Monitoring Requirements for Day Care Home Sponsors
Nutrition Services Division Management Bulletin
Purpose: Policy, Beneficial Information
Date: May 2014
To: Child and Adult Care Food Program Day Care Home Sponsors
Attention: Authorized Representatives
Reference: Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 226.16(b)(1)
Subject: Monitoring Requirements for Day Care Home Sponsors Operating in Different Geographic Regions
This Management Bulletin (MB) clarifies regulatory monitoring requirements for Day Care Home (DCH) sponsors that operate day care homes outside of the sponsoring agency’s geographic region.
Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 226.16(b)(1) requires DCH sponsoring organizations to employ the equivalent of one full-time staff person for every 50–150 day care homes it sponsors to perform monitoring duties. Sponsoring organizations must document that they meet this requirement as part of their management plan. State agencies are responsible for determining the appropriate level of monitoring for each sponsoring organization, consistent with these specified ranges.
In addition to determining the number of full time equivalents of monitoring staff, the California Department of Education (CDE) may require DCH sponsors that operate in different geographic regions to hire a local monitor. The CDE will consider several factors when making this determination. This policy is meant to maintain program integrity and is not meant to discourage sponsors from expanding into unserved areas.
The CDE defines a monitor as local when the monitor’s business address is located within 150 miles of the majority of providers monitored. Additionally, monitors should reside at an address that is within 50 miles of their business address.
Monitors that must travel long distances may compromise the integrity of the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) by potentially providing a predictable schedule for reviews and not being available to immediately investigate issues that arise. If a monitor is traveling to a separate geographic area and combining activities, such as training new providers, providers may view the posted training schedule and predict that an unannounced review might occur. Sponsors are less likely to uncover management deficiencies and program abuse if providers anticipate an unannounced sponsor review, which undermines the intent of the program’s unannounced review requirements. A local monitor is also better able to review all meal types (breakfast, lunch, supper, snacks, weekends, evenings, and holidays) when they are geographically more accessible.
Factors the CDE will consider when determining if a DCH sponsor should hire a local monitor are the cost of travel (flight, lodging, rental car, and per diem), the number of providers that are in the separate geographic area, the number of existing DCH sponsors that are available to sponsor these providers, and the DCH sponsor’s plan for expansion.
Any DCH sponsor interested in sponsoring DCH providers located outside of the geographic region where the DCH sponsor’s administrative office is located should contact their assigned CACFP Specialist. Given the various factors the CDE must consider when determining if a local monitor is required, the CDE will make determinations on a case by case basis.
If you have any questions regarding this MB, please contact your CACFP Specialist. A contact list of CACFP Specialists is available in the Download Forms section of the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System, Form #CACFP 01. You can also contact Nancy Charpentier, CACFP Unit Office Technician, by phone at 916-327-2991 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to be directed to your CACFP Specialist.