DCF 251.06 Note
Note: A list of approved sanitizers is available from the Department of Health Services, Division of Public Health, P.O. Box 2659, Madison, WI 53701-2659.
Food shall be clean, wholesome, free from spoilage, free from adulteration or misbranding and safe for human consumption. Meat, poultry, fish, molluscan shellfish, eggs and dairy products shall be from an inspected source.
Only milk and milk products which are pasteurized and meet the Grade A milk standards of the Wisconsin department of agriculture, trade, and consumer protection may be served or used.
Meals shall be prepared on the premises, in a central kitchen operated by the child care center or in another location that has been inspected by a representative of a state agency.
DCF 251.06 Note
Chapter ATCP 75
, subch. III, addresses restaurants and other public eating establishments. Chapter ATCP 75
, subch. II, addresses retail food establishments.
Food in dented, bulging or leaking cans, or cans without labels, may not be used.
Hermetically sealed, non-acid or low-acid food which has been processed in a place other than a commercial food processing establishment may not be used.
Foods shall be stored at temperatures which protect against spoilage. The following measures shall be taken to prevent spoilage:
Perishable and potentially hazardous food which includes all custard-filled and cream-filled pastries, milk and milk products, meat, fish, shellfish, gravy, poultry stuffing and sauces, dressings, salads containing meat, fish, eggs, milk or milk products, and any other food or food product likely to spoil quickly if not kept at the proper temperature shall be continuously maintained at 40°
F. or below or 150°
F. or above, as appropriate, except during necessary periods of preparation and service.
Each refrigeration unit shall be maintained at 40°
F. or lower and each freezing unit shall be maintained at 0°
F. or lower.
Each cold storage facility shall be equipped with a clearly visible accurate thermometer.
Foods not requiring refrigeration shall be stored in clean, dry, ventilated and lighted storerooms or areas which shall be protected from contamination by sewage, wastewater backflow, condensation, leakage or vermin. In addition:
Dry foods, such as flour, sugar, cereals and beans shall be stored in bags with zip-type closures or metal, glass or food-grade plastic containers with tight-fitting covers and shall be labeled. In this paragraph, “food grade plastic" means any plastic material used in the manufacture of dishes or utensils which has been found not harmful to human health by the national sanitation foundation.
Foods stored in the basement shall be stored at least 8 inches above the floor, and food stored in other areas shall be stored high enough above the floor to provide for air circulation and to facilitate cleaning.
Poisonous and toxic materials, including cleaning supplies, bleaches and insecticides, shall be labeled and stored in cabinets used for no other purpose and shall be inaccessible to children.
Cleaning aids such as mops, broom and buckets shall be clean and shall be stored outside of food preparation or food storage areas.
Raw fruits and vegetables shall be washed before being served or cooked.
Food returned from individual plates or from dining tables shall be discarded.
Leftover prepared food which has not been served shall be dated, refrigerated promptly and used within 36 hours, or frozen immediately for later use.
Food delivery vehicles shall be equipped with clean containers or cabinets to store food while in transit. Containers for cold food shall be capable of maintaining the temperature at or below 40°
F. and containers for hot food shall be capable of maintaining the temperature at or above 150°
Potentially hazardous frozen foods shall be thawed in the refrigerator, under cold running water or on the defrost setting in a microwave oven. No potentially hazardous frozen food may be thawed by leaving it at room temperature.
Wear clean clothing and effective hair restraints such as hair nets or caps.
Wash their hands with soap and warm running water before starting work, before and after handling food, and after using the toilet. Hands shall be dried with single use towels.
No one with an open or infected wound or sore may work in the food preparation area unless the wound or sore is covered and, if it is on a hand, a nonporous glove is worn on that hand.
A group child care center shall provide at least the number of washbasins and toilets with plumbing indicated in Table 251.06. Urinals may be substituted for up to 1/3 of the total required toilets.
- See PDF for table
When a center is licensed for more than 70 children, one additional toilet shall be provided for each additional 15 children or fraction thereof and washbasins shall be provided in the ratio of one for every 2 additional toilets and urinals or fraction thereof.
Children under the age of 30 months need not be included when determining the required fixtures under par. (a)
. However, in all cases, at least one toilet and one washbasin shall be provided.
