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Subpart 1.

Indoor space.

The licensed capacity of the day care residence must be limited by the amount of usable indoor space available to children. A minimum of 35 square feet of usable indoor space is required per child.


Bathrooms, closets, space occupied by major appliances, and other space not used by children may not be counted as usable space. Space occupied by adult furniture, if it is used by children, may be counted as usable indoor space.


Usable indoor space may include a basement if it has been inspected by a fire marshal, is free of hazard, and meets the minimum exiting standards specified in subpart 4.

Subp. 2.

Outdoor play space.

There must be an outdoor play space of at least 50 square feet per child in attendance, adjacent to the residence, for regular use, or a park, playground, or play space within 1,500 feet of the residence. On-site supervision must be provided by a caregiver for children of less than school age when play space is not adjacent to the residence. Enclosure may be required by the agency to provide protection from rail, traffic, water, or machinery hazard. The area must be free of litter, rubbish, toxic materials, water hazards, machinery, unlocked vehicles, human or animal wastes, and sewage contaminants.

Subp. 3.

Water hazards.

Swimming and wading pools, beaches, or other bodies of water on or adjacent to the site of the residence must be inaccessible to children except during periods of supervised use. Wading pools, as defined in chapter 4717, must be kept clean. When children use a swimming pool, as defined in chapter 4717, or beach, an attendant trained in first aid and resuscitation shall be present. Any public swimming pool, as defined in chapter 4717, used by children must meet the requirements of chapter 4717.

Subp. 4.

[Repealed, L 2019 1Sp9 art 2 s 134]

Subp. 5.

Occupancy separations.

Day care residences with an attached garage must have a self-closing, tight fitting solid wood bonded core door at least 1-3/8 inch thick, or door with a fire protection rating of 20 minutes or greater and a separation wall consisting of 5/8 inch thick gypsum wallboard or its equivalent on the garage side between the residence and garage.

Subp. 6.

Vertical separations.

For group family day care homes with a licensed capacity of more than ten children, a 1-3/4 inch solid wood core door or a door and frame with at least a 20-minute fire protection rating, must be provided whenever more than two floors of the residence are connected. These doors must be equipped with self-closing devices.

Subp. 7.

Heating and venting systems.

The following heating and venting guidelines must be met:


Stove and heater locations must not block escape in case of a fire.


Gas, coal, wood, kerosene, or oil heaters must be vented to the outside in accordance with the State Building Code.


Combustible items must not be located within 36 inches of the furnace or other heating sources.


Whenever in use, fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, solid fuel appliances, space heaters, steam radiators, and other potentially hot surfaces, such as steam pipes, must be protected by guards to prevent burns. All fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, space heaters, steam radiators, and furnaces must be installed according to the State Building Code.


The furnace, hot water heater, and workshop area must be inaccessible to children. Separation may be by a door, partition, or gate. There must be allowance for air circulation to the furnace.


Ventilation of usable space must meet the requirements of the State Building Code. Outside doors and windows used for ventilation in summer months must be screened when biting insects are prevalent.

Subp. 8.


A minimum temperature of 62 degrees Fahrenheit must be maintained in indoor areas used by children.

Subp. 9.

Infant and newborn sleeping space.

There must be a safe, comfortable sleeping space for each infant and newborn. A crib, portable crib, or playpen with waterproof mattress or pad must be provided for each infant or newborn in care. The equipment must be of safe and sturdy construction that conforms to volume 16, parts 1508 to 1508.7 and parts 1509 to 1509.9 of the Code of Federal Regulations, its successor, or have a bar or rail pattern such that a 2-3/8 inch diameter sphere cannot pass through. Playpens with mesh sidings must not be used for the care or sleeping of infants or newborns.

Subp. 10.


All stairways must meet the following conditions.


Stairways of three or more steps must have handrails.


Any open area between the handrail and stair tread must be enclosed with a protective guardrail as specified in the State Building Code. The back of the stair risers must be enclosed.


Gates or barriers must be used when children between the ages of 6 and 18 months are in care.


Stairways must be well-lighted, in good repair, and free of clutter and obstructions.

Subp. 11.


Decks, balconies, or lofts used by children more than 30 inches above the ground or floor must be surrounded by a protective guardrail and be constructed in accordance with the State Building Code. Wooden decks must be free of splinters and coated with wood preservative, paint, or constructed with treated wood.

Subp. 12.

Locks and latches.

Door locks and latches must meet the following guidelines:


a closet door latch must be made so that children can open the door from inside the closet;


every bathroom door lock must permit opening of the locked door from the outside and the opening device must be readily accessible to all caregivers; and


double cylinder (key required both sides) locks on exit doors are prohibited.

Subp. 13.

Sewage disposal.

Day care residences must have toilet facilities and sewage disposal systems that conform to the State Building Code or local septic system ordinances. The toilets must flush thoroughly. Outdoor toilets are permissible when local ordinances allow.

Subp. 14.

Construction, remodeling.

During construction or remodeling, children shall not have access to dangerous construction or remodeling areas within or around the residence.

Subp. 15.

Interior walls and ceilings.

The interior walls and ceilings within the residence, as well as corridors, stairways, and lobbies must have a flame spread rating of 200 or less.

Subp. 16.

[Repealed, L 2019 1Sp9 art 2 s 134]

Subp. 17.

[Repealed, L 2019 1Sp9 art 2 s 134]

Subp. 18.

Electrical services.

The following electrical guidelines must be met:


all electric receptacles accessible to children under first grade must be tamper-proof or shielded when not in use;


all major electrical appliances must be properly installed, grounded in accordance with the state electric code, and in good working order;


extension cords shall not be used as a substitute for permanent wiring; extension cords and flexible cords shall not be affixed to structures, extended through walls, ceilings, floors, under doors or floor coverings, nor be subject to environmental damage or physical impact; and


electrical wiring must be sized to provide for the load and be in good repair.

Subp. 19.

Smoking prohibited in group family child care home.

Pursuant to Minnesota Statutes, section 144.414, subdivision 2, smoking is prohibited in a group family child care provider's home during hours of operation.

Statutory Authority:

MS s 14.386; 14.388; 245A.09; 252.28


9 SR 2106; 10 SR 2617; 30 SR 585; L 2019 1Sp9 art 2 s 134

Published Electronically:

October 30, 2019

Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes