Missouri eases some childcare regulations during the coronavirus outbreak

While Missouri schools are closed, the state says licensed child care providers can use emergency school closing rules. This allows daycares to take in enrolled school-age children.

Other changes include:
•The state is letting providers exceed the license capacity of their location by 1/3 during this time.
•Short-term 45-day licenses are available that can be renewed.
•It has loosened some regulations for record keeping and to allow providers to extend their hours.

“We recognize that child care is an essential component of fighting COVID-19,” says Dr. Randall Williams, director of DHSS. “Health care and other emergency medical personnel must have appropriate arrangements for their children to ensure they can provide the health care and other essential services needed by our communities.”

The Department of Social Services has taken other actions:
•Child Care Subsidy program benefits are extended for 90 days.
•The Child Care Subsidy program can pay for additional hours of care for a child’s attendance due to school closure or the parent is required to work additional hours.
•Child Care Subsidy provider application renewals are extended for 90 days.

The state is also working closely with Child Care Aware of Missouri, a resource and referral agency that assists parents in locating child care. Parents who are looking for child care can call 1-866-892-3228 to speak with a referral specialist. They can also access these services online at https://www.mo.childcareaware.org/. There is no cost to parents for these services.

Child Care Subsidy benefit recipients who need additional child care hours or any low-income families who want to apply for assistance with child care costs are encouraged to reach out to the Family Support Division for help. Missourians can apply for services online by visiting MyDSS.mo.gov, over the phone by calling 1-855-FSD-INFO, or in-person at their nearest Family Support Division Resource Center.

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