If potty chairs are used for children under 30 months of age, the potty chairs shall be provided in a ratio of one for every 4 children or fraction thereof.
Steps or blocks shall be provided if the washbasins and toilets are not proportioned to the size of the children.
Soap, toilet paper, disposable paper towels or blower-type air dryers and a wastepaper container shall be provided and accessible to children using the facilities.
Toilet room door locks shall be openable from the outside and the opening device shall be readily accessible to the staff.
DCF 251.06(11)(a)(a) Requirement for outdoor play space.
A center shall have outdoor play space if children are present for more than 3 hours per day or if outdoor play is included in the center program.
(b) Required features of outdoor play space.
Except when an exemption is requested and is approved by the department under par. (c)
, a center shall comply with all of the following requirements for outdoor play space:
There shall be at least 75 square feet of outdoor play space for each child 2 years of age or older using the space at a given time.
There shall be at least 35 square feet of outdoor play space for each child under 2 years of age using the space at a given time except as provided in subd. 4.
The total outdoor play space of a center shall accommodate not less than 1/3 of the number of children for which the center is licensed or shall be a minimum of 750 square feet, whichever is greater. The number of children under one year of age need not be included for purposes of computing the minimum required outdoor play space if the center provides spaces in wheeled vehicles such as strollers and wagons equal to the number of children under one year of age.
An energy-absorbing surface, such as loose sand, pea gravel or pine or bark mulch, in a depth of at least 9 inches is required under climbing equipment, swings and slides and in a fall zone of 4 feet beyond and whenever play equipment is 4 feet or more in height. Shredded rubber and poured surfacing shall be installed to the manufacturer's specifications based on the height of the equipment.
The outdoor play space shall be well-drained and shall be free of hazards such as uncovered wells, cisterns and unused appliances. Structures such as playground equipment, railings, decks and porches accessible to children that have been constructed with CCA treated lumber shall be sealed with an exterior oil based sealant or stain. Wood containing creosote, including railroad ties, may not be accessible to children.
The boundaries of the outdoor play space shall be defined by a permanent enclosure not less than 4 feet high to protect the children. Fencing, plants or landscaping may be used to create a permanent enclosure.
Concrete and asphalt are prohibited under climbing equipment, swings and slides.
DCF 251.06 Note
The Consumer Products Safety Commission has a publication entitled Handbook for Public Playground Safety, Pub. No. 325 which provides information on playground safety guidelines designed to help child care centers build safe playgrounds. To obtain copies of this publication and a related public playground safety checklist, contact the Consumer Products Safety Commission at www.cpsc.gov
In this paragraph, “main thoroughfare" means a heavily traveled street or road used by vehicles as a principal route of travel.
If a center has no outdoor play space available on the premises of the center, the licensee may request an exemption from the requirements under par. (b)
for a center's outdoor play space.
A request for an exemption under subd. 1m.
shall be in writing and shall be accompanied by a plan for outdoor play space which does all the following:
Identifies and describes the location to be used, the travel distance from the center to that location and the means of transporting the children to that location.
Provides for adequate supervision of the children as specified in Table 251.05-D.
Describes the arrangements to meet the toileting and diapering needs of the children.
DCF 251.06 Note
Note: Send the request for an exemption and the off-premises outdoor play space plan to the appropriate regional office in Appendix A.
The off-premises outdoor play space shall be free of hazards such as bodies of water, railroad tracks, unfenced in-ground swimming pools, heavily wooded areas and nearby highways and main thoroughfares.
There shall be at least 75 square feet of outdoor play space for each child 2 years of age or older using the space at a given time, and at least 35 square feet of outdoor play space for each child under 2 years of age using the space at a given time.
No climbing equipment, swing or slide in the play space may have concrete or asphalt under it.
When the off-premises outdoor play space is reached by walking, the center shall transport children under 3 years of age in wheeled vehicles, such as strollers or wagons, with a seating capacity equal to the number of children under 3 years of age to be transported.
A center's plan for use of an off-premises outdoor play space is subject to approval by the department. Within 30 days after receipt of a plan and request for an exemption from the requirements of par. (b)
, the department shall either approve the plan and grant the exemption or not approve the plan and therefore deny the request for exemption. The department shall notify the center in writing of its decision and, if it does not grant an exemption, shall state its reasons for not granting the exemption.
