COVID Resources for DEEL Providers

The Department of Early Learning would like to thank all preschool and child care partners who have adapted classrooms and programs to continue serving children and families during COVID-19. You are among our community's greatest heroes during this unprecedented challenge our City is facing.

In addition to the resources below, we invite providers to visit the City of Seattle's COVID-19 Support for Small Businesses and Nonprofits for a list of resources available during the coronavirus crisis.

Provider Frequently Asked Questions 

Q: Are child care facilities mandated to stay open during COVID-19?
A: No, there is no mandate for child care facilities to stay open. Governor Inslee designated child care businesses and workers as essential and exempt from the "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" order; however, child care providers are not under a mandate to stay open or to close.

Because child care providers are independent business owners, decisions such as a voluntary closure during a health outbreak are decisions each facility makes on their own. DEEL is encouraging child care administrators to make these decisions in consideration of the latest information and recommendations distributed from the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) and Public Health - Seattle & King County (PHSKC).     

Q: Are there specific health guidelines I should follow during COVID-19? 
A: Childcare facilities operating under COVID-19 have been given new guidelines by Public Health - Seattle & King County and Washington Department of Health. These include guidelines for smaller group sizes, social distancing, daily health screenings, and increased frequency of sanitizing and disinfecting, among other health and safety measures. Public Health - Seattle & King County has weekly virtual calls available for child care providers under their PHSKC Child Care Health program. For information on how to join these calls, contact the PHSKC Child Care Health program

Q: One of the staff/children at our facility has tested positive for COVID-19. What steps must I take? 
A: Please see guidelines from Public Health - Seattle & King County on how to respond to a positive COVID-19 case at your facility. 

Q: My child care business is losing money right now. Is there any immediate financial relief for small businesses? 
A: The Washington Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) has announced an opportunity for Child Care COVID-19 Grants that provides support and stabilization for child care providers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Any licensed child care provider in Washington that is open on the date they submit an application and who is providing child care is eligible. Grants are offered on a first-come, first-serve basis starting on May 15, 2020, and are available in varying amounts based on licensed capacity. Providers must remain open through July 31, 2020.

Additionally, you can visit the City of Seattle's Small Business and Nonprofit Support page for COVID-19 resources that may be available to you.  

Q: Families in my program with a CCAP voucher are struggling to pay their portion of tuition. Where can I direct them for resources or benefits that may be available to them at this time? 
A: Link to City of Seattle resource page, call 2-1-1, apply for benefits through Washington State at washingtonconnection.org. Interpreter services are available. 

Q: I'm a new provider that is interested in becoming part of the City of Seattle's Child Care Assistance Program. Who could I call for any questions? 
A: Please call the Department of Education and Early Learning at 206-386-1050 to learn about becoming a CCAP provider.