WAC 110-300 FAQs

This page provides answers to questions submitted by licensors and early learning providers. They are divided into the corresponding WAC section with each question assigned to an associated WAC number. If you have any questions, email dcyf.wacqanda@dcyf.wa.gov.

The DCYF Child Care Licensing Quality Assurance Council is comprised of licensing staff and leaders from across the state. The members contribute field experience, WAC knowledge and expertise with provider guidance and support. The council helps to ensure consistent guidance is provided to the provider community and the licensing workforce statewide.

(0001 – 0030) Intent and Authority

WAC 110-300-0005

Please refer to the definition of Suspend in WAC 110-300-0005 which describes this. Additionally, refer to WAC 110-300-0443 which describes licensing enforcement actions, notice and appeal for more information.

WAC 110-300-0005

As long as the other licensee is present on-site and following all required rules including, ratio and supervision, there are no restrictions on co-owner absences. However, both owners are ultimately responsible for the early learning program license whether they are present or not. Please refer to WAC 110-300-0015 regarding licensee absences. There is no plan to change the WAC at this time.

WAC 110-300-0010

DCYF is unable to define this because it is a case-by-case determination based on the unique variables involved in each set of circumstances.

WAC 110-300-0015

If the provider has an emergency and is unable to submit the written notification of absence, a phone call must be made as soon as possible to the licensor to inform the department of their absence. The qualified individual left in charge of the early learning program must then submit written notification to the department and parents that will cover all items under (3).

WAC 110-300-0015

Under 110-300-0015, a written plan is required when an early learning provider will be absent for fewer than 10 days. Providers are only required to notify DCYF, if the absence will be longer than ten days.

WAC 110-300-0015

As long as the other licensee is present on-site and following all required rules including, ratio and supervision. there are no restrictions on co-owner absences. However, both owners are ultimately responsible for the license whether they are present or not.

WAC 110-300-0015 (2)

WAC requires the licensee to have a written plan in place to guide staff who will oversee operations during the licensee’s absence and while the program remains open for the care of children. This is true regardless of whether the director, assistant director or program supervisor is gone for one or more days. Under this subsection, written notification is required when a director, assistant director and program supervisor will be simultaneously absent for more than 10 consecutive days. Therefore, a verbal notification would not meet the requirement. A written notification to DCYF is NOT required if the director, assistant director or program supervisor’s simultaneous absence is less than 10 consecutive days.

Providers can develop a written communication that works best for their business and use their own discretion as to the method they use to supply each family with written notification. It is important that providers ensure that every family receives advance written notification, even if their child(ren) are not in care.

WAC 110-300-0016

At the time of licensure, the applicant would need to provide a certificate that orientation was completed within the last 12 months.

WAC 110-300-0016(1)

WAC 110-300-0016 (1) states that if the closure is a departure from the program's regular schedule they need to notify the Department. If the closure is part of their regular schedule, the program does not need to do anything different.

WAC 110-300-0016(6)

In accordance with WAC 110-300-0016 (8) A licensee is still responsible for maintaining annual compliance requirements during inactive status pursuant to RCW 43.216.305. Everything related to background check rules must be maintained during inactive status.

WAC 110-300-0020(2)

The valid complaint finding would remain valid, as the person was found to be providing unlicensed child care at the time of the complaint. DCYF is currently addressing the question of the posting of valid unlicensed complaints on Child Care Check as well as in Compass.
WAC 110-300-0010 (3)(a) states that the department’s written notice must inform the individual or agency providing unlicensed child care that the individual or agency must stop providing child care, pursuant to RCW 43.216.360. Technical assistance can be offered to the definition of “agency” noted in RCW 43.216.010 as it relates to those exempt from licensing. DCYF’s priority is to work with individuals and agencies to obtain child care licenses, to promote the development, health, and safety of children enrolled in early learning programs.

WAC 110-300-0020(3)

DCYF is currently working on posting requirements for unlicensed complaint findings in Child Care Check as well as in Compass. Until changes are made, all reporting and posting will follow current practices.

