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Celebrate the Week of the Young Child, April 16-20, 2018!

A fun-filled week celebrating young children and their families with hands-on, collaborative activities encouraging movement and healthy lifestyles through music, food, and art. Get involved with Week of the Young Child!


Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF)

Upcoming Public Hearing and Public Comment Period

The 2019-2021 CCDF State Plan Public Hearing is set for Thursday, April 26, 2018, in the Sanders Auditorium, 111 N. Sanders, Helena, MT at 1:00PM. Details have been posted on the DPHHS public calendar. On April 19th, a draft of the plan will be available on the Early Childhood Services Bureau website, and public comments will be accepted online between April 19th and May 3rd on the Early Childhood Services Bureau website.

Unable to attend the Public Hearing in person? Join via Skype. A recording of the Public Hearing will also be available after April 26th.

Montana's 2019-2021 CCDF State Plan Draft for Public Comment

*The state plan draft is subject to change once comments are received.

Montana's 2019-2021 CCDF State Plan Public Comment Opportunity

*All comments, whether in writing or presented orally at the public hearing, must be related to specific items in the proposed Plan. Commenters must identify the Plan section number, heading, and page number of the Plan upon which they are commenting. Comments that do not reference specific sections in the Plan may not be considered or reviewed.


Best Beginnings Child Care Scholarship

Administrative Rule and Policy Manual Proposed Changes

The proposed rule and policy manual changes being made to meet federal regulations. The proposed rule changes can be viewed on the Secretary of State’s website, in 2018 Issue No. 7. The proposed Child Care Policy Manual revisions can be viewed on the Early Childhood Services Bureau website.

Concerned persons may submit their data, views, or arguments either orally or in writing at the hearing on May 3, 2018, at 10:00 a.m., in the auditorium of the Department of Public Health and Human Services Building, 111 North Sanders, Helena, Montana. Written data, views, or arguments may also be submitted to: Todd Olson, Department of Public Health and Human Services, Office of Legal Affairs, P.O. Box 4210, Helena, Montana, 59604-4210; fax (406) 444-9744; or e-mail dphhslegal@mt.gov, and must be received no later than 5:00 p.m., May 11, 2018.

Video Resources

Demonstration of Pyramid Model Practices

ECSB Programs and Services

The Early Childhood Services Bureau has the following programs:


The Early Childhood Services Bureau receives the following grants:

  • The Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) assists Montana in improving the overall quality of child care services that support healthy development  and school readiness needs of children.
  • The Montana Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Grant is addressing the mitigation of toxic stress and trauma in infancy and early childhood. The key components of the grant include prevention, promotion, and intervention. 
  • The Early Head Start Child Care Partnerships Grant provides children and families with access to high-quality early learning experiences that support working families by providing a full-day, full-year program so that more vulnerable children have the healthy and enriching early experiences they need to realize their full potential.
  • The Montana Preschool Development Grant (MPDG) supports state and local efforts to build, develop, and expand High-Quality Preschool Programs so children from low-and moderate-income families enter kindergarten ready to succeed in school and in life.
  • Montana Project LAUNCH (Linking Actions for Unmet Needs in Children’s Health) is funded by a federal grant received by DPHHS in September 2014. The goal is to engage Montana’s early childhood partners to improve systems and access to mental health services for young children and families in our rural state while piloting evidence-based practices in Gallatin and Park Counties.

Partners and Councils

  • The Early Childhood Services Bureau partners with Child Care Resource and Referral agencies to offer a variety of early care and education services.
  • The Early Childhood Services Bureau houses the Best Beginnings Advisory Council (BBAC). The BBAC serves as the comprehensive early childhood advisory council for Montana.
  • The Early Childhood Services Bureau contracts with the Montana Early Childhood Project (ECP) to manage the state’s early childhood Career Development System. The ECP is dedicated to improving the quality of programs and services for Montana’s young children and their families. The ECP is located at Montana State University-Bozeman in the Department of Health and Human Development. The ECP collaborates with many organizations and associations in Montana to enhance its ability to assist families and promote helpful programs and services statewide.
  • The Early Childhood Services Bureau collaborates with Child Care Licensing to support child care licensing requirements. The goal of the partnership between ECSB and Child Care Licensing is to ensure licensing standards and interpretation of rule meet the needs of child care providers as well as the STARS to Quality program. STARS to Quality works very closely with Child Care Licensing to ensure training requirements and criteria are complimentary and not duplicated potentially streamlining the process for licensing and STARS.
Civil Rights
If you believe that you have been discriminated against because of race, national origin, ethnic background, sex, religious affiliation, or disability, you have a right to file a complaint. To file a complaint of discrimination contact:
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
1961 Stout Street - Room 1426
Denver, CO 80294
(303) 844-2024; (303) 844-3439 (TDD)
toll free 1-866-239-0458
(303) 844-2025 FAX
Patty Butler, Chief
DPHHS - Early Childhood Services Bureau
P.O. Box 202925
Helena MT 59620-2925