Child care should be authorized based on the parent’s verified schedule and the child’s need for care. Enter child care authorizations for the entire twelve (12) month eligibility period when available. When it is known that an authorization will change during the eligibility period, enter the authorizations in blocks of time in the system.
EXAMPLE: Mrs. Smith’s eligibility period is from January to December. Mrs. Smith’s daughter, Mary, attends school. Authorize Mary to the selected child care provider from January 1st to May 15th, when school ends. Enter Mary’s summer authorization beginning May 15th through August 15th. Mary begins school on August 16th, so begin her school authorization on August 16th till the end of the authorization period of December 31st. Enter authorizations for the entire eligibility period at the time application is approved or upon notification from the parent after the application is approved.
School Age Children
During the school year, authorize before and after school units of care based on the parent’s schedule for a child enrolled in school. The authorization should include 5 fulltime day units of care September through April to allow for payment of days when school is not in session.
When a child who is (7) years or older must be authorized more than (5) fulltime daytime units of care, a supervisor must enter the authorization into the system.
Two Parent Households
If both parents are engaged in a valid need, base the child’s authorization on the schedule when both parents are engaged in a valid need at the same period of time and the child is not in school.
EXAMPLE: Mrs. Smith works from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm Monday through Friday. Mr. Smith attends an approved training program on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 2:00 to 6:00 pm. Their daughter, Mary, is one (1) year old. Mr. Smith drops Mary off at the child care facility at 1:30 pm and Mrs. Smith picks Mary up after work at 5:00 pm on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Based on Mr. and Mrs. Smith’s work and training schedules, Mary has a need for care from 1:30 pm – 5:00 pm three (3) days per week. As Mary is in care for three and one half (3 ½) hours per day, three (3) days per week, she should be authorized for 13 half time daytime units of care per month (3 days X 4.333 rounds to 13 days).
Child care may be authorized for sleep time if the household is employed any part of a shift that is between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. The following should be taken into consideration when authorizing sleep time:
- Units of care should be authorized only on days that follow an over-night work schedule.
- Units of care should only be authorized during the hours the child is not in school or is not home schooled.
- Units of care should be authorized for a two-parent household when the second parent is engaged in another valid need and unavailable to care for the child.
If travel time is required, the authorization can include the time the parent travels from the child care provider to work, job training or other activity and from work, job training or other activity to the child care provider. Authorize travel time a maximum of (1) one hour each way based on reasonable need taking into consideration distance, mode of travel and time of day travel occurs. Do not authorize travel time from home to the child care provider or from the child care provider to home. Do not authorize travel time if the parent is engaged in a valid need at the same location where the child care is provided.
Continuity of Care
Child Care authorizations may continue if the eligibility unit is enrolled in a valid need and a temporary change occurs. Temporary changes that could occur include but are not limited to:
- Winter or Spring break from school;
- Temporary factory shut-down;
- Scheduled employer closings;
- Medical leave; or
- Maternity/paternity leave.