Child Care Center Operators
Health and Safety Training
Produced by the Community Care Licensing Division of the California Department of Social Services
[As a provider speaks with a child off-screen, a first aid kit is visible in the entry area of a child care program.]
Provider: Are you all right? Do you need some help?
Accidents and medical emergencies can happen anytime, anywhere, even in child care facilities that meet or exceed all licensing requirements. And so, when accidents happen, you and those working with you must know how to respond quickly, effectively, and correctly. Not responding correctly to an emergency can be devastating to a child, to a family, and to your child care facility. That’s why health and safety training regulations apply to all licensed child care providers in California, whether you’re running a child care center or operating a family child care home.
[Two licensing representatives speak.]
Community Care Licensing Representative 1:
Before you can be licensed to operate a child care facility in California, you must receive a minimum of 16 hours of training in 3 areas: pediatric cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), pediatric first aid, and preventive health practices.
Community Care Licensing Representative 2:
Community Care Licensing does not directly provide this training. Instead, training approved by the Emergency Medical Services Authority and offered by the American Red Cross and other organizations will enable you to master the skills and techniques you need to keep children well and safe. Also, you’ll need documentation that you’ve received the required training from an approved resource before we can issue your license.
CCL Rep 1:
In addition, child care centers are required to have at least one person on site at all times with documented proof of approved health and safety training. If you, as the licensee, are not present, you need to make certain that other staff members have the required training to address health and safety issues in your absence.
[The host speaks, and the questions she asks are displayed on a white board.]
Which agencies offer the required health and safety training?
[The host speaks as the corresponding content is displayed onscreen.]
CCLD doesn’t directly provide this training. There are four training resources available to you:
- the American Red Cross,
- the American Heart Association,
- accredited colleges or universities,
- and any training facility or course that’s certified by the Emergency Medical Service Authority (EMSA).
What trainings are required of staff and volunteers at my facility?
Before a family child care home can be licensed, the licensee must complete 16 hours of the required health and safety training. Before a child care center can be licensed, the licensee and the director, if this is a separate person, must each complete 16 hours of the required training.
For both family child care and center-based licensees, the following courses are required:
- pediatric CPR,
- pediatric first aid,
- and preventive health practices training.
During daily operations, if the licensee is absent from the facility, there must be one person on site who has completed pediatric CPR and pediatric first aid. Licensees of family child care homes must make sure that at least one staff member with a current, approved course completion card in pediatric first aid and pediatric CPR is on site at all times when children are present, and with the children when they are off site for facility activities.
Although encouraged to, this person is not required to complete the preventive health practices training. Remember, only after everyone required has completed all 16 hours of health and safety training by an approved resource will your facility be licensed to open and accept children for care.
Why should I consider training more people than is required?
While Licensing doesn’t require everyone at your facility to be fully trained in health and safety practices, we encourage you to have as many people who work with you receive some or all of the training delivered in certified courses. Keep in mind that mastering basic CPR and pediatric first aid techniques is relatively inexpensive, and not difficult to do.
[On-screen, certificates of completion for health and safety training are posted on a bulletin board.]
The more staff members at your facility know what to do in case of an accident or health emergency, the more likely they’ll be able to keep the children in your care from suffering unnecessarily. If resources don’t allow you to expand the number of people who receive this certified training, you can still do the following. After you, the licensee, complete the training, you can train your own staff. While this form of training doesn’t allow trainees to receive formal certificates of completion, by sharing what you’ve learned you’re improving the likelihood that all providers at your facility will know what to do in an emergency.
Let’s remember these key points about health and safety training requirements.
- All licensees are required to complete a minimum of 16 hours of certified health and safety training before receiving their child care facility license.
- In addition, directors of child care centers are required to complete the training.
When more staff members at your facility have health and safety training, they are better prepared to respond appropriately to accidents and emergency situations.
State of California