University of California, Riverside

Human Resources

Child Care


Campus Child Care

UC currently serves approximately 1,500 children in its own centers and another 500 in vendor-operated centers run in cooperation with the university, according to the September 2000 report. UC's centers are located on or near university property and serve the children of our students, staff, and faculty and, in some instances, members of the community as well. UC child care services are of high quality, providing all mandated service components of educational programs appropriate to the developmental needs of young children, including staff development, parent involvement and education, health and social services, community involvement, and nutrition.

The programs provided by the Early Childhood Services have been carefully planned to meet the goals, expectations, and policies of the University of California, the California Department of Education-Child Development Division, the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs, and the Center's staff and parents.

Other Types of Child Care

In-Home Child Care Providers and Shared Care

Some parents choose to hire an in-home child care provider (often referred to as a nanny, or au-pair) to care for their children. This person may live in or out of your home and may have additional responsibilities such as light housekeeping, cooking, laundry, carpooling and errand-running. Live-in providers generally work for room and board plus a salary. In-home child care is usually the most expensive form of child care.

Parents generally find in-home providers by placing ads in the classified section of local newspapers, using an agency that specializes in child care providers, or reviewing listings at a resource and referral service.

You can also place listings, with salaries, for student in-home child care providers at the UCR Career Center at (951) 827-3631.

When interviewing in-home providers, inquire about their level of experience and training in caring for children of the same age as your child. You should ask for references and make sure that you check them. Discuss the caregiver's willingness and/or special training to care for your child in case of illness or injury. You should also make a point of discussing the time commitment you expect of the caregiver, as well as planning for their sick and vacation requests.

Shared care

Some families may choose to enter a cooperative care arrangement, referred to as a "share," in which two or more families pool their resources to hire one caregiver who will care for all their children either in one home or alternating among them. Such an arrangement is often more expensive than family day care, but costs less than hiring an in-home caregiver for one or two children in the same family.

Your responsibility as an employer:

  • Few regulations apply to care provided in your own home.
  • No license is required of the caregiver.
  • The parent is legally required to pay minimum wage and to follow other employer requirements, such as paying federal Social Security, state disability insurance and unemployment insurance.
  • If the provider is not a U.S. citizen the person must have permission to work in this country.

To find out more about Social Security tax withholding, you can call Internal Revenue Service at (800)829-1040, ask for Publication 926.

Family Day Care

Family Day Care is the most common form of licensed child care, particularly for infants and toddlers. It typically consists of a small group of children of varying ages cared for in the provider's home. Some family day care providers include your child in activities as part of their extended family; others provide programs structured like a nursery school, but in a home setting. There are no formal educational requirements for family day care providers. Persons who take care of children from only one other family (other than their own) in their home are not required to obtain a license.

Center-based Programs

Center-based Programs may be called nursery schools, pre-schools, pre-kindergartens, child development centers, or day care centers. They differ in their goals, activities, and educational philosophies as well as the numbers and ages of children enrolled. There are very few center-based infant programs in this area. Those that do exist often have long waiting lists, so apply well in advance. Some centers may also offer kindergarten programs. Others have after-school programs for elementary school children and may provide transportation from neighboring schools.

Parent Cooperative Nursery Schools

In these programs, parents cooperatively form a philosophy, set rules and policies, and actively participate in the program for a set number of hours per week. These schools generally have a parent director and a paid teacher who organize the curriculum and coordinate the parent participants' schedules. The hours of parent cooperative schools are generally shorter than those at child care centers. Parent cooperatives' fees are lower due to the contribution of parent time in operating the program

Baby-Sitters/Baby-Sitting Co-Ops

Finding a person to provide occasional in-home child care may be a challenge. Parents with family and friends nearby or those having roots in a particular neighborhood may have more prospects, but for many these resources do not exist. The Child Care Switchboard can suggest guidelines for screening baby-sitters and can discuss current hourly rates for sitters, based on their age and experience.


Playgroups are a way for parents working part-time to share child care with other parents. Parents make out a schedule of who stays with the children on a given day, while the others go to work or have some time off. The parents determine the size of the group and how many days per week the group meets. The location usually rotates from home to home. Playgroups are also a way for parents and children to socialize. Playgroups may develop into other forms of paid child care, as the situation evolves.

Sick Child Care

Schools and most child care programs do not admit children with a contagious illness, so parents need to plan for those inevitable times when their child will become ill. You can expect a younger child to be sick more often. At UCR, accrued sick leave can be used to care for sick children.

Care for School-Age Children

After-School Recreation Programs

Many schools, both public and private, provide after-school programs. Transportation may also be available to programs at community centers, city park and recreation programs, child care centers, or family day care homes. These programs offer a variety of supervised activities, ranging from organized sports to a place to do homework. Some of these programs also provide full-day programs during school holidays and vacations.

Issues in Choosing Before/After School Child Care

What type of program will work best for your child?

Some children need a smaller group setting that allows them some privacy after spending the day in a classroom. Others are more socially oriented and eager for active recreation with friends and classmates. Family day care homes often have a mixed-age group, including infants and pre-school age children. How your child's needs will be addressed in these various situations is an important consideration.

Is the program's location convenient to your child's school?

If the care is not offered on the school site, see if transportation is provided or if an adult is available to accompany children. If children are old enough to walk by themselves, try to determine if the route is safe and where help can be sought if dangers arise.

What types of activities does the program plan for children?

A program should ideally address your child's special interests. Will they participate in organized activities (cooking, field trips, active sports and games)? Do they have an opportunity to do homework and receive help with it? Will the children be allowed to watch TV and videos? Are the providers actively involved in planning activities with the children?

Do the providers have experience and/or training in working with school-age children?

Providers should be in tune with the needs of the age-group they work with and provide age-appropriate methods of discipline. Observe staff-child interactions carefully. Staff turnover can also affect program quality.

Does the physical setting provide adequate space for both active and quiet play, both indoors and outdoors, and private storage space for children's belongings?

School-age children need time and space to let off steam and relax after a day at school. They also need a place to safely stash their books and clothing.

Does the program's schedule match your need for child care during holiday breaks, “minimum days,” and the summer vacation?

Make sure that you are clear about answers to these questions when you enroll. If some periods are not covered you will need to make other arrangements in advance.

Summer Camps

Summer recreation programs, day camps, and overnight camps for school-age children are offered by a variety of organizations. It is best to begin planning for summer activities in early spring.

Home Alone

Contact a child care resources organization for information on determining if your children are old enough to be home alone. If you do leave your children home alone, there are several things you can do to help make sure they are safe:

  • Tape a list of important phone numbers (your work number, pager number or cell-phone number, your nearest neighbor, relatives, doctor or clinic) on or near the phone. Let your children know when and how they can contact you at work.
  • Establish emergency procedures, including minor first aid to use in case of accidents. Review these periodically and/or hold practice drills.
  • Make use of a phone or tape recorder or message board for leaving last-minute instructions or reminders that your children can check when they return from school.
  • Make a list of productive things your children can do until you arrive home. Have a nutritious snack ready for them. Agree about the use of cooking appliances and television viewing.
  • Set guidelines about what your children should do about telephone calls or strangers coming to the door. Practice with them how they might respond.
  • Discuss the rules for playing and playmates. Children need companionship but they also need some rules to guide them.

More Information

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

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Department Information

Human Resources
1201 University Ave., Suite 208
Riverside, CA 92507

Tel: (951) 827-5588
Fax: (951) 827-2672