Regulations and Permits for Child Care Providers

Center-Based (Group) Child Care

A Group Child Care service is any program providing child care to 3 or more children under 6 years of age for 5 or more hours per week, for more than 30 days in a 12-month period, primarily operating in a non-residential space. Regulated by Article 47 (PDF) of the New York City Health Code.

School-Based Child Care Programs

School-Based Child Care programs provide instruction for children ages three through five that are located within a school or that are part of a school.

These programs must submit a Notice of Filing to the NYC Health Department. The filing form must include at least one of the following for the program, which are available at the NYC Department of Education, to be subject to Article 43 of the New York City Health Code:
  • New York City Department of Education Approval of Curriculum
  • New York State Board of Regents Registration
  • New York City/State Department of Education issued charter
  • New York State Department of Education Basic Education Data System (B.E.D.S.) number
  • Article 43 School-based Pre-school Instructional Program Notice of Filing

Summer Camp

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Bureau of Child Care (BCC) is responsible for the permitting and regulatory oversight of summer camps in New York City. After submission of your application and permit fee, the application will be assigned to the respective borough office for processing and issuance of the permit. Camps should not operate until the permit application requirements are met and the permit is approved.

Family Day Care (Home-Based)

Family Day Care homes are residences in which child care is provided on a regular basis for more than three hours per day per child for compensation or otherwise. Family Day Care providers may care for three to six children aged six weeks through 12 years, plus two additional school-aged children with approval from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). No more than two children under the age of two may be cared for at any one time. Regulated by New York State Social Services Law Section 390, Part 417.

Group Family Day Care (Home-Based)

Group Family Day Care homes are residences in which child care is provided on a regular basis for more than three hours per day per child for compensation or otherwise. A group family day care home must be operated by a primary on-site caregiver and at least one assistant, and there must be one caregiver present for every two children under the age of two. Group Family Day Care providers may care for seven to twelve children, aged six weeks through 12 years. Group Family Day Care providers may obtain separate approval to care for an additional four school-aged children. When any child less than two years of age is present, the maximum allowable number of children in care is 10. In this situation, an additional two school-aged children may be permitted with separate approval. Regulated by New York State Social Services Law Section 390, Part 416.

School-Age Child Care Programs (After-School)

A school-age child care program is a non-residential child care service for a group of seven or more school age children from kindergarten to under 13 years of age. School age child care services are provided during the school year before and/or after the period children are ordinarily in school or during school lunch periods. No child may be admitted unless the child is enrolled in kindergarten or a higher grade, or is at least six years of age. A school-age child care program may provide care for children over 13 years of age as long as the program meets all regulatory standards. Regulated by New York State Social Services Law Section 390, Part 414.

Informal Child Care (Non-Regulated)

Informal child care providers are usually located in a home or private residence. There is no age limit for the children in the provider’s care, but the total number of children must be less than three in addition to the provider’s own children. Providers in this category are not required to be regulated.