Your Step Up To Quality Journey

Step Up To Quality

Step Up To Quality (SUTQ) is Ohio’s quality rating system for child care programs that sets standards for early care and education above and beyond state licensing requirements. By earning a rating, a child care program demonstrates its commitment to going beyond minimum health and safety guidelines.

Supporting Child Care Providers

At Action for Children is here to support licensed child care programs to improve the quality of early childhood education in central Ohio. We do this through:

  • One-on-one coaching support
  • Professional development
  • Exclusive resources and community support

Your Step Up to Quality Journey

Action for Children provides free on-site technical assistance to centers and family child care providers working to obtain and maintain a SUTQ rating. SUTQ recognizes and promotes learning and development programs that meet quality program standards that exceed licensing health and safety regulations. Check out our FAQ for more info!


Action for Children’s Team Will:

  • Meet you where you are (both location and needs)
  • Create a customized plan to meet your goals
  • Speak to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services licensing specialists on your behalf

Step Up to Quality Materials Request

Need marketing materials for your new SUTQ star rating? Complete this form to submit your request for SUTQ marketing materials.

What's Up With Step Up

Did You Know?

You could be paid more for the work you already do! Providers who accept Publicly Funded Child Care (PFCC) earn additional payment increases for each star rating that they earn!


“The process is less overwhelming with their guidance.”
–Angela Oplinger, Michelle’s Academy

“Having the support from AFC’s TA staff is priceless. I would not have been as confident in applying for SUTQ nor equipped to go through the process without the support from my TAs!”
–Misty Norman, Heavenly Kids Child Care

Tools & Resources

If you are a provider looking for further assistance, we have a vast library of resources to help you understand the SUTQ system. You can also check out our four-part What’s Up With Step Up video series, which helps Ohio child care providers understand the April 2022 changes made to SUTQ.

About This Program

This work is funded by the Franklin County Department of Job and Family Services, the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, the Columbus Foundation, the City of Columbus, and PNC Bank. We also partner with other organizations, including Future Ready Columbus, that strengthen our efforts.


Still have questions about Step Up to Quality? Get in touch with our team today!