Understanding the MCC Care Structure

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Understanding the MCC Care Structure

Overview

Every day, CYP professionals strive to support DoD mission readiness by meeting the child care needs of eligible families. In order to do this important work effectively, it is essential that (a) your program be able to describe the full range of child care services provided to families, and (b) families be able to use this information to find and request the care that meets their specific needs.

MCC’s care structure provides the foundation on which the core MCC processes ─ child care search, request for care, offer, and placement activities ─ depend. This structure includes standard terms and processes for defining and requesting care across all Branches of Service. As a result, eligible families experience the same request for care processes regardless of Service.

To watch a video that explains how the MCC Care Structure supports key system functions related to requesting care, making and accepting offers, and reporting, access the MCC Care Structure video in the Training Center.

What is the MCC Care Structure?

The MCC care structure is a key component of the program’s profile, and is set up and maintained in program content by program users with the appropriate permissions. When the care structure is up-to-date and accurate, it supports an effective request for care process ─ benefiting both families and programs and strengthening mission readiness. For example:

  • Families are able to request the care that specifically meets their needs (e.g., 24/7 care, after school care only, before and after prekindergarten). The care structure ─ together with the data MCC collects from families during the household profile setup and search for care process ─ helps MCC efficiently capture all dimensions of a family’s care needs for each child. When a family submits requests for specific care options with the same date care needed at the same duty installation for a specific child --this bundle of requests is called the child’s care requirement. MCC uses this care requirement information to feed the search, request, and offer for care processes.
  • Programs can then make offers to families whose requests specifically match their available spaces. This allows programs to meet the needs of families and fill spaces in an efficient manner.

The MCC care structure and associated definitions reflect DoD instruction, but have been further refined to address program-level operations and support MCC capabilities. This structure reflects the actual child care services that programs provide every day and was designed to capture the specific care needs of eligible DoD families.

As depicted in the graphic below, the MCC care structure is composed of a standard set of program and care attributes that build upon one another to create a full and detailed picture of a program’s available child care services ─ starting with the broad characteristics of the program (program type) and finishing with the specific care offerings the program provides. Each program is first identified as one or more program types (e.g., CDC, SAC, FCC, 24/7) based on the care environment and ages served. The program type then defines which care types are available (e.g., full-day care, part-day care). In turn, the care type determines the care options and care offerings available. Each level of the MCC care structure is described in the sections that follow.

Graphic presenting an overview of the levels of the MCC care structure

A graphic depicting the specific care structure for a CDC program is displayed below for reference. Graphics depicting the care structure for all DoD program types (e.g., CDC, SAC, 24/7 Center, and FCC provider) can be found in MCC Care Structure by Program Type.

NOTE: The MCC Coordinator is responsible for setting up a program’s care structure in MCC. If you have questions relating to how your program’s care structure was set up, please ask the program user in your program who is responsible for this set up. If you have any questions about who sets up your program’s care structure, please ask your MCC Coordinator.

Graphic presenting the MCC care structure for CDC programs

PROGRAM TYPE

As depicted in the graphic below, the first step in building your program’s care structure and defining your care options is to select your program’s program type. Each military child care program must be associated with at least one program type. In MCC, the program type determines the program’s general attributes (i.e., available care types, ages served) that will display on your program profile, and will affect how you set up your program’s care options.

Graphic that highlights the program type level of the MCC care structure

The DoD supports the following program types:

  • Child Development Center (CDC): This program type provides child care services for infants, pretoddlers, toddlers, and preschoolers of eligible families from Monday through Friday during standard work hours. The CDC program type supports the following care types: Full-Day Care and Part-Day Care.
  • School Age Care (SAC) Program: This program type provides child care services for children of eligible families from the start of kindergarten through the end of the summer after seventh grade. This program type operates from Monday through Friday during standard work hours. The SAC program type supports the following care types: School Year Care and Summer Camp.
  • Family Child Care Program: The FCC Program provides administrative oversight for the installation's Family Child Care (FCC) Providers. The FCC Program is responsible for on-boarding all FCC providers and requesting their program profile and user account be set up in MCC.
    • FCC Provider (FCC): This program type provides child care services for infants, pretoddlers, toddlers, preschoolers, and school age children of eligible families. Care is provided in the home of the FCC provider, located either on or off of an installation. The FCC Provider program type supports the following care types: Full-Day Care, Part-Day Care, School Year Care, Summer Camp, 24/7 Care, and Extended Care.
  • 24/7 Center: This program type provides child care services for infants, pretoddlers, toddlers, preschoolers, and school age children of eligible families during non-traditional hours on a regular basis. This program type is designed to serve watch standers or shift workers, who work non-traditional, and/or rotating schedules (i.e., weekends, nights, and evenings).  The 24/7 Center program type supports the following care types: 24/7 Care and Extended Care. Families must submit proof of work schedule to qualify for 24/7 care.

CARE TYPE

Once your program has designated a program type, you may then select your program’s care types, which are the category of child care services available through your designated program type(s).  

