Overview of South Shore Stars, Inc.

This section describes the makeup and responsibilities of South Shore Stars, Inc.

Table of Contents

Overview

Founded in 1970, South Shore Day Care Services became South Shore Stars, Inc. (Stars) in 2010. Stars is a not-for-profit organization licensed by the Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) to provide early education childcare and youth development programs. Each year, Stars serves more than 1,200 children who live in communities south of Boston. During the audit period, Stars provided its services through 10 centers and 17 home care providers.

According to its website, Stars’ mission is as follows:

Stars provides comprehensive early education and youth development programs that enhance the optimal growth of children from economically and culturally diverse families, using a family support approach in collaboration with schools and other service providers.

Stars offers the following services and programs, which are more fully described in the Appendix to this report: Early Head Start, family childcare, preschool, elementary afterschool programs, middle- and high-school afterschool and summer-school programs, summer camp, and family support.

Subsidized Childcare

EEC uses both vouchers1 and contracted slots2 to purchase developmentally appropriate childcare for infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and school-age children. Eligibility is primarily based on need for service, family size, and monthly income. Families with vouchers or contracted slots pay copayments based on their incomes and family sizes. Very-low-income families may not have to pay a copayment, according to the EEC Financial Assistance Parent Co-Payment Table that EEC uses to determine family copayments.

To be eligible for subsidized childcare through either a voucher or a contracted slot, a family must first be placed on EEC’s centralized waitlist. Families are placed on the waitlist in one of three ways: by telephone, by applying online, or by contacting a Child Care Resource and Referral Agency3 (CCRR). Applicants must provide information about themselves, their children, their income, and their need for service to be placed on the waitlist. If funding is available for an applicant, the applicant is notified and referred to a specific childcare vendor or a CCRR. Applicants are required to complete and sign an EEC application and fee agreement and provide current documentation (such as photo identification; children’s birth certificates; and proof of address, need for service, and income) so that a subsidy administrator4 can determine eligibility for subsidized childcare. Successful applicants are either given contracted slots with vendors or issued vouchers by CCRRs. Authorizations for subsidized childcare are issued for periods no greater than 12 months. At each reauthorization, parents or caregivers must complete and a sign a new application and fee agreement and submit current documentation that verifies their residency, income, and need for service.

Stars is a childcare provider with contracted slots; it also accepts vouchers. According to statistics provided by Stars, it provided childcare to clients in the following categories during the audit period.

Clients Served by Type

Type

Fiscal Year 2018

Fiscal Year 2019

Income Eligible

391

425

Supportive*

192

195

Total Contracted Slots

583

620

Vouchers

221

231

Total

804

851

*     This category consists primarily of referrals from the Department of Children and Families and the Department of Transitional Assistance.

†     These vouchers are issued by CCRRs.

Sources of Revenue

During fiscal years 2018 and 2019, Stars received revenue from the following sources, according to its Uniform Financial Statements and Independent Auditor’s Reports5 for each year.

Summary of Revenue by Fiscal Year*

Revenue Source

Fiscal Year 2018

Fiscal Year 2019

EEC—Contracts

$4,112,271

$3,941,289

EEC—Vouchers

1,253,690

1,111,482

Direct Federal Grants/Contracts

800,812

787,635

Client Resources

670,628

1,067,632

Other Grants (Excluding Direct Federal)

515,684

565,247

Private Client Fees

310,277

477,537

Federated Fundraising

212,623

174,817

Massachusetts Government Grants

200,000

220,523

Contributions and Gifts

180,918

179,581

State Agency Non–Purchase of Service

145,103

192,313

Released Net Assets

109,914

89,513

Private In-Kind Contributions

19,384

45,774

Investment Revenue

3,192

0

Other Revenue

2,839

 2,763

Total Revenue

$8,537,335

$8,856,106

*     Stars’ fiscal year begins July 1 and ends June 30 (e.g., fiscal year 2018 began July 1, 2017 and ended June 30, 2018).

†     Released net assets are donated assets that have become available for spending because a donor-imposed stipulation has been satisfied.

1.     Childcare vouchers are certificates that show the number of hours and days per week for which a child has been approved for subsidized childcare. Parents with vouchers can select any childcare provider that has space available and accepts vouchers.

2.     Contracted slots set aside spaces at specific childcare centers, family childcare providers, or schools for children from low- to moderate-income families.

3.     CCRRs administer the childcare voucher program and give families information and referrals for licensed and license-exempt programs, including childcare centers, family childcare providers, preschools, and out-of-school programs. CCRRs also receive voucher payments from EEC that they then distribute to childcare providers.

4.     According to Section 10.02 of Title 606 of the Code of Massachusetts Regulations, a subsidy administrator is “a person or organization authorized or designated by the EEC to conduct eligibility determinations for child care subsidies, subject to the EEC oversight and review.” Stars is considered a subsidy administrator.

5.     Under Operational Services Division regulations (Section 1 of Title 808 of the Code of Massachusetts Regulations), any contractor or subcontractor that has been awarded a contract in excess of $100,000 to provide human and/or social services from a Commonwealth agency is required to file a properly completed Uniform Financial Statement and Independent Auditor’s Report annually. These reports contain contractual and financial information prescribed by the Operational Services Division, including audited basic financial statements.

Date published: June 30, 2020
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