Northwest Ohio

Child Care Providers

Become a Child Care Provider
Step Up to Quality
Update Your Program
Professional Development Opportunities
Early Learning Resources Ohio
Additional Resources

Child Care Providers

Child Care Providers Overview

Today's child care providers need to provide a high quality learning experience for every child in their program. Child care providers supply the framework to equip children with the skills they will utilize as they negotiate their path through the educational system to become productive members of society. 

As the designated child care resource and referral agency for the Northwest Ohio region, the YWCA Child Care Resource and Referral is your foundation for information on early care and education. At the YWCA Child Care Resource and Referral, we assist families, child care providers, employers and other community agencies in defining and attaining quality child care. We are the largest provider of training and technical assistance for early childhood caregivers and teachers in this region. The YWCA also offers a multitude of trainings and technical assistance for the Step Up To Quality tiered rating system. Our Specialists can assist child care providers with questions about infant, toddler, preschool, after school and administrative issues.

Become a Child Care Provider

Are you thinking about becoming a child care provide? Currently, there are three types of child care providers that are certified or licensed through the State of Ohio.

  • Child Care Centers – Facilities are licensed and inspected by the State of Ohio at least once a year. The size of the center determines the number of children and the number of staff.
  • Type A Family Child Care Providers – Homes licensed by the State of Ohio to provide care for up to 12 children with two adults providing care.
  • Type B Family Child Care Providers – Homes that may be certified by the State of Ohio for up to six children. Type B homes are not required by the State of Ohio to be licensed.

For information on becoming a licensed Type B provider, a licensed Type A provider, or to open a center, visit the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services website at

You will also want to consider becoming a YWCA CCR&R Registered Provider. Benefits include:

  • We help connect child care providers with parents who are seeking child care.
  • We provide a variety of child development trainings several days a week at various times of the day to ensure child care providers can meet their professional development goals.
  • We offer coaching for your programming needs such as: room arrangements, setting up different centers in your rooms, appropriate book and toy selections, and more.
  • We keep child care professionals connected to events and policy issues through our quarterly newsletter.
  • We offer a free Resource Library where providers can borrow books and prop boxes, laminate items, and create activity bulletin boards using our Cricut and Ellison machines.
  • We offer an annual Provider Appreciation Day event to celebrate all the hard work child care providers do every day.
  • We offer all of these services and more to our registered child care providers free of charge.

To become a Registered Provider with the YWCA CCR&R your center must be licensed by the State of Ohio and within the counties we serve. In addition, you must submit the following forms:

Please print and complete these documents and contact the CCR&R in your region in order to submit them. If you have any questions or concerns as you complete this packet, please feel free to call our office for assistance at (800) 632-3052. All elements of the application packet contain information that may be useful to you in the future. We suggest you make copies of all completed materials before submitting them to our office.

In addition to completing these materials, we also ask that you attend a mandatory new provider orientation at the YWCA. Once you have completed and returned all of the items required to be added to our registry, a referral specialist will contact you to discuss your criminal background check and schedule your orientation.

Step Up to Quality

The YWCA Child Care Resource & Referral can assist programs in becoming rated, renewing ratings, and increasing their rating through one on one coaching with issues such as preparing your required documentation, creating a professional development plan, room arrangements, lesson planning and more.

What is Step Up To Quality? 

Step Up To Quality is Ohio's voluntary quality rating system, for ODJFS licensed child care programs. Step Up To Quality identifies early care and education programs that go above Ohio's licensing standards. Supports and awards are offered to help programs in achieving and keeping a Star Rating. Programs that go beyond the minimum health and safety standards can earn stars. This is done by meeting the quality program standards for the State of Ohio.

 Step Up To Quality means:

There may be more teachers per child. This allows teachers to spend more time with each child. Better qualified teachers will be available. Teachers will have more training in early childhood development. There is a commitment to use Ohio's Birth-5 Kindergarten Entry Early Learning and Development Standards. Providing an outstanding work environment ensures staff are treated professionally and offered benefits. This will help retain good teachers.

