Iowa rolls out new quality rating system for child care providers

Iowa Quality for Kids (IQ4K), a new quality rating system for child care providers, was introduced statewide on April 1.

IQ4K is a voluntary program available for DHS licensed child care centers and preschools, registered child development homes and programs operating under the authority of an accredited school district or nonpublic school.

“Iowa’s child care providers want the best for the children, families and communities they serve and share our commitment to quality,” Julie Allison, state child care administrator, said in a statement. “It’s a win for child care providers, who will have increased support to achieve their quality goals.”

The new program is designed to allow child care providers a chance to assess their current level of quality across all areas of their programming. The system provides guidelines and benchmarks to help providers build off successes, identifying five levels of quality that can be achieved. Providers will be eligible for bonuses and could receive higher child care assistance reimbursements.

Participating in IQ4K also gives programs the opportunity to take part in specialized tracks and reduces a provider’s overall paperwork requirements, according to their website.