If you have a child who is nearly old enough to begin attending a daycare school program, then it's time to start thinking about where you will enroll them. For those who live in an area with several child care centers, it may seem difficult at first to compare all possible options. If you are curious about what you should look for in a daycare school beyond just a first impression or gut feeling, take a look below at just three of the things that make any child care center a great place for your little one to spend time.
The overall policies of the daycare center you're considering should be first on the list of things you take into account. Different daycare centers may have policies that vary dramatically when it comes to things such as television, snack time, naps, and time-outs. Perhaps more so than anything else, it is important to find a daycare center that aligns closely with the policies you enforce as a parent at home. Consistency is always key when it comes to young children who may be confused by two opposing sets of rules and expectations.
Unlike older children, toddlers and young children can't tell you about what happened during their school day and how they feel about it. Because of this, you'll want to look for a daycare center that emphasizes the importance of regular communication between teachers and parents. While in-person communication on an everyday basis isn't always possible, centers for child care should always provide multiple means of learning about what your child did and how they behaved on any given day -- whether via text, email, phone call, or daily journal.
Just as important as consistency and communication is the stability of the child care center as a whole. If possible, try to get a sense of how the rate of turnover for caregivers and teachers. One way to do this is to ask whether staff are made to sign contracts, and if so, what the average length of contracts is. Ideally, staff should be committed to staying at a daycare school program for one full academic year. No matter how qualified they might be, staff who come and go indirectly create an environment that can be unpredictable. This can, in turn, cause everything from scheduling conflicts to a lack of connection between caregivers and children.
For more information, reach out to a local child care center, such as ABQ Childcare.