Child Care Facilities
Health and sanitation requirements for operation and maintenance are established by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and regulated by San Juan Basin Public Health.
San Juan Basin Public Health’s Environmental Health program staff work with child care facilities and summer camps by providing both consultations and regulatory inspections. Facilities are inspected per the Colorado Rules and Regulations Governing the Health and Sanitation of Child Care Facilities. Critical violations are those that are more likely to cause illness.
One inspection may not represent the overall, long-term safety practices of a facility. On any given day, a facility may have greater or fewer violations than noted in the most recent regulatory inspection.
Inspections are public records, and a copy of an official inspection report may be obtained through an Open Records Request.
Child care centers and summer camps are licensed through the Colorado Office of Early Childhood, Department of Human Services. The licensing process takes approximately 90 days once an application packet is reviewed by the Division of Early Care and Learning. For more information click the link below.
Continuing education for childcare teachers is extremely important and there are several options for you to consider when improving your skills. To access Early Childhood Education Training please see below.
Child care facilities and summer camps providing meals and/or snacks must have adequate food service facilities to accommodate the safe preparation and service of foods provided. Child care centers and summer camps are required to meet Colorado Retail Food Establishment Rules and Regulations unless otherwise stated in Section 7.11 of the Rules and Regulations Governing the Health and Sanitation of Child Care Facilities found below. If a child care facility or camp serves food to the general public a retail food license may be required.
As of May 1, 2017, radon testing is required of existing facilities. New child care facilities opening after January 14, 2016 shall complete radon tests within six months of occupancy. Child care facilities remodeled after the effective date of these rules and regulations shall notify San Juan Basin Public Health of such remodeling in order to assess the need for any additional radon testing. It is best to conduct radon testing September through April.
The results of these tests shall be on file at each facility and available for review.
This requirement does not apply to non-building based programs such as mobile school age child care programs.
Properly using sanitizers in child care centers and summer camps is vital in stopping the spread of disease and ensuring the health of children. While not using a high enough concentration of sanitizer may not be effective, too high a concentration can leave chemical residues also harmful to health. Bleach is the most commonly used sanitizer; for mixing instructions please follow SJBPH Sanitizer Guidance.
The Colorado Board of Health (CBOH) at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) require that schools (including licensed child cares, preschools, camps, etc.) have records of immunization or exemptions on file for every enrolled student (6 CCR 1009-2). This means that each enrolled student will have a “school immunization record” which includes one or more of the following forms:
If a parent provides a medical or clinic record that shows proof of immunizations, those immunizations are to be transcribed onto the Certificate of Immunization. If you are enrolled in the Colorado Immunization Information System (CIIS), referred to as the Immunization Registry, you may be able to download the Certificate of Immunization with student vaccine dates included in the form.
If a student has an incomplete immunization record or needs to update the record, the school will give the parents/guardians “direct personal notification.” The parent/guardian will then have 14 days to get the required vaccines(s) for their child or have an appointment to get the vaccine(s). If additional vaccines are needed the parent will provide a written plan to receive the remaining vaccines(s). If a student does not receive the required vaccine(s) or did not follow up on the plan to get the vaccine(s) after the parent received the 14 day “direct personal notification,” that student will not be allowed to attend your child care/preschool according to the school immunization law.
- Direct Personal Notification Form
- Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment Child Care Immunizations Resources
- San Juan Basin Public Health Immunizations Program
Reporting Communicable Disease
Child care centers and summer camps are required to report suspected communicable disease outbreaks and reportable diseases to local public health.