Finding Childcare

Find information about babysitters, au pairs, and other childcare resources here.

Looking for a quick overview? Download our “Looking for Childcare?” information sheet.

Childcare Resources

Great Start to Quality →

Helps families find the best early learning settings for their children and helps educators improve the care they give to children. Search based on your family needs for care. Also check out the 5-star rating system, parent toolkit, and other resources on the website.

Au Pair in America → 

Touted as the world’s most experienced live-in child care program,  Au Pair in America is the first organization to be designed by the U.S. Government to offer a legal au pair program.

Childcare Licensing and Reports

If you are looking to find a licensed child care or view child care licensing reports, you can search for them on the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs website. Statewide search for child daycare centers and homes, licensing reports, program details and potential code violations are available. You can search providers in your area, or by zip code in another area. This site provides licensing information, including the license number of each provider, as well as licensing violations.

National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies

The goal of the Association is to advance a childcare system that effectively serves all children and families, including military families. Visit their website to view a comprehensive checklist on choosing a childcare provider. is a one-stop destination to find babysitters, nannies, senior/elder care support, housekeepers and even pet sitters! Their site allows you to view detailed profiles of their vetted providers and select by experience, hourly rate, availability and more. Visit

If you have needs for care in other areas across the nation (for example, if your elder mom lives in Florida, or you have a conference in Atlanta and you want to take your baby) you can find care anywhere!

You must enroll with your MSU NetID email address. Michigan State University gives MSU affiliates free access to view profiles, post job descriptions and communicate with providers. It is your responsibility to hire providers and pay a negotiated rate for them to work in your home.

Childcare Checklist

This Parent Checklist can be used to help you think about, and communicate your family’s rules to a caregiver that may be new to your household. This checklist will help you to talk about safety rules inside your home and out in the neighborhood. Take a little time to explain why you’ve made certain rules, so your caregiver understands exactly what they mean. Don’t assume your caregiver will make certain decisions the same way you would, communicate your expectations.

  • Have you left all the important and emergency phone numbers the caregiver will need? These should include police, fire, poison control center, ambulance/rescue squad, doctor, neighbors, friends, relatives, or others. Is the list up-to-date? 
  • Have you left your work/cell phone number? Is it OK to be called if there are questions or do you only want to be called in an emergency? 
  • If applicable, do you want your home phone to be answered or leave calls to the answering machine? If the machine is on, how will you get through if necessary? 
  • Do you keep the doors locked at all times? Is there more than one door the caregiver should know about? What if someone gets locked out? Is there an alarm system that needs special instructions? 
  • Is there a thermostat/air conditioner control the caregiver should know about? Can the temperature be adjusted if necessary? 
  • Do you have any pets? Have you explained where they will be kept while the caregiver is there? 
  • Have you reviewed your children’s general schedule for the day? Did you include information about meals and snacks, nap times, homework for older children, or instrument practice? 
  • Are there any rules for watching TV, using the computer, or running electrical or kitchen appliances such a microwave or stove? Is there anything you don’t want the caregiver or your children to use? 
  • Do your children have rules about playing outside? Near your home? In your neighborhood? Can they go over to a friend’s house? 
  • Can the caregiver take your children outside? Is there a local park nearby? 
  • Can older children walk or ride their bicycles around the neighborhood? Are bike helmets easily located? 
  • How much detail do you want from the caregiver when you come home? For babies, will it include food, sleep, bowel movements, and minor accidents? For older children, will it include food, homework, mood, and TV time? Do you want the information in writing?

View the PDF version of this checklist.
View the “Instructions for Today” PDF to provide information to the caregiver.