Illinois Annual Child Care Report FY2017 (pdf)

Bureau of Child Care and Development 217/785-2559

Vision for Child Care and Early Education in Illinois

Illinois families will have multiple options for affordable quality child care and early education. All children starting at birth will be offered opportunities to grow, learn and be cared for in safe, nurturing, culturally and developmentally appropriate settings.

Introduction

As required by State Statute 20 ILCS 505/5.15, the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) submits an annual report to the Governor and Illinois General Assembly about the status of its child care program. The program is administered by the IDHS Bureau of Child Care and Development, and this report includes information on the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) as well as the Quality Improvement Programs within CCAP. The 2017 Illinois Child Care Report includes information for the Fiscal Year 2017 (July 1, 2016 - June 30, 2017). The data in this report are from: a) the Child Care Management System (CCMS), b) the Illinois Network of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies' aggregate database of the local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) parent customers, child care providers, and professional development activities; and c) the Gateways to Opportunity Registry. IDHS thanks the thousands of center-based staff, family child care providers and CCR&R staff for their support in the care and education of Illinois children.

Fiscal Year 2017 (FY17) Child Care Funding Expenditures

State GRF $322,502,071
TANF $384,724,885
CCDF $196,778,095
TOTAL $904,005,051

FY 2017 Child Care Funding Expenditures

Federal Priorities

The IDHS Bureau of Child Care and Development sets policy and develops programs consistent with the federal Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Office of Child Care's philosophy and the Bureau's Vision. ACF's overall goal is "healthy, happy and successful children." Its philosophy includes a focus on the continuum of high quality care for children from birth to age 13; and partnerships across child care, education, Head Start and health for a broader delivery system that expands family choices.

In November 2014, Congress reauthorized the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG). This was an historic re-envisioning of child care. The four major topic areas of the law are:

  • Protect the health and safety of children in child care
  • Help parents make informed consumer choices and access information to support child development
  • Provide equal access to stable, high quality child care for low-income children
  • Enhance the quality of child care and the early childhood workforce.

During FY17, the IDHS Child Care Program continued to address the provisions of the CCDBG Act of 2014, while administering the CCAP programs under the previous federal priorities.

Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP)

The IDHS works with local Illinois communities to provide low-income families with access to affordable, quality child care. The Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) has two primary goals:

  • To support qualifying low-income families by providing child care subsidies. This allows parents to maintain employment, thereby decreasing dependence on public assistance; and
  • To allow families access to multiple options for affordable, quality child care, early education, and after school programs that offer children the opportunity to grow, learn and be cared for in safe, nurturing settings that are culturally and developmentally appropriate.

FY17 CCAP Enrollment

CCAP served a total of 211,393 children from 118,649 families between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017. The monthly average for FY17 was 131,310 children from 74,526 families.

Profile of Children Participating in CCAP in March 2017

  • 69.6% in licensed care, compared to 68.1% in FY16
  • School-age children (ages 6 and older) constituted 42.0% of all children served

Number of Children by Age Participating in CCAP in March 2017

Child's Age Number of Enrolled in CCAP % of Total
0-14 Months 9,942 7.4%
15-23 Months 10,777 8.0%
2 Years 15,085 11.2%
3-4 Years 29,475 21.9%
5 Years 12,717 9.5%
6-12 Years 55,739 41.5%
13 Years and Over 701 <1%
Total 134,436 100.0%

Profile of families participating in the CCAP in March 2017

  • 94.8% of families received subsidies because of employment
  • 4.3% of families had TANF as a source of income

CCR&R services to All Illinois Families, not just those participating in CCAP

  • Consumer education on legal and quality care
  • Referral to child care settings according to the family's preferences
  • Referral to CCAP, other IDHS programs, and community services
  • Toll-free number, in English and Spanish, that connects parents and child care providers to local CCR&Rs
  • Technical assistance to parents regarding CCAP

Annual Income Guidelines by Family Size

Number of CCAP families by Monthly Co-Payment Amount

Profile of Child Care Providers Participating in CCAP in FY17

  • 72% of the license-exempt family child care providers cared for relative children
  • Over 8,000 licensed providers received CCAP payments

CCR&R Services for Child Care Providers Participating in CCAP

  • Administration of parent applications
  • Determination of provider eligibility for CCAP
  • Processing of Monthly Child Care Certificates
  • Technical assistance to providers regarding CCAP

