Childcare and Interviews
For parents, looking for childcare can be a nightmare and an agonizing process. Especially when you are going from caring for your own child at home, a first time mother, leaving a trusted provider or center.
Finding a home daycare provider can be an ardous process, but perhaps I can shed some light on both sides of the coin to help parents and providers alike.
As providers we forget after a while, how it feels to be on the other end, so let me refresh us a little on thoughts from the ever anxious parent.
First off, when choosing a provider you can find them thru several avenues.
There are numerous free sites with a listing of childcare providers in your area. Also, you can call your city hall and most communities offer a listing of licensed daycare providers in your area. Newspapers and Parents as Teachers are another avenue to find names of providers in your area.
When calling a provider, first of all find out if they have a opening.
Ask their qualifications:
Are they licensed? Do they have a degree?How long have they been doing childcare?Who resides at home with them? How many kids do they themselves have and how many are enrolled?
Next, ask about their program:
What is their daily routine? Is there a set naptime? Hours of operation?What meals are served and are they on a food program who regulates their food service?DO they have a curriculum? What sort of discipline is used?(time out is the only accepted practice)
Never be afraid also, to ask for references and a background check. This person will be watching your child and they should never be offended to be asked that if they are a genuine honest professional.
When you set up an interview, observing the first time visit is not always an indicator of what environment is truly the norm. ALWAYS ask to drop in for another interview later in the week. Your prospective provider could best tell you a three hour span of when they are not napping or having meals.
Watch how the existing children interact with the provider. Are they loving or do they appear unconnected with the provider? How does your child react with the other children and provider?
Here are things that help both parents and providers when they are interviewing.
Parent turn offs----------------
These are things that a parent sees and create marks against even the best daycares.
1)Home cleaniness inside and outside.
When a parent walks up to your home, do they see hazzards like trash cans, torn welcome mats, unkept debris or icy drive and walkways?