UPDATE FROM THE FLORIDA OFFICE OF EARLY LEARNING
December 09, 2020
The Florida Office of Early Learning is implementing a “dimmer switch” approach to phasing-out the Child Care for Health Care Workers and First Responders Program. Therefore, the last day to accept renewed referrals for the Child Care for Health Care Workers and First Responders Program is December 31, 2020.
Please note the following:
- Families that submit a renewed referral by December 31, 2020, can continue to receive child care through the program for up to 3 months from the date of the renewed referral.
- Families currently enrolled in the program can continue to participate through the end of their already established 3-month referral.
- Families with referrals expiring before December 31, 2020, who wish to seek a renewal must obtain a renewed referral from their employer’s Human Resources office to continue participation. Renewals will be accepted only for referrals that expire on or before December 31, 2020.
- Participation in the Child Care for Health Care Workers and First Responders Program will end on or before March 31, 2021, based on the referral end date.
- Families currently participating in the Child Care for Health Care Workers and First Responders Program that do not receive a renewed referral by December 31, 2020, and have an income less than 85 percent of the State Median Income (SMI) will be given 3 months to establish a new purpose of care to continue to qualify for SR program participation through the end of the 12-month authorization period. If the family’s income exceeds 85% SMI, the family’s participation in the program will be terminated.
Parent copayments will resume on January 1, 2021.
- Families who receive a renewed referral to continue participating in the Child Care for Health Care Workers and First Responders Program (by December 31, 2020) may continue to have their copayment waived for the duration of the referral period.
- Beginning on January 1, 2021, families participating in the SR program that did not receive a renewed referral, will begin paying or resume paying the parent copayment as established by the early learning coalition prior to the copayment waiver period.
- If the family remains eligible upon conclusion of the referral renewal end date, the originally assessed parent copayment may be reinstated once the referral renewal authorization date expires.
Providers serving children as part of the Child Care for Health Care Workers and First Responders Program that have not reached the maximum $12,000 per facility will continue to receive bonuses while a valid referral is in place.