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.
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.
Foods shall be stored at temperatures that protect against spoilage. Milk and other perishable food shall be maintained at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
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.
Raw fruits and vegetables shall be washed before being served or cooked.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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 https://dnr.wi.gov/Contact/SSbyCounty.html
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)
Handwashing and toileting facilities shall be provided and accessible to children.
Single-use disposable towels shall be provided and accessible to children.
Soap, toilet paper, and a wastepaper container shall be provided and accessible to children.
Outdoor toilets, when used, shall be constructed according to the requirements of the applicable Wisconsin commercial building codes and maintained in good repair.
Plumbing shall comply with all applicable sections of Wisconsin plumbing codes.
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
, and 384
Handwashing and toilet facilities shall be in clean and sanitary condition.
DCF 252.43 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
: 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
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 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.
Protect the children from excessive fatigue and from overstimulation.
Provide daily opportunities for children to play outdoors except during inclement weather or when not advisable for health reasons.
Provide reasonable regularity in eating, resting and other routines.
Provide daily periods when a variety of experiences are concurrently available for the children to select their own activities.
Limit the amount of time that children are kept waiting in lines or assembled in large groups during routines such as toileting and eating and intervals between activities.
Each day camp shall have a written policy on guiding children's behavior which provides for positive guidance, redirection and the setting of clear-cut limits. The policy shall be designed to help each child develop self-control, self-esteem, and respect for the rights of others.
If a camp uses time-out periods to deal with unacceptable behavior, time-out periods may not exceed 3 minutes, and the procedures shall be included in the camp's child guidance policy as specified in par. (a)
. For purposes of this paragraph, a “time-out” is an interruption of unacceptable behavior by the removal of the child from the situation, not to isolate the child, but to allow the child an opportunity to pause, and with support from a counselor, reflect on behavior and gain self-control.
Actions that may be psychologically, emotionally or physically painful, discomforting, dangerous or potentially injurious are prohibited. Examples of prohibited actions include:
Spanking, hitting, pinching, shaking, slapping, twisting, throwing or inflicting any other form of corporal punishment.
Verbal abuse, threats or derogatory remarks about the child or the child's family.
Physical restraint, binding or tying to restrict movement or enclosing in a confined space such as a closet, locked room, box or similar cubicle.
Children shall not be punished for lapses in toilet training.
The camp shall provide program equipment and furnishings in a variety and quantity that allows staff to implement activities outlined in the written policy on program objectives and activities required under s. DCF 252.41 (1) (f) 5.
and meets all of the following criteria:
Provides construction activities and for the development of manipulative skills.
All equipment and furnishings, whether or not owned by the camp, shall be:
Scaled to the developmental level, size and ability of the children.
Safe, durable, of sturdy construction with no sharp, rough, loose, protruding, pinching or pointed edges, or areas of entrapment, in good operating condition, and anchored when necessary.
Placed to avoid danger of accident and collision and to permit freedom of action.
Used in accordance with all manufacturer's instructions and any manufacturer's recommendations that may affect the safety of children in care.
Equipment and materials which reflect an awareness of cultural and ethnic diversity shall be provided.
No trampolines or inflatable bounce surfaces on the premises may be accessible to children or used by children in care.
When a session is more than 4 hours in length, there shall be a rest period or period of quiet activities of at least 30 minutes for all children under 5 years of age.
Food shall be provided in accordance with Table DCF 252.44 which is based on the amount of time children are present. Food may be served at flexible intervals, but no child may go without nourishment for longer than 3 hours.
- See PDF for table
Camp-provided transportation time shall be included in determining the total number of hours a child is present for the purpose of par. (a)
Food allergies of specific children shall be reported to cooks, counselors and substitutes having direct contact with children.
Be posted in the kitchen and in a conspicuous place accessible to parents.
Be planned at least one week in advance, dated and kept on file for 3 months.
At a minimum, each meal and snack provided to children shall meet the U.S. department of agriculture child and adult care food program minimum meal requirements for amounts and types of food. Additional portions of vegetables, fruits, bread, and milk shall be available.
When food for a child is provided by the child's parent, the camp shall provide the parent with information about requirements for food groups and quantities specified by the U.S. department of agriculture child and adult care food program minimum meal requirements.
A special diet, based on a medical condition, excluding food allergies, but including nutrient concentrates and supplements, may be served only upon written instruction of a child's physician and upon request of the parent. A special diet based on a food allergy may be served upon the written request of the parent.