Looking for quality child care?
Reach for the STARS!
Keystone STARS can help you understand the quality of a child care/ early learning program. For a young child, everything is a learning experience. The early learning program you choose, such as child care or Head Start, can affect how well your child does in kindergarten, school, and in life.
Children who attend a quality child care / early learning program
- come to kindergarten ready to learn;
- do better in school; and
- are more likely to graduate high school, attend college, and get good jobs.
What is Keystone STARS?
Keystone STARS rates child care programs from one to four STARS on things you care about (meets state regulations for safety, offers a kid-friendly atmosphere with good teachers that partner with you to help your child learn) so you can find the program that feels right for your family. Child care and Head Start programs that participate in Keystone STARS earn a STAR 1 to STAR 4 rating based on quality standards that measure:
- Staff education: early childhood teachers have the training and knowledge for working with young children
- Classroom/Learning environment: the program has a variety of materials and activities for each age level that makes it possible for children to learn something new every day!
- Including families and the community: Families and community members are encouraged to become a part of the child’s learning progress
- Leadership and management: a quality program has to have sound business practices to ensure your child’s safety and early learning
As programs earn more STARS, they are providing higher quality early education for your child.
You can search for STARS programs near you on the COMPASS website (just click the STAR levels you are interested in during your search)…
What should I expect at a Keystone STARS program?
Department of Human Services Certificate of Compliance for child care centers or Certificate of Registration for family child care homes.
- A comfortable place where your child can explore and learn
- Laughing, reading, and talking which builds language skills
- Teachers who continue to learn new ways to help your child thrive
- A safe, healthy, and exciting place
- Music, art, science and play activities that increase school readiness
- Your child feeling good about himself or herself
- Families involved in the program and their child’s development
- Teachers that listen to children and parents
- Children having fun together and being respectful of each other
How do I find Keystone STARS programs near me?
You can search for child care/ early learning programs near you on Pennsylvania’s COMPASS website. Click on “Find a Provider” to choose what you are looking for in a program. You can select by things like your child’s age, your location, if you need access to public transportation, and if the program participates in Keystone STARS. Watch our 3-minute video or download step-by-step instructions for help.
Request Keystone STARS posters and brochures
You can download and print out the materials below or order hard copies online.
- Download the Keystone STARS brochure (PDF) | En Espanol (PDF)
- Download the STARS bookmarks