(1) There must be adequate opportunities for sleep periods during the day suited to the infant's and toddler's individual needs.

(2) Unless the parent has provided medical documentation from a health care provider ordering otherwise, infants must be placed on their back and on a firm surface with no incline to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

(3) Each infant must be provided with a crib or play pen for sleeping. At the discretion of the parent and provider, a cot or mat may be used once a child turns one year of age as long as a safe sleep environment is provided. Children one year of age through 18 months who are placed on a mat must have a signed permission statement in the file indicating that the parent has given permission for their child to be placed on a mat. When cots and mats are used, an early childhood teacher must remain with the child while they are sleeping.

(a) Infants and toddlers must not be allowed to sleep in a car seat, infant swing, or other infant apparatus.

(b) Cot or mat surfaces may be of plastic or canvas or other material which can be cleaned with detergent solution and allowed to air dry.

(4) Cribs must be made of durable, cleanable, nontoxic material, and have secure latching devices. Cribs must have no more than 2 and 3/8 inches of space between the vertical slats. No later than December 28, 2012, all cribs must meet the requirements for full-size baby cribs and non-full-size baby cribs as specified by the Consumer Product Safety Commission at 16 CFR Part 1219 (2011) and 16 CFR Part 1220 (2011), incorporated by these references. A copy of the requirements for full-size baby cribs and non-full-size baby cribs is available at https://www.cpsc.gov.

(5) Mattresses must fit snugly to prevent the infant from being caught between the mattress and crib siderail. Crib mattresses must be waterproof and easily sanitized. Cribs, cots, or mats must be thoroughly cleansed before assignment to another infant or toddler.

(6) Cribs, cots, or mats must be spaced to allow for easy access to each infant and toddler, adequate ventilation, and easy exit. Aisles between cribs or cots must be kept free of obstructions while cribs or cots are occupied. The use of stackable cribs for infants is permitted until the infants reach one year of age or weigh 26 pounds, whichever comes first.

(7) All pillows, quilts, comforters, heavy blankets, sheepskins, bumper pads, stuffed toys, and other soft products must be removed from the crib and play pen when an infant is laid down for sleep.

(a) Blankets of any weight must be removed when infants 12 months of age or under are laid down for sleep.

(b) Sleep sacks and similar safe sleep clothing may be used if the item does not restrict the infant's arms.

(c) Infants under 3 months of age may only be swaddled if medical documentation from a health care provider is on file at the facility.

(d) Infants over 3 months of age must not be swaddled.

(8) Toddlers must be provided a clean washable blanket or other suitable covering for their use while sleeping. Each child's bedding shall be stored separate from bedding used by other children.

(9) All cries of infants and toddlers shall be investigated.

(10) The facility must develop a written policy that describes the practices to be used to promote a safe sleep environment when children under age two are napping or sleeping.

(11) All early childhood teachers must sign an acknowledgement indicating that they have read and understood the facility's policy outlined in (10).


History: 52-2-704, MCA; IMP, 52-2-731, MCA; NEW, 1982 MAR p. 722, Eff. 4/16/82; TRANS, from Dept. of SRS, 1987 MAR p. 1492, Eff. 7/1/87; TRANS, from DFS, 1998 MAR p. 2881; AMD, 2006 MAR p. 1424, Eff. 6/2/06; AMD, 2012 MAR p. 1368, Eff. 7/13/12; AMD, 2018 MAR p. 308, Eff. 2/10/18; AMD, 2021 MAR p. 1787, Eff. 12/11/21.