Number of Providers Receiving CCAP Payments in FY17

Licensed Providers Number of Providers
Child Care Centers 2,626
Family Child Care Homes 5,037
Group Child Care Homes 513
Total 8,176
License-Exempt Providers Number of Providers
Child Care Centers 642
Family Child Care Homes:
Non-relative in provider's home 5,201
Relative in provider's home 12,217
Non-relative in the child's home 3,318
Relative in child's home 7,976
Total 29,354
Total all providers 37,530

Child Care Supply

The CCR&Rs support child care providers by referring families to their child care programs. The referral services are available free of charge to licensed centers, family child care homes, group child care homes listed in the provider database as well as to license-exempt centers and homes that choose to be included in the provider database. The FY17 provider database information is shown in the table below.

FY17 Statewide Child Care Database

Type of Care Number of Providers Child Capacity
Licensed Family Child Care Homes 7,928 76,602
License-Exempt Family Child Care Homes 368 1,062
Total 8,296 77,664
Type of Care Number of Providers Child Capacity
Licensed Child Care Centers 3,175 252,140
License-Exempt Child Care Centers 2,415 168,518
Total 5,590 420,658

Child Care Demand

There are two dimensions of the "demand" for child care in any community.

  1. The number of children needing child care compared to the child care capacity available to meet the needs, and
  2. The unique requirements of families for their specific child's needs, such as the child's age, type of care desired, parent's work/school schedule, location, special needs of the child and cost.

Snapshot of Families Receiving Child Care Referrals in FY17

  • 15,737 families received child care referrals by phone or online
  • 91% of families required care due to employment
  • 5,295 families used the online referral system

Schedules Requested for Children and Offered by Providers

Schedule Requested for Children Offered by Family Child Care Homes Offered by Child Care Centers Offered by Providers Total
Standard Hours* 13,528 7,237 3,016 10,253
Evening 2,389 3,870 181 4,051
Weekend 2,347 1,266 54 1,320
Overnight 949 2,741 61 2,802
Rotating 959 3,086 918 4,004
Temp/Emergency 180 3,669 907 4,576
Drop In 200 3,438 940 4,378

*A standard schedule is full-time care offered during traditional day time work hours.

Number of Children for Whom Child Care was requested by Age and Type of Care

Requests by Age of Child Number of Requests
Birth to 2 years 5,573 34%
2 Year Old Children 2,148 13%
3-4 Year Old Children 3,365 21%
5 Year Olds/Kindergarteners 1,058 7%
School Age Children 4,122 25%
TOTAL 16,266 100%

Requested by Type of Care Number of Requests
Child Care Center 17,516 56.8%
Family Child Care Home 13,094 42.5%
In-Home Care 204 <1%
TOTAL 30,814 100%

Data Context

Much of the Child Care Demand data are from the parent customer and child care databases compiled by the local CCR&Rs. Therefore, the data presented does not include all families and children requiring child care services in Illinois. Most families do not receive child care assistance and many families find child care services through friends, families, advertisements and other means. Additionally, many license-exempt child care programs are not listed in the provider database. Because of these factors, it is important to note that this report is only one means of examining the larger child care supply and demand picture in Illinois.

Quality Improvement Programs

During FY17, the federal Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) required at least seven percent of federal funds be allocated for the improvement of child care quality, plus an additional three percent for quality for infants and toddlers. These funds were used to support the IDHS Bureau of Child Care and Development's Quality Improvement Program. The program's overall goal is to increase the quality of child care available to all Illinois families. In all child care settings this goal is addressed with a multi-faceted, systematic approach that works to meet the individual needs of children, families, child care providers and communities. In FY17, IDHS contracted with 16 local CCR&R agencies, the Illinois Network of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (INCCRRA) and four quality discretionary grantees to implement the quality services described on the following pages.

Pathways to Excellence for Child Care Programs

Building Quality Recognition and Improvement Systems

One of the significant ways states can assist child care providers with quality improvement is to develop a Quality Recognition and Improvement System. In order to assist Illinois child care programs in providing quality care for children and their families, IDHS has administered the Quality Counts Quality Rating System (QC-QRS) since 2007 which successfully transitioned licensed providers to the ExceleRate IllinoisTM (ExceleRate), the quality recognition and improvement system (QRIS).