The goals of SUTQ are:

  • To boost the number of high quality early care and education programs helping children
  • To provide specialized training and program assistance for childcare providers
  • To offer an easy to use tool for parents, helping them choose high quality care and education for their children
  • To recognize and support programs that accomplish higher levels of quality


Learn more about Step Up to Quality at:

Update Your Program

Stay Connected to Parents - Keep your provider information up-to-date to receive more referrals!

It is important that you let us know every time your program experiences a change. Updating this information allows YWCA Child Care Resource & Referral to refer parents to your program and to keep you informed of policy updates, events, and trainings.

Please notify us any time the following information changes:

  • Change of Address
  • Change of Phone Number
  • Change of Email Address
  • Change of Rates or Policies
  • Change of Hours or Days of Operation
  • Change of Number of Child Care Openings in your Program

Complete your program update by clicking one of the links below:

You may also update us by calling:

Professional Development Opportunities

To help child care providers maintain quality child care we offer trainings designed to support early childhood professionals in meeting their goals of developing skills and improving the quality of their programs. In addition, our trainings meet ODJFS licensing and/or Step Up To Quality requirements. We offer trainings for family child care providers and center employees on a variety of topics including infant/toddler, preschool, school age, administrator, behavioral and business issues. Classes are offered at a variety of times throughout the week and on Saturdays.

Training participants must register for all trainings provided by the YWCA Child Care Resource and Referral through the Ohio Professional Development Registry. This registry is a statewide system that will track the professional development trainings and continuing education units that you have received from attending our trainings.

To register for training, you must first create a profile.

Click the following to view instructions on how to create a profile and register for training.

Click here to create your professional profile.

The YWCA Child Care Resource and Referral reminds all training attendees to please follow the attendance guidelines. Please click here to review our attendance guidelines and training fee policy.

 The YWCA Child Care Resource and Referral determines the content and frequency of training based on the following factors: feedback from providers, comments on training evaluations, and the history of attendance at each training. We strive to meet the needs of child care providers however, if you would like to comment about our professional development opportunities, please call our office or email us your comments. 

Early Learning Resources Ohio

Early Learning Resources Ohio is a subscriber-based web platform providing an extensive knowledge hub of tools focused on supporting the needs of early childhood education and care professionals. Members receive cost savings through 30 different partner organizations, as well as the convenience of forms, documents, and templates all on one website! The site also includes direct access to popular curriculums, lesson plan ideas, and links to local and federal regulations. Explore the site at

Additional Resources

The Ohio Preschool Expulsion Prevention Partnership

Do you have a child who is no longer a good fit at your preschool? Do this child’s challenges put them at risk for expulsion? Now, there’s support available to you. Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in collaboration with the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, provides resources to early childhood programs that have children in their setting facing potential expulsion. The Ohio Preschool Expulsion Prevention Partnership can provide on-site observation, feedback and strategies, resources regarding behavioral supports and recommendations for professional development related to early childhood mental health topics. Programs can access this service by calling 1-844-678-ABCs (2227) or by visiting the website at


Information and technical assistance on the Americans with Disabilities Act:

Fire safety for children:,

Early learning activities for Pre-K and Kindergarten:

Teaching resources for early education classrooms:

Education products:

Professional registry information including child development trainings to meet ODJFS and SUTQ goals:

World music site for children:

Learning to read site children:

Marketing materials website:

Business Advice for Family Child Care Providers:

Business Documents for Child Care:

Resources for Ohio Child Care Providers:

Step Up To Quality Information:

National Association for the Education of Young Children:

Ohio Association for the Education of Young Children:

National Association for Family Child Care:

The Council for Professional Recognition:

Ohio Child Care Finder

Our child care referral program is a FREE service to the community. All parent and child information is kept confidential. There are three different ways to get referrals.

  • Call the CCR&R office in your area Monday through Friday from 8:30 am until 5:00 pm
  • Submit a request for a child care search by sending an email to the office in your region
  • Complete an online search for child care by zip code with the below tool

Choosing Quality Child Care

The YWCA Child Care Resource and Referral knows that finding quality childcare is not easy. In fact, most parents often do not know the right questions to ask, nor do they know what to look for when visiting a child care facility. Always remember the best answer to selecting appropriate child care is to use your instincts. If the facility, staff or provider does not "feel" right, then it is probably not the best place for your child.

