WorkLife

Backup and sick child care

We know that even the best planned child care arrangements can be disrupted occasionally, so UW offers limited in-center backup care and in-home sick child care to eligible faculty, staff, and student parents at the Seattle, Bothell, and Tacoma campuses. Examples of when to take advantage of these services are:

  • Your child is mildly ill and can’t go back to their care center yet
  • Your regular caregiver is unavailable
  • Your child’s school is closed
  • You are between care arrangements
  • You are transitioning back to work after leave

Backup care is available at center locations throughout Puget Sound and nationwide. Hours of operation and child age requirements vary. Sick child care is available in your home 24 hours a day, seven days a week, whenever you need to attend to academic or work responsibilities.

In order to provide you with these child care options, we’ve negotiated subsidized rates with two providers: Bright Horizons Child Care Solutions and KinderCare Learning Centers. While both deliver high-quality care, the services and costs vary slightly between the two.  We recommend you register with both programs now, prior to ever needing to request care.  When the need arrives you easily submit your request through your already established account.  All requests are filled as able, and are not guaranteed placement.

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Bright Horizons provides both backup and sick child care. When your regular child care is temporarily unavailable, you can take your child to one of the many Bright Horizons centers or affiliates. On the occasion that your child is sick, Bright Horizons will send a caregiver to your home.

Backup care costs $20 per child and $35 per family. In-home care for a sick child costs $32 for up to four hours of care (for up to three of your children). Each additional hour costs $8.

You may use a combination of these two services up to five times per year.

Register

Before using either backup care or sick child care, register with Bright Horizons to create a personal account. On the sign in page, initial username is UnivWa and enter the password 4Backup. If you have problems registering, call Bright Horizons at 877-242-2737.

Scheduling care

Once you’ve registered, you will get instructions about how to schedule your backup or sick child care.

Care is provided on a first-come, first-served basis and availability is not guaranteed. Whenever possible, schedule backup care in advance (you can schedule care up to 30 days in advance). This will help ensure that child care is available when you need it.

If you need to cancel your appointment, do so before 5 p.m. on the day prior to your scheduled time. If you cancel after 5 p.m., you’ll be billed for all the hours you originally scheduled.

Accreditation

Child care centers in the Bright Horizons network are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) or have been assessed as meeting or exceeding state licensing requirements. All in-home care agencies in the Bright Horizons network are credentialed and employ trained caregivers. All in-home and center care providers participate in an extensive screening and training process.

KinderCare logo

When your regular child care is unavailable, KinderCare provides backup care options throughout Puget Sound and nationwide.

The cost is $20 per child, and you may use the service up to 10 times per year.

Register

Before scheduling care, register for backup child care on the KinderCare website. On the registration page, select University of Washington from the drop down menu then leave the company code blank. Phone: 877-914-7683, select option 3.

Scheduling care

Once you’ve registered, you’ll get instructions on how to schedule backup care. On the KinderCare website, you’ll be able to review details about each child care center.

Backup care is provided on a first-come, first-served basis and availability is not guaranteed. Whenever possible, schedule backup care in advance (you can schedule care up to 30 days in advance). This will help ensure that child care is available when you need it.

If you need to cancel backup care, do so before 5 p.m. on the day prior to your scheduled care. If you cancel after 5 p.m., you’ll be billed for all the hours you originally scheduled.

Accreditation

KinderCare Learning Centers are proud to have more NAEYC accredited centers than any other provider of early childhood education in the nation. You can rest assured that your center makes every effort to meet high national standards in teaching strategies, curriculum, assessment of children’s learning, health and safety, developing relationships with families, community involvement, administration, and teacher qualifications.

Additional KinderCare savings

The UW backup and sick child care program has limited funding and limited overall uses. Parents are enrolled in the program on a first-come, first-served basis and will be able to access services as long as yearly contract limitations are not exceeded. If program use exceeds funds available, the program may be suspended.

Funding limits for backup and sick child care

The UW backup and sick child care program has limited funding and limited overall uses. Parents are enrolled in the program on a first-come, first-served basis and will be able to access services as long as yearly contract limitations are not exceeded. If program use exceeds funds available, the program may be suspended.