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Family Child Care Backup Program

family child care backup program

We are excited to introduce the Family Child Care Backup/Substitute Program Pilot, a fresh initiative engineered to address care disruptions and their related impacts by deploying qualified substitute caregivers to assist in-home and family child care providers during their absences. Keeping care affordable without cutting corners on quality is a principle we’ve held firm to while planning the necessary investments from providers and the supporting community. This program emerges as our solution to the evolving child care demands within our communities, ensuring the caliber of care remains exceptional, even in the absence of regular caregivers.

We believe this pilot program aligns seamlessly with the broader objectives many communities have to fortify child care and early education. Although primarily aimed at enhancing the experience for child care providers and the families they serve, this initiative also creates avenues for community members to discover value through reduced employment impacts, ensured continuity of care for young children, and envision a sustainable extension of the program post-pilot.

Desired Outcome & Metrics

The pilot aims to ease the load for 15 primary care providers by offering up to 5 days of substitute care over a 6-month period. We’ve set up clear success measures including how satisfied participating parties are, consistency in the quality of care, and how smooth the switch is between primary and substitute providers throughout the program. Regular updates and reports will be shared with interested parties and funders of the program to keep things transparent and to keep a close eye on how the program is doing against the set goals.

Pilot Program Objectives:

  • Minimization of Disruptions: Can we reduce child care disruptions caused by providers’ short-term absences?
  • Maintain Continuity and Seamless Transition: Test a seamless transition approach ensuring uninterrupted child care with the aid of technology and experienced substitute providers, instilling confidence in requesting providers and impacted families.
  • Community Back-up Options: Explore new community back-up child care solutions to broaden the range of available child care options to meet the needs of all families.
  • Economic Impact Assessment: Begin understanding the local economic benefits to the community, providing a solid comprehension of the program’s broader potential impact.

Concept & Pilot Program Development Acknowledgements: The program concept was collaboratively developed with the involvement of participants from United for Childcare in Steele County, Minnesota. Noteworthy contributions came from the leadership of the United Way of Steele County, along with key representatives from Families First of Minnesota, Owatonna Public Schools, MNPrairie County Alliance, Steele County Public Health, employers and community figures from Steele County. The program also gained critical input and feedback from local area family child care providers. The initiative and pilot phases were financially supported, in part, by Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation.

The program is being administered by Business of Child Care and The CareConnection.

For those that have questions and/or were unable to attend the prior meetings regarding the Substitute Pilot Program, there will be two informal, virtual Meet & Greet meetings coming up over the next week. It will be a chance to meet the team at The Care Connection who are supporting this initiative and ask any questions you may have. You can attend one or both of the following:

Upcoming Virtual Meet & Greet Meetings

Thursday, March 21st, 6:30-7pm CST

Join Zoom Meeting: 

Meeting ID: 614 747 3020
Passcode: 89011

Tuesday, March 26th, 6:30-7pm CST

Join Zoom Meeting: 
Meeting ID: 614 747 3020
Passcode: 89011

You can also view the original information session here:
View the Recording From Our Information Session on March 12th

Licensed Family Child Care Providers are invited to apply to participate in our pilot program, which kicks off in March 2024 and runs for 6-months. Applications are being accepted now.

Join Us to Advance Child Care!

At Business of Child Care, we aim to guide child care businesses to better outcomes through expert support. We welcome experienced professionals to join our network as independent consultants focused on the business side of childcare.

For Child Care Center Operators & Family Child Care Providers

Share your expertise while earning extra income. If you’re an active child care operator looking for flexible projects, become a consultant leveraging your knowledge to help other providers in your community.

Benefits include:

With hands-on experience running a child care program, you have valuable insights to help other providers succeed. As a consultant, you can play a key role in improving child care, on your own terms.

For Child Care Industry Service Providers & Consultants

Join our network to focus on service while we provide systems/support. If you enjoy helping child care businesses thrive, partner with us to enhance your practice.

Benefits include:

By partnering with us, you can focus on delivering high-quality services while benefiting from our infrastructure and process expertise. Let us handle the back-end so you can focus on your consulting strengths.

Together, We Can Advance Child Care Businesses

If you’re dedicated to the business side of childcare, let’s connect. We’d love to explore flexible, rewarding consulting opportunities to support this meaningful work.

Contact us today to get involved!

Join Our Work