Our Valley Needs You!
What you should know...
There is a shortage of licensed child care slots in Walla Walla and Columbia Counties particularly for:
Infants and Toddlers (children under the age of three)
Child Care at Non Standard Hours (child care for 12 hour shifts, evenings, early mornings and weekends)
Drop In Child Care
Child Care located outside the City of Walla Walla
Owning a child care business can be a way to support your family and support others, while spending time with your own children.
A Good Candidate
You may be a good candidate to start a child care business if..
- You enjoy being around young children
- You want to care for your own children and take care of others
- You want to be an entrepreneur
- You enjoy challenges
- You want to serve your community
- You can obtain a federal tax ID or EIN number
- You own your home or your landlord permits a licensed family child care business in your
What You May Have Heard
- The licensing requirements are too strict
- I’ll go broke operating a child care center
- I have to have a B.A. in education to open a child care program
- The state system is impossible to navigate
- There is no support for child care providers operating a business
Myth: The licensing requirements are too strict
- The licensing process can be strict to ensure that children are well care for. But it is doable.
- Working with WWVELC, you will have support every step of the way.
- Becoming a provider is easier than before thanks to changed education requirements, increased state subsidy reimbursement and streamlined licensing processes
- Having realistic expectations throughout this process is important- if you have a background in ECE and don’t need to make a lot of changes to your home you could become licensed and open your business in about 6- 9 months, otherwise plan for 12-18 months.
Process for Starting Your Child Care Business
- Figure out what stage of the process you are at
- Find out what changes you may need to make to your home for it to be licensed
- Research what programs and services might be the most useful or helpful for you (See our other Provider Resources)
- Complete education requirements for opening and develop an education pathway that makes sense for you
- Develop a business plan, profit/loss and finding financing
- Make changes to your home, create curriculum, health and safety policies
- Start, complete and submit the licensing application
- Participate in licensing inspection and approval process