Resources for all Early Care and Education Professionals

Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF), Child Care

This is the main resource for all things related to child care in Wisconsin. This page will connect you to resources for establishing a child care business, regulation information, and current Wisconsin initiatives related to child care. You can sign up for email alerts directly related to providing quality early care.

Wisconsin Child Care Regulation Information

This is your resource for information about child care regulations in Wisconsin. The site includes information for Family Child Care Programs – Licensed and Certified, and for Licensed Group Child Care Programs. You can sign up for email alerts related to regulated child care.

Child Care Information Center (CCIC)

The Child Care Information Center is the go to place for information foe early learning programs. Resources for activities, parent communication, recent news in the field, and much, much more can be found on this site. Professionals in the field can request materials for their programs. This includes resources for programming, articles for continuing education, and materials for parents.


YoungStar is Wisconsin’s Child Care Quality and Improvement Rating System. Information about participation, including how to contact your local YoungStar office, can be found on this site.

Supporting Families Together Association (SFTA)

SFTA is Wisconsin’s statewide member association for organizations and individuals committed to making every early childhood a great one. Their core membership consists of Wisconsin’s Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies (CCR&Rs) and Family Resource Centers (FRCs). SFTA’s affiliate membership is made up of other like-minded organizations and individuals.

4C For Children, Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R)

4C For Children provides training for existing and new child care providers, helps parents navigate through the myriad of child care options available, works closely with the State of Wisconsin on YoungStar, and is recognized as a leader in the field of early education. The Main office is located in Milwaukee, with satellite offices in Racine and Washington counties.

Other Resources:

Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services, Division of Children and Family Services, Bureau of Regulation and Licensing (BRL) – The Bureau of Regulation and Licensing is responsible for licensing and regulating child day care and children’s residential care facilities and private child welfare agencies for adoption and foster care in Wisconsin. It provides quality assurance and consumer protection services for children in care in licensed children’s programs throughout the state. The Bureau’s website includes required forms, Regional Office contacts, the Group Day Care Manual with Commentary, the Family Day Care Manual with Commentary, information on choosing and locating child care, on starting a child care program, and on background checks.

Wisconsin Early Childhood Collaborating Partners – The Wisconsin Early Childhood Collaborating Partners is a statewide group of nearly 200 public and private agencies and associations united through a common desire for a blended, comprehensive delivery system for high quality early childhood care and education. Their website brings together many resources to support partnership efforts.

National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)– This Web site provides a summary of the wide range of educational services and resources available through NAEYC for adults who work with and for young children in child care and other early childhood programs.

DCF Mailing List  – Sign Up for Child Care Information and Join the DCF Mailing List for Updates – click on the link to learn more.

National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC) -The focus of NAFCC is to provide technical assistance to family child care associations. This assistance is provided through developing leadership and professionalism, addressing issues of diversity, and by promoting quality and professionalism through NAFCC’s Family Child Care.

Wisconsin Early Childhood Association (WECA) – We are the organization for early childhood professionals and those who support our work. We promote excellence in child development practices through a range of professional growth opportunities and support services.

Wisconsin Early Education Shared Services Network (WEESSN) – The Wisconsin Early Education Shared Services Network (WEESSN) brings together family and center-based early care and education programs to pool resources and leverage economies of scale. By sharing resources, knowledge, and expertise, childcare programs can save time and money.

Wisconsin Family Child Care Association – The Wisconsin Family Child Care Association, WFCCA, is a statewide organization of Family Child Care providers and their supporters, formed to provide support, involvement, and communication with others in the profession.

Wisconsin Registry – The Wisconsin Registry is the state’s recognition system for the childhood care and education profession. It verifies that individuals meet entry level and ongoing training requirements of the Wisconsin licensing code and assesses educational accomplishments and professional contributions beyond those required.

Kids Forward – Kids Forward aspires to make Wisconsin a place where every child thrives by advocating for effective, long-lasting solutions that break down barriers to success for children and families. Using a research and a community-informed approach, Kids Forward works to help every kid, every family, and every community.

Red Leaf Press – Established in 1973, Redleaf Press is a leading non-profit publisher of exceptional curriculum, management, and business resources for early childhood professionals.

Lakeshore Learning – Lakeshore is dedicated to creating innovative educational materials that spark young imaginations, instill a sense of wonder and foster a lifelong love of learning.