Reasons to Consider Enrolling
South Carolina is committed to an early care and education system that focuses on building high quality, comprehensive programs that provide integrated services. This commitment reflects a vision that every child in South Carolina will have equal opportunity for success in school based on equitable access to a high-quality early care and education system.
To promote the best possible child care, ABC Quality provides program support and training for providers and a quality ratings system that helps parents compare and choose. ABC Quality is a voluntary quality rating and improvement system (QRIS). Ratings for childcare providers range across five levels from A+ to C. An A+ indicates the provider is among the highest rated in the state.
Benefits of ABC Quality for Providers
- More ways to market your program and attract new families. ABC Quality is a primary tool parents use to search for high quality child care and compare providers.
- Increased SC Voucher payments based on quality level.
- A roadmap for strengthening your quality of care, plus customized support and assistance to improve your rating.
- Free professional development and scholarships to conferences plus grants, awards and other financial support.
- A current license, registration, approval or exemption, plus a documented history of complying with S.C. licensing regulations
- Current Pediatric First Aid and Infant/Child CPR certification for all staff
- Completion of the SC Health and Safety Pre-Service Certificate or ECD 101 by all staff
- Signed acknowledgment of the ABC Quality Code of Ethics by all staff
Additional eligibility requirements for license-exempt providers include:
- Verification of minimum staff education/qualifications
- Health Documentation for all staff
- Background checks for all staff
- Discipline policy prohibiting corporal punishment signed by all staff annually
Part 1: Structural Quality
The strengths-based assessment occurs in two parts to help determine the provider’s ABC Quality level. For details regarding each part of the assessment, download the ABC Quality program manual.
Element I: Program Administration and Structure
- Organizational Structure/Program Operation
- Policies and Procedures Relating to the Care of Children
Element II: Staff Education and Professional Development
- Education - Program Leadership/Administrators Standard
- Education - Teachers Standard
- Staff Evaluation and Ongoing Professional Development
Element III: Child Well-being
- Nutrition Standard
- Physical Health Standard
- Healthy Social-Emotional Development (Mental Health)
- Child Screening and Referrals
Element IV: Family Communication, Engagement and Cultural Competency
- Family Communication, Engagement and Cultural Competence
Part 2: Process Quality Assessment
The Process Quality Assessment is designed to capture the daily experiences of infant-toddler, preschooler, and school-age children in child care. ABC Quality Assessors focus on the Intentional Teaching Practices outlined below, as well as, child to adult ratio and group size.
Element V: Intentional Teaching Practices
- Responsive and Sensitive Care Standard
- Language and Communication Standard
- Guidance Standard
- Program Structure Standard
- Early Learning Standard
Element VI. Ratio and Group Size
How to Get Started
Contact the Regional Office for your county to learn how you can enroll in ABC Quality. Select your county in the dropdown below for the contact in your area.