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Child Care Licensing | Regulation Updates

RSPMI Clarifications

The following clarifications are to be considered and applied as you monitor RSPMI facilities. The standard licensing requirements will apply to any areas and situations not covered by these clarifications. If the program is meeting basic licensing requirements but is not meeting RSPMI standards that exceed the licensing requirements, the Director or person in charge will be advised as a courtesy.

301 Staff/Child Ratios

2.d RSPMI programs meet a 1/10 ratio for kindergarten through school age. This exceeds our ratios. A deficiency would only be cited If the program failed to meet our minimum requirements.

302 Director

3. Directors who are licensed Mental Health Professionals fully meet director requirements.

4. Specific New Director’s Orientation sessions may be available for RSPMI

7. Directors who represent newly licensed programs. (Check with Licensing Central Office for schedule.) Directors or staff members who are Licensed Mental Health Professionals are already required to obtain continuing education credits which will count for the required training hours regardless of whether the subject matter is listed in this section or the licensing requirements.

303 Employee Requirements

4. In addition to the requirement for at least one staff to be present who is certified in CPR, RSPMI programs also require at least one staff member to be present who has been certified in a nationally recognized crisis prevention/management model. (This is not something that would be cited but would be brought to the attention of the Director.)

5. In addition to the basic orientation requirement, RSPMI employees who work in summer and or after school programs are required to receive training as Mental Health Paraprofessionals. (Again, this is not something we would cite for failing to meet licensing requirements.)

304 Volunteers

2. RSPMI rules do not allow volunteers to have any supervisory or disciplinary control over children and volunteers are not to be counted in the staff/child ratio. (This exceeds our requirements for volunteers.)

500 Behavior Guidance

6. Some methods of behavior guidance are appropriate for use by RSPMI programs that might not be allowed in typical child care settings. Check with your supervisor before citing any non-compliance in this area. Physical holds or time outs that require physical contact with a child are required to adhere to guidelines established through CARF, JCAHO or COA standards.

601 Employee Records

7. RSPMI programs, as a part of the documented training requirement, also require documentation of MHPP certification and annual training requirements. (This exceeds licensing requirements and would not be cited.)

600 Child Records

All requirements in this section apply to RSPMI programs with the possible exception of the requirements for immunizations. Programs serving only school age children are not required to verify immunizations. However, the immunization requirements would apply to programs serving pre-school children. (Pre-school definition - Children five years old or younger who are not yet attending kindergarten.)

700 Nutrition

For RSPMI summer programs the rules for nutrition found in the Program Specific Variations, Section 1300 School Age/Summer Day Camp requirements are to be followed. (Please note that these rules only apply to snacks, the serving of milk and the use of vending machines. Other nutrition requirements, such as lunch requirements, are to be enforced as stated in the standard Section 700 requirements.)

Transportation Changes

The Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education has promulgated new rules on an emergency basis regarding the transportation of children in all licensed and registered child care programs.  During the past year there have been eight (8) children left unattended on child care transportation vehicles in Arkansas.  These new requirements were enacted to reduce the risk to children being transported.

The changes listed below are effective immediately and are found in the following sections of the licensing and registration requirements.

 Child Care Centers - Section 1201, requirements 7, 8 & 9
Child Care Family Homes - Section 1103, requirements 7, 8 & 9
Registered Child Care Family Homes - Section 1103, requirements 6, 7 & 8

Rosters, listing the date, the names and ages of all children being transported as well as the name of the driver and any other staff members on the vehicle shall be maintained.  These rosters shall be used to check children on an off the vehicle when they are picked up and dropped off at home, school, etc. and when children arrive at and leave the facility.  Transportation rosters shall be kept by the facility and available for review for three years.
To insure that no children are lft on the vehicle, the driver must walk through he vehicle and physically inspect each seat before leaving the vehicle.  The transportation roster must be signed by the driver , documenting that all children have exited the vehicle.

To insure that children have safely arrived in the appropriate classroom, the transportation roster shall be reviewed by the Director or designee and compared with classroom attendance records.  The Director or designee shall sign off on the transportation roster to verify that all children have safely transitioned from the vehicle to the classroom.

Arkansas Department
of Human Services
(501) 682-1001

TTY: 1-800-285-1131 or dial 711 for Arkansas Relay Service

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