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Allegheny County Provider Attendance invoices are due to ELRC Region 5 by the fifth* day of every month.

Invoices should be submitted via Provider Self-Service (PSS) or:

*Any invoices submitted after the fifth will be processed the following month.

Subsequent provider payments are scheduled to be direct deposited or mailed out on the 20th of each month. For direct deposit, a completed ACH form and a voided check must also be submitted. If you have not already provided a completed and signed ELRC Provider Agreement and W-9 to ELRC Region 5, we will be unable to send your provider payment.

These documents may also be e-mailed, faxed, or mailed to the contact information listed above.

For support or questions about your invoice or payment, please call 412.885.6831.

For assistance or questions about PSS, ask your Quality Coach or Early Learning Program Engagement Specialist, visit, or call 1.877.491.3818.

Provisional Hire Waiver Change

Based on changes to the Child Protective Services Law (CPSL) in July 2019, the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) is revising the requirements for the provisional hire process for new employees and those hired under the 90-day provisional hire period.

Learn More

Effective December 31, 2019, the 90-day provisional hire period was obsolete and has been replaced by a 45-day provisional hire period. The new 45-day provisional hire period is only permitted once the certified child care facility applies for a provisional hire waiver and it is granted by OCDEL. Applications for the waiver can be completed by the Legal Entity (LE) or person responsible for the facility. The waiver approval from OCDEL remains valid if the facility maintains the same location and the same Master Provider Index (MPI) number.

All waivers will be processed in the order in which they are received by OCDEL. Providers who anticipate needing a waiver are advised to apply for the waiver as soon as possible due to an anticipated high volume of requests that may cause a backlog. The effective date of the waiver approval will be the date that OCDEL receives a complete application. OCDEL will notify the provider when the waiver is approved, or the application is being returned because it is incomplete or inaccurate.

The waiver and instructions are available on the Keep Kids Safe website.

Providers who receive a waiver approval can implement the 45-day provisional hire with the following two major requirements:

  1. Any applicant must have the results of: either the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) clearance or the FBI clearance required by the Department of Human Services (DHS) to be considered as a provisional hire employee; show proof of application for the remaining clearances; and, sign a disclosure statement.

  2. If any provisionally hired employee has time remaining in the 90-day provisional hire period, the time remaining cannot exceed 45 days beginning December 31, 2019.


Examples (permitted so long as a waiver is granted)

  • Hired on 10/15/19

The applicant has until 1/13/2020 to complete all other requirements. They are eligible for the full 90 days. They are using 76 of their 90 days for the dates 10/15/19 - 12/30/19. Since they still do not exceed 45 days when the new requirements start, they are eligible for the remaining 14 days from 12/31/19 - 1/13/2020.

  • Hired on 12/30/19

The applicant will reach their allowable 45 days on 2/13/2020. This is how the time frame is computed; 45 days from 12/31/19 through 2/13/2020.

  • Hired on 12/1/19

The applicant has until 2/14/2020 to complete all other requirements. This is how the time frame is computed; 29 days for 12/1/19 through 12/30/19 (part of the 90-provisional hire) plus 45 days from 12/31/19 To 2/14/2020.


Contact the appropriate Regional Office with questions or concerns.

  • Central Region 1.800.222.2117

  • Northeast Region 1.800.222.2108

  • Southeast Region 1.800.346.2929

  • Western Region 1.800.222.2149

COVID-19 Food Distribution Information for Families in Region 8



Interested in becoming an early learning child care provider? Or are you already a child care provider and wish to learn more about enhancing your early learning program?

Licensed Providers

For information about becoming a licensed child care provider contact your ELRC or your Regional Day Care Office. The below links also contain information regarding becoming a licensed child care provider.

Report child abuse by calling ChildLine at 1-800-932-0313

Mandated reporters are held to a higher standard of responsibility, and can face serious consequences when they don't report suspected abuse. Mandated reporters can report online.



All prospective providers wishing to start a child care facility, family child care providers, and current providers wanting to relocate their current facility or open a new location must attend an orientation tailored to the type of facility they wish to open. For a child care center or a group home child care, providers must complete an online orientation and contact their Regional OCDEL Certification office to register for the face-to-face orientation.

These orientations cover topics such as how to fill out the application, important necessary documents, clearances, health and safety regulations, and information on child care subsidy, Keystone STARS, and Early Intervention. For more information, read OCDEL’s current steps for the orientation process. Upon completion of these orientations, providers will be given a certificate of completion that is valid for one year.

For more information and help getting started, prospective providers should contact their Regional OCDEL Certification office.

Keystone STARS may also be able to help providers through the beginning stages of certification with Technical Assistance.



  • Contact your Regional OCDEL Office to ask about:

  • Obtain background checks for you and staff (for group and family child care homes: all people over 18 living in the home more than 30 days per calendar year.)

  • Download the new universal application for new and renewing family child care homes, group child care homes and child care center.

  • Orientation done? Health & Safety trainings are next! The Federal Reauthorization of the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) requires all staff in certified child care programs to have training in 10 critical health and safety topics. Free modules (covering 9 of 10 required topics) are available to earn annual training hours and meet most of the new federal requirements.

    • View a detailed flyer (link to H&Straining_May2017.pdf) with information about how child care staff may comply with the federal requirements.

    • Start today! Access the new online training for free at the Better Kid Care website.

