Early care and education is important to the development of children. We understand that quality child care is expensive. Next to housing, child care is the largest expense in most families' budgets. Through federal, state and local funding from the Texas Workforce Commission to Workforce Solutions Rural Capital Area, Child Care Service is able to provide financial aid for eligible families and provide professional development opportunities for early care and education providers.
Eligibility criteria to receive Child Care Services (CCS) include:
- Each parent and step-parent, living in the household, must be working, attending school, in training/other educational program through a bachelors degree (time limitations apply), or a combination of these, at least an average of 25 hours a week over a review period for single parents or 50 combined hours for 2-parent households or actively looking for employment. Household members include those that live in the household: parents, step-parents, adult dependents and a child or other minor living in the household who is the responsibility of the parent.
A parent whose eligibility is determined may receive education- and training-related child care services regardless of the field of study, for a period not to exceed the following:
- 6 years (the equivalent of 72 months of activity in education / training) to complete a bachelor’s degree
- 4 years (the equivalent of 48 months of activity in education / training) to complete an associate’s degree;
- 2 years (the equivalent of 24 months of activity in education / training) to complete a) a post high school technical training, trade training, certificate program; b) an integrated education/training program
- Eighteen months to complete a GED or other high school equivalency credential.
The time frame for completing education programs shall begin when the parent starts receiving child care assistance to participate in their degree or certificate program. Maximum allowable time to complete all training is six years (72 months). Child care assistance shall not be provided for the pursuit of education beyond a bachelor’s degree.
In order to continue to be eligible for subsidized child care for post-secondary education activities, at each 12-month recertification, parents must be making progress toward successful completion of a job training or educational program (defined as being officially enrolled in and meeting attendance standards of the program in which the student is enrolled), and participate in a combination of training, education or employment activities for an average of 25 hours per week for a single-parent family or 50 hours per week for a two-parent family.
- Initial Job Search Child Care: If a parent or step-parent meets eligibility criteria except hours per week of work, school, or training hours, early-learning child care tuition scholarships are available for up to 3 months to support you while searching for employment. For child care to continue, employment must be found within 3 months of child care starting. Parents may self-attest their need for job search child care to actively seek employment and that their family income is below 85 percent of the state median income if it applies. If after 3 months of job search child care, documented employment eligibility hours are not met, child care will end. Initial Job Search Child Care is available only once during a 12-month time frame.
Boards must ensure that eligibility continues for a total of 12 months, inclusive of the initial three-month period, if the family meets the following requirements within or by the end of the initial three months, as follows:
- For a single-parent family, a family must have at least 25 hours per week of total activity participation, which must include a minimum of 12 hours per week in employment.
- For a dual-parent family, a family must have a total combined 50 hours per week of total activity participation, which must include a minimum total combined 25 hours per week in employment.
Workforce Solutions Rural Capital Area has a growing population. We maintain a waitlist for our Child Care Services Scholarship Program. A waitlist application for services must be submitted.
Waitlist applications are processed in the date order received. If a family meets one of the following criteria, they may qualify for priority waitlist status. The waitlist before you may be considered for a scholarship, as funds are limited.
- 1st Group: Choices, TANF, SNAP E&T and Transitional Child Care.
- 2nd Group: Children of a Qualified Veteran or Spouse, Foster Youth, Homeless**, Military Deployed, Teen Parents, and Children with Disabilities.
- 3rd Group: Siblings of children currently in care, parents who are participating in a case-managed employment or education program with the goal to obtain self-sufficiency in collaboration with Workforce Solutions Rural Capital, and Children receiving care through Early Head Start Child Care Partnership grants in collaboration with Workforce Solutions Rural Capital.
- 4th Group: Counties depending on rank from highest to lowest difference between county poverty share and expenditures.
- 5th Group: All other income-eligible families.
After your waitlist application is processed, a letter is sent to you regarding your form. Please allow up to three weeks to receive the letter.
We send letters, forms and other paperwork through your For Child Care Portal Account. If your physical and/or mailing address, email address or phone number changes, notify us immediately to update your information through your For Child Care Portal Account, phone 1-877-223-0404 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If we are unable to contact you, your child will be removed from the waitlist. Should you need services in the future, you must start over and complete another Waitlist Application.
**Homelessness Subtitle VII-B of the McKinney-Vento Act defines homeless children as “individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.”
The definition includes:
- Children and youths sharing the housing of other individuals due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; living in emergency or transitional shelters; abandoned in hospitals; or awaiting foster care placement
- Children and youths who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings
- Children and youths living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations or similar settings
- Migratory children who qualify as homeless for the purposes of this subtitle because the children are living in circumstances described in this section.
RESPONSIBILITIES TO UPDATE INFORMATION WITH CHILD CARE SERVICES
Report changes that may affect eligibility within 14 calendar days including:
- Changes in family income or family size that would cause the family to exceed 85 percent of State Median Income (SMI) for a family of the same size
- Changes in work or attendance at a job training or educational program not considered to be temporary changes
- Any change in family residence, primary phone number, or e-mail (if available)
- Agree to pay the Parent Share of Cost (when applicable)
- Agree to meet the attendance requirements
- Parents must also abide by all other responsibilities and rules related to the CCS Program.
- Two weeks notice must be given to child care services, the child care center you are leaving and the child care center you are transferring to. Authorization from Child Care Services must take place before the transfer can happen. Transfers without prior written authorization to the new child care center, will be paid for out of pocket by the parent.
- Scenarios regarding Health and Safety of a child or family, please speak to Child Care Services to potentially waive the 2 week notice.
You can reach our Child Care Services Team using your For Child Care Portal account, emailing email@example.com, calling 877-223-0404 or fax 855-584-7332