Back-up Care Program

UC Berkeley partners with Bright Horizons to offer senate faculty back-up care when they need to work and their regular child or adult/elder care is unavailable. For example:

  • When your regular caregiver/stay-at-home spouse is unavailable.

  • When you are between child or adult/elder care arrangements.

  • When your child's regular child care center/school is closed, or school is conducted remotely.

  • When you need temporary care for your loved ones so that you can do your work.

(Please note that due to the coronavirus, care may not be available for children or adults with mild illness).

Programs Available

Access is available for the following back-up care programs:

  • In-home well child care
  • In-home adult/elder care, including for a spouse/partner, parent, or in-law
  • Center-based child care, including both Bright Horizons Child Care centers and KinderCare Child Care centers, on a space available basis


All senate faculty are eligible to use this program (Cooperative Extension Specialists are included).

Program Parameters

All eligible employees can use up to 80 hours of back up care per fiscal year. There is a 4 hour minimum for all care requests. For more program details, please see the links below or go to the Bright Horizons Family Solutions website for UC Berkeley, register and view the specifics of the UC Berkeley program. Hours vary depending on the type of care needed, and the service is designed to provide care when employees need to work. In-home care is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week during your work hours. Center-based care hours vary based on the center's operating hours.


In-home care for children and adults: $4/hr (covers up to 3 dependents) 
Center based child care: $2/hr per child 
Co-payments are collected via credit card or EFT when a reservation is confirmed.

Because of the subsidy provided by UC Berkeley, the Back-Up Care program provides eligible employees with care at a cost that is less than the market rate for these services. The difference between the market rate and the employee cost is treated by the IRS as additional income to the employee (click here to learn more).

Advance Registration Required to Schedule Care

Registration, via phone or online, is free and is required prior to scheduling care. Eligible employees can register and reserve care either online through the password protected website. Your UC Path employee ID number will be required (with no leading 0 in the number). Registration in advance of needing care will ensure that you have access to the program when needed and will prevent delays in the scheduling process. You may schedule care 30 days in advance up to the day care is needed, however it is recommended that you allow at least 3-4 hours notice for same day care requests when possible.

New Users

From the Bright Horizons website, click "Use it" on the Reserve Back-Up Care tile. On the login page, click "Don't have a Bright Horizons login?" 'sign up' and enter the following employer information to begin the registration process:

Employer Username: UCB

Employer Password: backupcare6 

*Important note: when entering your employee ID in the registration process, be sure to use your new 8 digit employee ID (no leading zero) found in UC Path.

You can also register by phone: 877-BH-Cares (877-242-2737). Care Consultants are available to assist you 24/7.

Returning Users

Reserve online at the Bright Horizons website by signing in with the personal username and password you created previously.

Quality of Care

Child care centers in the network must be accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) or meet or exceed state child care licensing requirements. All in-home care agencies in the network are credentialed and employ trained caregivers. All center and in-home care providers participate in an extensive screening + training process. Due to the coronavirus, caregivers and child care centers are following all Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) health and safety protocols. Additional information can be found on the Bright Horizons website.