According to the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral, federal law requires each state to have regulations governing child care providers in three areas: prevention and control of infectious disease, building and physical premise safety and health and safety training. The exact nature of these regulations are different in each state.
An NACCRR 2013 quality ranking survey showed New York as the top state in quality of regulations and policies. This state requires a background check for all employees, a degree in Early Childhood Development for directors, special licenses for teachers and training for workers. They also require strict adherence to health and safety practices and are inspected four times a year by licensing, fire and health personnel. In the same quality survey, Idaho ranked lowest as it does not require education or training requirements for employees and does not require inspections four times yearly.
Judy L. Francis of Child Care Aware of America (a division of NACCRR) suggests that parents visit the child care facilities in their area before selecting who will care for their child. She suggests that speaking to friends and family about their experiences can make the choice easier, and a local CCAA office can provide parents with further resources.