Agency Announcement - UPDATE
Governor Newsom signed the budget this past week which means the two pending policies discussed in the mailer are now in effect. However, we are still waiting on the official direction from California Department of Social Services (CDSS) outlining implementation instructions for the waiver of fees and reimbursing child care providers based on the maximum certified need.
In the meantime, providers are NOT to collect July 2022 family fees as they have been waived from July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023.
Current COVID-19 Guidance and Policies
** Click HERE to download an English PDF version of this notice **
** Click HERE to download an Spanish PDF version of this notice **
Dear Parents and Child Care Providers:
Thank you very much for your continued understanding over the last year, as we have worked diligently to
navigate and adjust our agency procedures to accommodate the shift in our “new normal” due to the COVID19 pandemic. Although the pandemic has been challenging, it has given way to positive policy revisions
implemented by the California Legislature.
Effective July 1, 2021, Supportive Services, Inc. Alternative Payment Program along with other childcare and development programs transitioned from the California Department of Education to the California Department of Social Services (CDSS). This transition is the result of the Early Childhood Development Act of 2020. The State of California is committed to building and strengthening an equitable, comprehensive, quality, and affordable childcare and development system in our state. The California Department of Education and the California Department of Social Services will continue to work together to support this smooth transition.
Governor Newsome has approved Assembly Bill 131 which will require additional changes and modifications to address the continued issues negatively impacting once again all of us due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Consider the Supportive Services, Inc. Parent/Provider Handbook and this document as your resource guide for gathering information regarding parent and provider requirements from now through June 30, 2022.
As always, we would like to thank you for your continued patience and diligence as we work together to meet the needs of the families we serve during these unique and ever-changing times.
The following guidelines are effective July 1, 2021 thru June 30, 2022 and superseded any previously issued
16 Paid Nonoperational Days
Assembly Bill 131 (chapter 116, Statues of 2021) authorized 16 reimbursable nonoperational days for childcare and development providers when the provider is closed due to COVID related reasons. The 16 paid nonoperational days are available for both licensed and license-exempt childcare providers. Furthermore, the 16 nonoperational days are available for use between July 1, 2021, and June 30, 2022. The 16 paid nonoperational days do not need to be used consecutively.
Nonoperational closure days include closures necessary to allow providers to obtain the COVID-19 vaccine or to recover from the COVID-19 vaccine side effectives, to clean and sanitize the space in which childcare services are provided. Childcare providers are to mark on the attendance sheet(s) any closure days they wish to claim when they are closed for COVID-related reasons.
Supportive Services, Inc. provides the option of requesting an adjustment to be reimbursed retroactively for closures related to COVID-19 for which a provider may not have previously been reimbursed. Retro reimbursements will be processed as quickly as possible. To determine if you are eligible for a retroactive adjustment contact the Accounts Payable Department at (559) 230-1180.
Tracking Nonoperational Days
Effective July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022, Supportive Services, Inc. must report, monthly, to the Department of Social Services the usage of paid nonoperational days and associated costs. Hence, it is important that ALL childcare providers document COVID related closures on the monthly attendance sheets to assist the agency in remaining complaint with State requirements.
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-09
Waiver of Family Fees
Effective July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022, childcare providers will NOT collect family fees. Family fees will be waived through June 30, 2022. Supportive Services, Inc. will reimburse the full amount of the child’s certified childcare hours without deducting family fees starting with the July 2021 childcare reimbursement. Please be advised that the collection of family fees will resume on July 1, 2022 in accordance with families’ initial certification or recertification.
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-01
Pursuant to Welfare and Institutions Code (WIC) Section 10227.5, attendance sheets must include the dates and times in and out documented on a daily basis and must be signed by both the provider and the parent. If the child is not in attendance, the provider must indicate the reason for the absence.
Effective July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022, or through the end of the state of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic as declared by the Governor on March 4, 2020, whichever comes first, Supportive Services, Inc will reimburse childcare providers who submit an attendance sheet without a parent or guardian signature IF the childcare provider has attempted to collect the signature, but the parent or guardian is unable to sign due to COVID-19.
Attendance sheets eligible for reimbursement without a parent signature, must accompany documentation or an attestation of the provider’s attempts to collect the parent or guardian’s signature.
