Code of the District of Columbia

Chapter 2B. Additional Funding for Child and Adult Food Program.


§ 38–281. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “Child and Adult Care Food Program” or “CACF Program” means the program authorized by section 17 of the National School Lunch Act, approved October 7, 1975 (89 Stat. 522; 42 U.S.C. § 1766).

(2) “Child development facility” means a licensed community-based center, home, or other structure, regardless of its name, that provides care, supervision, guidance, and other services for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers on a regular basis. The term “child development facility” does not include a child development center or program that is sponsored or run by a public or private school.

(3) “Eligible child” means a child who is a District resident who occupies a slot funded in whole or in part by the childcare subsidy program, authorized by § 4-402, subchapter I of Chapter 29 of this title [§ 38-2901 et seq.], or the District of Columbia Public Schools’ Head Start program.

(4) “Farm-to-preschool programs” means programs at child development facilities that connect early care and education settings to local food producers, as an extension of the farm-to-school model, which connect children to local foods through meals and snacks, taste tests, lessons, farmer visits, cooking, field trips, growing food, and community and parent engagement.

(5) “Infant” means a child younger than 12 months of age.

(6) “Locally grown” shall have the same meaning as provided in § 38-821.01(3).

(7) “OSSE” means the Office of the State Superintendent of Education, established by § 38-2601.

(8) “Preschool” or “preschooler” means a child older than 24 months of age but younger than compulsory school attendance age, who is not enrolled in a public, charter, or private school.

(9) “Sustainable agriculture” shall have the same meaning as provided in § 38-821.01(9).

(10) “Toddler” means a child between 12 months of age and 24 months of age.

(11) “Unprocessed” shall have the same meaning as provided in § 38-821.01(10).

(12) “WIC” means the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, as provided in section 17 of the Child Nutrition Act of 1966, approved September 26, 1972 (86 Stat. 729; 42 U.S.C. § 1786).


(Feb. 26, 2015, D.C. Law 20-155, § 4072, 61 DCR 9990.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) addition of this chapter, see §§ 4072-4075 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-377, July 14, 2014, 61 DCR 7598, 20 STAT 3696).

For temporary (90 days) addition of this chapter, see §§ 4072-4075 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-449, October 10, 2014, 61 DCR 10915, 20 STAT 4188).

For temporary (90 days) addition of this chapter, see §§ 4072-4075 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-566, January 9, 2015, 62 DCR 884, 21 STAT 541).

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4077, an applicability clause, see § 7016(f)(3) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).


§ 38–282. Healthy Tots Fund.

(a) There is established as a special fund the Healthy Tots Fund (“Fund”), which shall be administered by OSSE in accordance with this section.

(b)(1) The Fund shall be funded by annual appropriations, which shall be deposited into the Fund. The money deposited into the Fund, and interest earned, shall not revert to the unrestricted fund balance of the General Fund of the District of Columbia at the end of a fiscal year, or at any other time.

(2) Subject to authorization in an approved budget and financial plan, any funds appropriated in the Fund shall be continually available without regard to fiscal year limitation.

(c) OSSE shall make funds from the Fund available for the following purposes:

(1) To provide additional funding for healthy meals served by child development facilities participating in the CACF Program by reimbursing the child development facility for each meal that meets the rules issued pursuant to this chapter as follows:

(A) For meals eligible for reimbursement through the CACF Program served to an eligible child:

(i) Ten cents for each breakfast;

(ii) Ten cents for each lunch; and

(iii) Ten cents for each supper;

(B) For meals served to any child attending the child development facility but not eligible for reimbursement through the CACF Program because child development facilities have maximized the number of allowable reimbursable meals, an amount of local funding equal to the free federal rate as established under the CACF Program; provided, that the meals meet the rules issued pursuant to this chapter; provided further, that at least 75% of the children attending the child development facility are District residents and at least 50% are eligible for subsidized child care.

