If you're trying to find arrangements for child care that fits around your work schedule, you may need to compare a few child day care centers since hours and policies vary among them. If you live in a big city, you'll probably have a lot of options for day care, but you should be able to find something that fits your needs no matter where you live. Here are three important things to look for when you evaluate day care centers for your child.
1. Hours Of Operation
If you work typical business hours, you shouldn't have any trouble finding day care, especially if you don't need care on weekends. If you often work overtime, you'll want to understand the policies of late pickups and how late you can be. If you work second or third shifts, finding day care can be more challenging. Some centers are open 24 hours a day and seven days a week.
It's important to find a center that can easily accommodate your work hours so you can avoid stress if you have to work late or on the weekends. Also, you should ask about extra hours since you may also want your child to go to the center on date night or if you want to work a day off for overtime.
2. Sick Care
Your child may not be able to attend regular day care if they have a fever and are in the contagious phase of an illness. Some hospitals in your area may offer day care for sick kids who can't attend their regular center, but there may be limitations on the medical conditions they accept. It's a good idea to find sick child day care centers in your area so you know your options if your child runs a fever and you need to find day care.
Centers that accept sick kids should have at least one nurse on staff, so you know your child will be taken care of. You'll want to understand your regular day care center's rules on when your child can return after having a fever and when they have a cough.
You want your child to enjoy staying at day care so you don't have to go through separation anxiety each day. Ask about the activities provided for your child and how many staff members there are for the children of your child's age. Some centers provide educational activities while others provide a lot of play time.
If you only need after-school supervision, your child may do homework while at the center. Knowing how your child's time will be structured can give you peace of mind your child will be happy and occupied while you're at work.
Contact a local child day care center to learn more.