WAC 110-300-0020(4)

Yes, DCYF would have to wait the stated 30 days before posting information about an unlicensed provider. If the provider complied with subsection 0020(2) DCYF would not be allowed to post the information stated in subsection 0020(4) online about the unlicensed provider.

WAC 110-300-0030

These types of decisions regarding inclusive care and "posing a threat" will be individually based and also how the program can meet the individual needs of a child as well as the needs of other children in the program. . Here is further information regarding Sec.36.208 Direct threat.

(a) This part does not require a public accommodation to permit an individual to participate in or benefit from the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages and accommodations of that public accommodation when that individual poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others.
(b) Direct threat means a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated by a modification of policies, practices, or procedures, or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services.
(c) In determining whether an individual poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others, a public accommodation must make an individualized assessment, based on reasonable judgment that relies on current medical knowledge or on the best available objective evidence, to ascertain: the nature, duration, and severity of the risk; the probability that the potential injury will actually occur; and whether reasonable modifications of policies, practices, or procedures will mitigate the risk.

WAC 110-300-0030

Almost all child care providers, regardless of size or number of employees, must comply with the ADA. Even small, home-based centers that may not have to follow some State laws are covered. The exception is child care centers that are actually run by religious entities such as churches, mosques, or synagogues. Activities controlled by religious organizations are not covered by the ADA.

WAC 110-300-0030

If you have questions regarding ADA and any specific requirements connected to your program, DCYF cannot give legal advice regarding specific compliance with the ADA. Please contact an attorney if you have these type of questions.

WAC 110-300-0030

Under the ADA, a provider is not required to remodel or rebuild an already existing structure to accommodate every potential disability. A provider is only required to make “reasonable modifications” to allow a specific person with a disability to participate equally with non-disabled peers. This may be an employee, a child with a disability who wants to enroll in your program, or the parent with a disability or relative of an enrolled child who wishes to attend program events. Providers and people with a disability are encouraged to discuss ways to achieve reasonable modifications. Please consult the resources listed here or your attorney to determine whether you may need to make reasonable modifications.

ADA guidance

WA Human Rights Commission Disability & Public Accommodation

Employment & Discrimination

WAC 110-300-0030(2)

WAC 110-300-0030 has two subsections. Subsection 0030(2) requires a provider to "have a written nondiscrimination policy addressing at least the factors listed in subsection (1) of this section." Subsection 0030(1) lists "race, creed, ethnicity, national origin, marital status, gender, sexual orientation, class, age, religion, or ability" as factors upon which a provider is not allowed to base discrimination in employment or client services. Accordingly, WAC 110-300-0030 requires that a provider must not discriminate in how they employee people or treat clients and requires a written nondiscrimination policy that addresses at least the factors of race, creed, ethnicity, national origin, marital status, gender, sexual orientation, class, age, religion, or ability.


WAC 110-300-0005—which does not go into effect until August 1, 2019—defines a family home early learning program as “an early learning program licensed by the department where a family home licensee provides child care or education services for twelve or fewer children in the family living quarters where the licensee resides as provided in RCW 43.216.010 (1)(c) (family day care provider).” This definition does not distinguish between buildings on the early learning premises that are or are not part of the family living quarters. For instance, a family home early learning program may have several buildings on the property not used for early learning programs, or it may have none. Both scenarios are allowed under this definition.

However, the definition of “licensed space” makes a distinction between space used for early learning programs and space that is not used for early learning programs. WAC 110-300-0005 defines “licensed space as “the indoor and outdoor space on the premises approved by the department for the purpose of providing licensed child care.” This WAC section also defines “premises” to mean the licensed and unlicensed space at the licensed address including, but not limited to, buildings, land, and residences.”

Taken together, a family home early learning program is located on a specific piece of property (the “premises”) and this property would contain the licensee’s living quarters and may contain additional buildings that are not part of the licensee’s living quarters. The premises may have buildings, rooms, or land approved for early learning program use (the “licensed space”) and buildings, rooms, or land not approved for early learning program use (the “unlicensed space”).

All the buildings at the address, where the early learning services are provided, are included in the premises. If there is more than one different address, the property owner may be able to file for a licensing waiver or variance for some of the buildings.