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Choosing Quality Care


Choosing a child care setting for your infant, toddler or preschooler is a big decision. Quality is one of the most important factors to consider, as research shows that quality early learning settings help children develop skills – like socialization, motivation, self-control and focus – that are crucial to their success once they enter school.


To find the program that is the right match for you and your child, look for the following characteristics:


  • Appears to be a pleasant and caring person
  • Handles discipline in a consistent, positive and loving manner
  • Has training and experience with children
  • Promotes open communication regarding your child's growth and development
  • Interacts throughout the day with your child


  • Clean, safe, and healthy indoor and outdoor space for the children to move and play freely
  • Atmosphere is bright and pleasant
  • Age appropriate toys and materials
  • Caregiver practicing and encouraging good hygiene with the children


  • A variety of toys and learning materials
  • Daily schedule posted with opportunities for active/quiet, indoor/outdoor, and adult/child chosen play
  • Children happy and playing together
  • Picture your child in this environment



The Child Care Scholarship (CCS) Program provides financial assistance with child care costs to eligible working families in Maryland.

Maryland EXCELS is a quality rating and improvement system for child care and early education programs that meet nationally recognized quality standards. 

The Maryland Families Engage website was designed to help build a community of support for those who care for and work with young children. The database of resources contains links to child development, family engagement initiatives, research, and more.