Chapter 5101:2-17 Step up to quality (SUTQ) rating system

5101:2-17-01 "Step Up To Quality" (SUTQ): program standards.

(A) Step up to quality (SUTQ) definitions.

(1) "Child care staff"

(a) ODJFS licensed child care center staff as defined in rule 5101:2-12-25 of the Administrative Code.

(b) ODJFS licensed type A home provider staff as defined in rule 5101:2-13-25 of the Administrative Code.

(c) ODJFS licensed type B home provider employee as defined in rule 5101:2-14-09 of the Administrative Code.

(2) "Family child care provider" is an Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) licensed type A home provider or an ODJFS licensed type B home provider.

(3) "Program"

(a) Family child care provider; or

(b) ODJFS licensed child care center.

(B) An ODJFS licensed child care center shall meet the standards for the star rating requested at registration as listed in appendix A to this rule and family child care providers shall meet the standards as listed inappendix B to this rule.

(C) A program registering for a two-star rating or above shall meet the program standards of all of the lower ratings contained in the appendices to this rule before a higher star rating shall be awarded.

(D) A program registering for four or five-star ratings may be awarded points based on the verification of the three-star rating requirements and its ability to earn additional points as outlined in the appendices to this rule.

(E) A program shall obtain at least one point in each of the following domains in order to achieve a four or five-star rating:

(1) Learning and development.

(2) Administrative and leadership practices.

(3) Staff qualifications and professional development.

(4) Family and community partnerships.

(F) For an ODJFS licensed child care center to achieve a four-star rating, it shall score thirty-five to fifty-five points. Points are indicated in appendix A to this rule.

(G) For an ODJFS licensed child care center to achieve a five-star rating, it shall score fifty-six to seventy-nine points. Points are indicated in appendix A to this rule.

(H) For a family child care provider to achieve a four-star rating, it shall score thirty to forty-five points. Points are indicated in appendix B to this rule.

(I) For a family child care provider to achieve a five-star rating, it shall score forty-six to sixty-four points. Points are indicated in appendix B to this rule.

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Effective: 07/20/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 10/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5104.30
Rule Amplifies: 5104.30
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/09, 8/1/10, 11/10/11, 10/1/13

5101:2-17-02 "Step Up To Quality" (SUTQ): eligibility for registration.

(A) A program licensed by the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) may register to participate in step up to quality (SUTQ), a tiered quality rating and improvement system.

(B) The following programs are not eligible to register to become star rated:

(1) Child day camps as defined in Chapter 5101:2-18 of the Administrative Code.

(2) Certified in-home aides as defined in Chapter 5101:2-14 of the Administrative Code.

(3) Licensed programs who operate a summer only program as determined by ODJFS.

(4) Licensed programs who only operate during non-traditional hours as determined by ODJFS.

(5) Licensed programs within the first six months of their provisional license period.

(6) Border state child care providers serving children receiving publicly funded child care.

(C) A licensed program shall be eligible for a star rating during the provisional license period if the new program meets the requirements pursuant to paragraph (I) of rule 5101:2-17-03 of the Administrative Code.

(D) In order for a program to be considered for a star rating the child care program shall:

(1) Register online at https://oclqs.ohio.gov [File Link Not Available].

(2) Meet the program standards for the star rating registered for as listed in appendix A to rule 5101:2-17-01 of the Administrative Code for ODJFS licensed child care centers and appendix B for ODJFS licensed family child care homes.

(3) Complete and have verified a professional registry profile for all administrators, lead teachers, and assistant teachers through the Ohio professional registry at https://login.occrra.org/.

(4) Electronically submit the registration in preparation for the desk review and participation with the verification visit.

(5) Be issued a regular license after the provisional licensing period has ended.

(6) Not have received a letter of intent to revoke a license from ODJFS within the forty-eight months prior to registration.

(7) Not have received a six point serious risk non-compliance or an accumulation of twelve points as shown in appendix A to this rule for licensed child care centers, in appendix B to this rule for licensed type A home providers, and appendix C to this rule for licensed type B home providers within the previous twelve months prior to the registration date and between the registration date and the awarding of the star rating. If a licensing inspection has not occurred within twelve months, the most recent licensing inspection will be considered.

(E) If a program does not qualify for a star rating, it shall wait six months from the notification of the inability to be awarded a star rating to submit a new registration.

(F) If a program's star rating is discontinued, it shall wait six months from the date the star rating was discontinued to submit a new registration for a star rating.

