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The information provided on this page is a basic outline of Montana Child Care requirements that pertain to the design and construction of Child Care Facilities in the State of Montana. This information is a brief synopsis and does not include all of the detailed requirements needed to satisfy the governing authorities for Child Care Licensing, Building Code, Fire Code, Accessibility, or local Zoning. These guidelines are for general information and planning purposes. Contact the governing authority directly or engage a Licensed Architect to complete a full analysis of your school location.

MONTANA Child Care Licensing Requirements

Child Care license obtained from:

Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services

2401 Colonial Drive, P.O. Box 202353, Helena, MT 59620-2953

https://dphhs.mt.gov/Portals/85/qad/documents/LicensureBureau/ChildCare/LicensingRequirementsforChildCareCenters.pdf

(406) 444-2012 or (406) 256-7062

License renewal is required every year.

Indoor Space Requirements: 35 sf per child

  

0-23 Mos.

2-3 Years

4 Years

6+ Years

Required

Teacher: Child Ratio

1:4

1:8

1:10

1:14

Required

Max. Group Size

12

16

24

32

Recommended 

Classroom Capacity

8

16

20

28

Recommended 

Staff per Classroom

2

2

2

2

Recommended 

Min. Classroom Area

280 sf.

560 sf.

700 sf.

980 sf.

Outdoor Space Requirements: 75 sf per child

  • Any outdoor play area must be maintained free from hazards such as wells, machinery, and animal waste. Outdoor play must adjoin or assessable to the indoor area.
  • Outdoor play areas must be designed where all parts are always visible and are easily supervised by a staff member.
  • Toys, play equipment and any other equipment used by the children must be of substantial conditions and free from sharp edges.
  • Outdoor equipment like slides and swings, much be anchored down firmly and places in a location according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Building Code Requirements

child care child toilet child care adult toilet child care drinking fountain child care mop sink child care bath tub

CHILD

FIXTURES

ADULT

FIXTURES

DRINKING FOUNTAINS

MOP

SINK

BATH TUB/

SHOWER

1: 15

1:50

1:100

1

1

2012 International Building Code

Fire Code Requirements

1

An annual approved inspection report from the state fire marshal’s official designee indicating that the fire safety rules have been met.

1

The director must have a bachelor’s degree in a related field plus one year of experience in Child Development Associate Certification (CDA).

5.7

In sleeping rooms, windows having a minimum of 5.7 square feet clear, unobstructed opening must be readily accessible for fire suppression.

2012 International Fire Code

Did you know . . .

child care playground Children must be in a smoke-free environment during child care hours, whether indoors or outdoors. child care infant Children must be without a fever of 101 or greater 24 hours before they are allowed to return to child care. child care 30 minutes The emergency Montana Poison Control Center number, 1(800) 222-1222 must be posted at all phones in the child care.

To access Montana Child Care requirements along with other states please see our interactive Child Care Requirements US map here.

Research completed by Calbert Design Group, LLC.  Updated 2019