DUBUQUE, Iowa (KWWL) — Governor Kim Reynolds was in Dubuque Thursday morning to sign three bills she says will boost workforce across Iowan industries. One of those bills focused on increasing numbers in childcare.
The new law puts the childcare worker to child ratio at one worker to seven two-year-olds or 10 three-year-olds. Governor Reynolds says the change will be voluntary.
“Individual childcare providers will make the decision,” Reynolds said. “If they think that will allow them to bring additional children into their childcare than they’ll have the opportunity to do that.”
Additionally, 16-year-olds working in childcare can now monitor children under their care without adult supervision.
Renee Krier, who owns Romper Stomper Childcare in Dubuque, says the new minimum age will allow her more flexibility in hiring and scheduling.
“Before today it was you could have a 16 year old within the room with supervision in that room,” Krier said. “So it will allow us to have more staff under that 18, so 16 to 18, without that person over top of them.”
Krier says her own business won’t benefit from the increased minimum because she doesn’t have the space. However she believes it will help childcare providers who are trying to expand.
The bill went into effect immediately.