Paying for Child Care
Do I qualify for child care financial assistance?
Working families often struggle to make ends meet and, for many families, child care is out of reach because of the cost. The Child Care Resource Center (CCRC) offers several financial assistance or subsidy programs to qualifying families on a non-discriminatory basis.
How do I know if I qualify for child care assistance?
CalWORKs Stage 1 Child Care
The Los Angeles Department of Public Social Services (DPSS) funds California Work Opportunity and Responsibility for Kids (CalWORKs) Stage 1 child care and sets the rules, regulations and requirements for eligibility. The Stage 1 program serves eligible families currently receiving cash aid who demonstrate a qualifying need to receive child care financial assistance.
How do I know if I am eligible for CalWORKs Stage 1 child care?
To establish your eligibility for child care financial assistance (subsidy), you may request help paying for part or all of your child care fees through your Greater Avenues for Independence (GAIN) worker or by contacting CCRC.
Once your request has been received, the Case Management Department will review your eligibility for services based on the following criteria:
- A parent/guardian is receiving cash aid/TANF/CalWORKs,
- A parent/guardian has a qualifying need and is participating in an approved Welfare to Work activity, or
- There is one eligible child under 13 years, or a child with specials needs under 19 years living in the home.
If I am eligible, how do I enroll?
If the CalWORKs Child Care Advisor establishes your eligibility for subsidized child care, you are most likely eligible for services. CCRC will mail you a presumptive eligibility letter (Form ST1-10) within four (4) business days. A CalWORKs Stage 1 Participant Document Checklist (Form ST1-10a) will be included with the letter detailing the paperwork required for program enrollment.
Once I am enrolled, how does my child care provider get paid?
In order for CCRC to pay your child care provider, we must authorize the child care services and rates. The authorization procedure is as follows:
2. You and your child care provider complete the required paperwork and CCRC authorizes the child care services and rates. If services are approved, CCRC sends an approval Notice of Action (NOA) to the parent and a Provider Notification of Approval to the child care provider.
3. CCRC pays for child care costs incurred only during authorized hours of care according to your approved schedule (link to Parent Handbook) when you are participating in your approved activity. Remember that the parent is responsible for child care costs before the date CCRC authorizes child care and for care after the termination date. The parent is also responsible for child care costs if care is provided for any other purpose than to participate in an approved activity during the approved schedule.
If I am already receiving child care financial assistance, why do I have to recertify?
Families are required, according to DPSS and CCRC guidelines, to recertify their child care financial assistance at least once every year according to the activity and its length.
Both you and your child care provider will receive termination notices explaining that child care will be terminated if your required paperwork is not returned on time. If you return all of your paperwork accurately and on time, CCRC will reauthorize your services for the length of your approved activity up to a maximum of one (1) year.
If you do not return your paperwork as required, your child care services will be terminated and you will have to reapply for child care and CCRC will have to re-determine your eligibility.
Under what circumstances may I be terminated from the program?
If you do not follow required rules, regulations or guidelines as defined by DPSS and CCRC, your child care financial assistance may be terminated or CCRC may take other appropriate actions.
If you disagree with any action taken by CCRC/DPSS, you have 90 days to ask for an appeal hearing. The 90 days will start after you have received the notice from CCRC/DPSS. To request an appeal, complete the back of the Notice of Action being appealed and send it to CCRC/DPSS.
To receive help when appealing a decision, call (800) 952-5253 to ask about your hearing rights or for a legal aid referral.
For more information regarding child care financial assistance rules, regulations and guidelines, you may contact CCRC at (818) 717-1000 or review the guidelines as outlined in CCRC's Parent Handbook.
California Department of Education (CDE) Programs
Participation in California Department of Education (CDE) programs is based on available funding and if you meet the qualifications required for enrollment in the program.
How do I know if I am eligible for child care assistance funded by CDE?
CalWORKs Stage 2
In order to qualify for CalWORKs Stage 2, you must meet the eligibility requirements as defined in the How do I get started? section and have at least one eligible need for child care services.
CalWORKs Stage 3
If funding is available, CCRC moves a Stage 2 family into CalWORKs Stage 3 (C3AP) after the Stage 2 parents has been terminated from cash aid for 24 months. If no funding is available, the family will be terminated. In order to qualify for Stage 3 child care services, you must meet all of the eligibility requirements as defined in the How do I get started? section and have at least one eligible need.
