Choosing Quality Programs

A quality early learning program — in child care, Head Start, or preschool — will help prepare your child for success in school and in life. 

Here are things to look for when choosing your child’s early learning program: 

  1. Does the facility have a current Department of Public Welfare certificate of compliance?
  2. Are facilities clean and safe, both indoors and outside?
  3. Are there sufficient numbers of trained staff available?
  4. Does staff interact positively with children?
  5. Do activities encourage early childhood development?
  6. Is there sufficient indoor and outdoor play equipment available?
  7. Are educational materials, toys, supplies, games, books, and other equipment safe and suitable to children’s ages and developmental levels?
  8. Is parent involvement encouraged?
  9. Are fees for service clearly explained, and are payment policies acceptable?
  10. For school-age children, are services available on days when there is no school?
  11. Does day care provider have an agreement with his or her local CCIS so parents can avail themselves of possible day care fee subsidy if they are eligible for that benefit?

Count the STARS.

The higher the STAR level, the higher the quality.

For more information and to find a Keystone STARS program near you, visit

Keystone Stars