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DCF 252.425(2)(c) (c) A camp counselor may not engage in any duties that are not related to caring for children while he or she is counted in meeting the required counselor–to–child ratios.
DCF 252.425(2)(d) (d) Children of staff who attend the camp and who are on the premises for supervision and care shall be counted in the determination of counselor-to-child ratios.
DCF 252.425 History History: EmR1918: emerg. cr., eff. 1-30-19; CR 19-089: cr. Register March 2020 No. 770, eff. 4-1-20; correction in (2) (a) 1. made under s. 35.17, Stats., Register March 2020 No. 770.
DCF 252.43 DCF 252.43Base camp and facilities.
DCF 252.43(1)(1)Site and building.
DCF 252.43(1)(a)(a) The licensee shall identify a base camp that provides an environment that allows the program to be oriented to the out-of-doors. The base camp shall be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition at all times.
DCF 252.43(1)(b) (b) The base camp shall have a building or shelter for use by the camp during inclement weather. If the shelter is not enclosed, the camp shall implement a procedure for ensuring that children are protected from the elements.
DCF 252.43(1)(c) (c) The base camp shall be located on a well-drained site not subject to flooding. The premises shall be properly graded to prevent the accumulation of storm or other waters that may create hazards to the property or to the health or safety of the occupants. No camp may be located in an area that is situated so that drainage for any source of filth, such as garbage or animal waste disposal, can be deposited on the site.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: Local authorities should be consulted to obtain any required zoning clearances or building permits. Chapter NR 115 and s. NR 116.12 (2) (b) may affect the camp's location with regard to flood plains and shore land areas.
DCF 252.43(1)(d) (d) Buildings and shelters on sites used or constructed primarily for day camp purposes shall comply with the applicable Wisconsin Commercial Building Code and applicable local ordinances. A copy of the building inspection report shall be on file with the department.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: Inspections can be obtained from a commercial building inspector certified by the Department of Safety and Professional Services in accordance with chapter SPS 305, “Licenses, Certifications, and Registration," or a Wisconsin architect registered in accordance with chapter A-E 3, Architect Registration, or a Wisconsin engineer registered in accordance with chapter A-E 4, Professional Engineer Registration. Local authorities should be consulted to obtain any required zoning clearances or building permits.
DCF 252.43(1)(e) (e) All buildings and structures used by children for day camp purposes shall have not less than 2 plainly marked exits that are free of obstruction.
DCF 252.43(1)(f) (f) The base camp premises and any structures used by children on the premises shall be free of litter, safe, well maintained, in good repair, and clean.
DCF 252.43(1)(g) (g) If the base camp includes an enclosed building used by children, the inside temperature of the building may not be less than 67 degrees Fahrenheit. If the inside temperature exceeds 80 degrees Fahrenheit, the licensee shall provide for air circulation with fans or by other means.
DCF 252.43(1)(h) (h) Painted exterior and interior surfaces accessible to children shall be free of flaking or deteriorating paint and finished with lead-free paint or other non-toxic material.
DCF 252.43(1)(i) (i) Garbage and refuse at the base camp shall be kept in rigid, watertight, and leak-proof containers with tight-fitting covers and disposed of as necessary to prevent decomposition and overflow.
DCF 252.43(1)(j) (j) The areas around garbage and refuse containers shall be clean and dry.
DCF 252.43(1)(k) (k) Solid waste disposal sites on the premises must be licensed by the department of natural resources.
DCF 252.43(1)(L) (L) The growth of brush, weeds, grass, and plants shall be controlled in the base camp area to prevent the harborage of noxious insects, rodents, and any other animals.
DCF 252.43(1)(m) (m) Chemical and other insect, weed, and rodent control measures shall be used in accordance with label instructions.
DCF 252.43(2) (2)Emergency plans and drills and open fires.