CCRC enrolls families from the Eligibility List (E-List) in the Alternative Payment Program (CAPP) during an open enrollment period. In order to qualify for CAPP child care services, you must meet the eligibility requirements as defined in the How do I get started? section and have at least one eligible need.
Family Child Care Home Education Network (FCCHEN)
Family Care Home Education Network (FCCHEN) program emphasizes early learning and a high quality child care environment in a licensed and approved family child care home. Before a child care provider can be part of FCCHEN, a Child and Family Education Specialist reviews the program to see if it meets standards and requirements set forth by the California Department of Education (CDE). You must meet the eligibility requirements as defined in the How do I get started? section and have one qualifying need.
How do I get started?
CCRC’s Family Assessment & Orientation (FAO) Department determines your family's initial eligibility for a CDE program according to the following guidelines:
- A family who is currently receiving cash aid/TANF or who has received it within the past 24 months is eligible for CalWORKs Stage 2.
- FAO verifies eligibility and schedules an orientation.
- During orientation, the parent completes the Confidential Application for Child Development Services and Certification of Eligibility (Form CD9600), receives an enrollment packet, and a list of documents needed for certification.
- A 30-day timeline begins from the date of orientation during which time FAO may approve or deny services to the family.
- If required documents are submitted accurately and on time, an FAO Case Specialist helps the family through the final steps of certification and enrollment.
A family who is NOT currently receiving cash aid/TANF, has received it more than two years ago, or has never received cash aid is eligible for other CDE funded programs based on availability of funding. Families must complete an Eligibility List Intake Form English (see below) to be placed on the eligibility list (E-List). When funding becomes available, FAO generates a list of families from the E-List according to CDE priorities - families with the lowest income rank (1st percentile) have priority.
Please click on the appropriate link to complete your eligibility list intake form:
- Eligibility List Online Application (English)
- Eligibility List Intake Form (English)
- Eligibility List Intake Form (Spanish)
FAO will mail the parent an invitation to attend an income screening to determine if the family qualifies for any current program openings. If a parent does not respond to the invitation, he/she is marked as inactive on the E-List.
If a parent is determined to be income eligible, FAO schedules an orientation and gives the parent an enrollment packet of required parent and child care provider documentation. The parent must bring completed documentation to the scheduled appointment.
During orientation parent and child care provider packets are reviewed. If all paperwork is complete, the parent meets with an FAO Case Specialist to enroll in the subsidy program.
How does my child care provider get paid?
In order for CCRC to pay your child care provider, CCRC must authorize the services as outlined below.
You must submit a complete provider packet. Once you have been approved as a provider, CCRC sends you a green Approval Provider Notification with your current authorization.
CCRC will not pay for child care services before the start date, after the end date, or for hours not listed in the green Approval Provider Notification unless you receive a new notice extending authorization.
If you have received a termination date or a notice of actions, CCRC will not pay you for services after the termination date unless CCRC sends you a new Approval Provider Notification extending the authorization.
If you have a child with special needs, your child care provider may qualify for a special rate. Speak with your Case Specialist to learn more about how your provider may apply for this rate. You may also request care for an over age child with special needs. Speak with your Case Specialist about the procedure to follow and forms to complete.
In order for CCRC to pay your child care provider, you and the provider must complete a CDE Attendance Sheet every month to verify your child's attendance. CCRC sends the yellow attendance sheet to the provider every month and payments are according to the information on the attendance sheet. CCRC expects you and your provider to submit accurate information. Click here for more information regarding CDE Payment Timelines & Document Guidelines.
Children are expected to attend child care regularly according to the approved schedule. When your child is absent, you must note the specific reason on the back of the attendance sheet and sign your name. An absence without a note on the back of the attendance sheet will be considered unexcused and may not be paid. Excessive absences may result in termination of your services.
Excused absences include: illness of the parent or child, medical and dental appointments, court ordered time spent with parent or other relative and family emergencies.
CDE Child Care Termination
If you do not follow CCRC / CDE regulations, CCRC may terminate your child care services. If CCRC terminates you or you disagree with CCRC’s action as stated in the Notice of Action (NOA), you have the right to appeal the intended action. To protect your appeal rights, you must follow the appeal procedure. If you disagree with an action as stated on the NOA, you may appeal the intended action within fourteen (14) calendar days of the date of the NOA and request a local appeal hearing.
For more information regarding CDE child care financial assistance programs, please review CCRC's Parent Handbook or call us at (818) 717-1000.