact, the operator shall immediately implement the written policy described in subsection (f).

§ 3310.35. Pets.

(a) A pet or animal present on the facility premises must be in good health and known to be friendly to children.

(b) Teaching staff, including the operator, must be physically present when children have contact with pets.

(c) The operator shall ensure:

(1) That a veterinarian’s certificate of current rabies immunization is obtained for each cat or dog at the facility, as applicable. The certificate shall be on file at the facility whenever the cat or dog is present.
(2) That pets that are at the facility are cared for in a safe and sanitary manner.
(3) That containers used solely for collecting animal feces or urine are not located in any rooms used by children.

(d) The operator shall inform parents/guardians of animals or pets kept or brought into the facility.

(e) Poisonous or aggressive animals or animals that are known to be carriers of illnesses, such as ferrets, turtles, iguanas, lizards, or other reptiles, psittacine birds or birds of the parrot family, or animals who are sick with a disease that may be spread to humans are prohibited on the facility premises and at program activities.

(f) Animals and pets are prohibited from the following facility areas:

(1) Food preparation, food storage and dining areas.
(2) The vicinity of sinks where children wash their hands.
(3) Clean supply rooms.
(4) Rooms or areas used by infants or toddlers.

(g) All individuals who have contact with animals, animal products, or animal environments shall wash their hands immediately after having such contact.

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Supervision and Discipline

3310.36. Discipline.

(a) Teaching staff persons, including the operator, shall use only the least amount of direct physical contact required to prevent immediate harm to a child or others.

(b) The operator shall establish discipline policies that ensure the following:

(1) That children are directed with techniques that stress praise and encouragement.

(2) That children are not subjected to verbal abuse, derogatory remarks, threats of removal from the family child care home, or other harsh or threatening language.

(3) That physical punishment, including spanking a child, is prohibited, regardless of parent/guardian permission, and regardless of whether the child is related to a facility person, including the operator.

(4) That abusive discipline practices are prohibited.

(5) That no child is punished for bedwetting or actions related to toilet training.

(6) That no child is punished by denying a child elements of an individual care plan, service agreement, IFSP or IEP.

(7) That no child is punished by denying communications with, or visits by, the child’s family.

(8) That no child is subjected to physically strenuous exercise or work solely as punishment.

(9) That punishment for a child is not delegated to another child.

(10) That foods, beverages, clothing or shelter are not denied or withheld from a child as discipline or used as a reward for good behavior.  A child may not be forced or bribed to eat food or drink a beverage.

(11) That no child or child’s family is singled out or ridiculed or threatened with harm.

(12) That teaching staff persons, including the operator, do not aim to degrade a child or a child’s family.

(13) That teaching staff persons, including the operator, do not restrain a child or restrict a child’s movement or enclose the child in a confined space, closet, or locked room or use high chairs, car seats or equipment to punish a child or restrict movement.  The prohibition against restraining a child does not apply to the use of adaptive equipment prescribed for a child with a developmental delay, disability or individual care plan. Documentation of prescribed adaptive equipment for each child, as applicable, must be maintained in the child’s records.

(14) That teaching staff persons, including the operator, do not prevent a child from or punish a child for exercising religious rights.

(c) The owner/operator shall ensure the discipline policies described in subsection (b) are included in the family handbook as specified in § 3310.13.

§ 3310.37.  Supervision of children.

(a) The operator shall ensure the supervision of all children in care at all times.  Supervision shall be maintained on the facility premises and on facility excursions off the premises. Outdoor space used by the facility is considered part of the facility premises.

(b) The requirement for supervision on and off the facility premises includes compliance with the staff:child ratio requirements in § 3310.42 (relating to age levels and ratios).

(c) When children are participating in water activities, the operator shall:

(1) Determine whether there are accessible bodies of water in the proximity of the location.

(2) Ensure that all requirements of this section and § 3310.44 (relating to bodies of water and water activities) are satisfied.

(d) Teaching staff, including the operator, are prohibited from caring for children in a child care space that is not certified by the Department.

(e) The operator shall ensure that only the individuals specified under § 3310.34 (relating to release of children) are permitted to have unsupervised access to a child in care.

