March 20, 2020
Latest COVID 19 Related Child Care Resources and Information for Indiana Families.
Guidance about the current COVID-19 outbreak is changing by the minute. Having the most up-to-date information will help your family feel empowered and minimize difficulties during this uncertain time.
Best Way to Stay Informed:
You can receive updates with the latest information from your local government in a few ways.
- OECOSL guidance is available online. The CDC Website is also a great resource available.
- Phone – Call center open 24 hours. 317-233-7125 open Monday through Friday 8:15 AM – 4:45 PM. After hours line is 317-233-1325. This line is for critical questions only, please use other forms of information gathering first.
- Text – Sign up for Indiana Health Alert Network here.
- Email – email@example.com
You can also receive information through brighterfuturesindiana.org. or by reaching out to your local Child Care Resource and Referral agency.
Indiana’s Current Policies Regarding the Closing of Child Care Centers
If the local public, non-public, or charter school closes and there have not been positive cases of COVID-19 identified, child cares should remain open and accept children in need of care.
Providers and families should practice social distancing as much as possible. Examples of how to implement social distancing include limiting social gatherings, creating distance when in groups, canceling or postponing trips that increase exposure to children, staff, and parents. Providers should also avoid mixing classes of students in common areas such as cafeterias and playgrounds.
CCDF Family Personal Day Policy
For families that may be keeping their children at home, FSSA has updated the family personal day policy to state that all families will receive full-time vouchers, 40 additional personal days for a total of 60 days as opposed to the original 20, providers can be closed and have personal days applied as opposed to the prior policy that the 20 days could only be used when the provider is open. This policy is effective March 20, 2020 to September 30, 2020.
Currently all families receive 53 weeks of service and are asked to complete a redetermination 60 days prior to the end of their services. Effective March 20, 2020 to October 3, 2020 all families will receive an additional 4 months of eligibility.
School Age Children Vouchers – Families with vouchers for school-age children currently receive 10 hours of care per week while children are in school. Effective March 15, 2020 to October 3, 2020 all school-age children will now receive ‘school-age other’ vouchers to allow 25 hours or more per week of care.
Changing Providers with a Voucher – During this time of transition, families may need to relocate or change their child care plans due to closings. These changes could be from one provider to another, from one location to another, or from break care to full time. Families may ask providers to submit a provider form to their eligibility office via email to complete these changes. Your provider can submit these forms to the following contacts based on the type of voucher:
- For AHS voucher changes contact Carter@fssa.in.gov or Lisa.Russell@fssa.in.gov.
- For Brightpoint vouchers, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For Children’s Bureau vouchers, contact email@example.com.
- For Maximus vouchers, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For River Valley Resource Vouchers, contact Leslie.Abbott@fssa.in.gov.
Break Care Vouchers – Currently, break care only vouchers may only be requested during school breaks and summer. Effective March 15, 2020 to October 3, 2020 families with school-age children who now need weekly care can request vouchers for full-time care. Families can ask providers to submit a provider form to their eligibility office. Provider questions on forms or any other item related to break only vouchers should be directed to their local CCDF eligibility office or policy consultant. Click here for eligibility office contacts: https://www.in.gov/fssa/files/CCDF_Eligibility_Office_Map.pdf
Families with children receiving care in child care home facilities should know what OECOSL has waived the restriction for school-age break care where school districts have closed.
Currently, if a family loses a source of income, they are provided 16 weeks of transitional care to find new employment before benefits are terminated. Effective March 20, 2020 through October 3, 2020 families will be provided an additional 10 weeks of transitional care before benefits are terminated, for a total of 26 weeks.
Currently, families that fail to use their swipe card or claim attendance for 60 days automatically have benefits terminated. Effective March 20, 2020 to October 3, 2020, benefits will not be automatically terminated in the event that a family fails to use benefits due to illness or quarantine.
Temporary Care Locations
If you know of a provider trying to set up a temporary care location due to closures, please provide them with the following contact information so that OECOSL may work to help them with licensing. Creating temporary care quickly is important to communities affected by closures, but it is equally important that these facilities and providers are safe.