Daycare's License Violations
Berkeley Parents Network >
Daycare's License Violations
As of Summer 2014, parents can view complaints, violations, and
inspection dates online for
all daycares, preschools, and childcare centers in California at
the website for the California Childcare Licensing Division (CCLD).
See the next section for how to do this.
CCLD's "Facility Detail" page includes basic information about the daycare,
and also a record of inspections, complaints, and citations. Here is some
advice about what to pay attention to:
Very few daycares that are reviewed on the
have had any complaints filed.
If the daycare you are researching has one or more substantiated complaints,
find out details from the local State
Licensing Office - the contact info is on the Facility Detail.
More than one substantiated complaint would be a very strong signal that
there's a problem with the daycare. Not all parents go to the trouble to file
a complaint - they just change daycares when there is a problem
- so multiple complaints is a red flag and warrants additional research.
- Citations: Type A citations are serious, and Type B citations
are minor. A majority of
daycares that are reviewed on the BPN website do not have any Type A citations. One or two Type B citations are not unusual, which
may represent just a paperwork deficiency, such as
failing to have an emergency contact form on hand for every child at the daycare. If you
are concerned about Type B citations, ask the daycare about it, or contact your local State
Licensing Office - see the Facility Detail for contact info. Multiple Type B
citations may indicate a lack of organization at the daycare, which may or may
not affect a parent's satisfaction with the daycare.
On the other hand, a Type A
citation can indicate a serious safety violation at the daycare, such as
inadequate fire escape routes or more children present than the daycare is licensed for.
Since the online database currently
does not provide details about the nature of the violations, you should contact the
State Licensing Office to learn more. Multiple citations for a daycare is very
unusual and should be a strong warning sign that further research is needed.
- Lic. Date This date is not always present but when it is, it can
tell you how long the daycare has been operating. Just be aware that when a
daycare moves to a different address, they will be assigned a new license
number which resets the license date.
- State Licensing Office Contact Information This is the address and
phone number where you can get the details about citations and complaints for
the daycare you are researching.
If the daycare has reviews on BPN,
go to the daycare's page and click the "view" link next to the
License # to view the CCLD's report for that facility.
(Send us email
if the View link is incorrect so we can fix it.)
You can also use the "Search" function at CCLD here:
- If you are looking for a Childcare Center or Preschool that is
not in someone's home, it's easiest to search on the name of the center or school. Add the City
in to the search to narrow down common names.
- For Large Daycares (up to 14 children), which includes
Preschools based in someone's home, you must search on the owner's name, not
the name of the preschool or daycare. It is often easier to do a
search on the daycare's zip code and then pick it out from the list of matching
- Small Daycares (8 or fewer children) are difficult to look up,
because you must exactly match the owner's name as CCLD recorded it.
Location information is not searchable. Look it up using the license
number as explained below.
- To look up a specific daycare,
and you know the daycare's license number, the easiest way to view
their info is to directly type a URL (web address) into your web browser
that looks like this:
(substitute the license number for '000000000')
Your child's childcare provider is required to keep 3 year's worth
of any confirmed violations and show them to you if you ask. If you want to
check a daycare or preschool that your child doesn't attend, you
can look it up in the
CCLD Database or
optionally call/visit the Regional Office and ask to review the daycare's file.
See Facility File Review
on the CCLD website.
Here is the information for Alameda and Contra Costa counties:
BAY AREA REGIONAL OFFICE
1515 Clay Street, Suite 1102, MS 29-04
Oakland, CA 94612
FAX (510) 622-2641
For other California counties,
see List of Child Care Program Offices (PDF file from CCLD).
Note: Until recently (June 2014),
California was one of the few states that did not make this
information available online. Here is a Jan 2014 report about this by the
Center for Investigative Reporting:
Q&A from Parents about Licensing Violations
I recently visited a home daycare. Some very odd things stood out about the
place, mostly regarding obvious lack of childproofing/safety of the play areas.
