A review of child abuse and neglect laws and center reporting procedures.
Information on any special needs a child being transported may have and the plan for how those needs will be met.
Prior to the day a driver first transports children in care and annually thereafter, the licensee shall obtain a copy of the driving record for each driver and place the record in the staff file. The licensee shall review each driving record to ensure that the driver has no accidents or traffic violations that would indicate that having children ride with the driver could pose a threat to the children.
In determining whether a driver may pose a threat to the children, the licensee shall consider the totality of the driver's record, any other relevant facts, and the following factors in combination:
A driver whose driving record indicates that the driver poses a threat to the children may not transport children.
Except as provided in subd. 2.
, a driver of a vehicle that is transporting children in care may not use a cellular phone or other wireless telecommunication device while loading, unloading, or transporting children, except when the vehicle is out of traffic, not in operation, and any of the following applies:
The phone or device is used to communicate with the center regarding an emergency situation.
A navigation device may be used during transportation if the device is programmed to a destination when the vehicle is out of traffic and not in operation.
The licensee shall ensure that each vehicle that is used to transport children is all of the following:
Registered with the Wisconsin department of transportation or the appropriate authority in another state.
Clean, uncluttered, and free of obstruction on the floors, aisles, and seats.
At 12-month intervals the licensee shall provide the department with evidence of a vehicle's safe operating condition on a form provided by the department.
DCF 251.08 Note
The department's form, Vehicle Safety Inspection
, is used to record evidence of the vehicle's safe operating condition. Information on how to obtain forms is available on the department's website, https://dcf.wisconsin.gov/cclicensing/ccformspubs
At least once per year, the licensee shall make available to the department each vehicle that is required to have a child safety alarm under sub. (8) (a)
to determine whether the child safety alarm is in good working order.
No person may transport a child under 8 years of age in a motor vehicle, unless the child is restrained in a child safety restraint system that is appropriate to the child's age and size and in accordance with s. 347.48
Stats., and ch. Trans 310
Each child who is not required to be in an individual child car safety seat or booster seat when being transported under par. (a)
shall be properly restrained by a seat belt in accordance with s. 347.48
, Stats., and ch. Trans 315
Children transported in school buses or vehicles built to school bus standards shall be properly seated according to the manufacturer's specifications.
Children under 13 years of age who are in the care of the center may not ride in the front seat of a vehicle.
The center shall be responsible for a child from the time the child is placed in a vehicle until the children reaches his or her destination and is released to a person responsible for the child. A parent of a school age child may authorize a child to enter a building unescorted.
DCF 251.08 Note
The form Transportation Permission - Child Care Centers
may be used to designate an adult to receive a child being transported. Forms are available on the department's website at https://dcf.wisconsin.gov/cclicensing/ccformspubs
When children are transported in a vehicle, there shall be at least one adult supervisor in addition to the driver whenever there are more than 3 children who are either under 2 years of age or who have a disability that limits their ability to respond to an emergency.
The licensee shall develop and implement a procedure to ensure that all children exit the vehicle after being transported to a destination.
No child may be in a vehicle for transport to or from a center, a field trip, or other center activity for more than 60 minutes for a one-way trip.
A vehicle shall be equipped with a child safety alarm that prompts the driver to inspect the vehicle for children before exiting if all of the following conditions apply:
The vehicle is owned or leased by a licensee or a contractor of a licensee.
The vehicle has a seating capacity of 6 or more passengers plus the driver. The seating capacity of the vehicle shall be determined by the manufacturer.
No person may shut off a child safety alarm unless the driver first inspects the vehicle to ensure that no child is left unattended in the vehicle.
The child safety alarm shall be in good working order each time the vehicle is used for transporting children to or from a center.
DCF 251.08 Note
Information on the required vehicle safety alarm is available in the “child care licensing/information for providers” section of the department website at http://dcf.wisconsin.gov
DCF 251.08 History
Cr. Register, January, 1997, No. 493
, eff. 8-1-97; CR 03-052
: r. and recr. (3) and (7), am. (4) (b) and (5) (d), cr. (4) (d) Register December 2004 No. 588
, eff. 3-1-05; CR 07-102
: am. (1), (3) (b), (4) (d), (5) (b) 1. and (6) (b), r. and recr. (2) (a), cr. (3) (c), (4) (b) 2. to 5. and (5) (e), renum. (4) (b) to be (4) (b) 1. and am. Register December 2008 No. 636
, eff. 1-1-09; CR 14-028
: cr. (8) Register July 2016 No. 727
, eff. 8-1-16; EmR1918
: emerg. r. and recr., eff. 1-30-19; CR 19-089
: r. and recr. Register March 2020 No. 771
, eff. 4-1-20.
