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Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Child Care Providers: Safe Child-Staff Ratio and Group Size
The number of children per adult care provider and the total group
size are two important factors that indicate the quality and safety of a child
care setting. The recommended guidelines for these factors vary by the child's age, the type and size of the child care center, and other aspects. For example, recommendations for group child care centers are shown below:1
Maximum child-to-staff ratio
Maximum group size
12 months or younger
3 to 1
13 to 35 months
4 to 1
7 to 1
8 to 1
6 to 8 years
10 to 1
9 to 12 years
12 to 1
American Academy of Pediatrics et al. (2011). Staffing. In Caring for Our Children: National Health and Safety Performance Standards—Guidelines for Early Care and Education Programs, 3rd ed., pp. 2–45. Elk Grove Village, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.
October 9, 2013
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics & Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
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