Child Care Centers
Most child care centers with six or more children below age 13 must be licensed. They must meet basic standards for staff, numbers of children and space. In New Jersey, child care centers are licensed and inspected by the Department of Children and Families, Office of Licensing. To contact the Office of Licensing, call 877/667-9845 or visit The Department of Children and Families. Child care centers generally group children by age, allowing children to interact and learn with their peers. Some centers are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children which means they have met high standards for staff, curriculum, health & safety and staff to child ratios.
Family Child Care
Family child care providers care for five or less children in their own home. They are self-employed and are not required to be licensed. Community Child Care Solutions only provides referrals to family child care homes that are State-registered. Anyone caring for 6 or more children is operating a child care center and must be licensed.
Family child care providers may choose to register with the State of New Jersey. Community Child Care Solutions administers Family Child Care in Middlesex and Somerset Counties. We register caregivers who provide child care in their homes. They must meet health, safety, and training standards. Once providers earn their State registration certificate, they must renew every three years. Family Child Care providers may also become accredited through the National Association of Family Child Care Providers.
Ages of Children in Family Child Care:
- The provider shall care for no more than 3 children below one year of age unless a second caregiver is present.
- The provider shall care for no more than 4 children below two years of age unless a second caregiver is present.
- If the provider is caring for 3 children below 1 year, or 4 children below 2 years of age, a second caregiver must be present to provide care for any additional children under 6 years of age.
Before and After School Care
Before- and after-school (or school-age care) programs are for children ages 5 and older. Afterschool programs can be in schools, rec centers, or child care centers. Many, but not all, school-age child care programs must be licensed. Community Child Care Solutions only provides referrals to licensed programs or those that are legally exempt from licensing.
Summer camp programs offer full- or part-day summer activities. Many after school programs operate as full day programs during the summer. The certification of youth day camps that operate only in the summer falls under the New Jersey Department of Health Public Health, Sanitation & Safety Program. Community Child Care Solutions only refers camps that are licensed by the Department of Children and Families, Office of Licensing or certified by the New Jersey Department of Health Public Health, Sanitation & Safety Program.
Head Start provides developmental and social services to low-income children and their families. The Administration of Children and Families in Washington DC administers this program. There is a special focus on helping preschoolers develop the early reading and math skills they need to be successful in school.
Head Start programs help children get ready for school through educational, health, nutritional, social, and other services for children and families. They involve parents in their children’s learning and help them in making progress toward their education, reading, and job goals. The involvement of parents is important in Head Start programs.
Public School education is offered starting at age three in the cities of New Brunswick and Perth Amboy. The family must live in the city of New Brunswick or Perth Amboy. The child must be three or four on or before the birthday cutoff date to start school that year. This program includes before and after school and summer care for income eligible families.
To contact the New Brunswick Board of Education, call (732) 745-5300.
To contact the Perth Amboy Board of Education, call (732) 376-6200.
Limited Public School education for preschool children is offered in some other cities.