Illinois is one of only a handful of states that has implemented a quality improvement program for License-Exempt Family Child Care providers (LEFCC). LEFCC providers have the opportunity to participate by completing Training Tiers consisting of 16 - 3 hour modules. The Training Tiers are described below:

QRS Training Tier Levels for License-Exempt Family Child Care Homes in FY17

License-exempt Family Child Care Homes Number of CCAP Children Enrolled by Training Tier Level
Training Tier 1 320 597
Training Tier 2 133 271
Training Tier 3 269 581
Total 722 1,449*
Additional (non-CCAP) children cared for by these providers 563
Total number of children cared for by these providers 2,012

*Enrollment/CCAP numbers reported at time of initial application and updated annually

  • Training Tier 1 modules are: Overview of Child Development; Health Issues in Group Care; Nutrition Issues in Group Care; and Safety Issues in Group Care.
  • Training Tier 2 modules are: Observation and Guidance; Learning Happens in Relationships; Family & Community Relationships; and Personal & Professional Development.
  • Training Tier 3 modules are: Child Growth and Development for Birth to 8 Months; Child Growth and Development for 8 - 18 Months; Child Growth and Development for 18 - 36 Months; Preschool Child - Social/Emotional Development; Preschool Child - Physical Development; Preschool Child - Language Development; Preschool Child - Cognitive Development; and School Age Development.
  • The Early Childhood Education (ECE) Credential Level 1 is achieved upon completion of all three tiers.

ExceleRate IllinoisTM Circles of Quality for Licensed Care Centers in FY17

Illinois has fully implemented the comprehensive, cross-sector quality recognition and improvement system, ExceleRate IllinoisTM, which has been designed to make continuous quality improvement an everyday priority among early learning providers, including licensed child care centers and licensed family child care homes; Head Start and State Preschool for All (PFA) programs. The system establishes standards to help infants, toddlers and preschool age children intellectually, physically, socially and emotionally. It recognizes early learning providers for their ongoing efforts to improve the quality of their care by awarding the following Circle of Quality designations:

  • Licensed Circle of Quality: a program meets state licensing standards, the foundation for quality. In FY17, 1,893 child care centers were included in this group.
  • Bronze Circle of Quality: a program where teachers and administrators have completed ExceleRate trainings, and have met staff qualifications.
  • Silver Circle of Quality: a program that meets, or goes beyond, quality standards in three areas: learning environment and teaching quality; administrative standards; and training and education.
  • Gold Circle of Quality: a program that meets, or goes beyond, the highest quality standards in the three areas listed for the Silver Circle.

The following table shows FY17 data for licensed centers, number of CCAP children enrolled and the Circles of Quality.

Licensed Centers Number of CCAP Children Enrolled
Bronze Circle of Quality 129 3,534
Silver Circle of Quality 375 11,622
Gold Circle of Quality 475 19,518
Total 979 34,674

Additional (non-CCAP) children cared for by

ExceleRate certified Licensed Centers

48,706

Total number of children cared for by

ExceleRate certified Licensed Centers

83,380

Circles of Quality for Licensed Family Child Care Homes (FCCH) in FY17

ExceleRate provides a framework for FCCH providers to identify opportunities for improvement, increase their skills and take steps to make positive changes. The ongoing efforts to improve the quality of FCCH care result in the award of one of the following Circle of Quality designations:

  • Licensed Circle of Quality: a program meets state licensing standards, the foundation for quality. This includes 7,484 family child care homes.
  • Bronze Circle of Quality: a licensed family child care provider and any assistant caregivers have completed ExceleRate trainings, and have met staff qualifications.
  • Silver Circle of Quality: a licensed family child care provider meets, or goes beyond, quality standards in three areas: learning environment and teaching quality, administrative standards; and training and education.
  • Gold Circle of Quality: a licensed family child care provider meets, or goes beyond, the highest quality standards in the three areas listed for the Silver Circle.

 The following table shows FY17 data for FCCH, number of CCAP children enrolled and the Circles of Quality.

Licensed Family Child Care Homes Number of CCAP Children Enrolled
Bronze Circle of Quality 160 921
Silver Circle of Quality 199 1,893
Gold Circle of Quality 34 258
Total 393 3,072*

Additional (non-CCAP) children cared

for by these providers

4,443

Total number of children cared for by

ExceleRate Certified licensed child care

homes

7,515

*Enrollment/CCAP numbers reported at time of initial application and updated annually

Pathways to Excellence for Child Care Providers

Building Strong Professional Development and Supportive Workforce Initiatives

Responsive, well-qualified practitioners are one of the most important factors in child care settings. IDHS provides professional development opportunities to child care providers. These services are available to child care providers listed on the statewide database, including licensed and license-exempt practitioners. The following pages give some data on these programs for FY17.

