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Home » Information for Caregivers » Questions and Answers for Caregivers

Questions and Answers for Caregivers

What do I need to do before I open a home daycare?
All caregivers must have a current Police Records Check (less than three years old) prior to opening a home daycare. All adults in the house (over 18) during daycare hours also need to have a current Police Records Check.

CCPRN recommends the following as Best Practices prior to starting: First Aid/CPR training, Liability insurance, Daycare Ryder (extra car insurance) on your car (if you are taking children out in the car), a written contract and other business related papers; and a smoke-free, child-proofed home. Workshops such as: How To Start a Home Day Care, Child Development, Income Tax, Children's Health and Safety are also a good idea - depending on your present education level and your child care experience. CCPRN offers workshops across the City - check out our list of workshops. Please feel free to call us to discuss this further.

How many children can I have in my daycare?
As an independent home child care provider you can provide care for up to 5 daycare children, under the age of 10 at any one time. Please see Ministry Guidelines.

Does CCPRN find client families for me?
CCPRN is not a Home Child Care Agency - it is a Resource Centre. CCPRN provides information, training, resources and support. The support includes two methods for accessing client families: Child Care Connection meetings and access to parents via the website (parents have access to all Member-Caregivers in their search).

Where else can I advertise to find clients?
There are many free websites for this purpose. Click here to see a list.

Can I have more children if I have a helper?
Not if you live in Ontario. Please see Ministry Guidelines.

Can two caregivers work together?
Independent caregivers must have separate dwelling addresses and work addresses. Caregivers may however, meet at the park, go on outings together etc. Please call the Ministry of Children and Youth Services: Early Learning and Child Development Branch at 613-787-5279 for more information on the Day Nurseries Act and independent home child care.

Can caregivers visit in each other’s homes?

This depends on the number of daycare children in care. A daycare home cannot receive more than 5 daycare children at any one time. Therefore, a caregiver with 3 daycare children can visit a caregiver with 2 daycare children. However, if one caregiver has 4 daycare children and another has 3 daycare children – they cannot visit in one of their homes as the home would then be receiving more than 5 daycare children during the visit.*The caregiver’s own children do not count in these numbers – only “daycare” children.



Where can I get more information on the DNA regulations that apply to independent home child care?
Please call the Ministry of Children and Youth Services: Early Learning and Child Development Branch at 613-787-5279 for more information on the Day Nurseries Act and private, independent home child care.

Do I need to follow the DNA?
You need to follow the number guidelines that define independent home child care. The rest is for licensed centres and you are not mandated to follow it. However, it is considered by the Government to be minimum standards.

Should I take the children out in my car?
This is up to each individual and to the client families in care. It will depend on your access to a safe vehicle and to safe car seats, your driving record and comfort in driving young children, and the type of program you wish to offer the children in your care. Some believe that outings to playgroups, parks, gymnastics programs, children's events… are invaluable to the children in their care. Others believe they can meet children's needs better in the space of their home and the activities that they can walk to. For more information on car seats please go to

How much can I charge?
You set your fees and the terms of your written agreement. Fees are usually based on location, years of experience, education, quality of food served, type of program. Click here for our most recent survey of rates.

Do I need to have a contract/written agreement?
Written agreements help to ensure that both parties understand what the expectations are. They are not mandatory - but they help keep the parent/client relationship running smoothly.

Can parents change the terms of my contract?
A parent cannot change the terms of your contract; however, s/he may wish to discuss certain aspects and negotiate a change with you. It is your business and you make the decisions related to it. The parent decides whether to enter the contract with you or not.

How many holidays can I take?
Caregivers are self-employed and therefore are not entitled to "paid sick time", or "paid vacation". To accommodate for this some caregivers charge more per day and bank the extra money for when they are sick or on holidays. Others use statements similar to the one below:

"Weekly fee for care is _____, totaling an annual amount of ______. Payment is expected for the agreed upon hours/days whether the child is in attendance or not. Payment will not vary due to statutory holidays, child’s illness or appointments or parent vacations. Fee will be negotiated if caregiver takes excess of ____days off annually."

Another term for this is being "paid by enrolment". The language is very important in case of an audit by Revenue Canada. If you are audited and your contract mentions "paid vacation" and "paid sick time", Revenue Canada can request the parents pay CPP and UI Benefits. Remember also, Revenue Canada can go back 6 years.

Can I charge for days that the child isn't there?
See note above.

Can I charge for holding a spot?
Yes you can. Please call the office for more information.

Do I have to give receipts?
Caregivers are required to give receipts yearly. Please note that parents can declare your fees even if you haven't issued a receipt so make sure you file your returns! Caregivers are exempt from charging GST/HST.

Do I provide diapers, wipes, & baby food?
Typically the parent supplies these. Once the child is on regular food the caregiver takes over the food cost and preparation. However, this can be negotiated between the caregiver and parent and of course would be reflected in the fee paid.

How do I get in touch with other caregivers in my area?
Some ways to get in touch with other caregivers include: Social district events, workshops, children's events, New Member Orientations, Wed., evening resource nights at the office, Ontario Early Years Centres, as well as local parks and playgroups (you can get a listing of local playgroups through the Parent Resource Centre).

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