ODE Update for Early Learning Programs April 3, 2020

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Dear Early Learning Provider,

Due to the temporary closure of child care in Ohio as outlined in the Executive Order, the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) is implementing system changes to the Ohio Child Licensing and Quality System (OCLQS) for Step Up To Quality (SUTQ). These changes include a 6-month extension of expiration dates for ongoing registrations (renewals) and anniversary dates for annual reports. This means that no program will have an annual report or rating renewal due before October 2020.

During this period, all SUTQ ratings will be held constant to the rating that existed for programs as ofThursday, March 26, 2020. Programs receiving their initial rating after March 26, 2020 will not be affected by this extension. Any ratings that have expired since March 26, 2020 are in the process of being restored to the previous rating in the OCLQS system. Any desk reviews that are currently in process in the system will remain on hold and will not close in the system.

Please disregard any system email reminders that do not reflect this extension. New reminders will be generated based on the new dates and will supersede any notifications previously received.

ODE program staff working remotely may choose to continue to complete Step Up To Quality work for annual reports, ongoing registrations, and desk review revisions already in process. ODE specialists are continually reviewing submitted SUTQ documentation during this time of school building closure. ODJFS is not completing SUTQ initial registrations, desk reviews, annual reports or onsite verification visits due to the closure of all child care programs and schools in Ohio.

As a reminder, Amended Substitute House Bill 197 extended the deadline to September 1, 2020 for programs providing publicly funded child care (PFCC) to be SUTQ rated. This means that any program providing PFCC has until September 1, 2020 to become SUTQ rated. Programs with a provider agreement that are not rated will be able to continue providing PFCC after July 1, 2020.

If you have questions about the OCLQS system changes please contact the ODJFS Child Care Help Desk at 1-877-302-2347, option 1.

If you have any questions about SUTQ for ODE programs, please email SUTQ@education.ohio.gov

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