HR Compliance 101: HR Policies and Childcare Employee Handbooks


Childcare HR policies are only as effective as what you have documented – and what your team members are aware of.

Every business needs an employee handbook that clearly sets out the expectations. If your policies are not written down, they essentially don’t exist. Without an employee handbook your business is already at risk for common workplace disputes.

What should be included in a childcare employee handbook?

Everything about your organization and the working environment should be clearly documented in your childcare employee handbook.

This includes and is not limited to:

  • Code of conduct
  • Insurance policies
  • Compensation and benefits
  • Job descriptions
  • Pay Structure
  • Benefits
  • Sick and vacation policy
  • Work Hours
  • Attendance policy
  • Hiring and onboarding process
  • Resignation and termination process
  • Complaint procedures 

Childcare centers must also comply with additional safety standards and reporting requirements 

To ensure safety of children in your care, your employee handbook should include required reporting guidelines. The guidelines vary per state, but common mandatory reports for childcare include:

  • Incident reporting for accidents or injuries on the premises
  • Child abuse and neglect
  • Health and illness
  • Facility inspections
  • Background checks
  • Food and nutrition reporting
  • Attendance reporting
  • Emergency reporting

Your handbook must outline what happens in the event of an incident and acknowledge the protocol for meeting your state and local regulations.

Managing changes in the law

Laws and policies that relate to human resources, mandatory reporting, and business operations evolve rapidly. 

Just like taxes, one change of the law at the state or federal level has a domino effect and impacts many processes your business may have in place.

One of your jobs as an Owner or Director is to keep up with these changes – and make sure that your handbook is updated on a regular basis. We recommend that you review your policies yearly since the law is fluid. This will ensure your policies continue to meet compliance and protect your business.

Creating your childcare employee handbook

Since your employee handbook is essentially a legal document, businesses often outsource creation of an employee handbook. 

It can cost thousands of dollars if completed by a lawyer or HR consulting firm. We know that’s a lot more than some of us are able to spend – especially as a small business.

An affordable option is an online employee handbook builder

We always recommend the Mineral HR employee handbook builder to our clients. The handbook builder is based on the laws of your state and allows you to custom design it to match your organization’s policies.

Fill out this form and receive access to the builder to create your employee handbook for only $25!

You’ll be on your way to creating or updating your employee handbook. You also have the option to ask your HR questions from a certified HR professional in your state. You can get real answers and fact checks from a trusted source.

You can also take this free HR assessment (don’t worry – it’s only a few questions!) to learn more about your personal HR risk and what needs improving. You will receive recommendations for resources and tips that will allow you to improve over time.

As always, feel free to contact us with any questions: . We love helping childcare center owners and directors understand business and finances.

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