(G) If a program's star rating cannot be renewed, it shall wait six months from the date of expiration to submit a new registration for a star rating.

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Effective: 07/20/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 10/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5104.30
Rule Amplifies: 5104.30
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/09, 10/1/2013

5101:2-17-03 "Step Up To Quality" (SUTQ): desk reviews, verification visits and star rating awards.

(A) A program that has submitted a completed registration for a star rating shall qualify for a desk review conducted by the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS).

(B) A program may qualify for a verification visit upon completion of the desk review.

(C) A program shall comply with the registration process, desk review, and any verification visit. The program shall meet the program standards for the star rating applied for as described in the appendices to rule 5101:2-17-01 of the Administrative Code.

(D) If the program meets the standards for a star rating and the requirements for maintaining a star rating, the star rating shall be awarded according to the following:

(1) One-star rated programs shall be rated for a period of one year.

(2) Two and three-star rated programs shall be rated for a period of two years.

(3) Four and five-star rated programs shall be rated for a period of three years.

(E) If the program does not meet the standards of the requested star rating at the desk review, the star rating may not be awarded or a lesser star rating may be assessed at the time of the verification visit. If a lesser star rating is assessed, the star rating shall be awarded according to the timeline listed in paragraph (D) of this rule.

(F) If a program cannot be awarded a star rating at either the conclusion of the desk review or the verification visit, the program shall wait six months from the notification of inability to be star rated before the program is able to complete and submit a new registration.

(G) If a program is awarded a star rating lesser than that for which was registered, the program shall wait six months from the rating date before the program is able to complete and submit a change star rating registration.

(H) If a program cannot meet the program standards for the star rating they registered for, a star rating deferral may be issued at the conclusion of a verification visit by ODJFS. A star rating deferral provides the child care program additional time to meet the program standards.

(1) A program shall be notified of the following:

(a) The program standard that was not met.

(b) The documentation that shall be submitted in order to meet the program standard.

(c) A date by which the documentation shall be submitted.

(2) If the program cannot meet the deferral requirements a star rating shall not be awarded. The program shall wait six months from the date of the notification of inability to be rated before the program is able to complete and submit a new registration.

(3) If the star rated program was awarded a lesser star rating as a result of not being able to meet the deferral requirements, they shall wait six months from the date of notification before the program is able to complete and submit a change star rating registration.

(I) An initial program applicant may be awarded a rating at the time a provisional license is issued when the following occur:

(1) The program's owner owns multiple licensed programs of which:

(a) Fifty per cent of the owner's programs have a star rating; and

(b) Two or more of the programs have a three, four or five-star rating.

(2) The rating awarded shall equal the lowest rating of the three, four or five-star rated programs if the program meets the following:

(a) All administrator and staff qualifications must be met pursuant to the appendices to rule 5101:2-17-01 of the Administrative Code for the star rating to be awarded.

(b) The program implements a written, research-based, comprehensive curriculum aligned with the early learning and development standards and/or Ohio K-12 standards, appropriate to the age group served, and which shows alignment to the program's identified assessment process.

(3) If the program is unable to meet all of the requirements of paragraph (I)(2) of this rule, a lesser star rating may be awarded.

(4) Once the initial star rating has been awarded, the program shall:

(a) Submit a SUTQ registration within four months of receiving the star rating; and

(b) Comply with a verification visit.

(J) Once rated, if ODJFS is notified that the program is not meeting any of the standards outlined in the appendices to rule 5101:2-17-01 of the Administrative Code, the program shall:

(1) Comply with any verification visits as part of the investigation.

(2) Submit any documents requested by ODJFS.

Effective: 07/20/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 10/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5104.30
Rule Amplifies: 5104.30
Prior Effective Dates: 10/1/2013

5101:2-17-04 "Step Up To Quality" (SUTQ): changes, renewals, removals or requests to withdraw a SUTQ rating.

(A) A program shall notify the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) within ten business days if one of the following occurs:

(1) Change of program location.

(2) Change of owner.

(3) Change of program administrator.

(4) Change in a lead teacher who meets the program standards as described in the appendices to rule 5101:2-17-01 of the Administrative Code.

(B) If ODJFS determines that the star rated program no longer meets the program standards as a result of a change in paragraph (A) of this rule or as a result of an investigation pursuant to paragraph (J) of rule 5101:2-17-03 of the Administrative Code, a star rating may be removed or a lesser star rating may be awarded.

(C) Change in star rating.

(1) A program may request a change in rating six months after the current rating begin date. To request a change in rating the child care program shall:

(a) Log onto http://oclqs.ohio.gov [File Link Not Available] to complete a change in rating.

