Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. 591-1-1-.32

Current through Rules and Regulations filed through May 10, 2024
Rule 591-1-1-.32 - Staff: Child Ratios and Supervision
(1) A Center must establish groupings of children for care and maintain Staff: child ratios as follows:

Ages of Children

Staff: Child Ratio*

Maximum Group Size**

Infants less than one (1) year old or children under eighteen (18) months who are not walking

1:6

12

One (1) year olds who are walking

1:8

16

Two (2) year olds

1:10

20

Three (3) year olds

1:15

30

Four (4) year olds

1:18

36

Five (5) year olds

1:20

40

Six (6) years and older

1:25

50

* Staff, such as the Director or service workers (food, maintenance and clerical staff, etc.), shall be counted in the Staff: child ratio only during the time that they are giving full attention to the direct supervision of the children. Service staff routinely acting as child care workers shall meet the qualifications of the respective caregivers.

** Maximum group size does not apply to outdoor play on the playground routinely used by the Center or for special activities in the Center lasting no more than two (2) hours. Maximum group size does not apply to Centers with a licensed capacity of 18 or fewer. However, required Staff: child ratios must be maintained.

(2) Mixed-Age Groups for Centers with a licensed capacity of 19 or more children. The Staff: child ratios for a mixed-age group shall be based on the age of the youngest group of children that includes more than twenty percent (20%) of the total number of children in the mixed-age group.
(3) Mixed-Age Groups for Centers with a licensed capacity of 18 or fewer children. The Staff: child ratios for a mixed-age group shall be based on the following: the age of the youngest child under three (3) years of age shall determine the Staff: child ratio for the group in which the child(ren) under three (3) years of age are cared for; and where all of the children in any one group are three (3) years of age or older, the age of the majority of the children in the group shall determine the Staff: child ratios.
(4) For Centers with a licensed capacity of 19 or more, children under three (3) years of age shall be housed in separate physical areas from older children and cannot be mixed with older children except at the following times and circumstances:
(a) During early morning times of arrival and late afternoon times of departure, infants and children younger than three (3) years may be grouped with older children so long as Staff: child ratios and group size are met based upon the age of the youngest child in the group.
(b) Children who turn three (3) years of age during the regular school year may remain grouped with other two (2) year olds for the remainder of the school year provided that the continued placement in the younger group is with the agreement of the older child's Parent(s) and is developmentally appropriate for the child.
(5) Staff: Child Ratios During Day-time Scheduled Rest or Sleeping Periods. During those periods, the Staff: child ratios may be doubled for children three (3) years and older provided that: at least one (1) Staff person is in each room providing direct supervision of the children; and all Staff required by paragraph (1) above relating to Staff: child ratios are in the Center and available to assure safe evacuation in an emergency.
(6) Staff: Child Ratios During Evening and Night-time Care. The Staff: child ratios required by paragraph (1) above shall be maintained except when a majority of the children are sleeping. When a majority of the children are sleeping, then the required ratios may be doubled. However, all Staff required by paragraph (1) above must be available on the premises of the Center to resume supervision of the children whenever a majority of the children in care in an area are no longer asleep or an emergency situation arises.
(7) Supervision. Children shall be supervised at all times appropriate to the individual age, needs and capabilities of each child. Such supervision must include, but not be limited to, indoor and outdoor activities, mealtimes, naptime, transportation, field trips, and transitions between activities. "Supervision" means that the appropriate number of Staff members are physically present in the area where children are being cared for and are providing watchful oversight to the children, volunteers and Students-in-Training. The persons supervising in the child care area must be alert, positioned to maximize their ability to hear and see the children at all times, and able to respond promptly to the needs and actions of the children being supervised, as well as the actions of the volunteers and Students-in-Training, and provide timely attention to the children's actions and needs. Staff shall be attentive and participating with all children during mealtimes and shall be seated within an arm's length away from children thirty-six (36) months of age and younger.
(8) Assignment of Caregiving Staff. Employees shall be assigned so that in so far as possible children receive care from the same Employee each day.
(9) Immediately prior to the Center closing and being locked at the end of the business day, the Staff member charged with the responsibility of locking the Center shall make a physical inspection of the entire premises to verify that no child is left on the Center's premises.

Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 591-1-1-.32

O.C.G.A. § 20-1A-1 et seq.

Original Rule entitled "Staff: child Ratios and Supervision" adopted. F. Dec. 23, 1997; eff. Mar. 1, 1998, as specified by the Agency.
Amended: F. Dec. 4, 2015; eff. Dec. 24, 2015.
Amended: F. May 26, 2017; eff. June 15, 2017.
Amended: F. Aug. 31, 2020; eff. Sept. 20, 2020.