(2)(A) To provide additional funding to child development facilities participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program that use local foods by reimbursing the child development facility an additional $0.05 per lunch or supper that meets the rules issued pursuant to this chapter served to eligible children and at least one component of a meal is comprised entirely of locally grown and unprocessed foods; provided, that the child development facility reports to OSSE the name and address of the local farms where the foods were grown.

(B) For the purposes of this paragraph, the term “locally grown and unprocessed foods” shall not include milk.

(3) To provide funding to child development facilities that have partnerships with the Office of the State Superintendent of Education and that follow Early Headstart Standards as defined by 45 C.F.R. § 1304 and that provide comprehensive services, including health, mental health, nutrition, and family services; provided, that the funds shall be used for recruitment into or administration of the Child and Adult Care Food Program, including meal planning and nutrition education to children and their families.

(d) In addition to the requirements set forth in subsection (c) of this section, and subject to available funding, OSSE shall make funds from the Fund available:

(1) To make competitive grants available to child development facilities participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program to support physical activity, nutrition, gardens, natural play areas, and farm-to-preschool programs; and

(2) As an incentive to increase participation in the Child and Adult Care Food Program, provide a $300 grant per year to a child development home that participates in the Child and Adult Care Food Program to help pay for costs associated with licensing, renewal, and other related expenses.

(e) A child development facility receiving a reimbursement or other funding pursuant to this section shall provide the meals at no charge to participating infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.

(f)(1) OSSE may, by rule, increase the amount of reimbursements, grants, or other funding provided by this section to further improve the quality and nutrition of meals provided by a child development facility.

(2) OSSE may withhold reimbursements or other funding authorized by this section from a child development facility that does not meet the requirements of this chapter, or rules issued pursuant to this chapter.


(Feb. 26, 2015, D.C. Law 20-155, § 4073, 61 DCR 9990; Oct. 8, 2016, D.C. Law 21-160, § 4032(a), 63 DCR 10775.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) addition of a provision concerning child development facility requirements, see § 4073a of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-449, October 10, 2014, 61 DCR 10915, 20 STAT 4188).

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4073a, concerning child development facility requirements, see § 2(f) of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Clarification Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-461, November 6, 2014, 61 DCR 11784, 20 STAT 4368).

For temporary (90 days) addition of a provision concerning child development facility requirements, see § 4073a of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-566, January 9, 2015, 62 DCR 884, 21 STAT 541).

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4073a, concerning child development facility requirements, see § 2(f) of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Clarification Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-587, January 13, 2015, 62 DCR 1294, 21 STAT 758).

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4077, an applicability clause, see § 7016(f)(3) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).

Temporary Legislation

For temporary (225 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4073a, concerning child development facility requirements, see § 2(f)( 2) of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Clarification Temporary Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Law 20-179, March 7, 2015, 62 DCR 424).


§ 38–282.01. Child development facility requirements.

(a) If 50% or more children in a licensed child development facility are eligible for at least 6 continuous months for subsidized child care, the facility shall participate in the CACF Program unless the facility is exempt pursuant to subsection (a-1) of this section or OSSE grants the facility a hardship exemption pursuant to subsection (b) of this section.

(a-1) Subsection (a) of this section shall not apply to a child development facility that is on the U.S. Department of Agriculture ("USDA") CACF Program National Disqualification List for the period of time that the child development facility is on the USDA CACF Program National Disqualification List.

(b) To be eligible for a hardship exemption, a child development facility must provide OSSE with a written statement describing why participation in the CACF Program constitutes a hardship, and provide OSSE documentation demonstrating that the child development facility is in compliance with the current CACF Program Meal Patterns. OSSE will determine whether good cause exists and provide notice to the child development facility that it is excused from participating in the CACF Program for one year from the date of the notice. To the extent possible, OSSE shall work with excused child development facilities to address barriers to participating in the CACF Program.

(c) Repealed.


(Feb. 26, 2015, D.C. Law 20-155, § 4073a; as added Oct. 22, 2015, D.C. Law 21-36, § 7030(a), 62 DCR 10905; Oct. 8, 2016, D.C. Law 21-160, § 4032(b), 63 DCR 10775; Dec. 13, 2017, D.C. Law 22-33, § 4062, 64 DCR 7652.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 4062 of Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2017 (D.C. Act 22-167, Oct. 24, 2017, 64 DCR 10802).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 4062 of Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2017 (D.C. Act 22-104, July 20, 2017, 64 DCR 7032).

