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Child Care Licensing

Our Strong Start

Resources for New Child Care Entrepreneurs

We're here to help you open or expand your childcare business!

The Our Strong Start (OSS) is part of the Caring for MI Future. The Our Strong Start is focused on recruiting new child care entrepreneurs and helping current child care businesses expand. OSS offers a team of trained navigators who will connect child care entrepreneurs with grant opportunities and work with potential child care entrepreneurs to troubleshoot any concerns they may have about starting or expanding their child care business.  OSS has technical assistance tool kits, trainings, and other resources to prepare new or expanding child care business owners to meet their goals!

If you would like to connect with the Our Strong Start, please submit a short inquiry form found HERE.

Top Resources for New Providers:

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Caring for MI Future

The Michigan Department of Education and Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (MDE and LARA) launched a $100 million strategy to open 1,000 new child care providers by the end of 2024 and expand access to quality, affordable child care for families in all communities. Through Caring for MI Future, entrepreneurs will have access to resources and grant opportunities in key areas:

Space, Startup Funding, Staff, Business Support

For additional details on Caring For MI Future and to stay up to date on when specific grants will be available to entrepreneurs, please visit the Caring for MI future webpage or talk with a Our Strong Start Navigator.

Family and Group Home Capacity:  Requesting Increases to Capacity and Ratio for Homes

The recent changes to PA 116 allows family and group homes to request an increase in capacity if the licensee meets certain conditions. To help streamline the process, the Child Care Licensing Bureau has developed a form for licensees to request the increase in capacity and a variance to allow for a ratio increase. For more information, please see the forms below.

Child Care Staffing Shortages: Rule Exception Requests

Child care staffing shortages throughout the state have made it difficult to find caregivers for our youngest Michiganders. With over 9,000 vacancies, shortages of staff are impacting the industry’s ability to serve children and families.  

To help meet this need the Child Care Licensing Bureau is now accepting requests for exceptions to the rules, “rule variances”, identified by child care professionals as barriers to bringing on new staff members. For additional details see the full listserv notification covering this information here.


Information about Monkeypox and COVID-19 in Child Care Facilities.


Information about Monkeypox from the Center for Disease Control can be found here: Monkeypox FAQ.

Information about Monkeypox from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services can be found here: MPV (Monkeypox) (