Quality Start is a voluntary program for licensed child care centers, designed to recognize, support and increase the quality of child care throughout Louisiana. Participating centers can earn up to five stars and can receive training and incentives to help increase their rating.

Quality Start rates child care centers on a scale from 1 to 5 stars:

  • 1 STAR - Centers that apply and have a license in good standing and no outstanding deficiencies are awarded one star.
  • 2 STARS - The two star rating indicates that the center staff has received more specialized training and the center has completed a self-assessment plan.
  • 3-5 STARS - The three to five star rating indicates the center provides quality child care based on staff qualifications and the Environment Rating Scales (ERS).

Parents who are taxpayers with children under the age of six enrolled in a Quality Start Program may be eligible for a tax credit. In addition, centers are eligible for tierd bonus payments for the care of children in the Child Care Assistance Program and foster care based on the rating level of the center. By joining Quality Start, centers show their commitment to providing the highest quality child care.