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State lawmakers seek to raise care standards

SOUTH BEND — Indiana lawmakers are focusing on financial incentives as a way to raise standards at child care centers, even those that are associated with religious groups.

The Legislature’s interim Committee on Child Care is looking at setting minimum standards for any facility that receives federal money and offering financial incentives to parents to choose centers that provide a higher level of care.

Faith-based ministries that run child care centers in Indiana must meet far fewer regulations than licensed centers. But the drowning of a 1-year-old boy in a baptismal pool at an Indianapolis church’s child care center last February reignited the debate about whether the disparate regulations are a good idea.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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