It’s hard to take care of a child during the day when you have to go to work every day. Luckily, many options are available that will give you child care and let you go about your day at work to make money. That’s led to over 600,000 child care facilities opening in the United States.
The question is, can you find good child care providers in a crowded market?
Finding quality child care is essential if you want to go about your workday without worrying about your children. Keep reading to learn how to find a child care program that will do a fantastic job at watching over your kids.
Start Looking for Reviews
You have a lot of options when it comes to daycare programs. The problem is that you may not have enough time to filter through all the options available.
You can start the filtering process by starting on Google. A quick search for daycare facilities will give you a list of the daycare programs in your local area. You also get the added benefit of seeing customer reviews next to the daycare listings.
You can use these reviews to filter the poorly rated facilities from your list. Start with the top-rated options, and you’ll immediately increase your chances of finding a great facility.
Do a Facility Walkthrough
The next step to picking your daycare facility is to narrow down your choices from user reviews to a few top contenders. Once you pick several options, you’ll need to do a daycare tour of the facilities during the day. Here are a few things you need to watch for during your walkthrough.
One of the keys to a great daycare program is a staff that cares for the children and interacts with them throughout the day. When you go through your walkthroughs, look for staff engaged with the children and keeping them happy.
Plenty of Stimulation
The last thing you want is to send your children to a facility where they’ll sit in boredom all day. Your daycare facility needs to have plenty of stimulation for your children. This stimulation should come in the form of both staff engagement and well-kept toys and games.
Age Group Separation
While it doesn’t hurt to expose your children to kids in other age groups, that doesn’t mean a daycare with mixed ages is always a good idea. Older children may not have learned yet how to interact with younger children. If they get too wild, you could end up with injuries.
The next thing to look for in a daycare facility is cleanliness. Make sure all the toys are clean, and there are plenty of sanitation methods available for the kids and staff.
Children are unpredictable at times. They’re curious, so they’ll get into things that they shouldn’t get into. That means your daycare facility needs to take proper precautions to ensure their children don’t get into things dangerous for them.
This helpful blog has more you can look for when checking for a good facility.
Check on Communication Guidelines
You’re relying on your daycare provider to help guide your children in a critical time in their lives. They’re going to experience things in their daycare program that you may not get to experience with them.
That means communication is essential for daycare providers. Ask a facility how they’ll keep you in the loop about your child’s accomplishments and troubles during the day.
The opposite is true, as well. If your children are going through a rough time at home, it’s essential to let your daycare facility know what’s going on. Doing this will help your provider better prepare for taking care of your kids during the day.
Look for Long-Lasting Team Members
The way a daycare facility treats its staff plays an essential role in how a daycare facility is run. If people are poorly treated and underpaid, the chances are good that they won’t do a great job at taking care of your children. This fact is true even if they love kids.
You want to look for daycare facilities that don’t have high staff turnover. High turnover is a sign that people don’t enjoy working at a daycare facility and quickly move on to better jobs.
High turnover is also a sign that a facility isn’t hiring the right people for the job. If that’s the case, how can you expect the people currently on a child care facility’s payroll to know how to take care of your children?
Check for Policy Positions
As a parent, you likely have your own views as to how to raise a child. The question is, will the child care facility you sign up with share your vision of parenting a child?
You’ll need to check the policies of a facility before committing to sending your child there. Here are a few policies you can check into to see if they fit with your parenting style:
- Food quality
- TV time
- Sick policy
There are other policies out there, so think about the topic to see what matters most to you.
Ask About Number of Children
The number of children plays a vital role in the quality of care children receive at daycare. If there are too many kids at a facility, it reduces the amount of time staff can give each individual child.
If you want your kids to get the attention they deserve, try not to send them to an overcrowded facility. However, keep in mind that a large number in and of itself isn’t a bad thing. There just needs to be enough caretakers there to handle the additional children.
Start Your Search for Quality Child Care Today
There are many daycare facilities out there, and not all of them will be able to give you the service your child needs. Make sure you do your research when looking for a daycare facility. If you do your due diligence, you’ll find a quality child care program that will keep your kids happy and safe.
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