Here are a few guidelines to evaluate when considering a family child care home or a child care center for your child.

  • LOOK: Visit the home or center more than once and at different times
  • LOOK: Is the environment clean and safe?
  • LISTEN: How does the setting sound? Is there positive interaction? How does the provider greet you and your child?
  • ASK: Inquire about staff training, education, experience, and turnover rate
  • COUNT: What is the staff to child ration?
  • FIND: What is the provider doing to improve or maintain quality child care?
  • ASK: What activities are offered to encourage family involvement? Are children allowed to bring items from home (toys, blankets, etc.)?

Click here to download a free guide to choosing quality child care.(PDF)

Types of Child Care

Currently, there are three types of child care providers that are certified or licensed through the State of Ohio.

  • Child Care Centers – Facilities are licensed and inspected by the State of Ohio at least once a year. The size of the center determines the number of children and the number of staff.
  • Type A Family Child Care Providers – Homes licensed by the State of Ohio to provide care for up to 12 children with two adults providing care.
  • Type B Family Child Care Providers – Homes that may be certified by the State of Ohio for up to six children. Type B homes are not required by the State of Ohio to be licensed.

Parent Resources

Developmental Milestones
Early Education
Kindergarten Readiness
Resource Library
Baby T.A.L.K.
Dolly Parton Imagination Library


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Developmental Milestones

It is important for parents to know what the developmental milestones are for their children. Please use these links to help guide you on what your child should be doing at the age.

Early Education

The Early Learning and Development Standards describe key concepts and skills that young children develop during the birth–to–five-year period. Their purpose is to support the development and well–being of young children and to foster their learning. The standards promote the understanding of early learning and development, provide a comprehensive and coherent set of expectations for children's development and learning, and guide the design and implementation of curriculum, assessment and instructional practices with young children. View these standards here

Kindergarten Readiness

Information regarding Ohio’s Kindergarten Readiness Assessment as well as tips and checklists related to school readiness can be found at this link:


As a parent, there are many ways that you can be involved in supporting Ohio and it’s early childhood policymaking and systems building work. The YWCA CCR&R supports work that focuses on building a comprehensive and equitable early childhood system. Two websites that you can find further information: and

Resource Library

Need help with parenting strategies? Our Resource Library can help! We offer a variety of free resources and services to support parents, children and the community in the Resource Library. Each of our three offices offers a Resource Library but availability of items and hours of operation may vary by location. Contact your YWCA CCR&R location to schedule a visit or to reserve an item.

Baby T.A.L.K

Baby T.A.L.K (Teaching Activities for Learning and Knowledge) is a program where a YWCA Specialist demonstrates and models interactive play based learning activities for the family to engage with one another. Each family receives a copy of a featured book, as well as written materials that support the modeled activity. The Baby TALK program also offers a parent gathering called Family Fun Times, where parents and their children come together with additional families to share in a literacy activity based on a preselected age appropriate book.

Dolly Parton Imagination Library (Allen County)

This program is committed to the education of children and families and is invested in increasing awareness of the importance of early literacy opportunities for our youngest learners. Partly funded through the United Way, the YWCA of Northwest Ohio has sent over 105,000 books to more than 2,800 children in Allen County since 2009!

For more information, call and speak to one of our specialists.
Toledo Region: 800.632.3052
Lima Region: 800.992.2916
Mansfield Region: 855.548.9598

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Disclaimer: YWCA Child Care Resource & Referral does not license, endorse, or recommend
any particular provider nor can assure you that any provider gives quality care. 

Mansfield Region: Serving Crawford, Marion, Morrow, and Richland Counties
Lima Region: Serving Allen, Auglaize, Hancock, Hardin, Mercer, Putnam, Van Wert, and Wyandot Counties
Toledo Region: Serving Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Williams, and Wood Counties