We started this database to make it easier for parents to learn the truth about childcare facilities. Our team routinely gets calls from parents searching for reliable ways to research the childcare facility they are considering for their child. Parents want to make sure they are choosing a safe daycare.
Our response is always the same – we point them to the state department website that is in charge of licensing requirements for child care facilities in their area. In Texas, this is handled by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) and the Texas Health and Human Services Department (THHS). DFPS and THHS work in conjunction to license, inspect, and investigate daycares in Texas. For the most part, the information is public record and available to all citizens with a simple request. However, what is available online is limited in many respects. That is where this database comes in.
Over the years of handling daycare injury cases across the nation, we have learned that getting your hands on public information is often difficult, time consuming, and expensive. Gaining access to anything more than a few sentences on a public website can take months and months of waiting and can cost you some money. The reports are often hard to understand and follow.
Why did we create this database?
The simple truth is that our team regularly receives shocking investigation reports from state entities on daycare abuse and negligence and we started asking ourselves ‘how can it be that it is so difficult for parents to learn information on the truth behind what is happening at these facilities?’ This is when our team decided to do something with all of the records we have stocked up over the years. We decided to make the process simple and create a central database of daycare incidents and deficiencies where you as the parent and a member of our community can view the report yourself without the wait and for free.
Where do the reports in our database come from?
All of the information provided in our database is pulled straight from public records obtained from the state and government entities that oversee child care. We have redacted some information for privacy reasons, so you will not find any personal information regarding any minor children or their families on these reports.
How can you use this database to help in your research?
Use this database to learn the truth about daycares. Every investigation and inspection report we share here is summarized for your quick reference. We provide a link for you to view the report yourself.
You will find two types of reports in our database:
- Child-Care Inspection Forms; and
- Investigation Reports.
Child-Care Inspection Forms:
Texas Child-Care Inspection Forms are completed every time the daycare is inspected. Daycares can be inspected for routine monitoring reasons and for investigation reasons. The inspection form will begin with providing the general information on the daycare facility – information like the name, location, permit type, capacity, and the director’s name.
Next, the inspection form will share what laws, administrative rules, or minimum standard rules have been inspected during that visit. If the inspection form is being completed as a part of an investigation then the report will give you a brief summary of the allegations being investigated.
The most important part of the inspection form is the “Findings” chart. If the licensing representative found any deficiencies or failures on behalf of the daycare, they will fill in the “Findings” chart with the description of the standard or rule broken, a summary of the specific way the daycare broke the rule, a statement of the findings and a date for which the daycare is required to take corrective action to comply with the rule. If you see deficiencies for things like being out of the child-to-caregiver ratio, supervision, training, or failing to ensure a child is not abused, neglected, or exploited – a red flag should be raised. These are the most common deficiencies that we see when a serious injury has happened at the daycare facility.
Often times the inspector will offer technical assistance or a discussion of how the daycare can improve its operation. The inspection form will include what type of technical assistance was given and how the licensing representative suggested improvements.
Similarly, Investigation Reports begin with the basic information on the operation and the allegations being complained of. The allegation description will give you a very brief summary of what has been reported and the incident or injury being investigated by the state.
Next, the report will tell you when the incident happened, when it was reported, and who reported it to the state entity. It will include a narrative of the observations made during the investigation inspection and the identity of each individual interviewed. The investigator will summarize every conversation they had with each and every individual involved in the incident.
Finally, the investigation report will conclude with a summary of the findings and an explanation of the disposition, or conclusions, that the investigator has come to. If any additional action is necessary, the investigator will recommend the action needed at the end.
Investigation reports need to be read in full in order to really understand what happened. Merely skipping to the findings will not be as helpful as reading it in its entirety. This is because the child care minimum standards are just that – minimum. You may find that something terrible has happened but that the state seemed to still find that the daycare did not violate any law. This is because the bar is quite low for the minimum standards. Take the time to read the whole report because you may be searching for a daycare that lives up to your expectations and not the expectations of the bare minimum.
How to Report a Daycare Injury, Daycare Incident, or Daycare Deficiency
To report an injury, incident, or licensing deficiency occurring in Texas daycare, contact the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Abuse and Neglect Hotline by calling 1-800-252-5400 or report the incident through their online portal here
If you need to report an injury, incident, or licensing deficiency occurring in a daycare located in another state, visit our page on How to Report a Daycare Injury in Your State to learn more about who to contact and how to report your observations.
How else can the Button Law Firm help?
Our team provides free resources for you to use in your search for a safe daycare facility. We are always happy to help explain a report or a finding!
If you are searching for a safe daycare, reach out to us and get a copy of our Search for a Safe Daycare Guide to help you navigate how to find the right child care center for your child.
If you have any concerns about your child’s daycare or if your child was injured while in the care of a daycare center, give our team a call at (214) 699-4409. We are dedicated to doing more to keep families moving forward and to help make child care safer for working parents and their children.
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Child Wanders Around Daycare Unsupervised, Caregivers Assume Knowledge of His Whereabouts A Forney, Texas daycare did not know the location of a toddler. He was found wandering around empty classrooms unsupervised.
Child-Care Licensing Investigation Report for Fort Worth, Texas, Daycare Daycare database records reporting a child left alone and unsupervised in a classroom at a Fort Worth daycare.