Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) Provider Resources

As announced by Governor Gina Raimondo in today’s press conference, a reopening for child care providers under new regulations is planned for June 1, 2020.

Accordingly, the State extends its mandated closure of child care sites, family and center, through May 31, 2020 and the Department of Human Services (DHS) will continue its suspension of all child care licenses issued through that date as well pursuant to R.I. General Laws § 42-12.5-1 et seq. DHS is issuing this emergency suspension pursuant to R.I. General Laws § 42-35-14.

The State’s plans to reopen child care for June 1st is aligned with the Governor’s broader Reopening RI, a phased and flexible plan to safely bring Rhode Island and its economy into a place that is stronger and more resilient with fewer restrictions. It is important to note, timelines for Reopening RI are entirely dependent on the status of the COVID-19 crisis and guidance from our public health experts.

The Department’s first priority is to protect the health and safety of all children and families served in child care programs statewide. We also recognize the need to reopen child care in a way that is economically viable for child care providers who are small business owners.

Our Department will continue to take steps to help position you to reopen. The Department will continue to honor the following CCAP payment practices until June 1st during the state’s mandated closure period.

  • • Reimburse CCAP subsidies based on enrollment, not attendance
  • • Waive the allowable absence policy for CCAP families
  • • Waive all family copays (DHS to cover the cost of these copays in provider payments)

Our Department recognizes the need to thoughtfully reopen safe and developmentally appropriate child care to both support working families and ensure the economic viability of our valued providers. Based on recommendations from our public health experts, RI is exercising additional precautions to protect the health and safety of children and ensure child care programs adhere to public health protections to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

We are asking all providers to develop and submit a COVID-19 plan to the DHS Child Care Licensing team by May 22, 2020 in preparation for reopening on June 1, 2020. To assist you, DHS is having a child care reopening webinar in English on May 6, 2020 at 1PM and in Spanish on May 7, 2020 at 1PM. Both will discuss:

  • • The COVID-19 application process for reopening on June 1, 2020
  • • CCAP payment practices that will be in effect for 13 weeks from June 1, 2020 to August 28, 2020
  • • New emergency regulations, such as reducing group sizes, required screening procedures and limited movement between classrooms. (English and Spanish)
  • • Enhanced health and safety training administered virtually by the Center for Early Learning Professionals (English and Spanish)

A link to register for either webinar will be sent separately in another email early next week. Both webinars will also be taped, shared in an email and posted soon after it takes place.

For providers who submit a COVID-19 plan to reopen on June 1st, they must receive approval from the Department to begin operating. These plans, and a Department approval letter, must be posted in your program in order to begin operating for June 1st. COVID-19 plans should be sent to the DHS Child Care Licensing team by May 22, 2020.

The following CCAP payment practices will go into effect temporarily as our valued providers reopen on June 1st. These practices will be in effect for 13 weeks, from June 1st to August 28th.

  • • For providers who reopen, CCAP services will be reimbursed based on enrollment and not attendance. Providers who do not reopen and are not serving CCAP children will not be reimbursed for CCAP services. Providers will temporarily be able to maintain their Pre-COVID enrollment capacity upon reopening and should only disenroll CCAP families who either lose their eligibility or decide to enroll with a new CCAP provider.
  • • CCAP Providers will see a temporary rate enhancement to support reopening costs. These rates will be posted here and emailed to all providers next week.

If you have child care licensing inquiries in the interim, or would like support from your licensor in completing your COVID-19 plan, please email Child Care Licensing team. For CCAP child care inquiries, such as CCAP enrollment and payment matters, please email Child Care.

Thank you for your cooperation, flexibility and patience as the State continues to do all it can to further prevent the spread of COVID-19 and safely reopen our economy.

Need help navigating the Child Care Assistance Program Provider Portal?

This Quick Reference Guide (QRG), below in English and in Spanish, provides an overview of how to log in, enroll a child, search for and submit attendance and view reports and correspondence.

CCAP Provider Portal QRG English

CCAP Provider Portal QRG Español

CCAP Provider Portal Guide 2018:


Comprehensive Background Check

Comprehensive background checks are an essential component of child care licensing compliance, and is required every five years. A comprehensive background check consists of the following:

    • RI Child Abuse and Neglect Registry Check – only available from the Department of Children, Youth and Families (formerly known as a CANTS check)
    • National FBI Fingerprint Criminal History Check
    • State criminal background check for RI (also known as the BCI) (If fingerprints were conducted in RI, the state check is included in the national. If fingerprints were conducted outside of RI, a state criminal BCI is needed.)
    • State Sex Offender Registry (RISOR)
    • National Sex Offender Registry (NSOR)
    • Interstate Criminal, Sex Offender Registry, and Child Abuse and Neglect Registry (for any individual who has lived outside of Rhode Island in the previous five years)

Effective December 2019, the Rhode Island Attorney General will accept any and all staff members for walk-in fingerprinting. It is imperative to the Child Care Licensing team that you can hire, onboard and train staff to ensure successful adherence to the child care regulations. While you are still able to go to your local and state police barracks if necessary, the Attorney General will fingerprint new hires for you immediately. The cost of the comprehensive background check at the Attorney General’s office will be $40.00.

  • Due to COVID-19, we ask those individuals to contact BCI first in order to make an appointment at 401-274-4400 , ext. 2.

Please provide the fingerprint affidavit (below in English and Spanish) to all child-caring staff upon hire moving forward. It is important that you work with your staff to fill this out entirely, so the complete comprehensive background check can be obtained.

A Helpful Background Check Requirements Infographic is below in English and Spanish.

Review of the RI State Plan for Child Care Assistance

Following a public hearing in June 2018, the federal Administration for Children and Families approved the RI CCAP State Plan 2019-2021. Here is the most recent amendment.

SEIU - Service Employees International Union

SEIU 1199 NE represents health care workers in the New England area and is the selected union representative for family child care providers participating in the Starting RIght Child Care Assistance Program. For more information, please connect to SEIU 1199 NE.

Ways to Strengthen Rhode Island's Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS)

BrightStars Think Tank Recommendations Report

Department of Human Services' Response to the BrightStars Think Tank Recommendations

Implementation Fall 2018 Response

RI Child Care Market Rate Survey 2018

A study was undertaken to determine child care rates charged throughout Rhode Island and, particularly, to establish the 75th percentile rate. The ultimate purpose of this study is to assist DHS in determining the appropriate maximum reimbursement rates for child care services provided to families participating in the DHS Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP).