For Childcare Programs

Your Childcare Program and Colorado Shines

What is Colorado Shines?

Colorado Shines is the state’s quality rating and improvement system for licensed early care and learning programs. It helps programs improve their quality and connect with families looking for quality care for their children.

Think of Colorado Shines as a network that will strengthen your program, give you access to professional development opportunities, connect you to your colleagues and inform families who are looking for programs like yours.

Better yet, you don’t have to pay anything to be rated, to receive support and to be part of the network. We have worked hard to make it a flexible and customizable process so you can begin your quality journey at whatever pace works for your program.

Why does it matter?

As a provider of early childhood education and care, you know the early years are a critical period for a child’s learning and development. Quality early learning programs like yours help children start early and start strong.

Research consistently shows that children who attend quality early care and learning programs are more likely to do well in school and less likely to drop out or need remedial education. The benefits last forever.

The services you provide are the gateway to children’s life-long success. Colorado Shines is here to support you in achieving, maintaining and improving your quality.

How do I join Colorado Shines or improve my current quality rating?

First, get licensed! If you are currently providing early care and learning services without a license from the State of Colorado, we encourage you to go through the licensing process. It is a simple and necessary step towards providing better quality care to Colorado’s children. Visit to get started.

If you are currently licensed, you are already on your way to making Colorado’s children shine! Check out our Colorado Shines Program Guide for step-by-step instructions on how to maintain or improve your quality rating.

Just by participating in Colorado Shines, early learning programs like yours demonstrate their commitment to quality and continual improvement. If at any time during the process you have questions or need additional support, visit or call 844-447-4441. We are your partner in helping you achieve the highest levels of quality.

Most importantly, we want to ensure every early care and learning program like yours becomes part of a network that supports every child in Colorado!