Program Instruction: CCDF-ACF-2016-02

Publication Date: January 11, 2016
Administration for Children and Families
  1. Log No: CCDF-ACF-PI-2016-02
  2. Issuance Date: January 11, 2016
  3. Originating Office: Office of Child Care
  4. Key Words: Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF); Revised ACF-801 Child Care Monthly Case Record Form and Instructions


State and Territorial Lead Agencies administering child care programs under the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act (the CCDBG Act), as amended, and other interested parties.


Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) Child Care Monthly Case Record Form and Instructions (ACF-801 Report) for State and Territorial Lead Agencies.


The Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act (42 U.S.C. § 9858 et seq.), as amended by the CCDBG Act of 2014 (Pub. L. 113-186).  Relevant Technical Bulletins are located on the Office of Child Care (OCC) Web site.


To inform States and Territories of approved revisions to the ACF-801 Report.  These revisions include changes related to the reauthorization of the CCDBG Act.  The form and instructions are attached. 


Case-level child care program information for the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) is required by Section 658K of the CCDBG Act, as amended.  The case-level administrative information received through this collection provides the means to analyze and evaluate the CCDF program and the extent to which States and Territories are assisting families in addressing child care needs.  This collection will provide the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) with the information necessary to make its biennial report to Congress, address national child care needs, offer technical assistance to grantees, meet performance measures, and conduct research.

Revised Report and Instructions

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has extended approval for the ACF-801 Report through December 31, 2018 (OMB Control Number 0970-0167). The form has been revised to add several new data elements and to make other changes, including:

Family Homeless Status

As reauthorized, section 658K(a)(1)(B)(xi) of the CCDBG Act now requires States to report whether children receiving assistance under this subchapter are homeless children.  The new data element will be required with the reporting period beginning October 1 of 2015 (FFY 2016).

Child with Disability

Section 658E(c)(3)(B) of the CCDBG Act requires a State’s priority for services to include children with special needs.  Reauthorization strengthened this provision by requiring ACF to prepare a report annually that contains a determination about whether each State uses CCDF funds in accordance with priority for services requirements, including the priority for children with special needs.  While States have flexibility to define “children with special needs” in their CCDF Plans, many States include children with disabilities in their definitions.  The new data element will be required with the reporting period beginning October 1 of 2016 (FFY 2017).


The reauthorized CCDBG Act includes provisions that support services to English language learners.  Specifically, section 658E(c)(2)(G) requires States to assure that training and professional development of child care providers address needs of certain populations to the extent practicable, including English language learners.  The new data element Language will help States, researchers, and other stakeholders identify the number of children being served through CCDF that may have language needs that can be addressed by the child care.  The data element indicating the primary language spoken in the home will become effective with the reporting period beginning October 1 of 2016 (FFY 2017).

Military Status

The Administration has taken a number of actions to increase services and supports for members of the military and their families.  This data will allow States and OCC to determine the extent to which military families are accessing the CCDF program.  The new data element will be required with the reporting period beginning October 1 of 2016 (FFY 2017).

Family ZIP Code and Provider ZIP Code

As reauthorized, sections 658E(a)(2)(M) and 658E(a)(2)(Q) of the CCDBG Act now require States to address the needs of certain populations regarding supply and access to high-quality child care services in underserved areas including areas that have significant concentrations of poverty and unemployment.  To successfully implement these requirements, States and OCC will be able to examine the supply of care in particular communities by collecting family and provider Zip codes.  The new data elements will be required with the reporting period beginning October 1 of 2016 (FFY 2017).

Social Security Numbers

With reauthorization, section 658K(a)(1)(E) of the CCDBG Act now prohibits the ACF-801 report from containing personally identifiable information.  As a result, Social Security Numbers (SSNs) must be dropped from the family record (element 3) and the child’s record (element 17) effective with the reporting period beginning October 1 of 2015 (FFY 2016).    Note that the form will still require a unique identifying number, other than the SSN, that is assigned by the State for each family.  It is imperative that the unique State identifier assigned to each family (head of household) be used consistently over time –regardless of whether the family transitions on and off subsidy, or moves within the State.  This will allow States and OCC to identify unique families over time in the absence of the Social Security Number (SSN).  A State may still use personally identifiable information, such as SSNs, for its own purposes, but this information cannot be reported on the ACF-801.  We also remind CCDF Lead Agencies that, under the Privacy Act, States cannot require families to disclose SSNs as a condition of receiving CCDF, although States may collect SSNs if the families disclose the SSNs voluntarily. 

Quality of Child Care Providers

The existing ACF-801 allows States several ways of reporting information on the quality of each child’s provider(s)—including: QRIS participation and rating, accreditation status, provider is subject to State pre-K standards, and other State-defined quality measure.  These elements provide data on provider quality for each child receiving a child care subsidy as reported on the ACF-801.  Working with States to track this data will give us a key indicator on the progress we are making toward serving more low-income children in high quality care.  Reauthorization reinforced this priority by adding a number of provisions that bolster support for quality, including new higher quality spending requirements.  States must also take into consideration the cost of providing higher quality when setting payment rates (658E(c)(4)(B)(iii)(II)).  To ensure that the CCDF program is providing meaningful access to high quality care, it is essential for States to have data on the quality of providers participating in the subsidy program.

