Questions for Your Early Learning Provider During COVID-19

Child Care and the COVID-19 Pandemic

Child Care Operations in Pennsylvania

During the COVID-19 pandemic, all child care programs located in counties in the yellow or green phase of Governor Tom Wolf’s Process to Reopen Pennsylvania are permitted to offer services to families and caregivers without a waiver. However, to maintain the health and safety of children, families, and staff, all programs must comply with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Guidance for Child Care Programs that Remain Open.

To better understand the type of care and services your early learning program is providing during the COVID-19 pandemic, ask your early learning professional the following questions. For additional questions on program quality, visit our Questions to Ask Your Early Learning Professional page.



Questions to Ask Your Child Care Program

    • What are your current operating hours? (COVID-19 might have affected the normal hours.)
    • What is the health screening process you are implementing for children and staff?
    • What is your drop-off and pick-up process right now?
    • What is your policy regarding visitors and non-essential staff in your program?
    • What is your program’s policy on adults and children wearing masks?
    • Can you share with me a little about your handwashing and hygiene practices?
    • What is the staff-to-child ratio you are currently following?
    • How are you handling groupings of children and use of space in general (ie., meals, nap time, outdoor activities)?
    • How is your program communicating with families?
    • Can you tell me about the communication you will have with families about illnesses?
    • Does the program have an emergency plan for a child or staff member showing COVID-19 symptoms?
    • Can you share your sick/illness policy with me before enrolling?
    • How will you meet the developmental needs of my child while following the health and safety guidance of the CDC?
    • Do you have an outside play area or a plan to get children outside every day?
    • Recognizing the increased need for cleaning and sanitation, are cleaning supplies and chemicals locked up and out of the reach of children?

Print this Resource

This list of questions is also available as a printable Family Checklist (PDF).

Find Child Care

Is your family in need of child care? Use the Allegheny Child Care tool to search for child care, before and after school programs, and summer programs near you! This tool displays real-time available child care slots at early learning programs in Allegheny County. Visit our Find Child Care page to learn more and start your search.

More Information

If you are looking for additional questions to assess program quality, visit our Questions to Ask Your Early Learning Professional page. For more information and to stay up-to-date on COVID-19 guidance, please visit the Pennsylvania Department of Health website.


Mental Health

Series Navigation

The Developmentally Appropriate Parenting Series highlights several early childhood topics to support parents and caregivers who are caring for young children. Use the list below to navigate through each series topic:

Learn more about the series.

Request free printed materials from our Developmentally Appropriate Parenting Series.


Picture: A young baby looks up at the camera.
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