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 7016(f)(1) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4077, an applicability clause, see § 7016(f)(3) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).


§ 38–283. OSSE requirements.

(a) The OSSE shall:

(1) Provide training to support the efforts of a child development facility to meet the requirements of this chapter;

(2) Monitor the progress of a child development facility in complying with this chapter during the facility’s licensing process and record collected data in each facility’s compliance history;

(3) Provide to the Mayor, the Council, and the Healthy Schools and Youth Commission an annual evaluation of the effect of the implementation of this chapter on the health, well-being, and school-readiness of participating District children; and

(4) Provide to the Mayor, the Council, and the Healthy Schools and Youth Commission, no later than June 30 of each year, a report listing the names and locations of licensed child development facilities with 50% or more eligible children enrolled, whether or not the facility participates in the CACF Program, and whether and why the facility was excused from participation.

(b) Within 60 days of February 26, 2015, the OSSE shall add participation in the Child and Adult Care Food Program to the searchable criteria on the website for the OSSE Child Care Connections, which is the District’s child care resource and referral center.

(c) No later than December 30 of each year, the OSSE shall submit, in conjunction with the Department of Health, a report to the Council and the Mayor on the efforts to promote WIC in child development facilities, including data on:

(1) Identifying opportunities to better promote WIC at child development facilities;

(2) The feasibility of the development of a breastfeeding-friendly rating for child development facilities; and

(3) Whether data matching or other means tested programs can be used to identify families receiving child-care subsidies and connect them to WIC if they are eligible for WIC benefits and are not receiving them.

(d) Within 120 days of February 26, 2015, pursuant to the authority granted by § 38-2602(b)(11), the OSSE shall issue rules to implement this chapter, which, at a minimum, shall:

(1) Establish nutritional standards for meals and snacks served at child development facilities;

(2) Establish physical activity standards for child development facilities;

(3) Improve the environmental sustainability of child development facilities;

(4) Increase the use of locally grown and unprocessed foods from growers engaged in sustainable agriculture practices;

(5) Enhance nutrition and healthy eating education programming for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers at child development facilities, including farm-to-preschool programs; and

(6) Ensure that child development facilities provide sufficient training to staff on improving nutrition and increasing the level of physical activity of participating infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.


(Feb. 26, 2015, D.C. Law 20-155, § 4074, 61 DCR 9990; Oct. 22, 2015, D.C. Law 21-36, § 7030(b), 62 DCR 10905.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 21-36 added (a)(4) and made related changes.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, as enacted by D.C. Law 20-155, § 4074, see § 2(g) of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Clarification Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-461, November 6, 2014, 61 DCR 11784, 20 STAT 4368).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(g) of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Clarification Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-587, January 13, 2015, 62 DCR 1294, 21 STAT 758).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 7016(f)(2) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4077, an applicability clause, see § 7016(f)(3) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).

Temporary Legislation

For temporary (225 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(f)(3) of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Clarification Temporary Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Law 20-179, March 7, 2015, 62 DCR 424).


§ 38–284. Use of Department of Parks and Recreation facilities.

The Department of Parks and Recreation shall, to the extent feasible, partner with child development facilities to allow the facilities to use District recreation centers, fields, playgrounds, and other facilities on occasions that do not conflict with the Department of Parks and Recreation’s existing programming or with on-going community obligations.


(Feb. 26, 2015, D.C. Law 20-155, § 4075, 61 DCR 9990.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) addition of D.C. Law 20-155, § 4077, an applicability clause, see § 7016(f)(3) of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-127, July 27, 2015, 62 DCR 10201).


§ 38–285. Applicability.

This chapter shall apply as of October 1, 2015.


(Feb. 26, 2015, D.C. Law 20-155, § 4077; as added Oct. 22, 2015, D.C. Law 21-36 § 7030(c), 62 DCR 10905.)