DayCare Safety 101

A lot of times at JuiceBox Hero we tend to take a playful approach to parenting. We know there are just things we all have to roll with and not take too seriously. Safety is not one of those things.

The most important thing in our world is our children. Like you, we care passionately about the well being, safety, and health of our most important people. That’s why we limit participation on our site to childcare providers who are licensed and regulated. That means everyone on our site has been required to have background checks and are required to meet ongoing safety standards including that their facilities are regularly inspected. Other sites, like do not.

Does this limit the type of caregivers we can offer to parents? Yes! And, we’re ok with that. The stakes are just too high.

Our safety standards are the reason why we focus (first*) on regulated daycares, preschools and after-school programs.

*Of course, we know that families use a variety of childcare partners, including babysitters, nannies or au pairs. And, there are great partners in the childcare space who focus on appropriately vetting these caregivers (and the families they serve). We do have plans to work with these experts in the future — stay tuned!

📖Learn More

For those interested to learn detailed info about childcare safety standards, consider the following:

Both stand-alone childcare centers and those who provide care in their homes can become regulated by the State of Texas. The state of Texas has a highly regulated process with standards to be maintained along with announced and unannounced visits by officials from the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS). Once a center or home is licensed, in order to maintain their license a center or home has to continue to follow these minimum standards.

In the state of Texas, childcare providers who meet DFPS standards do so at different levels: licensed, certified or registered. All of these levels of regulation require background checks and safety standards. Here is what the different levels mean:

  • “Licensed” – The highest standard of regulation. Centers or homes who just started the process to get their license will be issued an “Initial” permit for 6 months. During this time, providers are visited routinely by DFPS officials to ensure they are in compliance with state standards. Those who have completed the permitting process are then issued a “full permit”. The full permit is up for renewal every couple of years.
  • “Registered” – These are childcare providers who operate in-home centers and are registered with the state and provide childcare for less than 6 children.

The state of Texas also shares a database of “Listed” providers; they are not required to be background checked. JuiceBox Hero does not allow these providers on our site.

graphic credit: Austin American Statesman

✅ Safety & Inspections Reports

DPFS maintains a public database of safety and inspection reports on all regulated childcare providers. We are working on an API to directly link providers on our site to their reports. In the meantime, once you have selected your top favorites, we recommend all parents visit the DPFS website to view inspection reports or any violations or deficiencies that may have occurred in the past. These violations are rated from “low” to “high” and could be anything such as not having enough signage to children being left unattended. These inspections reports are incredibly helpful in determining what kind of care your child will receive.


Additionally it’s best practice to know the ratios in the state of Texas for child to staff in childcare settings.

Age RangeChild: Staff RatioMaximum Group Size
0 – 11 months4:110
12 – 17 months5:113
18 – 23 months9:118
2 years (24 months)11:122
3 years15:130
4 years18:135
5 years22:135
6-8 years26:135
9 – 12 years26:135

Remember you are your child’s biggest advocate — their biggest super hero — so trust your gut. We are here for you every step of the way to help keep your kids safe and make your family the best it can be. As always, feel free to reach out to a member of our concierge team for additional help.

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