Child Care Centers

Child Care Centers are programs that care for 13 or more children. Child care centers can be located in the residence of the provider or in any other approved location.

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Change of Ownership of an Existing Child Care Center Program

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Initial Licensure/Provisional License

Instructions for Applying for Provisional Child Care Center License

Once the Department receives the approvals, conducts the pre-licensing inspection and verifies compliance with all regulations, a provisional license will be issued. Provisional licenses are issued to all newly licensed child care centers for the first year of operation. This license may be extended for one six month period.

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Applying for an Operating License

Instructions for Applying for an Operating Child Care Center License

Once a child care center completes their provisional license year and are in compliance with all regulations, they must apply for an non-expiring operating license if they wish to continue to provide care. In order to receive an operating the license, the licensee must apply for an operating license. Licensees will receive written notice 90 days prior to their expiration of their provisional license.

Once a non-expiring license is issued, the licensee will not need to renew the Child Care Center license. The license will remain in effect until the program closes or the Department revokes the license due to serious violation of regulations. Licensees, however, need to send in appropriate license fees each year to maintain the operating license.

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Changes in the License
If you have a change in one or any combination days, hours, ages, name capacity
If you have a change in location
If you have a change of director

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Forms

pdf icon Provisional Application for Individuals
pdf icon Provisional Application for Non-Profit Corporation or Governmental Unit
pdf icon Operating Application for Individuals
pdf icon Operating Application for Non-Profit Corporation or Governmental Unit
pdf icon Health Information Report
pdf icon Report of Law Enforcement Contact  
pdf icon Parent Brochure
pdf icon Consent and Authorization of Release of Information 
pdf icon Independent Study Documentation Form
pdf icon Children's Records 
pdf icon Immunization Record 
pdf icon Alternative Compliance Request 

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Orientation Training

Before a provisional license can be issued, Child Care Center directors must complete Orientation Training developed by the Department. The training consists of written materials that discuss relevant issues specific to child care centers. Directors in Washington, Douglas, Sarpy, and Cass counties may obtain this training by contacting the Omaha office at 402-595-3348. Directors in the rest of the state may obtain this training by contacting the Lincoln office at 402-471-9562. 

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Licensee Fees

* Provisional License Fee (capacity less than 30) $25
* Provisional License Fee (capacity 30 or more) $50
Yearly License Fee (capacity less than 30) $25
Yearly License Fee (capacity 30 or more) $50

* Fee must be received before a license will be issued

* License Fees are Non-refundable
* Fees must be paid by check or money order
* Cash is not accepted

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Inspections

Child Care Centers are required to have pre-licensing inspections before they can begin operation. Nebraska law also requires the Department to make at least one unannounced inspection to all Child Care Centers who have capacities of less than 30 and two unannounced inspections to programs who are licensed for 30 or more two times each year. Other visits conducted to Child Care Centers include:

  1. Complaint investigations (these are unannounced)
  2. Change of location
  3. Consultation/Technical Assistance (these are scheduled and conducted only at the request of the provider)

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Requesting Prior to Hire Background Checks

Child Care and Preschool regulations require Directors to have background checks conducted on both the Nebraska Central Registry of Child Abuse and Neglect and the Adult Protective Services Central Registry before a staff person is hired. Directors can use the following steps to request the checks be completed:

  1. The completed pdf iconrelease of information form must be forwarded to the Department in order to have the background checks completed. Requests for background checks can be mailed or faxed to:

Children's Services Licensing
Department of Health & Human Services
Division of Public Health, Licensure Unit
PO Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509-4986
Fax: (402) 471-7763

  1. In response to requests, the Department will conduct the background checks and notify programs, in writing, if the person’s name appears. If the name of the applicant does not appear you will receive the completed form with "No Report Found" indicated.
  2. When submitting completed Release of Information forms by mail, please include a self-addressed envelope with your requests. One envelope per mailing is sufficient IF all forms will fit in the envelope to be returned to you.

Please remember that all information you receive from the registries is confidential!

pdf icon Frequently Asked Questions the Nebraska Child Abuse and Neglect and Nebraska Adult Protective Services Central Registries

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Rules and Regulations/Statutes

pdf icon 391 NAC 1 Family Child Care Home I
pdf icon391 NAC 2 Family Child Care Home II
pdf icon391 NAC 3 Child Care Centers
pdf icon391 NAC 4 School-Age-Only Centers
pdf icon391 NAC 5 Preschools
pdf icon Statutes relating to Child Care Licensure

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