In the MCC care structure, care types build upon your designated program type, serving to define general characteristics of care offered to military families, including care schedule and age groups or grades served. The graphic below depicts how care types form the next level of the care structure, after the program type. 

Care types also organize the care options available ─ which is the next level of the care structure, described in the following section. Information captured in care types also helps programs report on and meet the care requirements of DoD families. 

Graphic that highlights the care type level of the MCC care structure

Below are the standard care types used by DoD programs:

  • Full-Day Care: This care type is associated with the CDC and FCC provider program types and provides child care services for infants through preschool age children for six hours or more per day on a regular basis, at least 4 days per week.
  • Part-Day Care: This care type is associated with the CDC and FCC provider program types and provides child care services for infants through preschool age children for fewer than six hours per day on a seasonal or regularly scheduled part-day basis.
  • School Year Care: This care type is associated with the SAC and FCC provider program types and provides child care services for school age children (i.e., children enrolled in kindergarten – grade 7) during the school year.
  • Summer Camp: This care type is associated with the SAC and FCC provider program types and provides child care services for school age children between school years during the summer.
  • 24/7 Care: This care type is associated with the 24/7 Center and FCC provider program types and provides child care services for infants through school age children during non-traditional and overnight hours on a regular basis. 24/7 care supports watch standers or shift workers who work non-traditional, and sometimes rotating schedules (i.e., weekends, overnights, and evenings) and is often used in lieu of other care types.
  • Extended Care: This care type is associated with the 24/7 Center and FCC provider program types and provides child care services for infants through school age children during extended or non-traditional hours on an irregular or occasional basis. Extended care is often utilized by families in conjunction with other types of care.

Each program type is associated with specific care types. The graphic below displays the care types available to each DoD program type.

Graphic that presents the care types associated with each program type

Selecting Secondary Program Types to Capture Your Program’s Care Types

As illustrated above, care types are tied to specific program types. Since program type impacts the attributes displayed on your program profile, your program must designate the program types that reflect your child care services so you can set up the full range of care types and care options on your program profile.

While some programs may only need one program type (referred to as the “primary” program type) to capture all of the care types they offer, other programs may designate additional program types (referred to as a “secondary” program type) to capture the specific range of child care services they offer. Below are several scenarios in which a program must designate a secondary program type.

Note: Only users with the appropriate permissions designate the program type(s) on the program profile. If you have any questions about this process, please ask your MCC Coordinator.

Examples of When a Program User Should Designate a Secondary Program Type

Scenario 1: CDC with SAC as a secondary program type: Garrison Child Development Center has classrooms for infant through preschool age children, and offers a kindergarten program to kindergarten-eligible children. This program should have a primary program type of CDC and a secondary program type of SAC.

Scenario 2: SAC with CDC as a secondary program type: Fort Bravo SAC Program provides school year care, but also offers part-day preschool during the school year. This program should have a primary program type of SAC and a secondary program type of CDC.

Scenario 3: 24/7 Center with CDC and SAC as a secondary program type: The Main 24/7 Center provides care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for families who work non-traditional and/or rotating schedules. Because additional space is available, the program can also serve infant through school age children during typical operating hours as well. This program should have a primary program type of 24/7 and two secondary program types of CDC and SAC.

CARE OPTIONS

Just as each program type has associated care types, each care type then defines the range of care options available. Care options provide more specific information on key attributes of the child care services provided such as the age groups served, the operating schedule, and the dates care is available. These attributes are important drivers in the family’s search for care process ─ allowing MCC to match the family’s care requirement to a specific program’s care options.

The graphic below visually depicts how care options form the next level of the care structure, building upon the care types defined by the program type.

Graphic that highlights the care option level of the MCC care structure

The table below defines the care options associated with each care type and provides definitions for each care option. The table presents the care options currently established in MCC. If your program provides a care option that does not align with any of the care options currently available in MCC, contact the MCC Support Desk to determine if a new care option should be created.

Care Options Available by Care Type

Table that presents and defines the care options available by care type

CARE OFFERINGS

Some care options may also include a final care structure level - called care offerings - to further refine the services provided. Care offerings are only associated with the School Year Care, School Year Care - Kindergarten, Pre-K Before and After School, Summer Camp, and Summer Camp by Grade care options. Programs that operate these care options have other services associated with them that cannot be conveyed at the care option level (i.e., before school care, after school care, etc.) and care offerings capture these distinct services in MCC. In the case of the Summer Camp and Summer Camp by Grade care options, the care offering breaks down the summer camp into weekly sessions.Graphic that highlights the care offerings level of the MCC care structure

The detail provided by the care offerings level of the care structure allows families to request the care that meets their specific needs (e.g., my child needs only winter camp and all school out days; my child only needs weeks 2, 3, and 5 of summer camp, my child needs flexible school out days from an FCC provider). Care offerings also allow you to match your actual spaces (e.g., your program has a space in your Winter Camp) to a family that specifically requests that offering (e.g., the family requested care for Winter Camp).

The care options and their associated care offerings are defined below.

Care Options with Associated Care Offerings
Table that presents and defines the care offerings  available by care option

 

Care Structure is Central: How the MCC Care Structure Drives Core Processes

Now that you have information on how program type, care type, care option, and care offerings fit together, it is important to understand how this care structure drives key MCC features and processes  and helps you manage your program operations.

