About Family Child Care

Research shows that opportunities in the early years matter for success in school and in life, and family child care providers like NAFCC members are leading the way.

Family child care is the work of child care provided in a professional caregiver’s home.  Across the country, family child care homes provide high-quality programs for infants and toddlers, preschoolers, school age, and children with special needs. 

Building the supply of high-quality family child care is essential for families, for communities, and for expanding early learning opportunities for young children.

Across the country, eleven million children under age five are in child care. There are three million children in family child care.

There are approximately 1 million paid providers caring for children in a home-based setting. The supply of licensed family child care is declining when it should be rising to meet the needs of working families and the urgency of early learning opportunities for young children.

Where policy opportunities permit, family child care providers partner to deliver publicly-funded preK and participate in Quality Rating and Improvement Systems. Family child care is an important partner in Head Start, and 600 family child care providers are in Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships. Family child care programs enroll families who pay with assistance (subsidy), and support families who are often challenged to find high-quality, reliable child care, including those in need of care in “nontraditional” work hours and in rural communities.

The National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC) is the only professional association dedicated specifically to promoting high-quality early childhood experiences in the unique environment of family child care programs.  NAFCC works on behalf of the one million family child care providers operating nationwide.

NAFCC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit membership association. The NAFCC team operates in Salt Lake City, Utah and Washington, DC. 

Commitment to Quality: Family Child Care Accreditation

NAFCC has lead the family child care accreditation program for over 25 years.  The standards are research-based and demonstrate principles of child growth and development as well as current best practices in the early childhood field.  Accreditation is not just a mark of quality, but a demonstration of commitment to continuous quality improvement. Find out more. 

NAFCC Policy Priorities 

NAFCC is working to prioritize the role of family child care and promote access, affordability and quality of early care and education. Key issues in 2016 include investment and implementation of the Child Care and Development Block Grant; Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships; the Child and Adult Care Food Program in the Child Nutrition Reauthorization; strengthening the early childhood workforce; and building the supply of high-quality child care in rural communities; for infants and toddlers; and for families who work non-traditional hours.