What is INCCRRA?

The Illinois Network of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (INCCRRA) is a statewide organization which – in partnership with its 16 local Child Care Resources and Referral (CCR&R) agencies – is a recognized leader, catalyst and resource for making high quality, affordable early care and education and school-age care options available for children and families in Illinois.

What statewide systems and services does INCCRRA provide?

Gateways to Opportunity

Gateways to Opportunity is a statewide professional development support system designed to provide guidance, encouragement, and recognition to individuals and programs serving children, youth, and families. Resources and services provided by Gateways to Opportunity include Credentials, Professional Development Advisors, Great START, Gateways to Opportunity Registry, the Illinois Trainers Network, and Gateways to Opportunity Scholarship Program.

Gateways Registry

Gateways Registry membership offers a way to track training and education online, and meets Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (IDCFS) licensing requirements.


Great START (Strategy to Attract and Retain Teachers) is a wage supplement program that rewards eligible early care and education and school-age care practitioners for receiving higher education and for remaining at their current place of employment.

Gateways Scholarship Program

The Gateways Scholarship Program is an individual-based scholarship
opportunity for practitioners working in Early Care and Education (ECE) or
school-age care.

The Gateways Scholarship Program will pay a percentage of the cost of tuition
and fees based on an eligible participant’s child care position income.

Quality Counts – Quality Rating System

The Quality Counts – Quality Rating System (QRS) assists child care programs in providing quality care for children and their families. Once a child care program has met criteria required, they will be recognized for their achievement.

Illinois Trainers Network

Illinois Trainers Network (ITN) provides opportunities for early care and school-age practitioners and educators to pursue professional development through high quality and accessible trainings. All legally operating early child care and education and school-age programs in Illinois have access to ITN services. ITN trainings are scheduled through your local Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R) agency.

Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R)

INCCRRA provides professional development, technical assistance and training opportunities to the 900 CCR&R staff across the state.

Child Care Data & Research

INCCRRA collects, maintains and reports statistical information related to child care supply, demand and quality across the state. Information is provided to state government, community planners, policy makers and human service organizations to help identify and address the child care needs of Illinois children and families.