Child Care - SC First Steps

Child Care

Providing local families with access to high-quality early care and education.

Evidence Based

Several First Steps partnerships provide local families with access to high-quality early care and education by operating or supporting center-based child care programs in their communities.

This map only shows programs funded by South Carolina First Steps. For more information about services available in your area, contact your local First Steps partnership.

Who it Serves

Contact your local First Steps for program availability and eligibility.

Ages 0-3

Families with babies and toddlers

Ages 3-5

Families with preschool-aged children

Early care and education providers

Opportunities for early childhood teachers, paraprofessionals, and program directors

How It Works

Local partnerships provide operational oversight and/or funding for licensed child care programs, including support for staff and materials.


A focus on language and literacy development

Professional Development

Learning experiences for early childhood professionals

2 Generation Approach

Education and support for the whole family

Target Outcomes

Access to quality early care and education improves school readiness and long-term academic outcomes and provides parents with the opportunity to work or attend school.

More Programs in Early Care & Education

Early Care & Education

Quality Enhancement

Intensive support to child care centers, Head Start and preschool classrooms to improve quality

Early Care & Education

Quality Counts

Quality Counts is a community-based child care quality improvement strategy, designed to build and sustain high quality in early care and education programs.

Early Care & Education

Child Care Scholarships

Eligible children receive tuition-free enrollment at quality child care centers

Early Care & Education

Early Head Start

Nationally, Early Head Start programs serve over 160,000 children and pregnant women annually.

Early Care & Education

Training and Professional Development

Certified and registered training hours for the early childhood workforce

Early Care & Education

First Steps 4K

First Steps 4K offers free, full-day four-year-old kindergarten to qualifying children in South Carolina. We partner with more than 270 licensed child care centers and private schools across the state, making it easy for families to find a high-quality program that meets their needs.

Early Care & Education

Enhanced Early Education

The Enhanced Early Education strategy seeks to enhance education services offered by early childhood classrooms.