(f) When there is only one operator in the family child care home, and the operator is unable to be physically present with the children because the operator is preparing snacks or meals for children in care, opening the door, or is using the restroom, the operator may comply with the supervision requirement in subsection (a) through the use of an electronic monitor, camera, mirror, or other device or method so the operator can see, hear, direct and assess the children in real time at all times.

(g) Supervision by a device or method as specified in subsection (f) is permitted only for the time necessary for the operator to perform the specific task of preparing snacks, answering the door, or using the restroom.

(h) The operator shall remain on the facility premises while supervising children using a device or method as specified in subsection (f).

(i) For an operator who provides supervision as specified in subsection (f), specific provisions must be included in the family handbook describing how supervision is ensured at all times.

(j) For a facility offering non-traditional care, no teaching staff person may work for a period of more than 12 consecutive hours in a 24-hour time period.  The operator shall secure an individual qualified as an operator under this chapter to ensure continued appropriate supervision as required in subsection (a) for facilities providing non-traditional care.

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Transportation

3310.38. Driver qualifications.

The driver of a facility vehicle shall be 18 years of age or older and shall have a valid operating license for the type of vehicle being driven. The driver must possess a safe driving record.

§ 3310.39. Safety restraints.

(a) The operator shall ensure that children are transported in accordance with the requirements for parent(s)/guardian(s) as set forth in 75 Pa.C.S. § 4581 (relating to restraint systems) and as consistent with applicable State and federal laws and regulations.

(b) Safety restraints installed in the vehicle at the time of manufacturing must be used by all occupants.

(c) Safety restraints must be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s specified recommendations.

(d) Manufacturers’ instructions for the use of safety restraints must be kept in the vehicle at all times.

(e) A school bus with a seating capacity of 16 or more children that is used to transport preschool or school-age children is exempt from the requirements of this section.

§ 3310.40. Vehicles.

(a) The operator shall ensure that facility vehicles are insured in accordance with 75 Pa.C.S. §§ 1701—1799.7 (relating to the Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law).

(b) The doors on a facility vehicle must be locked whenever the vehicle is in motion.

(c) The back of a pick-up truck may not be used to transport children.

(d) The cargo area of a vehicle may not be used to transport children.

(e) In accordance with 67 Pa. Code Chapter 171 (relating to school buses and school vehicles), the child care program may not transport a child in an 11—15 passenger van.

§ 3310.41. Transportation.

(a) When children are being transported, the operator shall ensure the following:

(1) Compliance with the requirements specified in § 3310.17 (relating to consent for transportation).

(2) No child is left unattended in a vehicle.

(3) Children are supervised during boarding and exiting vehicles by a teaching staff person or the operator, who remains outside the vehicle.

(4) That health history, emergency contact information, emergency medical care authorization    forms, and the appropriate medication (if applicable), is accessible for each child being transported.

(5) That attendance is taken that ensures all children are accounted for each time children begin and end travel to an off-site activity, and every time children enter and exit a vehicle.

(6) When the operator uses a vehicle to transport children in care, the operator shall:

(i) Ensure the number of passengers does not exceed the manufacturer’s seating capacity of the vehicle.

(ii) Maintain a vehicle temperature that is appropriate for all children, including children with a developmental delay, disability or individual care plan.

(iii) Prevent any driver with a known condition that would compromise driving, supervision, or evacuation capabilities from operating facility vehicles.

(b) A family child care home is exempt from the requirements of this section when the children in care are transported in vehicles owned, operated or contracted by the school district in which the facility is located.

§ 3310.43. Children of the operator or a facility person.

(a) The related or foster children of a facility person, including the operator, shall be counted in the requirements specified in § 3310.42 (relating to age levels and ratios).

(b) Notwithstanding subsection (a), the following applies:

(1) The related or foster school-aged children of an operator or facility person are not counted in the staff:child ratio requirements specified in § 3310.42 (relating to age levels and ratios).
(2) The related or foster children of an operator or facility person who are younger than school-aged, must be counted in the staff:child ratio requirements specified in § 3310.42 (relating to age levels and ratios).

(c) This section applies when the related or foster children of an operator or a facility person are in certified child care space.

§ 3310.44.  Bodies of water and water activities.

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