DCF 252.43(2)(a) (a) Children shall be protected from indoor and outdoor hazards, including any recalled products.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: Lists of recalled products are available on the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection website at or by contacting the U.S. consumer products safety commission (US CPSC) at 1-800-638-2772.
DCF 252.43(2)(b) (b) Materials harmful to children, including drugs, pesticides, flammable or combustible materials, insecticides, matches, cleaning supplies, bleaches, and other hazardous, toxic, or poisonous materials shall be stored in the original, covered, and labeled container in areas not accessible to children. Power tools shall be stored so they are inaccessible to children.
DCF 252.43(2)(c) (c) A motor vehicle shall be immediately available at the camp in case of emergency if a public or private rescue or emergency vehicle cannot arrive at the camp within 10 minutes of a phone call.
DCF 252.43(2)(d) (d) Smoking is prohibited anywhere on the premises or in a vehicle used to transport children when children are in care.
DCF 252.43(2)(e) (e) The camp shall have a working telephone at the camp during the hours of operation. A list of emergency telephone numbers, including fire, law enforcement, and poison control shall be in a location known to all camp counselors. In this paragraph, “telephone” does not include a pay telephone requiring payment to reach the operator or a telephone in a locked room.
DCF 252.43(3) (3 )Emergency plans and drills.
DCF 252.43(3)(a) (a) Each camp shall have a written plan for taking appropriate action in the event of an emergency situation, including a fire, tornado, or natural disaster, extreme heat or cold, lost or missing children, a missing swimmer, an accident, an illness, allergic reactions, human-caused events, such as threats to the premises or its occupants, or other circumstances requiring immediate attention. The plan shall include specific procedures that address all of the following:
DCF 252.43(3)(a)1. 1 . Evacuation, relocation, shelter-in-place, and lockdown.
DCF 252.43(3)(a)2. 2. Procedures for ensuring that the needs of children with disabilities are met.
DCF 252.43(3)(a)3. 3. Communication with parents.
DCF 252.43(3)(a)4. 4. Connecting children with their parents if the camp is required to evacuate the premises.
DCF 252.43(3)(b) (b) Each staff member shall be informed of and knowledgeable about his or her duties in the event of an emergency and appropriate evacuation routes.
DCF 252.43(3)(c) (c) All fire protection facilities and equipment, including fire extinguishers, shall be operable and maintained in working order by a qualified person. Each fire extinguisher shall be inspected once per year by a qualified person and have a label indicating its present condition and the date of the last inspection.
DCF 252.43(3)(d) (d) Before camp opens, written notification of the camp operation shall be given to the nearest fire department or forest ranger service for protection in case of fire. The notification shall include the dates the camp will be operational and the number and ages of children in care.
DCF 252.43(3)(e) (e) Any necessary permits required for operation of incinerators or for open fires shall be secured and available for review by a licensing representative.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: The department recommends that the licensee contact the local municipality and the Department of Natural Resources prior to the camp opening to determine what permits are required.
DCF 252.43(3)(f) (f) The clearing around open fires shall be free of burnable materials for a radius of 6 feet.
DCF 252.43(3m) (3m)Food preparation, service, and storage.
DCF 252.43(3m)(a) (a) When meals are prepared or heated on the premises, the kitchen area shall be equipped with a microwave or stove, a refrigerator, a sink, and utensils that are necessary to prepare and serve meals. The sink shall be used exclusively for food preparation and dishwashing.
DCF 252.43(3m)(b) (b) Camps preparing or serving only snacks are not required to have a sink unless dishes or utensils requiring dishwashing are used. Camps preparing or serving only snacks are not required to have a microwave or stove unless the snacks require heating.
DCF 252.43(3m)(c) (c) All equipment and utensils used for preparing, serving, or storing food shall have smooth hard surfaces, be easily cleanable, in good repair, durable, non-toxic, and free of cracks, seams, chips, and roughened areas, and be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition.
DCF 252.43(3m)(d) (d) Single-service utensils and food containers may not be reused.
DCF 252.43(3m)(e) (e) Foods shall be stored at temperatures that protect against spoilage. Milk and other perishable food shall be maintained at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
DCF 252.43(3m)(f) (f) Food shall be protected from potential contamination and adulteration, including dirt, insects, rodents, or animals. Dry foods, such as cereals, crackers, and pasta shall be stored in bags with zip-type closures or metal, glass, or food-grade plastic containers with tight-fitting covers and shall be labeled and dated. In this paragraph, “food-grade plastic” means any plastic material used in the manufacture of dishes or utensils which has been found not harmful to human health by the national sanitation foundation.
DCF 252.43(3m)(g) (g) Raw fruits and vegetables shall be washed before being served or cooked.
DCF 252.43(3m)(h) (h) Meals shall be prepared at the base camp in a central kitchen operated by the camp or in another location that has been inspected by a representative of a state agency. Food delivery vehicles shall be equipped with clean containers or cabinets to store food while in transit. Containers for cold food shall be capable of maintaining the temperature at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit and containers for hot food shall be capable of maintaining the temperature at or above 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: The rules for restaurants and other public eating establishments are in ss. ATCP 75.101 to 75.112. Chapter ATCP 75 is at
DCF 252.43(3m)(i) (i) Extra food that was prepared but not served shall be dated, refrigerated promptly, and used within 36 hours, or frozen immediately for use within 6 months.
DCF 252.43(4) (4)Water.
DCF 252.43(4)(a) (a) A supply of safe drinking water shall be available to children at all times from disposable cups, covered water bottles labeled with the child's name, or angle jet type drinking fountains. Common use of drinking cups is prohibited.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: It is recommended that single-use disposable water bottles not be reused.
DCF 252.43(4)(b)1.1. When a public water system is not available, a private well may be used if it is approved by the department of natural resources. At least 2 weeks prior to the camp opening each year, water samples from an approved well shall be tested for lead and bacteria by a laboratory certified under ch. ATCP 77. The water supply shall be bacteriologically safe. The laboratory report shall be made available to the department upon request.
DCF 252.43(4)(b)2. 2. If the results of the water test under subd. 1. indicate the water is bacteriologically unsafe, the water shall be appropriately treated and re-tested until it is determined to be safe. Bottled water shall be used on a temporary basis until the water is determined to be safe.
DCF 252.43 Note Note: Camps using a private well that serves at least 25 of the same people over 6 months of the year are considered to have a non-transient non-community water system (NTNC) and must be in compliance with Chapter NR 809, Safe Drinking Water Act Standards. Contact the nearest department of natural resources office from the list at
DCF 252.43(4)(d) (d) Where running water is not available, a covered drinking water container that is easily distinguishable from other containers, constructed of a food grade material that does not permit the water to become contaminated by dirt, insects, or animals, and suitable for pouring or equipped with a faucet shall be provided. Dipping into water from the container is prohibited. The container shall be cleaned and sanitized daily. The water source shall be a public water supply or as specified in par. (b).
DCF 252.43(5) (5)Washrooms and toilet facilities.
DCF 252.43(5)(a) (a) Handwashing and toileting facilities shall be provided and accessible to children.
DCF 252.43(5)(b) (b) Single-use disposable towels shall be provided and accessible to children.
DCF 252.43(5)(c) (c) Soap, toilet paper, and a wastepaper container shall be provided and accessible to children.
DCF 252.43(5)(d) (d) Outdoor toilets, when used, shall be constructed according to the requirements of the applicable Wisconsin commercial building codes and maintained in good repair.
DCF 252.43(5)(e) (e) A portable toilet shall be in compliance with s. SPS 391.13 and local ordinances.
DCF 252.43(5)(f) (f) Plumbing shall comply with all applicable sections of Wisconsin plumbing codes.
DCF 252.43(5)(g) (g) Liquid waste disposal shall be connected to a public sewer, if available. If not available, liquid waste disposal shall be in accordance with chs. SPS 382, 383, and 384.
DCF 252.43(5)(h) (h) Handwashing and toilet facilities shall be in clean and sanitary condition.
DCF 252.43 History History: Cr. Register, October, 1984, No. 346, eff. 11-1-84; corrections in (1) (d) and (3) (e) made under s. 13.93 (2m) (b) 7., Stats., Register, July, 1999, No. 523; CR 04-040: am. (1) (d) and cr. (2) (a) 8. Register December 2004 No. 588, eff. 1-1-05; correction in (3) (c) 1. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register November 2008 No. 635; CR 07-102: r. and recr. (1) (a) to (c), (2) (a) 4., 5. and (3) (c) 1., am. (1) (d), (e), (2) (a) 3., 6., 7., (b) 1. to 4., (3) (a) 1., 2., 4., 5., (b) 1. to 3., (c) 2., 5., (d) 1., 2., 3., (e) 2., 4., 6. and 7., cr. (1) (f), (g), (2) (a) 9., (3) (c) 6. to 8. and (d) 2m., r. (2) (a) 2. c. and (3) (c) 3. Register December 2008 No. 636, eff. 1-1-09; correction in (3) (d) 2. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register December 2008 No. 636; correction in (3) (d) 2. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register August 2011 No. 668; correction in (3) (e) 7. made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 7., Stats., Register January 2012 No. 673; EmR1918: emerg. r. and recr. (1) (f), cr. (1) (h) to (m), r. and recr. (2), (3), cr. (3m), (4), (5), eff. 1-30-19; CR 19-089: r. and recr. (1) (f), cr. (1) (h) to (m), r. and recr. (2), (3), cr. (3m), (4), (5) Register March 2020 No. 771, eff. 4-1-20; correction in (2) (title) made under s. 13.92 (4) (b) 2., Stats., Register 2020 No. 771.
DCF 252.44 DCF 252.44Program.
DCF 252.44(1)(1)Program planning and implementation.
DCF 252.44(1)(a) (a) Each day camp shall have a program of activities that shall be planned according to the developmental level of each child and each group of children and intended to expose children to a variety of cultures. The needs of children with disabilities shall be considered when planning the programming and activities for enrolled children. The program of activities shall focus on the out-of-doors and the natural environment and shall reflect the camp's written policies. The program shall provide each child with experiences which will promote all of the following:
DCF 252.44(1)(a)1. 1. An appreciation and understanding of the natural environment.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)2. 2. Large and small muscle development.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)3. 3. Intellectual growth.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)4. 4. Self-esteem and positive self-image.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)5. 5. Opportunities for recreation.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)6. 6. Social interaction.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)7. 7. Creative expression.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)8. 8. Self-expression and communication skills.
DCF 252.44(1)(a)9. 9. Literacy skills.
DCF 252.44 Note Note: With parental consent and consultation, it is recommended that camps who care for children who have an Individualized Education Program (IEP) coordinate programming activities with the local school district.
DCF 252.44(1)(b) (b) The program shall:
DCF 252.44(1)(b)1. 1. Protect the children from excessive fatigue and from overstimulation.
DCF 252.44(1)(b)2. 2. Encourage spontaneous activities.
DCF 252.44(1)(b)3. 3. Be planned to provide a flexible balance each day of:
DCF 252.44(1)(b)3.a. a. Active and quiet activities.
DCF 252.44(1)(b)3.b. b. Individual and group activities.
DCF 252.44(1)(b)4. 4. Provide daily opportunities for children to play outdoors except during inclement weather or when not advisable for health reasons.
DCF 252.44(1)(b)5. 5. Provide reasonable regularity in eating, resting and other routines.
Published under s. 35.93, Stats. Updated on the first day of each month. Entire code is always current. The Register date on each page is the date the chapter was last published.