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DOD Expands Access to Quality Child Care for Military Families

Maryland EXCELS Joins Department of Defense Pilot Program

BALTIMORE  – Maryland EXCELS child care providers are part of an important initiative by the Department of Defense (DOD) to expand the availability of child care options for eligible military families through its fee assistance program, Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood (MCCYN).

Last week, the DOD launched a pilot program known as MCCYN-PLUS. The pilot includes child care programs that are participating in Maryland EXCELS (Excellence Counts in Early Learning and School Age Care) and meet the eligibility requirements for MCCYN. Maryland EXCELS, with over 4,600 participants, is the state’s quality rating and improvement system for early education and child care programs.

“Children of military families deserve the very best child care available, and Maryland EXCELS is a valuable resource to assist them in finding that excellent care,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “We are proud to be involved in providing safe and affordable child care for the families of those who serve.”

“Maryland is honored to be part of this vital pilot program that helps to support military families, and we are glad that this initiative benefits our dedicated child care providers as well,” said Dr. Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools.

The MCCYN-PLUS pilot provides military families greater access to high quality, early education experiences for their children. The pilot also offers opportunities for Maryland’s child care programs to grow their businesses, while supporting military families in their neighborhoods.

Families throughout Maryland count on Maryland EXCELS to provide guidance when searching for excellent child care.  The rating system builds on the state’s rigorous child care licensing requirements, and informs families about the additional standards met by the early care program of their choice.

Maryland EXCELS’ ratings reflect nationally-accepted best practices in early care and educational experiences, such as positive behavioral supports and individualized instruction. The Maryland EXCELS program is part of a nationwide effort to enhance child care and early education opportunities for families.

Learn more about MCCYN-PLUS at For more information about Maryland EXCELS, please click here.