How to Report Bad Child Care Centers

Make sure that your child is well cared for at the child care facility.

Child care centers are supposed to have strict protocols and provide qualified staff. Although a child care center may not have the same oversight through the Department of Education as a preschool does, child care centers still need to maintain their licensing and provide a clean, safe, nurturing environment for service recipients. If you know of a bad child care center that may be neglecting or abusing children, is not clean, safe or has other hazards, it is important to report the child care center if they do not remedy the situation.

1 Addressing Concerns with the Director

2 Make a list

Make a list of concerns that you have regarding the facility, such as concerns about a specific employee’s treatment of a child, safety problems like exposed outlets, lack of child locks or other issues.

3 Discuss your concern

Discuss your concern with the director of the child care center and ask that he fix the situation immediately. Depending on the severity of the situation with the child care, you may give the director a few days to address the problem herself before reporting the center immediately.

4 Follow up with the child care facility director

Follow-up with the child care facility director and make sure that the problem is being addressed.

5 Reporting Child Abuse or Neglect

6 Go

Go to the Department of Health and Human Services website’s “Child Welfare Information Gateway” at and go to “Topics,” then “Reporting” to report child abuse or neglect.

7 Go to Child Abuse Reporting Numbers to Child Abuse

Go to “Child Abuse Reporting Numbers” and choose “Download” or “View” to see the PDF file with related organizations. This is a country wide list that maintains phone numbers of state offices that deal with suspected child abuse.

8 Call the number

Call the number listed for your state.

9 Explain your concerns

Explain your concerns and your needs and explain what child care facility you are speaking about. Answer any questions which the hotline counselor has regarding the complaint.

10 Take the hotline specialist s

Take the hotline specialist’s i.d. number and/or name and make sure that you have it for future reference.

11 Reporting Licensing Violations

12 Make a list of issues that you have with your child s day care facility

Make a list of issues that you have with your child’s day care facility.

13 Contact your states

Contact your states’ Department of Human Services and find the phone number for the Division of Child Care Licensing. Contact the Division of Child Care Licensing and ask for the phone number or contact information to report licensing violations.

14 Discuss your concerns

Discuss your concerns about the child care with the Division of Child Care Licensing. Explain specific issues with the child care, giving examples and dates as applicable. If the director refused to make necessary changes when you presented the concerns in Section 1, make sure that you note the day of your conversation.

Andrea Helaine has a Bachelor of Philosophy in theology and is currently finishing her thesis course for a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing. Helaine has been writing professionally for over 10 years and has been published in several anthologies and is currently breaking into the screenwriting market.