Child Care Resources

Community Based Child Care Assistance

Community Based Child Care Assistance

State Early Learning Scholarships

The State Early Learning Scholarships give families financial support up to $7,500 per child for a 12-month period. Families must have a child between the ages of three and four as of September 1 of the current year, and must meet other eligibility requirements. Scholarship funds are paid to the early childhood program that the family chooses. The program must participate in the Parent Aware Quality Rating System and must have and maintain a Three- or Four-Star Parent Aware Rating in order to receive scholarships. Eligible programs may include Head Start, school district pre-kindergarten and preschool programs, and child care programs.

Families interested in applying for an early learning scholarship should contact the Regional Administrator serving their county. The regional administrator for the Twin Cities metro area is Think Small.

Basic Sliding Fee Child Care Assistance

Basic Sliding Fee Child Care is a county-administered program that may help you pay child care costs if you do not receive MFIP and your income is within program limits. Basic Sliding Fee Child Care can help you with child care costs for any combination of:
  • Work: You may get help with child care if you or your spouse/partner are working 20 hours or more per week, unless approved in your plan, and earn at least minimum wage.
  • Job Search: You may get help with child care for a limited time to look for work.
  • School or Training: You can get child care assistance for the amount of time your school says it takes to complete your degree with prior approval.

There are limits to the amount of money counties have to spend on Basic Sliding Fee Child Care. If there are no openings in your county for Basic Sliding Fee Child Care, ask for your name to be put on a waiting list.

For more information, call your county of residence or visit their website.

YMCA Child Care Scholarships

For parents interested in using childcare through YMCA childcare programs, need-based scholarships are available to cover the cost of Child Care, Preschool, School Age Care, or Summer Programs tuition. YMCA childcare options are located throughout the Twin Cities metro area.

Information on these childcare services are offered as a resource for University of Minnesota students; however, the University of Minnesota Student Parent HELP Center assumes no liability in relation to the quality of their performance.

Finding Quality Childcare

Finding Quality Childcare

Organization that partners with parents and child care providers to promote best practices to prepare children for kindergarten. Provides resources for parents to find high-quality child care and training opportunities for child care providers. Families use Parent Aware Star Ratings to find programs using best practices that prepare children for kindergarten. Child care providers are evaluated for Star Ratings on a voluntary basis and ratings are based on a number of factors such as family partnerships, teaching materials, tracking learning, teacher training, and child safety.

Article: Is This the Right Place for My Child? 38 Research-Based indicators of High-Quality Child Care by Child Care Aware

Childcare Resource and Referral Agencies

Childcare Resource and Referral Agencies

(888) 291-9811
(651) 641-0305
Directory of free preschools in Minnesota, searchable by city
Resource to check if a childcare provider has had recent licensing violations

Specialty Childcare

Specialty Childcare

2400 West 64th Street, Richfield, MN 55423

Program that offers child care and preschool for children with typical needs and special needs. They only utilize inclusive classrooms and implement wholly beneficial programs for all children. Child care is provided Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Flexible scheduling available with tuition rates based on schedule.


525 Pelham Blvd. N, Saint Paul, MN 55104
(651) 603-0144

KidsPark is a professionally staffed, state-licensed drop-in, hourly child care facility for infants and preschoolers in the Twin Cities. The goal of KidsPark is to enhance the quality of life of families who only require childcare on an occasional or semi-regular basis both by delivering a quality experience to the children and increasing the sense of community for these participating families. KidsPark currently serves children from 6 weeks to 5 years old (not in Kindergarten) Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Member families can make reservations up to one week in advance. Time is reserved in no less than a 2 hour block. The fee is $7.50 an hour for children in the infant room (6 weeks to 16 months) and $7.00 an hour for children in the mixed age room (17 months and older).


St. Paul Parks and Recreational Centers' Rec Check Program 

Rec Check is a free after school program for youth in grades 1-6, held on weekdays between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. on days when Saint Paul Public Schools have classes in session. Children check in with staff upon arriving at the center and check out when leaving, and parents can choose to be notified when their child does not check in. Youth participate in a variety of scheduled activities including physical activities, arts & crafts, reading, homework help, and special events. A daily snack is provided. Rec Check is for youth who live or attend school in Saint Paul; registration is required & space is limited. Some transportation between schools and recreation centers is available.


