School age care

How to Use This List

  1. Go through each item on the list.
  2. Check off the things you already do.
  3. Don’t worry if you can’t check off everything!
  4. Use the items you DO NOT CHECK off to create an action plan for improvement.

Furniture and Space

Room Arrangement

  • ___ Materials with a similar use are placed together.
  • ___ Individual stations are set up for specific activities, such as painting, reading, etc.
  • ___ Traffic patterns don’t interfere with activities.
  • ___ Stations and play areas are easy to supervise visually.
  • ___ Required resources such as water or shelving are available in the stations.
  • ___ Quiet and noisy stations are separated.
  • ___ Appropriate play space is provided in each station.
  • ___ Stations provide a variety of learning experiences (such as an art corner, a computer area, a table for board games, etc.).
  • ___ Materials in stations are labeled and organized so that children can use them on their own.
  • ___ Additional supplies are available to add to or change the stations.
  • ___ If homework is part of the program, there is a separate area in the center that is quiet, not crowded, with suitable chairs and tables for working on homework.
  • ___ If homework is part of the program, children have access to reference materials such as a library and computers.

Furnishings for Routine Care

  • ___ Enough tables, chairs, and other furnishings for all children to eat, play, nap, do homework, and store their things comfortably.
  • ___ Furniture is in good repair.
  • ___ Furniture is child-sized.
  • ___ Routine care furnishings are kept clean and in good order.

Furnishings for Learning and Recreation

  • ___ Enough basic furnishings in good repair for learning and recreational activities.
  • ___ Enough storage for learning and recreational materials.
  • ___ Furnishings are the appropriate size and are available for daily use.
  • ___ Furnishings are well-maintained.
  • ___ Some space is available for the display of work done by the school age children and for the display of work of interest to them.
  • ___ The full range of learning and recreational furnishings is used regularly.
  • ___ Materials are labeled or other guidance is used so that children can use some learning and recreational materials independently.

Relaxation and Comfort

  • ___ There is some furniture available to children that is upholstered and soft.
  • ___ Soft furnishings are in good repair (pillow covers are washed regularly, no tears in fabric, etc.).
  • ___ Soft furnishings are regularly available to children (cushions in the reading area, couches in the music/listening area, etc.).
  • ___ Several areas include soft carpeting or rugs.
  • ___ There is a planned, soft cozy area where children can relax.

Indoor Space

  • ___ Space has good light, ventilation, and temperature.
  • ___ Space is in good repair (no peeling paint on walls, floor is in good repair, etc.).
  • ___ Space isn’t crowded with furniture.
  • ___ There is enough space for children to move around freely.
  • ___ Some natural light through windows or a skylights.
  • ___ Space is regularly cleaned (floors cleaned, rugs vacuumed, trash cleared, etc.).
  • ___ Space is aesthetically pleasing, with a light, open, airy feel.
  • ___ Adjustable blinds or curtains allow the caregiver to control the amount of natural light.
  • ___ Windows or fans allow staff to control the amount of ventilation.


  • ___ Staff supervises children in potentially dangerous areas (for example, while using climbing apparatus or doing carpentry).
  • ___ Careful supervision of children is adjusted appropriately for different ages and abilities (for example, younger children are supervised more closely).
  • ___ Children are given more help when needed (for example, staff show children how to use new equipment).
  • ___ Staff show appreciation of children’s efforts and accomplishments.
  • ___ Staff talk to children about ideas related to their play and help to elaborate and extend their activities.
  • ___ Staff are available to coach team sports and help with activities requiting adult input.

Emergency and Safety Policy

  • ___ There is written safety and emergency procedures.
  • ___ All staff is trained in emergency and safety procedures.
  • ___ The facility has passed an official fire safety inspection.
  • ___ There is always at least two adults present, so that one can leave in case of an emergency.
  • ___ Emergency information, including contact information for each child’s parents, doctor, and dentist and written permission for medical care for each child, is accessible.
  • ___ At least one person with first aid training, including CPR, is in the facility at all times.
  • ___ There is regular safety inspections of the facility, the grounds, and equipment to identify and eliminate potential hazards.
  • ___ All staff has current first aid certificates, including CPR.

Safety Practices

  • ___ Medicines and other hazardous substances are locked away.
  • ___ Equipment is safe and in good repair.
  • ___ Outdoor playing area is free of trash, broken glass, and other hazards.
  • ___ Outdoor playing area is fenced.
  • ___ Phone is accessible for emergency use.
  • ___ Emergency procedures are posted.
  • ___ First aid supplies are well-stocked and accessible.
  • ___ Emergency numbers are posted near the phone.
  • ___ Evacuation procedures are practiced monthly.
  • ___ Parents are informed about accidents.
  • ___ Staff makes frequent inspections of grounds, facilities, and equipment for potential hazards and problems are fixed or dealt with.
  • ___ Children are taught safety rules.
  • ___ The environment is planned to avoid safety problems (for example, younger children are separated from older children during active play; outdoor play equipment is appropriately sized for each group, etc.).
  • ___ Safety information and plans are shared with parents.
  • ___ Parents are asked to monitor children so that dangerous items are not brought to the program.

Health Policy

  • ___ There is a written policy for isolating a sick child and notifying parents.
  • ___ There is written rules for managing contagious illnesses that cover exclusion of sick children, readmission, and notification of all parents.
  • ___ Staff keeps records of immunization and other health information for each child.
  • ___ Staff have all had physical exams and TB tests within the last two years.
  • ___ Staff are trained to detect signs of illness, child abuse and neglect, and report when necessary.
  • ___ The written health policy is given to parents.
  • ___ Medication is given only from the original container with written permission from parents and exact instructions.
  • ___ Caregiver has arranged for a medical consultant, such as a local doctor or nurse practitioner, to handle the staff’s health questions.

Health Practices

  • ___ An area is set aside for sick children.
  • ___ Children’s allergies and medication schedules are posted for staff use.
  • ___ Parents of a sick child are contacted.
  • ___ Staff report suspected child abuse or neglect to the proper authorities.
  • ___ At the first sign of illness, a child is isolated in a separate room.
  • ___ Staff take health precautions when supervising a sick child.
  • ___ Children are taught about health practices such as good nutrition and hygiene.
  • ___ Staff provide feedback to parents about children’s physical and mental health (for example, they report concerns about hearing or vision, loss of appetite, withdrawal, aggression, depression, etc.).
  • ___ Staff assist parents to meet children’s health needs (for example, by arranging for referrals to trusted doctors and health screenings).

Personal Hygiene

  • ___ Tissues, paper towels, soap, and water are accessible to children
  • ___ Bathrooms are clean.
  • ___ Children wash their hands after using the bathroom, before and after eating, and after messy activities and outdoor play.
  • ___ Staff periodically check bathroom cleanliness and supplies.
  • ___ Personal hygiene is part of an educational program to promote good health care habits.
  • ___ Children have their own toothbrushes and use them after eating.
  • ___ Children are taught not to share personal items such as toothbrushes, combs, food and drinks.