The Illinois Trainers Network (ITN) provides training to individual trainers and facilitators as well as child care providers, on topics such as ECE Credential Level 1, developmentally appropriate practices, Program Infant Toddler Care series (PITC), School Age and Youth Development Level 1, Early Childhood Developmental Screening, and others. Child care providers can access these trainings through their local CCR&Rs.

Training Activity

ExceleRate IllinoisTM Training in FY17

FY17
Number of approved topics offered 17
Total # of times approved topics were offered 429
Total # of training session held* 502
Number of participants 7,261
Number of training hours achieved 28,535

*Some of the ExceleRate Illinois approved topics are multi-session trainings

Illinois Trainers Network (ITN) Training in FY17

FY17
Number of ITN curricula offered 5
Total # of times ITN curricula were offered 931
Total # of training sessions held* 738
Number of participants 11,794
Number of training hours achieved 37,972

*Some of the ITN curricula are multi-session trainings

CCR&R Training Offered in FY17

FY17
Number of training sessions held 1,122
Number of training participants 15,735
Number of training hours achieved 42,006

Online Training in FY17

FY17
Number of online training topics offered 83
Number of online training participants 213,261
Number of online training hours achieved 436,432

Gateways to Opportunity Professional Development System

The Gateways to Opportunity Professional Development System provides supports for professionals working with children, youth and families. These supports include Credentials; the Gateways Scholarship Program; the Great START Wage Supplement program; Professional Development Advisors; and the Gateways to Opportunity Registry.

Great START (Strategy to Attract and Retain Teachers)

Great START is a wage supplement program available to the lowest wage earners employed by licensed child care centers and family child care homes; it recognizes those who have achieved an educational level higher than the one required by DCFS Licensing Standards, and recipients must remain employed by the same program. Participants renew their eligibility every six months.

FY15 FY16 FY17
New Recipients 551 677 662
Renewing Recipients 3,181 2,932 3,015
Total 3,732 3,609 3,677

Gateways to Opportunity Scholarship Program

The Gateways Scholarship Program is available to individuals employed by licensed child care centers and family child care homes. The scholarship enable practitioners to earn degrees, certificates or credentials in early care and education and school age child care.

FY15 FY16 FY17
Family Child Care Practitioners 148 118 113
Child Care Center Staff 722 575 642
Credits Taken 7,226 5,926 5,768
Degrees Completed 25 27 5

Gateways to Opportunity Registry

The Gateways to Opportunity Registry (Registry), administered by INCCRRA, is a resource and a tool to drive the quality and accountability of the professional development that is available to early learning, school-age and youth practitioners. It is also used to track the CCAP provider training completion. Anyone who works with or on behalf of children, youth and families in Illinois can become a member of the Gateways Registry. As of June 30, 2017, the Registry membership was 64,653, an increase of 433 members over FY16. The Registry membership includes Day Care Centers, Family Day Care Homes, and Group Day Care Homes (required by DCFS Licensing Standards) as well as practitioners working for child care programs seeking ExceleRate's Bronze, Silver, or Gold Circles of Quality (required by ExceleRate).

Type of Program and Position (Where Registry Members are Working)

Based on employment data for the 64,653 current Registry members:

  • 4% work in Indirect Service, such as child care resource and referral, and higher education.
  • 96% work in Direct Services
    • 79% work in Licensed Child Care Centers
    • 18% work in Family/Group Child Care Homes
    • 3% work in License-exempt child care settings

Gateways to Opportunity Credentials

The Gateways Credentials validate an individual's educational attainment and professional experience. The credentials are recognized by the State of Illinois in the DCFS Licensing Standards for Day Care Centers and in the IDHS Great START program. ExceleRate IllinoisTM has credential requirements for the Bronze, Silver and Gold Circles of Quality. A variety of credentials are available for practitioners who work with, or on behalf of, children, youth and families.

The first Illinois Director Credentials (IDC) was awarded in FY2000. Since then, additional Gateways Credentials have been developed and are awarded on a continual basis. The IDC is appropriate for directors and program coordinators of early childhood and school-age child care settings. It is awarded at three (3) levels: Associate, Bachelor, and Graduate. The credential has requirements in: General Education; Education specific to Early Childhood Education/Child Development; Education specific to Management and Administration; and Work Experience and Professional Contributions to the field.

