Colorado resumes some regular child care group sizes

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DENVER (June 3, 2020) — Gov. Jared Polis has announced that certain child care providers in Colorado may return to regular group sizes and licensed capacity as stated in Colorado child care licensing rules beginning Thursday, June 4. This guidance is applicable to child care centers, family child care homes, and building-based school-age child care programs only. It does not include school-age day camps, license-exempt youth programs, or children’s resident camps. 

School-age day camps and license-exempt youth programs are currently allowed to operate with smaller ratios as outlined in guidance from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). Resident camps are still not allowed to operate. Further guidance on children’s resident camps will be released in mid-June. 

“Providing Colorado families with safe, affordable and accessible high-quality child care is key to the state’s recovery from COVID-19,” said Michelle Barnes, executive director of the Colorado Department of Human Services. “Unfortunately, child care providers, like so many small businesses, have faced significant challenges during these unprecedented times. Returning to regular group sizes will help child care businesses keep their doors open, and will ensure more Colorado families who need access to child care are able to find it, particularly families participating in the Colorado Child Care Assistance Program.” 

Child care providers must still adhere to other health and safety guidelines as outlined by CDPHE. This includes maintaining physical distancing of 6 feet whenever possible. Standard child care licensing rules do allow for approximately this level of physical distancing, as facilities must have 35 square feet per child for infants and 30 square feet per child for preschool and school-age children. Providers are also encouraged to engage children in outdoor play as much as possible, as this is a safer way for children to interact while still maintaining physical distancing. More information about current guidelines in child care facilities can be found on CDPHE's COVID-19 website. More information on child care licensing can be found on the Colorado Office of Early Childhood’s website. 

For individual assistance with questions, please contact Colorado Child Care Licensing at 303.866.5948 or 1.800.799.5876. 

Media contact:
Madlynn Ruble
Deputy Director of Communications