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The information provided on this page is a basic outline of Pennsylvania Child Care requirements that pertain to the design and construction of Child Care Facilities in the State of Pennsylvania. 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.

PENNSYLVANIA Child Care Licensing Requirements

Child Care license obtained from:

Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare Office of Child Development Bureau of Certification Services

P.O. Box 2675, Harrisburg, PA  17105-2675

https://www.pacode.com/secure/data/055/chapter3270/chap3270toc.html

(717) 364-9320

License renewal is required every year.

Indoor Space Requirements: 40 sf per child

  

Infant

Young Toddler

Older Toddler

Preschool

Young School Age

Older School Age

Required

Teacher:Child Ratio

1:4

1:5

1:6

1:10

1:12

1:15

Required

Max. Group Size

8

10

12

20

24

30

Recommended 

Classroom Capacity

8

10

12

20

24

30

Recommended 

Staff per Classroom

2

2

2

2

2

2

Recommended 

Min. Classroom Area

320 sf.

400 sf.

480 sf.

800 sf.

960 sf.

1200 sf.

Outdoor Space Requirements: 40 sf per Infant, 50 sf per Toddler, 65 sf per Preschool and Older

  • Fencing is required to separate children from unsafe conditions.
  • Toxic plants are not permitted in a child care space.
  • Drinking water shall be provided to children who are outside for more than one hour.
  • Spaces being used to care for children may not be used simultaneously for other business purposes not related to the child care being provided.

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

2015 International Building Code

Fire Code Requirements

110

Piping with over 110 degree water require insulated pipe covers.

5

Protective outlet covers must be used to protect children 5 years old and younger.

1

Trash shall be removed from the building at least once per day and from the property at least once per week.

2009 International Fire Code

Did you know . . .

Every facility must have an operable telephone and a published telephone number.

Child care window blinds

Above grade, windows must be modified to limit the opening size to six or fewer inches.

child care design no smoking

Smoking is not allowed in the childcare space, a play space, or food preparation area.

To access Pennsylvania 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