PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
Subject of Possible Rule Making: Chapter 170-151 WAC, School age child care center minimum licensing requirements.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 43.215.200 directs the department of early learning (DEL) to adopt rules setting the minimum requirements for child care agencies licensed by DEL. RCW 43.215.200 and 43.215.502 direct DEL to review its child care licensing regulations in consultation with affected groups.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: DEL plans to complete a comprehensive revision of the school age child care licensing WAC chapter. Chapter 388-151 WAC was transferred from the department of social and health services (DSHS) to DEL chapter 170-151 WAC in 2006 under chapter 265, Laws of 2006. The last thorough revision of this chapter was done in 1997. In 2008 DEL made technical updates to chapter 170-151 WAC and revised sections related to background checks. This WAC chapter needs a thorough review to make school age child care rules consistent with current child care regulatory standards. DEL may create a new WAC chapter to replace chapter 170-151 WAC in this process.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: As appropriate, DEL will coordinate rule development with the state department of health, office of the superintendent of public instruction, DSHS, school districts, tribes and other state or local agencies that may have an interest in these rules.
Process for Developing New Rule: DEL plans to contract with a nongovernmental organization to review the current rules; gather stakeholder input on suggested changes; research other states' child care laws, rules, literature and best practice; discuss alternative requirements, and deliver to DEL a comprehensive set of recommendations for revising chapter 170-151 WAC. Meetings to take input or deliberate recommendations will be open to the public. The contractor's process is projected to be finished by autumn of 2010. DEL will use the contractor's recommendations and other public input when writing the preliminary draft and formally proposed rules. DEL will circulate the draft and proposed rules for public input. When the formal proposal is filed, DEL will hold public hearings and take written comments before adopting final revisions to chapter 170-151 WAC.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication. During the rule review stage, the contracted - School's Out Washington (SOWA) - will be responsible for making information available about the rule review process. For questions or to join SOWA's e-mail or postal mail lists, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, phone (206) 323-2396, or mail to SOWA, 801 23rd Avenue South, Suite A, Seattle, WA 98144.
DEL is responsible for distributing rule-making notices as well as official draft, proposed and permanent rules. To get more information about the rule-making process, or to join DEL's rules mailing lists, e-mail Rules@del.wa.gov, phone (360) 725-4397, write to the DEL Rules Coordinator, P.O. Box 40970, Olympia, WA 98504-0970. Information about this rule process will be posted on the DEL web site at http://www.del.wa.gov/.
April 23, 2009
Elizabeth M. Hyde