Statement as issued Friday by the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration:
Hoosier families now have a digital tool to help assess child care facilities for quality, safety and other benchmarks, and to take a “virtual tour” of select facilities. Child Care Online is a free Internet search tool designed to easily and conveniently compare child care programs and to help parents or guardians identify a range of high quality choices. The tool is available beginning today at http://www.childcareindiana.org.
“Finding the appropriate, high-quality child care provider is often a difficult task for Indiana families,” declared Melanie Brizzi, administrator, Indiana Bureau of Child Care (BCC). “Working Hoosiers need high-quality child care to support their child’s development. Research shows that effective early learning experiences prepare children for future success in school, work, and life.”
The Child Care Online tool also allows users to view actual images of teaching and learning spaces, food service capabilities and toileting facilities, and recreation areas and equipment. Utilizing Child Care Online allows child care providers to explain, in their own words, what they do and why. Using text, photos and audio, parents and guardians can read, see and hear what to expect from providers. “What families really want to know is who best can keep their children safe, healthy and learning,” explained Brizzi.
Child Care Online is being launched in support of Paths to QUALITY™, Indiana’s voluntary quality rating and improvement system for child care programs. “Indiana is proud to be among states with the highest percentage of child care programs that are nationally accredited and meeting rigorous research-based quality standards,” said Brizzi. More than 1,145 child care programs have achieved, or are working toward the state’s highest level of care – national accreditation. Child Care Online will highlight these programs that are providing rich learning environments for children. To learn more about child care resources visit http://www.childcareindiana.org.