The Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) licenses Family Child Care and Group & School Age Child Care programs in Massachusetts. Learn more about these programs and find a licensed child care provider that's right for you.
Guide Find a licensed Family, Group or School Age Child Care program
Overview of Family Child Care
Family Child Care, sometimes referred to as "home daycare", is child care provided in someone's home where the caretaker is not related to the children.
Family Child Care programs are small in size and have no more than 10 children.
- A Family Child Care provider can care for up to 8 children in their home by themselves depending on the ages of the children.
- If a Family Child Care provider works with an EEC-approved assistant, they can care for up to 10 children in their home.
Overview of Group and School Age Child Care
Group and School Age Child Care programs provide early education and care for young children in a non-residential setting such as a school or community center.
These programs include several types of early education and care such as:
- Out-of-school time programs that operate before/after school or during the summer
- Center-based care for infants, toddlers, preschool, or Kindergarten age children
- Early Head Start and Head Start programs
Choosing a licensed child care program
Choosing a program for your infant, preschooler, or school age child is a very personal choice for each family. The best program is the one that matches your own child’s temperament, likes and dislikes, health, interests, and behavior. A program should also be compatible with your family’s philosophies, and schedule, and should provide a safe environment that is fun, educational, and nurturing.
View EEC's "Choosing Child Care" guide for tips on selecting a licensed child care provider for your child.
Additional Resources for Choosing a licensed child care program
Find a licensed child care program
EEC created a geographic search tool to help you find licensed child care programs. You can search by both geographic area and child care program type.
Some licensed programs choose to not be listed in EEC's searchable directory. If a program that you are looking for doesn't appear in your search results, you can call your local EEC office to confirm whether the program is licensed.
You can also contact EEC to find out about a program’s license history including non-compliance findings, and any current restrictions on a license.