To become a child care provider you first need to decide if you want to open a business in your home or if you want to create a center-based business. Below is a definition of each type of business:
- Family Child Care – You may provide care for up to 8 children in your home
- Large Family Child Care – You may care for up to 12 children in your home
- Child Care Center – You may provide care in a facility outside of your home that is zoned to be used as a child care center. The number of children you serve is dependent upon the square footage of the building.
Anyone who is interested in starting a child care business in a home or center is required to take the "orientation" session as the very first step to getting a child care center license or a large family or family child care registration. The orientation session is available "on-line" only; computer access is required.
To take the virtual "on-line" Orientation Session on your computer, select the link below that matches the type of child care business you would like to start. The orientation includes videos, interactive activities and audio narration. You should expect to spend about one hour going through the orientation. But if you need to take a break during the hour, you can pause the orientation and return at a later time. This session will walk you through all of the steps you need to take and it will connect you to all of the forms that you need to complete.
After you work through the required orientation, the appropriate regional office of child care will be notified that you have successfully completed it. You must click on every screen in the orientation in order to successfully complete it.
Paula Johnson, Chief, Licensing Branch
Division of Early Childhood Development
Maryland State Department of Education
200 West Baltimore Street
Baltimore, MD 21201