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-07
Parent Appeal Process
As part of the transition from the California Department of Education to the California Department of Social Services, the state level appeals contact information has changed. Effective July 1, 2021, families who have completed the local level appeal process and are now appealing at the state level, should send all applicable correspondence to:
California Department of Social Services
Child Care and Development Division
Attn: Appeals Coordinator
744 P Street, MS 9-8-351
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (833) 559-2420
Fax: (916) 654-1048
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-11
Provider Reimbursement Based on Certified Need
Pursuant to AB 131 (chapter 116, Statues of 2021), childcare providers shall continue to be reimbursed based on families’ certified need for services, as follows:
1. Childcare providers shall be reimbursed based on the maximum authorized hours of care,
regardless of attendance.
2. Childcare providers who service families with a variable schedule, shall also be reimbursed based on the maximum authorized hours of care.
3. License-exempt childcare providers who provide part-time childcare services, shall be reimbursed based on the maximum authorized hours of care.
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-07
American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Survey Requirement
In accordance with federal requirements for the Child Care Stabilization funds, childcare providers who are reimbursed based on certified need rather than attendance or who are reimbursed for nonoperational days must provide information via a one-time survey. The survey can be completed online and is available in English and Spanish. More details will be provided in a separate mailing.
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-07; 21-09
TK – 12 School Closures
If a child is required to quarantine from school due to COVID and during the quarantine the child utilizes services with the childcare provider, the provider may be eligible for reimbursement. Parents must submit a copy of the documentation from the school verifying the child must be quarantined and the duration of the quarantine. Without proper document, Supportive Services, Inc. is unable to reimburse childcare providers for the days/hours a child is in the care of the childcare provider due to COVID-19 TK – 12 school closures.
*Reference: CAPPA-CDSS 10-19-2021
Provider Reimbursement for School-Age Children – Effective November 15, 2021
In accordance with state and federal law, reimbursing childcare providers during the hours of a child’s “scheduled instructional minutes” is prohibited. As a result, Supportive Services, Inc. must only reimburse childcare providers during non-school hours when a school-age child is enrolled and participating in “in-person instruction.”
Distance Learning refers to remote instruction offered when a school is closed, and in-person instruction is not available. Since TK-12 distance learning does not provide supervision for children during a child’s “scheduled instructional minutes” of a public or private educational program that the child is enrolled and attending, the agency may reimburse providers for days/hours that a school-age child is participating in distance learning while in a childcare setting. Note: this only applies when the child’s school is closed, and in-person instruction is not available.
In-Person vs. Remote Learning Option
If a school offers the choice between in-person instruction and remote schooling, Supportive Services, Inc. is unable to reimburse childcare providers for any day/hours of care that take place when in person instruction is available, but the parent opts to enroll their school-age child in remote learning. Per Child Care Bulletin 21-14, Supportive Services, Inc. may only reimburse providers for care provided during non-school hours or when in-person instruction is not available. Note: this policy is effective November 15, 2021. Childcare that was provided between July 1, 2021, and November 12, 2021, while in-person instruction was available but where the parent opted to utilize remote learning shall be reimbursed. ANY reimbursement for childcare provided on or after November 16, 2021, must meet the criteria as outlined in this section.
*Reference: Child Care Bulletin 21-14
Parent Voices (a project of the California Child Care Resource & Referral Network) is a parent-run, parent-led grassroots effort that works to make quality child care accessible and affordable to all families. Parent Voices works to strengthen the capacity of parents to be effective advocates for their child care needs. The program combines leadership development, advocacy, and community organizing to achieve its goals related to increased funding, quality improvement, and better access to child care. Locally it is sponsored by Central Valley Children’s Services Network.
Parent Voices is asking parents who had been paying family fees to create a video using their phone to show the impact of freezing family fees has had in their lives. What are parents able to do or use the extra money they now have?
We need to continue to show our legislators in Sacramento the benefit of freezing family fees in order to extend the waiver and pass the bill next year. A final decision has not been made yet, but we are probably going to be making AB 92 a two-year bill to save us from getting vetoed without the appropriate funding available in the budget.
These videos can show just how valuable these family fee dollars are to families and how it allows them to afford the basic necessities without being so restricted!
Please think of at least one parent who’s no longer paying family fees and ask them to make a video.
Families that would be willing to do the video should do so no later than August 26. For questions or assistance please call Lou Hernandez at Children’s Services Network (559) 256-0963 or you may email her at: email@example.com