(b) Electronically submit the registration in preparation for the desk review and the verification visit.

(2) If a program wishes to change its star rating, and its star rating expiration date is within six months of the request, the program shall submit a request for a change with its renewal.

(D) Renewing a star rating and submitting the annual report.

(1) A program shall request to renew its rating by logging onto http://oclqs.ohio.gov [File Link Not Available] .

(a) If the renewal registration is not submitted sixty days prior to the star rating expiration date, the star rating shall expire on the expiration date.

(b) The program shall wait six months to submit the new registration if its star rating expires.

(2) A program shall complete and submit an annual report at http://oclqs.ohio.gov [File Link Not Available] .

(a) The annual report shall contain all of the following:

(i) Updated information as described in the appendices to rule 5101:2-17-01 of the Administrative Code.

(ii) A description of how the program has ensured that any new lead teachers have been trained on the program standards, if applicable.

(iii) A description of how the program has ensured that any new administrators have been trained on the program standards, if applicable.

(b) If the annual report is not submitted thirty days prior to the anniversary date of the initial star rating:

(i) The star rating shall be discontinued on the anniversary date of the star rating.

(ii) The program shall wait six months from the date the star rating is discontinued before submitting a new registration.

(c) If a star rated program no longer meets the program standards based on the information provided in the annual report, the program shall:

(i) Complete a change in rating request by logging onto http://oclqs.ohio.gov [File Link Not Available] within thirty days of notification to do so.

(ii) Electronically submit the registration in preparation for the desk review and verification visit.

(d) If the change of rating is not submitted within thirty days from the date of notification:

(i) The star rating shall be discontinued on the thirty-first date after the date of notification.

(ii) The program shall wait six months from the date the star rating is discontinued before submitting a new registration.

(E) Star rating removals and reductions.

(1) A star rating shall be removed if the program receives a letter of intent to revoke a license from ODJFS.

(2) A star rating may be reduced or removed if ODJFS determines that the program has a six point serious risk noncompliance or an accumulation of twelve points within the previous twelve months as listed in appendix A to rule 5101:2-17-02 of the Administrative Code for ODJFS licensed child care centers,appendix B for licensed type A home providers, and appendix C for licensed type B home providers.

(3) A star rated program whose star rating has been removed shall not display, disseminate or utilize any SUTQ marketing materials provided by ODJFS.

(F) Withdrawing from SUTQ.

(1) A program may withdraw from SUTQ by completing and submitting the JFS 01556 " Request to Withdraw From Step Up To Quality" (rev. 10/2013).

(2) A program may submit a new registration six months after it is notified by ODJFS that they have been withdrawn.

Effective: 07/20/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 10/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5104.30
Rule Amplifies: 5104.30
Prior Effective Dates: 10/1/2013

5101:2-17-05 "Step Up To Quality" (SUTQ): appeals.

(A) A program may appeal the following:

(1) Denial of a star rating as a result of the desk review or verification visit.

(2) The award of a lesser star rating at the completion of the desk review or verification visit.

(3) The removal or reduction of a star rating as a result of serious risk noncompliances.

(B) A program shall complete and submit the JFS 01563 "Appeal Request for Step Up to Quality" (rev. 10/2013) within seven business days of the following:

(1) Notification of the star rating desk review results.

(2) Notification of the verification visit results.

(3) Notification of the removal or reduction of the star rating.

(C) The program shall receive a written decision of the appeal by the ODJFS.

(D) The program may not appeal a discontinued star rating as a result of the program failing to submit a renewal registration or an annual report.

Effective: 07/20/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 10/01/2018
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5104.30
Rule Amplifies: 5104.30
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/09, 10/1/13

5101:2-17-06 "Step Up To Quality (SUTQ): county agency responsibilities.

(A) This rule describes the general requirements for the county agency to interact with the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) for the implementation of type B home provider standards for the "Step Up To Quality" (SUTQ) initiative.

(B) The county agency shall utilize the Ohio child licensing and quality system (OCLQS) to support SUTQ.

(C) The county agency shall utilize ODJFS procedures to complete SUTQ desk reviews for a type B home provider as assigned.

(D) The county agency shall complete verification visits of a type B home as defined by ODJFS procedures.

(E) The county agency may delegate SUTQ responsibilities but shall ensure that the designee meets the requirments of this chapter.

Effective: 07/20/2014
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 07/01/2019
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5104.30
Rule Amplifies: 5104.30