DCF 251.09 Additional requirements for infant and toddler care. DCF 251.09(1)(a)(a)
Group child care centers providing care and supervision to infants and toddlers shall comply with the additional requirements of this section.
Prior to admission, the licensee shall obtain written information from a child's parent or guardian to individualize the program of care for the child. Child care workers shall use the information obtained from parents to provide care to the child. Information shall include all of the following:
DCF 251.09 Note
The licensee may use the department's form, Intake for Child Under 2 Years — Child Care Centers, or the licensee's own form to record information for individualizing the program of care for each child. Information on how to obtain the department's form is available on the department's website, http://dcf.wisconsin.gov
, or from any regional licensing office in Appendix A.
Admission information for an infant or toddler shall be on file in the room or area to which the child is assigned and shall be known to the child care worker.
Child care workers shall document changes in a child's development and routines every 3 months based on discussion with the parent.
Each infant and toddler shall be cared for by a regularly assigned child care worker in a self-contained room or area.
The regularly assigned child care teacher and assistant child care teacher for each group of infants and toddlers shall have a minimum of 10 hours of training in infant and toddler care approved by the department within 6 months after assuming the position. If the training is not part of the required preservice entry-level training under s. DCF 251.05 (3) (f)
it shall be obtained through continuing education.
Infants and toddlers are restricted to first floors and ground floors having direct grade-level exits unless the building is in compliance with all applicable building codes that permit children to be cared for on other levels. The building inspection report on file with the licensing office shall indicate where care may be provided for children under 30 months of age.
For centers licensed on or after January 1, 2009, the space occupied by cribs shall be deducted in determining the 35 square feet space requirement under s. DCF 251.06 (7) (a)
for each child.
The number of children under one year of age admitted at any one time may not exceed the number of cribs and playpens.
Cribs and playpens shall contain a tight fitting mattress and any mattress covering shall fit snugly over the mattress. Water beds may not be used by children under age 2.
Sheets or blankets used to cover a child one year of age or older shall be kept away from the child's mouth and nose, and if sleeping in a crib or playpen shall be tucked tightly under the mattress.
A child under one year of age may not sleep in a crib or playpen that contains soft or loose materials, such as sheepskins, pillows, blankets, flat sheets, bumper pads, bibs, pacifiers with attached soft objects, or stuffed animals. No blankets and other items may be hung on the sides of the crib or playpen.
(2) Daily program.
In addition to the requirements under s. DCF 251.07
, all of the following apply to the care of infants and toddlers:
Child care workers shall respond promptly to a crying child's needs.
Each infant and each toddler shall be allowed to form and follow his or her own pattern of sleeping and waking.
Each child under one year of age shall be placed to sleep on his or her back in a crib unless otherwise specified in writing by the child's physician. The child shall be allowed to assume the position most comfortable to him or her when able to roll over unassisted.
Emphasis in activities shall be given to play as a learning and growth experience.
Throughout the day each infant and each toddler shall receive physical contact and attention such as being held, rocked, talked to, sung to and taken on walks inside and outside the center.
Routines relating to activities such as taking a nap, eating, diapering and toileting shall be used as occasions for language development and other learning experiences.
When a non-mobile child is awake, the child care worker shall change the child's body position and location in the room periodically. Non-mobile children who are awake shall be placed on their stomach occasionally throughout the day.
The non-walking child who can creep or crawl shall be given opportunities during each day to move freely by creeping and crawling in a safe, clean, open, warm and uncluttered area.
Child care workers shall encourage infants and toddlers to play with a wide variety of safe toys and objects.
When infants and toddlers are taken outdoors for a walk, equipment, such as strollers or wagons, shall be provided.
An adult-size rocking chair or other adult-size chair shall be provided for each child care worker.