Many parents find themselves in need of child care, especially in a world that often requires both parents to work. Whether you are seeking full-time childcare during the week or you need part-time services sporadically, keep some pointers in mind to select the most appropriate services for your child.
Proximity to Home and Work
If you currently commute, you probably know how frustrating traffic is; now, imagine adding even more time onto your journey because you have to go out of your way to a daycare. Whether you opt for a facility that is near your house or your job, try to find one that does not elicit a lengthy ride at drop-off or pick-up. The closer to your route the facility is, the more quality time you can spend at home with your kids.
A major child care advantage is that your kids gain exposure to skills they’ll need and situations they’ll encounter later in life. The specific scenarios, however, depend upon the method of the facility. For example, some programs are learning-based, and they may appear similar to a traditional nursery or pre-kindergarten program than a daycare. Others encourage free-play, and still others have certain ideologies, such as religion, that govern them and their activities.
Chances are that you have already sat down to figure out if it is cost-effective for both you and your partner to work. The cost should not be the only determining factor since a cheap program may offer unsafe services for your children. However, cost does play a role since you cannot enroll your kids in a program that you cannot afford. While you are exploring the costs of different facilities, make sure to take the time to research the tax credit. You may receive such a credit if you enroll your children in a program.
Certification and Licensing
You may have heard about a great facility in your neighborhood where some of your friends’ kids go for child care. However, upon entering the facility, you discover that it does not have the proper certificates and licensing. As comfortable as you may feel in the environment, keep in mind that you must think with logic and reason too. Ask yourself why the owners of this facility have never attempted to receive certifications and licensing. Your children’s odds for injury or worse could be higher here, and you could have less or no protection if something negative does occur.
As you are exploring your options for such services, you may begin to feel overwhelmed by the myriad possibilities. Use these criteria to start to narrow down your choices to the right facility for you, your family and your current needs.