Some considerations before choosing a child care center or family home for your child.
Ask yourself if your child would be safe and content there.
Look for clean and safe areas, free of clutter or potential safety hazards.
Is the outdoor area safe and fenced?
Is there a fire escape plan posted?
Do they have a natural disaster plan?
Request to see the providers license and investigative reports for the last 3 years.
Does the provider take pride in his/her business?
Does the provider understand the stages and development of young children?
Is the center/home accredited or participating in Early Achievers?
Do teachers/caregivers receive ongoing education and training?
Don’t forget to interview the teachers/caregivers who will be caring for your child most of the time, in addition to the Director and administrative staff.
Does the provider communicate regularly with the parents about their child’s day?
Does the provider welcome input and respect your family’s values and culture?
Are you comfortable with their discipline policy?
Do the teachers/caregivers encourage language, social and problem solving skills when talking with children in a group setting?
Do the children appear to be happy and engaged in age appropriate activities?
Is there a variety of choices and activities for the children?
Would your child adjust to the size and make up of the group?
Do you see pictures, books, et cetera, that reflect your family’s culture?
Research has shown that the quality of the adult caregiver/teacher’s interaction with the children can make all the difference in the quality of a child’s experiences in childcare.
Does the teacher/caregiver directly talk with the children in a caring, attentive way that encourages learning?
Does the program prepare your child for new transitions like kindergarten or a new classroom?
Be sure to review the parent handbook; a requirement for state licensing and should include: Admission/enrollment procedures, hours, rates, meals and snaks, disciplinary philosophy, medical and emergency procedures, supplies, absences, illness and vacation policy.