The Gateway ECE Credential is appropriate for professionals working in early childhood settings. It is awarded at six (6) levels ranging from Level 1 (an entry level credential earned by completing a 48 clock-hour training covering many topics related to leading programs for this age group, birth to 8 years of age, including but not limited to human development) to Level 6, which is the Graduate Level Credential. ECE Credential Levels 2-6 have requirements in General Education, Early Childhood Education, Work/Practicum Experience and Professional Contributions to the field.

The Gateways Infant Toddler Credential (ITC) is a specialization for the ECE Credential and is appropriate for professionals working with children younger than three years of age. It is awarded at five levels from Level 1 (12 ECE credits and 3 Infant Toddler credits) to Level 6 (Graduate Degree). Levels 2-6 have requirements in General Education, Early Childhood Education specific to Infants/Toddlers, Work/Practicum Experience specific to Infants/Toddlers, and Professional Contributions specific to Infants/Toddlers.

The Gateways School-Age/Youth Development (SAYD) Credential Level 1 (implemented in FY15) is an entry level/48 clock-hour training covering many topics related to leading programs for this age group (8 - 18 years of age), including but not limited to human development; health and safety; program development; community relations; communication with parents, and others. SAYD Credential Levels 2-5 (implemented in FY16) have requirements in General Education, Early Childhood Education, Work/Practicum Experience and Professional Contributions for the field.

The Gateways Family Child Care Credential (FCC) is for professionals working as a family child care provider with children ages birth through 12 years. It is awarded at four levels from Level 2 (6 credits in ECE/SA plus 3 credits in FCC) to Level 5 (Baccalaureate Degree). Levels 2-5 have requirements in General Education, Early Childhood Education, Family Child Care (FCC), Work/Practicum Experience and Professional Contribution specific to ECE and FCC. This credential was first awarded in FY16.

The Gateways Family Specialist Credential (FSC) is for direct service professionals who work with families using a strength-based model to promote optimal child care family outcomes. It is awarded at four levels from Level 2 (6 credits if FSC content) to level 5 (Baccalaureate Degree). Level 2-5 have requirements in General Education, Education specific to Family Specialists, Work/Practicum Experience and Professional Contribution specific to FSC. This credential was first awarded in FY16.

The Gateways Technical Assistance Credential (TA) is designed for professionals working in a variety of roles that relate to relationship-based professional development, such as technical assistance providers, coaches, mentors, and professional development advisors. It is awarded at three (3) levels: Associate, Bachelor, and Graduate. This credential has requirements in: General Education; Education specific to Early Childhood/School Age (EC/SA), and EC/SA coaching, mentoring or technical assistance, Work Experience specific to Early Childhood/School Age (EC/SA), EC/SA coaching or technical assistance, and Professional Contributions to the field. This credential was first awarded in FY16.

Credential First Awarded In FY15 FY16 FY17 Total Awarded*
ECE Credential - Level 1 FY06 1,773 2,720 7,062 14,529
ECE Credential - Levels 2-6 FY08 3,238 3,279 2,539 9,997
Infant Toddler Credential FY09 1,218 1,254 1,097 4,226
Illinois Director Credential FY00 495 582 494 2,268
SAYD Credential - Level 1 FY11 50 60 62 332
School-Age Credential - Levels 2-6 FY16 78 183** 261
Youth Development Credential FY16 37 ** 37
Family Child Care Credential FY16 113 141 254
Family Specialist Credential FY16 107 127 234
Technical Assistance Credential 12 50 62
Total 6,774 8,242 11,755 32,200

*Includes credentials awarded prior to FY14

**In FY17 instead of having separate School-Age Credential and Youth Development Credential, they were combined as one "School-Age and Youth Development Credential".

During FY16, the Governor's Children's Cabinet was established to ensure that all children and youth in Illinois are healthy, safe, well-educated and self-sufficient by age 25. One of its focuses is the Early Childhood Workforce project designed to promote and support a strong pipeline and alignment of career pathways for a diverse, well-qualified early childhood care and education workforce. Attainment of the ECE Credential Level 1 was a priority strategy under promoting and supporting a strong pipeline. Between February and June, 2017, the strategy had resulted in 6,135 ECE Level 1 credentials attained.

For more detailed information about any of the programs contained in this report, visit:

www.dhs.state.il.us

www.ilgateways.com

www.excelerateillinois.com

www.inccrra.org

This publication is created to comply with State Statute 20 ILCS 505/5.15