Well, I checked the daycare license, and the daycare had numerous serious
violations, some of them very recent. However, there are about 10 kids there
right now. I can't believe these parents put their kids there. Am I missing
something? Didn't the other parents see the chaos and safety issues that I saw,
and didn't they check the license history? I would never put my baby there.
Just curious about others' thoughts on this. Thanks.
I work in licensing enforcement, and I believe that very few parents
check out the licensing files on day cares before they put their
children in them. As a matter of fact, before I worked at licensing,
I didn't even know that parents could do such a thing, and the day
care facilities rarely if ever volunteer prospective parents to look
up the licensing file. I ended up putting my then infant in a nice
and shiny day care center that had been cited for toe curling
violations! I didn't find out about those violations until after I
had taken my child out of the facility! UGH... I still have
nightmares about that facility!
Now that I work in enforcement, I have been deeply disturbed by some
of the parents I have encountered, when I have taken facilities to
court to revoke the licenses. Despite how egregious the violation is,
there are always parents who come to court to testify how wonderful
and loving the day care provider is. I won't give you examples of the
cases, since you will be as troubled as I am!
I recently discovered that a facility that cares for kids of friends
of my child does not have a required license, and a few of the parents
of the kids dismiss my concerns by saying they trust the provider to
run the facility safely and select employees carefully. UGH! I have
seen several cases where the unfingerprinted person looks like a
pillar of society and has a criminal record that will frighten the
heck out of you! Oh well...
I hope your posting helps alert parents of an important resource
easily available to them, and that they run... not walk... over to
1515 Clay Street - 11th floor... call first... and look at the
facility files. Via BART: 12th Street station.
been there and unfortunately done that
I checked, I believe I had to leave a message and they
called me back. My daycare had one violation in the
previous two years, of having one extra child in care at
time of inspection, but on subsequent expections the ratio
WOW!! I had no idea about all this. I quite naively
assumed that if there was a violation the license would be
pulled and the provider would not be doing childcare
anymore. Now that I have read your post and the responses,
I can see how WRONG I am. I will be going to Clay street
(do not pass go) ASAP. Thank you so much for posting this
information, I think it is something all parents need to
a greatful mama
We are looking for a home daycare for our son. What is the
best way to find out about their safety records, whether there
are any complaints about them...etc. We live in San Ramon,
Contra Costa County.
Thanks a lot.
You can contact licensing:
BAY AREA REGIONAL OFFICE
1515 Clay Street, Suite 1102, MS: 29-04 Regional Manager:
Oakland, CA 94612 Fred Gill
(510) 622-2602 FAX (510) 622-2641
Counties: Alameda and Contra Costa
Please, if you see inquiries, don't judge right away. I had to
report a sexual abuse ordeal with the children services on a
parent (which is my responsibility as a childcare provider) and
that parent, knowing I was the main person in this childs life
that would report, backlashed & reported false claims against
me causing 2 other inquiries on my file. These were
unsubstantiated, but still, when a parent sees even inquiries,
it's damaging. If you notice something on the daycare providers
record, you may want to look into it first with the provider to
get their take on it. All the other parents in my daycare knew
what had happened too & were very supportive of me, so you
could also contact the providers current/past clients.
Call Community Care Licensing for your area. Should be in the
government section of the phone book. They'll be able to provide
information about any licensed daycare home or center in your area.
Contact Community Care Licensing, Dept of Social Services. I think that
area may still be under the Oakland jurisdiction, but if not they can
refer you. It would
be helpful to have the license # of the day care(s) in which you are
interested. Keep in
mind, though, that not all safety records have to be sent to CCL. They
should have all
copies on site as well. Some are not open to the public, but many have
to be made
available to public.
Former Childcare Director
Contra Costa Child Care Council should be able to point you in
the right direction if that info is publicly available. . . .
