New Resource for Families: Finding Child Care When a Child is Mildly Ill

July 03, 2024

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Families who have a child in child care, preschool, or elementary school have a regular place for their child while they work or attend school. However, there will be times when a child will get sick, and they won’t be able to attend their regular child care or school. Though inevitable, many families are faced with a last-minute decision about what to do when their child is sick hours before they must get to work or attend a class. 

Child Care Aware of America developed a new resource to help families think about child care for mildly ill children before the need arises. It covers topics like when a child might be too sick to attend their regular child care, types of sick child care options, ideas for who can care for a child who is ill, and questions to ask a child care program or provider that will be caring for a child only when they are mildly ill. 

Child Care Resource & Referral agencies (CCR&Rs) and other child-centered organizations can use this resource to help families be proactive when thinking about their child care needs. If you serve families of young children, consider: 

  • including this one-pager as a part of your child care referral or education packets to encourage families to think about sick child care options ahead of time.  
  • linking the resource with the education on your website to provide information for families who know they might need back-up care if their child gets sick. 
  • printing copies of the one-pager to offer as a resource for families at in-person events or family engagement opportunities.  
  • sharing the resource with local partners and child care programs who can pass it along to families who may need sick child care. 

This resource is available in English and Spanish. If you have any questions about this resource or Child Care Aware of America’s other offerings, please contact our Consumer Education team at   

Topics: Health & Safety

Jessica Read

Written by Jessica Read

Jessica Read is a Project Manager on the Consumer Education team at Child Care Aware of America. She creates resources and content about quality child care for families and child care providers, maintains databases that help families and providers find local resources, and supports CCR&Rs through trainings and consumer ed resources. Jess joined CCAoA in 2010 assisting families and providers on the national hotline with information about quality child care and military fee assistance. Prior to her time at CCAoA, Jess worked as a CACFP caseworker and Family Child Care licensing trainer in Rochester, NY and as a Spanish teacher in Houghton, NY.