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Providing Child Care Star Rated License Provider Forms Professional Development Provider Contacts Provider Resources
How Points are Earned
Increasing Star Rating
Sample License
Star Rated License FAQs

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Request for a Rated License Assessment


In September 2000, the Division issued star rated licenses to all eligible child care centers and family child care homes. (Note: Religious-sponsored child care programs will continue to operate with a Notice of Compliance and do not receive a star rating unless they choose to apply.)

Then, in 2005, the Division changed the way facilities earned stars in order to more accurately reflect indicators of a program’s quality. Under the original star rated license, facilities were evaluated on three components:

  • Program Standards
  • Staff Education
  • Compliance History with Child Care Regulations

The new rules make a 75% “compliance history” a minimum standard for any licensed facility. Because it is now a minimum requirement, newly licensed facilities (and eventually all programs as they transition to the revised rated license) earn their star rating based only on the two components that give the best indication of quality:

  • Staff education
  • Program Standards

In addition, programs having a two component license can earn a “quality point” for meeting enhanced standards for staff education and program standards.

By 2008, your program will need to transition to the two component license. Contact your child care consultant or call DCD at 919-662-4547 for more information on requesting an evaluation for the two component license. Click here and then specifically to What occurs when an Environment Rating Scale Assessment is done to find out how programs are assessed for the two component license.

Why "Star Rated Licenses"?

North Carolina moved to this system in 2000 for many reasons. It allows your child care program to be recognized for the higher quality care that you are already providing. In the previous system your program's individual strengths were not highlighted. For Family Child Care Homes, there was not any way to indicate being recognized for providing higher quality care.

Be sure to explore other pertinent star rated license information in order to:

  • Understand how points are calculated
  • Learn how a star rating can be increased
  • See a sample license
  • Read the most frequently asked questions about star rated licenses

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