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The Hood Magazine

What Questions Do You Need to ask Yourself (As a Parent) When Choosing the Right Childcare?

Jun 26, 2021 10:58AM ● By Melissa Anderson, Truks-N-Trykes PlayCare, Owner

  By: Melissa Anderson, Truks-N-Trykes PlayCare, Owner 

 When researching what questions to ask when looking for a childcare center, parents tend to forget about their own needs. Here are some questions that address your needs as a parent/guardian. 

What do I need to keep in mind while setting up a tour: 

  • When is your ideal start date? 

  • Schedule a tour for when you can see teachers in action! Lunch breaks and near the end of the day can be challenging for the center. 

  • Directors and teachers are busy! Setting up a tour time allows them to schedule time just for you.  

What are my expectations for after-hours communication? 

Most centers use an app, so ask what their policy is on after-hours messaging. What is the typical response time? One hour or one business day. What will meet your needs?  

What types of lesson plans/food menus am I hoping to see? 

Lesson plans can be hard to interpret. Ask the teacher what their ultimate goals are for their lessons, and how they measure success for students. 

Is a menu that has fresh fruit and minimal sugar a priority, or are PopTarts and fruit snacks good? A good mix?  

 Things to look for while touring: 

  • Do kids take their shoes off in the classroom?  This is a good indicator that they feel at home.  

  • Did a kid tell you something about their day? This shows that the teachers are engaged and the day’s agenda is exciting. 

  • Did teachers and kids say hi? Social skills are a huge part of childcare. Saying hi is a great start!    

Can I bring my child to see if they like it?

If you choose to take a tour without your child(ren) and feel comfortable with the center, ask to schedule a time when you could bring your child(ren). Respecting your child’s feelings and intuition helps them feel involved. 

 Finding the right childcare center is about both the child’s needs and the parents’ needs being met.