To date, States have been required to report on at least one of the quality elements for a portion of the provider population.  This has resulted in States reporting limited quality data—often for only a small portion of their child care providers.  Therefore, effective with the October 2017 report, States must report quality information for every child care provider.  This delayed effective date is designed to give States the necessary time to make adjustments to their data systems.

States with a Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS), at a minimum, must report elements 33 (QRIS participation) and 34 (QRIS rating) for every provider.  These States may report additional quality elements (35 through 38) at their option. 

States without QRIS must report quality information for every provider using one or more of the following elements: 35 (accreditation status), 36 (provider is subject to State or local pre-K standards), 37 (provider meets other State-defined quality measure), or 38 (provider is subject to Head Start or Early Head Start standards).  New element 38 has been added to indicate whether or not the provider is subject to Head Start or Early Head Start standards--providing another option for looking at the number of children in quality settings.

Date of Most Recent Inspection

Section 658E(c)(2)(J) of the reauthorized CCDBG Act requires States to monitor both licensed and license-exempt CCDF providers.  To ensure that CCDF providers are monitored at least annually, CCDF Lead Agencies will need to track inspection dates for these providers.  OCC is also interested in data that ensures States are meeting monitoring requirements.  Therefore, we propose to add a data element to the ACF-801 effective October 2017 indicating, for each child care provider currently providing services to a CCDF child, the date of the most recent inspection for compliance with health, safety, and fire standards (including licensing standards for licensed providers).  If the State uses more than one visit to check for compliance with these standards, the State should report the most recent date on which all inspections were completed.  The delayed effective date (October 2017) for this new element corresponds with the start of a fiscal year and gives States time to make changes to their data systems.

Due Dates

Case-level data is collected monthly and reported quarterly.  Reports are due 60 days after the end of each quarter.  States and Territories may submit case level data monthly instead of quarterly.  If they choose to submit the data monthly, the report is due 90 days after the reported month.

Who Must Report

All Lead Agencies in the United States, the District of Columbia (DC), and Territories (including Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) are responsible for completing the ACF-801 Report.

Penalties for Non-Reporting

The statute provides that the Secretary of Health and Human Services may impose sanctions on a Lead Agency for non-compliance with any requirement of the CCDF program (CCDBG Act, Section 658I(b)(2)(B)).  For example, the regulations provide that the Secretary may impose a penalty of not more than four percent of the discretionary funds for a fiscal year, if it is determined that a Lead Agency has failed to implement a provision of the Act, the regulations, or the Lead Agency's biennial Plan (45 CFR 98.92(b)(2)).  Lead Agencies failing to provide reports may be subject to this penalty (63 FR 39980) or other sanctions.

Additional Information Required

  1. Information on Pooling (if applicable). If a grantee pools its CCDF funds (i.e., includes other funding, such as Title XX, State-only funds not used for MOE or Match, or other funds not used for Match), it must report the percentage of funds that are provided by CCDF on the ACF-800 Form. The Office of Child Care will calculate the percentage of each data element attributable to CCDF.
  2. Sampling Plan. All States, DC, and Territories that submit a sample of their records must have a sampling plan that has been approved by ACF.  If there are anticipated changes to the existing sampling plan, e.g., switching from submitting a sample to submitting full population data or vice versa, the Office of Child Care should be notified 60 days in advance.

Electronic File Transfer Method

The case-level report must be submitted electronically to ACF via an approved secure electronic submission method.  Currently, for most of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the Territories, the Social Security Administration computer center serves as a gateway when transmitting data files to the National Institutes of Health computer center.  States should contact the National Center on Child Care Data and Technology for information on approved secure electronic submission methods and relevant contacts.


Upon receipt of the case-level data file, the Federal system will process the data and generate summary assessment and detail assessment reports.  The two report files will automatically be transmitted via a secure electronic submission method to the State.  The summary assessment report is also sent via e-mail to the State Lead Agency and the appropriate OCC Regional Office staff.  This serves as a notification that the data file has been received.

Technical Assistance

The National Center on Child Care Data and Technology (NCDT) was established by the Office of Child Care to provide technical assistance for grantee reporting requirements.  Assistance related to the submission of the ACF-801 Report is available on the internet.

NCDT Technical Assistance Specialists can answer questions and provide guidance in preparation of the program information and submission of the ACF-801 Report.  NCDT can be reached toll-free at 1-877-249-9117 weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) or at

Reporting Problems or Policy Questions:

Lead agencies that have problems complying with the reporting requirements should contact ACF for technical assistance.  Questions should be directed to the appropriate OCC Regional Child Care Program Manager (see attached list).

Paperwork Reduction Act

Collection of the information for the ACF-801 Report is expected to average 25 hours per response, including the time for reviewing instructions, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and reviewing the collection of information.  An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. The information collection required under this Program Instruction is approved under OMB Control Number 0970-0167, which expires December 31, 2018.

Rachel Schumacher
Office of Child Care

Attachments:   List of ACF Regional Child Care Program Managers

                         ACF-801 Report and Instructions


Last Reviewed Date: