Welcome

West Central Child Care Connection is a resource and referral agency dedicated to supporting children, families and the child care community by promoting options in accessibility, affordability and quality care.

We hope you enjoy the information and resources we offer on our website. Feel free to contact us with any questions.

 

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COVID-19 Resources

Reopening Child Care In Illinois

As of July 1, 2020 IDHS increased the maximum child care payment rates for providers. New rates can be found on the IDHS website at https://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=121213.
THE RATES DID NOT GET PROGRAMMED INTO THE SYSTEM IN TIME FOR THEM TO BE PRINTED ON THE JULY CERTIFICATES. SUBMIT THE JULY CERTIFICATES ANYWAY AND DHS WILL PAY AT THE NEW RATES. YOUR PAYMENTS WILL NOT BE DELAYED.

Effective July 1, the IDHS Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) is returning to normal policies and procedures with some modifications. 

Income Eligibility and Co-Payments

All income eligibility levels have been re-indexed to the current Federal Poverty Level amounts effective July 1. In addition, all copayment amounts are being adjusted so a family will not pay more than 7% of their reported gross income. These new copayments will go into effect the next time a family’s eligibility is determined by the CCR&R or Site Administered provider. Until then, co-payments will be assessed at the level they were in March. The $1.00 co-payment ended in June. The new guidelines can be found at https://www.dhs.state.il.us/onenetlibrary/12/documents/Forms/IL444-3455B.pdf

Redeterminations

CCAP cases will no longer be auto-extended as they were for March, April, May and June. We are returning to our normal redetermination process. All cases ending after June 30 must have their eligibility redetermined to remain on CCAP.

Priority Essential Worker (PEW) Cases

The Priority Essential Worker designation for CCAP ended in June.  Parents that were classified as Priority Essential Workers may apply for CCAP through the regular application process and must meet income guidelines to continue receiving child care assistance.

90-day Grace Period

Families who are no longer employed should report that to the CCR&R or Site Administered provider. If the job loss happened between 3/21 and 6/30 they will be given a 90-day job loss grace period that starts on 7/1.

Parent Signatures on Certificates 

Child Care Certificates for home providers will once again require a parent signature. This requirement had been waived for the months of March through June.

Enrollment Attendance and Payment Policies

Effective July 1, a provider must be open and serving children in order to be paid for CCAP services.

• Provider many not bill for more children than they can legally serve under DCFS emergency rules.

• Line out children on the billing certificate that have dropped out or are no longer enrolled due to reduced capacity and list the last day of care or notify your CCR&R to have them removed.

• Only children that are in attendance should be counted as “attended”. Distance learning activities to CCAP children that are not physically in attendance do not count as attended.

• The 80% payment rule is being revised to 50%. Licensed and license-exempt centers and licensed home providers will be paid for all approved days of care if children attend at least 50% of the days.

• Providers may request a waiver if attendance falls below 50% or if the program is forced to close due to COVID related reasons.

CCAP Policy Modifications for School Age Care

On August 7, 2020 IDHS issued a temporary policy regarding approving care for school-age children.  It was indicated that if in person learning was available at the child’s school, CCAP families would have to select that option and CCAP would not be approved for that time.  Effective immediately, to meet the needs of children and families that policy is being rescinded.

Policy

  • CCAP will pay a full-time day for school-age children if the parent’s work/school schedule does not allow them to be home with their child and the child is in the provider’s care for 5 or more hours during that time, regardless of any in-person school option that is available.
    • This includes time that the child is participating in their school’s distance learning activities while in the provider’s care.
  • Parents must inform the CCR&R of changes to their school-age children’s care schedule.

Payments 

  • Child care providers should enter the actual number of full time and part time days the child was in care on the certificate.
  • CCAP will pay up to the total number of eligible days (full time and part time combined).  For example, if the child was approved for 22 part time days, CCAP can pay up to 22 full time days.
    • Follow existing procdeures for billings above eligible days.
  • If eligible days had not been updated to full time and the provider bills for any full time days, they can be paid for these full time days.
    • The co-payment will remain as already assessed for this payment.
  • Update part time days to full time and reassess the co-payments for months through October based on the full time days listed on August & September certificates.
  • CCAP will not pay any additional fees to the provider for assisting with school activities, or any other fees beyond the approved daily rate for care.

 

 

Child Care Restoration Grants

The Illinois General Assembly has directed at least $270 million of the state’s Coronavirus Urgent Remediation Emergency (CURE) Fund to support the economic health of child care providers as our economy reopens in the coming months. The Child Care Restoration Grant Program is designed to support licensed child care programs that lost revenue due to a restriction of their business as a result the COVID-19 public health emergency. Providers can get more information and apply on-line beginning July 24 at https://www.ilgateways.com/financialopportunities/restoration-grants.

 

COVID-19 Resources

 

 

Helping Parents with:

  • Child care referrals
  • Information on evaluating quality child care
  • Resources on various parenting issues
  • Assistance in paying for child care (for income eligible families)

Offering Child Care Providers:

  • Access to valuable training
  • Support services for new or established programs
  • Access to funding opportunities
  • Lending library resources

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WCCCC…

…is concerned about the ratio of supply to demand for child care and works with parents, child care providers, businesses, and community organizations to help increase the availability of quality child care services and resources in nine counties in West Central Illinois.  These counties include:

  • Adams
  • Brown
  • Calhoun
  • Cass
  • Greene
  • Hancock
  • Jersey
  • Pike
  • Schuyler