Organization Title


AB 290 Child Care Nutrition Training


AB 290 (Alejo, 2013) Foundations for the Healthy Nutrition in Child Care was signed into law by Governor Brown on Friday October 11, 2013.  The bill was passed to address a lack of nutrition training for child care providers. AB 290 amends child care licensing laws to increase the required hours of preventive health and safety training to include one hour on the importance of childhood nutrition and the resources of the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), a subsidy program for child care providers based on the healthy feeding of the children in care.

Research indicates child care provider training has the greatest impact on the quality of child care programs. With nearly 25% of preschool-aged children overweight or obese, thousands of California’s youngest residents face a lifetime of health challenges (e.g., diabetes, heart disease, cancer) related to poor nutrition.

Conversely, children who practice healthy eating habits during the first five years of life are more likely to extend those healthy habits into adulthood. With more than 45,000 licensed child care facilities in California serving over one-million children, child care providers are uniquely positioned to influence the health of our youngest residents. This bill is an important step to ensuring California's children in child care are receiving healthy meals and snacks.

The EMS Authority worked with nutrition experts to develop standards for this training, and worked closely with its approved Preventive Health and Safety Practices program directors to assist them in developing appropriate curricula for the training. The Authority convened a standards workgroup in April 2014, and shared the training standards with training programs by November 2014. Program directors are responsible for develop their own curriculum based on EMS Authority’s standards for the training. Program directors have submitted curricula containing the nutrition content to EMS Authority for review and approval, and a process that took place starting in January 2015 through December 2015. The new nutrition training was implemented on January 1, 2016.

View the AB 290 Fact Sheet [PDF]
Full text of AB 290 can be accessed here
Child Care Nutrition Content Overview

The Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA) has developed child care nutrition training standards as required by Assembly Bill 290 (Alejo, Chapter 734, Statutes of 2013). The law adds one (1) hour of nutrition training to the current seven (7) hour preventive health and safety practices course for a total of eight (8) hours of preventive health and safety training required for licensees of child care homes and centers.

Beginning January 1, 2016 and thereafter, all preventive health and safety courses must include an additional one-hour of nutrition training based upon the standards developed and approved by EMSA. 

  • EMSA Child Care Nutrition Training Standards [PDF]

  • Bulletin to Program Directors: Preventive health and safety course content changes (nutrition training standards) [PDF]

  • SAMPLE Child Care Nutrition Curriculum-Outline [PDF]


Required Nutrition Topics:

5. Serving foods that are low in fat

6. Serving goods that are low in salt

7. Reading ingredient lists

8. Information about CACFP

9. The importance of teaching children about nutrition

10. Implementing family-style meal service

12. Writing policies regarding feeding children in child care

13. Children’s food allergies

14. Practicing food safety in order to provide healthy and safe meals to children in child care


Supplementary Nutrition Topics:

1. The Importance of working with a child’s family regarding their specific nutritional needs

2. Preventing choking

3. Creating a healthy environment in child care

4. Reducing sugar

5. Additional topics related to nutrition

6. Latest News about Nutrition

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What does this mean for Child Care Providers?

When individuals seek a license for a child care center or home in California, they are required to take the Preventive Health and Safety Practices training. After January 1, 2016 the Preventive Health and Safety Practices training will include an additional hour of training in the importance of childhood nutrition and the benefits of the CACFP. The addition of nutrition content will happen automatically and will not require child care providers to take any action.
  • I already have my Child Care License, do I have to take the 8-hour Preventive Health and Safety Practices course again?

If you already have your license, you do not have to take the 8-hour Preventive Health and Safety Practices course again. Those who are getting their license in 2016 OR making changes to their license (i.e. moving locations) will have to take the Preventive Health and Safety Practices training again.

For More Information
Emergency Medical Services Authority
10901 Gold Center Drive, Suite 400
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
Phone: (916) 322-4336
California Department of Education
Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
USDA Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
California Food Policy Advocates (Sponsors of AB 290)

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