Improving and Sustaining Quality Child Care

Wake County Smart Start


Wake County Smart Start
Improving & Sustaining Quality Child Care
4901 Waters Edge Drive
Suite 101
Raleigh, NC 27606


(919) 851-9550


Improving and Sustaining Quality Child Care is an activity in the Early Childhood Initiatives Department within Wake County Smart Start. Quality Enhancement Specialists (QES) work with 1, 2, 3 and 4-star child care facilities to improve both the quality and level of care for children. Facilities must apply to participate. Participating facilities receive a variety of services including consultation, training, and technical assistance at no cost. The facility is assigned a QES who will work with the staff to design an improvement plan based on ratings from the Infant/Toddler Environment Rating Scale (ITERS-R) or the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale (ECERS-R). Priority for participation is given to facilities having the greatest percentage of children enrolled that receive a subsidy.


If you have any questions or wish to apply to the program, please contact Sharon Clauss or call (919) 851-9550.

Click here for the 2018-19 Improving and Sustaining Quality Child Care Application.



Improving and Sustaining Quality Child Care is funded and managed by Wake County Smart Start.

Related Programs

NC Pre-Kindergarten

NC Pre-K provides children with a high-quality classroom program to help four-year olds get ready for Kindergarten. Children attend Pre-K for 6.5 hours each day, Monday through Friday.

Farm to Child Care

The Farm to Child Care program supports child care facilities, fostering nutrition plans that include fresh, local produce for snacks and meals throughout growing seasons.

Program Coordination and Evaluation

Wake County Smart Start Program Coordination and Evaluation staff work with community stakeholders to develop activities to achieve the goals, objectives and outcomes articulated in the Wake County Smart Start strategic plan.

Child Care Program Quality Supplements

Child Care Program Quality Supplements provide monthly supplement payments to eligible four- and five-star centers and homes that serve children on subsidy to maintain or incentivize improvement in program quality.

Child Care Health Consultant Program

The Child Care Health Consultant Program provides on-site health, safety, and nutrition consultation in child care facilities.

Assuring Better Child Health and Development (ABCD)

ABCD is an evidence-informed intervention and nationally-recognized model that trains pediatric primary care physicians and their staff to perform routine developmental and autism-specific screenings and connects children ages birth to 5 years old with specialized therapies and other early interventions services.

Advancing School Readiness

Advancing School Readiness has two components. Directors can apply to participate in the Wake Directors’ Leadership Academy or the Accreditation project.