I have been searching diligently for a home daycare for my infant
daughter. It hasn't been easy due to the lack of openings at most
facilities. Of the twenty or so I called, I got calls back from
only a small handful, most of which I visited. I finally found
one we thought was okay, but then found out information from
another parent on BPN that confirmed some uncomfortable feelings
we had and decided not to use them.
I had started to lose hope but then found another very close to
home with a warm, loving atmosphere and an opening. They were
also willing to come down in price which was important as we have
rather tight finances (hence the need for a home daycare versus
another kind of care). However, when I called Community Care
Licensing, I found out out they have violations on file such as:
-an adult present in the daycare who wasn't fingerprinted (I'm
guessing this is an immigration related issue but don't know for
-too many children under two
-primary caregiver with license moved out of house (she still
provides care, but doesn't live there which I guess means the
license isn't valid)
I don't know whether to ignore these technicalities and trust my
gut that this is the best place we've found. They actually seem
to like/hold/interact with babies there (which hasn't been true
of others I've visited where it is clearly and primarily a
money-making venture and not about the nurturing of children).
I'm running out of options, but I'm also hesitant due to the
problems in their file. Note: there were no parent complaints
What are your experiences with such things? What would you do if
you had a limited amount of money and had to use a home daycare,
had an infant (there are very few openings for infants) and
couldn't get into any of the places recommended by friends and
acquaintances because there were no openings. If you couldn't
hire a nanny and couldn't stay at home (must work to support
family)? A daycare center is out of the question due to the high
cost and long waiting lists.
Frustrated by lack of options, scared too
Our daycare got a violation WHILE our kid was still attending -- in fact, I
suppose it could be the same place, although I don't recall any problem with
unfingerprinted workers. They had had too many kids under two when the inspector
visited, on two occasions. The agency came down like a ton of bricks, and our
daycare provider lost the ability to accept any new kids under 2 for, I think, 2
years. The parents of the then-current attendees were very supportive of our
caregivers -- they had really taken great, loving care of our babies while we were
out at work, and we knew that at least one of the ''too many toddlers'' events was
due to a birthday party. So for what it's worth, these violations may not be a
big deal. Ask the other parents who are currently there how they feel about the
Careful But Openminded
I would check on the details of the violations as the inspecting process is not
always logical. Maybe something they marked the daycare down on is not something
you would be concerned about at all. I don't know how her prices compare but,
last I checked, Robin's Nest Daycare in Berkeley had a couple of openings and I
can vouch for the very personal and engaging care Robin provides because she
raised both of my (now grown) kids and they still consider her their second mom.
She prefers infants and she has taken all the continuing education, 1st aid,
childhood development, etc., has passed all her inspections, and all members of
her household have been cleared. She can be reached at 510-843-8897. Don't give
up hope; the right place is just around the bend.
For goodness sakes! You found a daycare which is:
1/ within your budget
2/ willing to take your infant
3/ loves to hold and interact (a primary need of infants)
and you're worried about technicalities? The violations would make me pause too,
however the bottom line is... will your child get good care, be safe and get lots
of love? I'm guessing your gut already gave you a yes on that one. So if they
aren't licensed/fingerprinted and sometimes have too many kids, does that mean
they will love your infant any less? Hopefully not, and you are somewhat bound by
supply and demand. I say trust your instincts, know that life is never perfect,
and go for this situation where your baby will get loved anon
My 2 year old goes to a daycare center so I can't comment specifically, but I
would say, those violations raise some red flags for me, particularly the invalid
license and the non- fingerprinted adult. I wonder if you could talk to any of the
parents whose kids go there to get their feedback? Maybe even post the name of the
daycare on BPN and see if you get any responses. What about a nanny share? I
really don't know what these cost since we never looked into it. Finding
affordable quality childcare is so impossible. We love our center, but it is far
from affordable. Good luck.
this page was last updated: Aug 4, 2014
The opinions and statements expressed on this website
are those of parents who subscribe to the
Berkeley Parents Network.
Disclaimer & Usage for
information about using content on this website.
Copyright © 1996-2014 Berkeley Parents Network