The graphic below illustrates how the care structure ─ and all of the information it captures ─ drives the MCC features and processes that allow your program to manage the entire request for care process efficiently. These core processes include: (a) the family search and request process, (b) the family’s care requirement for each child, (c) the program’s placement activities, (d) MCC’s calculation of anticipated placement times, and (e) reporting and analytics. Descriptions of how the MCC care structure informs these core processes are included in this section.

Graphic presents how the MCC care structure informs key request functions

FAMILY SEARCH AND REQUEST PROCESSES

The care structure and the attributes collected at each care structure level are important drivers in the family’s search and request for care process ─ allowing MCC to match the family’s care requirement to a program’s specific care options. This function not only helps families effectively communicate the care they need to support the DoD mission, but also helps programs to better meet those needs ─ which is the overarching objective of military child care.

During the search process, MCC uses the family’s care requirement to match them with programs whose care structure and attributes match their specific needs. As such, careful setup and maintenance of your program’s care options ensures that your program displays on all families’ search results if your child care services meet their search parameters. If your care attributes match a family’s care requirement, your program will appear in the family’s search results, enabling them to submit a request for your program by selecting the care option and associated offerings that specifically match their care requirement. If you have not set up a care option correctly, or the care options that your program offers are not reflected in MCC, your program may not appear in a family’s search results and the family will be unable to view the care offered at your program or submit a request for care.

CARE REQUIREMENT

Families use MCC to communicate their child care needs, search for child care, and request the care that they need to support the DoD mission. Families provide key information about their child care needs through their household profile (child age, date care needed) and child care search criteria (e.g., which child needs care, the child’s grade and school [if applicable], the care type needed, the location where they need care). These details define the family’s care requirement for each child and allows the family to manage all requests related to that care requirement as a group. All aspects of the care requirement align with the information and attributes captured in the MCC care structure. In fact, as mentioned earlier, the MCC care structure was designed to capture the specific care needs of eligible DoD families and help programs categorize the care they provide to meet those needs.

APT

The MCC care structure also supports APT, or the estimate of how long families can expect to wait for a child care space in the requested program. APT indicates the probability that a family will receive an offer for care (likely, possible or not likely), as well as the estimated timeframe. APT is available for Full-Day and 24/7 care for CDC programs, 24/7 centers, and the FCC Program overall. The information provided via APT allows families to assess child care availability and make informed decisions about where to place their child care requests during the search for care process. Families can view APT on the search results page prior to placing a request. Once they submit a request, families can view the APT associated with their request on their My Child Care page. For more detailed guidance on APT, see APT for Programs.

PROGRAM OFFER PROCESS

The MCC care structure helps your program quickly and efficiently fill vacancies and optimize enrollment. Placement activities leverage the attributes captured in your program’s care structure to better manage your waitlist once you have identified a vacancy. With a detailed and standardized care structure, you can describe the type of vacancy you have available (i.e., specific age, care offering). This capability allows you to identify requests on your waitlist that specifically match your vacancy. You are then able to make offers for care to these families, fill your vacant spaces quickly, and meet the needs of eligible families. Altogether, this enables your program to support mission readiness by meeting the specific care needs of eligible families quickly and efficiently.

REPORTING & ANALYTICS

A standardized care structure across the Services supports accurate data collection and reporting. More specifically, it prevents data gaps, reduces duplication of effort, allows for “apples to apples” comparative analysis between Services, and supports analysis of how military child care programs meet the child care needs of eligible families and support mission readiness. Additionally, how your program sets up your MCC care structure informs MCC reports relative to demand and request metrics. For example, when families place requests for your program’s care options and your program makes offers to those requests in MCC, leadership can analyze that information through MCC reports.

Through MCC reports, managers are able to report and analyze metrics relating to placement activities, wait times, and demand for programs at each installation, region, or Service. Some metrics available via MCC reports (e.g., unmet need, performance metrics) serve as important program planning tools that help leadership decide when to increase program capacity.

MCC Care Structure by Program Type

This topic includes graphics of the care structure associated with each program type.

Graphic presenting the MCC care structure for CDC programs

Graphic presenting the MCC care structure for 24/7 Centers

Note: The 24/7 Center Program Type has no care offerings associated with its care options.

Graphic presenting the MCC care structure for SAC programs
*Before School, After School, Before AM/PM Kindergarten, and After AM/PM Kindergarten includes school out days and seasonal camps.

Graphic presenting the MCC care structure for an FCC provider
*Before School, After School, Before AM/PM Kindergarten, and After AM/PM Kindergarten includes school out days and seasonal camps.

Last revised: 2 Mar 2021
Watch

MCC Care Structure

This video explains how the MCC Care Structure supports key system functions related to requesting care, making and accepting offers, and reporting. It also includes details about each of the care options and when to use each one. This information is especially relevant to staff responsible for setting up and managing care options in MCC. 

Duration: 
36:52

MCC Care Structure

Last revised: 24 Jul 2019