National Association
for Family Child Care

NAFCC Accreditation is quality, commitment, and excellence.
NAFCC sponsors the only nationally recognized accreditation
system designed specifically for family childcare providers.


Accreditation is awarded to family childcare providers who meet the eligibility requirements and the Quality Standards for NAFCC Accreditation. Family childcare providers achieve this high level of quality through a process that examines all aspects of the family childcare program, i.e. relationships, the environment, developmental learning activities, safety, health, and professional and business practices.

Use the graphic below, to identify where you are in the NAFCC process, follow the arrows, and review the information for each step to the side.

NAFCC Timeline for Self Enrollment


The At-A-Glance publications created by NAFCC provides a wealth of information regarding the expectations for each step of accreditation. Use the NAFCC At-A-Glance Flyer to identify your current step in the process. Once determined, read how to begin the next step in preparation.

During self-study, you evaluate your program using the Quality Standards for NAFCC Accreditation and make quality improvements.

The NAFCC Application stage assesses your eligibility. This, among others, includes verification of CPR and First Aid certification, background checks, and family childcare specific training.

NAFCC trained observers conduct an observation of you and your program. The observer gathers information based on the Quality Standards and objectively documents what is seen and heard. Prior to your observation visit you will complete the Self-Certified Standards book and families will complete parent surveys.

You will assess yourself and your program to ensure continuous compliance with the Quality Standards, verify you continue to meet all eligibility requirements, and report professional development activities and quality improvements you have completed during the year.

Frequently Asked Questions

Process of NAFCC FAQs

I now have my Self Study Kit, now what?

This “how to guide” takes you through each step of the process. Learn the expectations and requirements of the accreditation process, use the handy forms and charts to record professional development and quality improvement goals, and keep your documents organized. As an added bonus, the Provider Guide includes a chapter that encourages you to develop a professional portfolio, a valuable marketing tool! Get started by familiarizing yourself with the table of contents, then read chapters 1-4. Refer to the other chapters as needed.

How should I plan for Accreditation?

When you believe you have made the necessary professional development and quality improvements, you demonstrate your commitment to completing the process by submitting an accreditation application. Upon the receipt of the application, INAEYC and NAFCC assess the candidate eligibility for completing the accreditation process. You should only submit your application if you are ready for an observation.

When should I apply?

Choose a month you would like your visit. Use the chart to determine when to submit your application. Re-accrediting providers should consider submitting their COMPLETE application up to 6 months earlier to avoid lapse in status.

How do I maintain my accreditation?

MARK YOUR CALENDAR. Keep track of your expiration dates and deadlines. NAFCC attempts to send reminders via email and mail. However, they cannot guarantee receipt of these reminders.

PLAN AHEAD. Eligibility documentation may take time, especially training ours. Allow yourself plenty of time to complete items so you can submit your annual updates and re-accreditation application on time.

FOLLOW THE TIMELINE. Accreditation takes time. Allow plenty of time for the process to happen if you want to avoid a lapse in accreditation status. Allow about 6 moths for re-accreditation process.

RE-EVALUATE. Go over the Quality Standards for Accreditation at least before each observation visit. The Benchmarks to Quality workbook is a valuable tool to use throughout your career as an accredited provider.

How do I submit my Accreditation Update?

17 months after accreditation begins, send the following to the INAEYC office:

  • Submit complete NAFCC Annual Update Form.
  • Submit INAEYC Scholarship Application.
  • Submit documentation that needs to be updated. Refer to your checklist you received with your award letter.
  • Submit all documentation listed on the INAEYC Scholarship Application.

One of the most important things you can do when seeking or maintaining your accreditation is have the appropriate and most up-to-date version of the necessary paperwork. Applications for all steps of the NAFCC Accreditation process can be found on the NAFCC website at by hovering over the Accreditation tab and choosing Achieving and Maintaining Accreditation.

NAFCC Website Links

Self-Study Enrollment –

Accreditation Application –

Accreditation Update –

Having trouble with the paperwork?

To assist with completing some of the forms within each step of NAFCC Accreditation, below are some short How-To videos. If you still have questions, need guidance, or the form with which you need assistance is not represented, you should contact the appropriate NAFCC representative at 801. 886.2322 and follow the extensions provided below for direct connection.

Accreditation Kevin Shaw 4617 Observation Visits/Observers
Kelsey Lambert 3196 Self-study Enrollment/Annual Updates
Mason McMillan 4741 Applications/Bi-lingual

These short videos can assist with forms required for the Accreditation Application step of the NAFCC Accreditation process.

These short videos can assist with forms required for the Annual Update Year 1 and Year 2 step of the NAFCC Accreditation process.

Watch the video about how to complete the Quality Improvement Record (

Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find a few questions and answers that are often asked regarding the required NAFCC Accreditation paperwork.

How do I apply?

First time apply for accreditation:

  • Submit the complete NAFCC Accreditation Application.
  • Submit the complete INAEYC Scholarship Application.
  • Submit ALL the documentation listed on page 1 of the NAFCC Accreditation Application.
  • Submit ALL the documentation listed on page 1 of the INAEYC Scholarship Application.
  • Keep your original copies. Original documents will be digitized and will not be returned.

Applying for Re-Accreditation

  • Submit the complete NAFCC accreditation application.
  • Submit the complete INAEYC Scholarship application.
  • Submit the documentation that needs to be updated. Refer to the documentation checklist received with your Accreditation Update.
  • Submit ALL the documentation listed on the INAEYC Scholarship Application.
  • Keep your original copies. Original documents will be digitized and will not be returned.

What are Accreditation Updates?

Accreditation updates strengthen commitment to maintaining the quality standards, encouraging on-going professional development and promote continuous quality improvement. Timely updates are required to maintain accreditation status throughout the 3 year award period. Upon successful completion of each accreditation update, NAFCC sends a validation seal signifying that accreditation is valid for another 18 months. If the update is not submitted on time, accreditation will no longer be valid.

Where do I get the applications?

NAFCC will send you a postcard through the mail before any documents are due and provide you an email with all applications and updates that need to be submitted. If you are not receiving these emails, check the spam folder in your email or contact NAFCC directly. You can also access all applications and accreditation updates through the NAFCC website at

Every step and of NAFCC Accreditation process require some supplemental documentation to be sent with the appropriate paperwork. The table below gives a snapshot of the documents that you may need to send for each step of the NAFCC Accreditation process.

Note that this table does not include ALL eligibility documentation found on the first page of the Accreditation Application.

Having trouble gathering everything?

We understand that gathering all the needed certificates, transcripts, and other documents can be difficult. Applying all of these documents to the appropriate form can also be confusing. If you are having trouble completing the NAFCC Accreditation Training Log, watch the short video below. If you still have questions, we recommend you contact the appropriate representative at NAFCC using the contact information in the NAFCC Accreditation Paperwork section of this page.

Watch the video Completing the NAFCC Accreditation Training Log.

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