The Division of Child Care released rule changes and implementation of H.B. 12-1276. This is the bill that was passed last spring that makes the waiver process more efficient and timely.
This bill “creates appeal rights related to materials waivers/appeals find by licensed child care centers.” The new law “creates specific standards for the facility writing the materials waiver/appeal, and for the Department in handling of waivers/appeals.”
Proposed Rule 7.701.13 amends the rules to comply with standards of the bill, including deadlines for appeal hearings, standards for material waivers, and waiver/appeal review rights.
The “materials” of specific interest to the Montessori community include the use of glass, and small items, such as the golden bead materials, small parts of the Tower of Cubes, Knobbed and Knob less Cylinders Blocks, and small objects for sandpaper letter lessons.
These waivers are exempt from the 60 day filing requirement and do not require establishing that the citation results in hardship, or has been too stringently applied. Requests for materials waivers may be filed at any time. An appeal for materials can be filed proactively and need not be tied to a specific citation from the Department.
All appeals will be heard by an appeal panel composed of professionals from a variety of agencies, and expertise and experience. A parent representative shall sit on this panel. Requests are to be made to the Office of Early Childhood.
Once an appeal has been filed:
- The Department shall make a decision on the request and notify the center of the decision within 60 days of the receipt of the request.
- If the Center disagrees with the decision, a right to appeal the decision can be made in writing with 45 days of the receipt of the decision.
- The Department is required to act on this appeal with 45 days and has 10 days to notify the center.
- The appealing center has the right to request a meeting in person with Department personnel.
To file an appeal, the Department requires the following:
- All instructors in the Center are trained in the use of materials in a way that provides reasonable safety provisions for use by children.
- The Center must notify parents of the use of the materials and their potential safety risks associated with those materials. Signed parental consent forms acknowledging awareness of the risks in using the materials in the center are required.
Members of the CMA Board of Directors have successfully obtained waivers for their schools and programs and are happy to assist CMA member schools with this process. Contact us at [email protected]. We are here for you!