Quality Standards

QUALITYstarsNY Standards represent the best practices and policies in early care and education. Developed by leading experts in the field of early childhood learning and development, QUALITYstarsNY Standards are used to assess and rate the quality of an early childhood program.

Programs earn points toward their rating for meeting these key quality indicators, and receive a 1-5 Star rating. A rating of 4 and 5 Stars indicates a high quality early learning program.

Sets of Standards

The elements of a high quality program can differ based on the setting of the early care and education program. QUALITYstarsNY has developed three sets of Standards for center-based early childhood programs, public school-based programs, and family child care to reflect what a quality looks like in each program setting.

Center-Based Program Standards
Public School Program Standards
Family Child Care Standards

In addition to the three sets of standards currently in use, a draft of the School-Age Program Standards is available for download.

We’ve also developed online, Interactive Standards that provides quick access to the Standards and additional information and resources to help enrich program understanding of the Standards and how to meet them.

Interactive Standards

Abbreviated Standards

Additionally, programs that already comply with a set of quality standards through Head Start or either NAEYC or NAFCC Accreditation have an abbreviated set of standards that takes into account the crossover between these requirements and the QUALITYstarsNY standards.

Four Key Areas of Quality

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Find the Right Program

Download our checklist for parents to spot high quality practices when looking for a care and education program for your child.

Rating Process and Points

The quality standards provide the framework for the QUALITYstarsNY rating process. Learn more about the rating process, including how points are awarded and calculated to determine a program’s Star Rating.