Various locations

Rec Plus provides school-age childcare for children ages 5-12 (in grades K-6) at recreation centers before and after school and on Minneapolis Public Schools release days. Activities include games and sports, arts and crafts, homework help, field trips, and nutritious snacks. Children can be bused from their school to Rec Plus if it is within the busing zoneFees are based on choice of program. Fee assistance can be requested by qualified Minneapolis residents upon availability. Summer program also available.

Campus Child Care

Campus Child Care

University of Minnesota Child Development Center
1600 Rollins Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
(612) 625-2273

The University of Minnesota Child Development Center (UMCDC), located a few blocks north of the East Bank Campus, is licensed by the state of Minnesota and has national accreditation through NAEYC, the National Association for the Education of Young Children. It cares for 140 children, ages 3 months to 5 1/2 years, or pre-kindergarten. Enrollees must be university affiliated faculty, staff, and/or students. Full-time child care is provided Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuition is determined on a sliding fee scale based on gross annual household income. Extensive waiting list of over 12 months.


University of Minnesota, Institute of Child Development 
51 E River Parkway, Minneapolis, MN 55455
(612) 625-6549

The Shirley G. Moore Laboratory School is located in the Institute of Child Development on the East Bank Campus, and offers morning and afternoon programs for children between the ages of 2 and 5 years, 2-5 days a week. They are licensed for 100 children. Limited financial scholarships are available.

Community Child Care Center
Commonwealth Terrace Cooperative
1250 Fifield, St. Paul, MN 55108
(651) 645-8958

The Community Child Care Center (CCCC) located at the Commonwealth Terrace Student Family Housing Cooperative near the St. Paul Campus offers flexible scheduling for children ages 16 months to 5 years. Child care is provided Monday through Friday from 7:15 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.  The center is licensed by the state of Minnesota and has national accreditation through NAEYC, the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Sliding fee scale provided for Commonwealth Terrace Cooperative residents and University of Minnesota students.


Como Early Learning Center
Como Student Community Cooperative
1024 27th Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55414
(612) 331-8340

Como Early Learning Center (CELC) is a non-profit childcare center founded in 1975 by University of Minnesota students from Como Student Community Cooperative, a student family housing complex near the University. CELC primarily serves University families, but also offers services to the surrounding community. CELC is licensed to offer childcare services for children ages 16 months to 5 years. Child care is provided Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Part time schedules are available and tuition is determined on a sliding fee scale based on household income.

Using GoldPASS to Post for Nanny/Babysitter

Using GoldPASS to Post for Nanny/Babysitter

Students are able to post nanny or babysitter positions on GoldPASS in order to find a UMN student or alumni to hire.

Disclaimer: Students must do due diligence to screen anyone found on GoldPASS. The SPHC cannot provide any endorsement of providers found through GoldPASS. 

In order to do so, register as an employer. You can do this either by using a personal (non-UMN) email by going to and clicking "create employer account." For an alternative way to do this, follow these guidelines.

Once a Handshake account is created, this article may be helpful: ‘How to Post Personal Babysitter Household or Caretaker Jobs.’

Here are some additional recommendations from GoldPASS about creating these types of position postings:

  • At least 3 Qualifications
  • 3 - 5 Responsibilities, be as detailed as possible
  • Hours to be worked (i.e 4hr, 10am -2pm or if schedule is flexible in a certain time frame like 4hrs between 8am and 4pm)
  • Whether or not they will need a drivers licence or vehicle. If not, provide bus lines that are near your home
  • Pay
  • Steps you commit to take to provide the safest work environment possible for the selected candidate. This can be a big area of concern for job seekers. Steps can include
    • disinfecting surfaces prior to each shift
    • opening windows before and during shift, or as requested by the candidate
    • wearing/providing PPE in your home.