    • Find courses in the PA Keys to Quality Professional Development (PD) Registry. You can search and register for first aid training sessions in your area. The PD Registry offers early learning professionals a wide variety of trainings on relevant topics offered at appropriate skill levels. There is no cost to sign up as a user of the PD Registry.

  • Family Child Care Homes – Watch What to Expect in an Inspection video!

Types of Child Care and Early Learning Programs

You have options when it comes to the care for your child. Early learning programs help provide positive outcomes for children. They give families choices for quality early education at home, in community programs, or in school for part or all of the day. CLICK HERE to find child care and other early learning programs near you.

Child Care serves children birth-School Age. Child care is available in a variety of settings, including family child care homes, group child care homes, and child care centers, including Before And After School Programs. Programs for school age children (SAC) are important to provide care, education and activity for children through 8th grade. The Bureau of Certification in the Department of Human Services regulates family child care homes, group child care, and child care centers to ensure they provide safe child care.

Head Start (3-5) and Early Head Start (birth-3) serves children birth-4 years. Head Start and Early Head Start provide comprehensive services - including child development, health/nutrition, parent involvement and family activities - to families and children through age five. Families earning 100 percent of the federal poverty level or less are eligible to apply. Services may be center based, home-based or a combination of both. There is no cost to qualifying families. CLICK HERE to learn more about Head Start in Pennsylvania.

PreK Counts serves children 3-4 years. A PreK Counts provides funding for three- and four-year olds to attend a high quality, half or full-day pre-kindergarten in schools, child care centers, and preschools. It also provides funding for children to access Head Start services and is designed to support children who are at risk of school failure because of income, language (for example, English is not the child's first language), or special needs issues.  CLICK HERE to learn more about PA Pre-K Counts.

Private Academic School-Licensed PreSchools, PA Department of Education serves Children 3-5 years. Private Academic Schools (PDE Licensed Preschools, formally known as nursery schools) are licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education as private academic schools. They are staffed by qualified teachers and other professionals who encourage and supervise educational play.

Home Visiting services can be a great answer for families who are looking for help. Visits are conducted by professionally trained staff and based on the needs of the parent and child and are different for every family. Pennsylvania offers several different programs including Early Head Start, Family Check-Up, Healthy Families America, Nurse Family Partnership, and Parents as Teachers. CLICK HERE for more information about home visiting services in Pennsylvania.


The Bureau of Certification Services is responsible for the regulation of all child care centers, group day care homes and family day care homes in Pennsylvania. 

The Certification Bureau receives and responds to inquiries regarding a variety of topics, including:

• The requirements and process for opening a child care facility.
• The statutes and regulations for operating a child care facility.
• The status and compliance history of specific facilities.
• The complaints regarding child care facilities.

CLICK HERE to learn more about Certification and types of child care care. If you are looking at how to apply, please visit the Certification First Steps page on the PA Keys website.

Visit the PA Department of Human Services website for links to child care regulations, forms, contact information, orientation schedules and other important information.

Sign up for the Certification E-News to stay up to date on regulations changes and tips to meet child care regulations.

The Bureau of Certification Services is responsible for the regulation of all child care centers, group day care homes and family day care homes in Pennsylvania.

The Certification Bureau receives inquiries regarding a variety of topics, including:

  • The requirements and process for opening a child care facility.

  • The statutes and regulations for operating a child care facility.

  • The status and compliance history of specific facilities.

  • The complaints regarding child care facilities.


Child care providers operating a program for four or more unrelated children must be certified by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. The Department regulates three types of child care facilities:

  • Child Care Center: A child care facility in which seven or more children who are not related to the operator receive child care. A child care center must have a certificate of compliance (“license”) from the Department of Human Services (DHS) in order to legally operate.

  • Group Child Care Home: A child care facility in which seven through 12 children of various ages or in which seven through 15 children from 4th grade through 15 years of age who are not related to the operator receive child care. A group child care home must have a certificate of compliance (“license”) from DHS in order to legally operate.

  • Family Child Care Home: A child care facility located in a home in which four, five, or six children who are not related to the caregiver receive child care. A family child care home must have a certificate of compliance (“license”) from DHS in order to legally operate.


In 2014, the federal law that oversees and provides funding for child care assistance (Child Care Development Block Grant- CCDBG) was reauthorized for the first time since 1996. In an effort to support families with access to safe, reliable child care, the law required family child care homes and friend/neighbor caregivers receiving child care subsidy to become certified by November 2016.



Keystone STARS is Pennsylvania’s initiative to improve quality through Standards, Training/Professional Development, Assistance, Resources and Support.

Keystone Stars promotes continued quality improvement in child care and Head Start programs.  Providers can earn a STAR 2 to STAR 4 rating by meeting the Keystone STARS quality standards.  All providers who earn a full Certificate start with a STAR 1 rating. The STARS program supports early learning programs in their commitment to continuous quality improvement. Programs that participate in Keystone STARS care about providing quality early learning to your child.  As programs move up the STARS rating ladder, they are providing even higher quality experiences so your child benefits even more from the program. At each level, programs have to meet certain research-based quality standards that measure four areas that a difference in the quality of care your child receives:

  1. Staff Education

  2. Learning Environment

  3. Leadership Management

  4. Family and Community Partnerships

To learn more, contact us or call our Hotline 1 888 461-KIDS (5437).

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