For grownups who care about kids
Parents, child care providers, grandparents, educators and other caregivers.


The Parenting Place certifies individuals for child care certification in La Crosse, Monroe and Juneau counties in Wisconsin. The process for applying is detailed below.

Orientation session

To begin the application process for certification you must attend one of our monthly orientation sessions. An application packet will be available at that time. The session includes two trainings required for certification: Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention (required when caring for children under the age of five) and SIDS: Sudden Infant Death Syndrome prevention (required when caring for children under 12 months of age). Click here for information on when the orientation sessions are held.

Application process

Step 1: Attend a Monroe, La Crosse or Juneau County child care certification orientation session

Orientation sessions are offered at The Parenting Place. During the orientation session you will complete the two trainings required for certification: Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention and SIDS: Sudden Infant Death Syndrome prevention.

Step 2: Submit a complete application

The application is distributed at the end of the orientation session. A non-refundable fee is due (payable to The Parenting Place) when you return your complete application packet.

Step 3: Prepare for the home visit

After all of the required paperwork has been received in our office and processing is complete, we will contact you to schedule a home visit.

Application & background check fees

A $75 application fee is due when the application is submitted. A $75 renewal fee is due every two years when certification is renewed.

Out of state background checks

If you or other household members (age 18 or older), substitutes, etc. have lived in a state other than Wisconsin within the last three years, there may be additional processing fees for those background checks.

Home visit

Once all your application paperwork has been processed we will contact you to schedule a home visit. The application process is normally completed in an estimated 2 to 6 weeks from the time you submit a complete application with the fee. After your visit is scheduled you will receive a packet of information and forms that need to be completed before the date of your home visit. If you have questions on any of the paperwork, your certifier will go over them with you at the time of the visit.

The home visit ensures families have access to quality child care with all required standards met. The home visit checks all aspects of rooms used for child care, including looking in cabinets, closets, under beds and any other areas the children will have access to. If during our visit we find that the home has not achieved the minimum requirements, we can provide technical assistance and suggestions to help make the home a safe and healthy child care setting.

Providers need to supply the following items at the home visit

Some things we will be checking in the home

If during the home visit there are concerns for the children’s safety, we will offer suggestions and allow time to correct the problem.

If you have questions about the process for becoming an in-home La Crosse County certified child care professional, call 608-796-0830 or 800-873-1768 or e-mail at

If you have questions about the process for becoming an in-home Monroe or Juneau County certified child care professional call 608-374-4190 or e-mail Julee at

Please Note: If you live in another Wisconsin county or state other than Wisconsin, contact your local human services department for information on the child care regulation requirements for your area.

Number of children

The number of children you may care for depends on several variables, such as the ages of the children, whether or not they are related, and how they are related. Detailed information regarding group size can be found on the website listed above, but some basic guidelines for determining your group size include, but are not limited to

Determining your group size can be confusing; to help in figuring out how many children you may have in your care based on the children’s ages, the state of Wisconsin has developed a helpful tool. The certification group size estimator is a simulator that can be used for questions about group size, which can be found at