If any circumstance described in an approved plan for use of off-premises outdoor play space changes or if any condition for plan approval is not met or is no longer met, the department may withdraw its approval of the plan and cancel the exemption. A center with an approved plan shall immediately report to the department's licensing representative any significant change in any circumstance described in the plan.
Above-ground and in-ground swimming pools, and beaches on the premises may not be used by children in care. Swimming pools shall be enclosed by a 6-foot fence with a self-closing, self-latching door. Spaces between the vertical posts of the fence shall be 4 inches or less. Access to a beach shall be restricted by a 6-foot fence.
A wading pool on the premises may be used if the water is changed and the pool is disinfected daily. Supervision and staff-to-child ratio requirements under s. DCF 251.05 (3)
shall be met.
A wading pool, pool, water attraction or beach that is not located on the center premises may be used by children, if all the following conditions are met:
The construction and operation of the pool shall meet the requirements of chs. SPS 390
and ATCP 76
for public swimming pools. A beach shall comply with any applicable local ordinance.
While children are in the water of a pool, wading pool, water attraction or beach, staff-to-child ratios for child care workers who can swim shall be:
When a mixed age group of children are swimming, the staff-to-child ratio shall be adjusted based on the number of children in the water and each child's age.
DCF 251.06 Note
Note: A worksheet to help calculate the staff to child ratio for mixed aged groupings during swimming is available from the department. Requests may be made to the licensing representative or regional licensing office listed in Appendix A.
A child shall be restricted to the area of the pool or beach that is within the child's swimming ability.
If some of the children are in the water and others are not, there shall be at least 2 child care workers supervising the children. One child care worker shall supervise the children who are in the water, and the other child care worker shall supervise children who are not in the water.
DCF 251.06 History
Cr. Register, January, 1997, No. 493
, eff. 8-1-97; r. and recr. (11), Register, September, 1998, No. 513
, eff. 10-1-98; reprinted to restore omitted copy in (11) (b), Register, April, 1999, No. 520
; correction in (1) (a) made under s. 13.93 (2m) (b) 7., Stats.; CR 03-052
: am. (title), (1) (a), (2) (h) and (i), (3) (b) and (c), (6) (b) 2., (9) (b) 3. c., 4. b. and (c) 1., (9) (f) 5., (g) 1., c., (10) (a), Table 46.06 (title), (10) (b), (11) (b) 1. and 2. a., (11) (b) 3. and 6. and (c) 2. (intro.), cr. (2) (k) and (L), (6) (b) 3., (9) (c) 3m. and (11) (c) 1m., renum. (11) (b) 2. b. to d. and 3. a. to d. to be (b) 3. to 9., r. and recr. (12) Register December 2004 No. 588
, eff. 3-1-05; corrections in (6) (b) 1. and (12) (c) 1. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register November 2008 No. 635
; CR 07-102
: am. (2) (a), (3) (intro.), (a) to (c), (4) (j), (6) (b) 1., 3., (9) (d) 2. a., (10) (f), (11) (a), (b) 5. to 7., (12) (a), (b) and (c) 3., cr. (9) (a) 1m. and (12) (c) 6., r. and recr. (9) (b) 4. and 5., r. (9) (c) 3. and (11) (b) 9., renum. (12) (c) to be (12) (c) (intro.) and am. Register December 2008 No. 636
, eff. 1-1-09; corrections in (12) (b) made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register November 2008 No. 635
; correction in (6) (b) 1. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register August 2011 No. 668
; correction in (12) (c) 1. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register January 2012 No. 673
; correction in (12) (c) 1. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register July 2016 No. 727
Each group child care center shall have a written program of activities which are suitable for the developmental level of each child and each group of children. The program shall provide each child with experiences which will promote all of the following:
DCF 251.07 Note
The Wisconsin Model Early Learning Standards are voluntary standards that were designed to help centers develop programs and curriculum to help ensure that children are exposed to activities and opportunities that will prepare them for success in school and into the future. The Standards are primarily intended as guidance on developmentally appropriate expectations and are not intended to be used as a checklist to gauge a child's progress. The Standards are based on scientific research. Copies of the Wisconsin Model Early Learning Standards are available on the Wisconsin Early Childhood Collaborating Partners website at http://www.collaboratingpartners.com/
or through the Child Care Information Center at 1-800-362-7353.