(A) A child care program licensed by the Ohio department of job and family services (ODJFS) may apply to participate in step up to quality (SUTQ), a voluntary quality rating system.
(B) Eligibility requirements to become star rated include:
(1) The program has not received a letter of intent to revoke a license from ODJFS within the forty-eight months prior to application.
(2) The program had no serious risk noncompliances, as outlined in appendix A to this rule, at the last licensing inspection, as a result of a substantiated complaint, or during a verification visit.
(3) The program meets all the benchmark indicators for the star rating it applied for as listed in appendix B to this rule.
(4) The program administrators, lead and assistant teachers have completed a professional registry profile online at www.ohpdnetwork.org.
(C) Any program with serious risk noncompliances may apply for a star rating after the next regular licensing inspection with no serious risk noncompliances.
(D) A program shall complete and submit an online application located at www.stepuptoquality.org:
(1) To participate in SUTQ.
(2) To request a change in a star rating.
(3) To renew a star rating.
(E) After receiving notification of eligibility status from ODJFS programs shall comply with an unannounced verification visit as required by rule 5101:2-17-02 of the Administrative Code.
(F) A star rated program shall maintain its rating for a period of one year as long as it has not had any serious risk noncompliances. A star rated program may receive a warning regarding its star rating or notification that its rating has been suspended or removed as a result of a serious risk noncompliance.
(G) Any financial incentive issued to a star rated program shall be made by an electronic funds transfer (EFT).
(H) A star rated program whose star rating has been removed shall not display, disseminate or utilize any SUTQ marketing materials provided by ODJFS.