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Military Access to Quality Family Child Care


Key Message

In many cases, Defense Department-certified military family child care providers must also be licensed or registered by the state when simply caring for DOD children. By recognizing military family child care certification, in lieu of requiring state licensing, states can enhance access to military child care and reduce the time on waitlists. States can also support Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood-PLUS, which increases access for active-duty, National Guard and reserve families.


By providing a provisional license, or by exempting family child care providers from licensure and registration that is duplicative of the certification they receive from the military services, states enhance the quality of life and economic security of both the providers and military families seeking qualified child care options.


According to a recent report, the Defense Department was in need of 1,433 family child care providers to meet the demands of military communities. But in fiscal year 2021, the department reported having only 727 available providers, an almost 50% deficit.

State Policymakers

If you are a state policymaker, request more information.