Establish Your Budget
If you have not compared the rates for childcare centers in your area yet, you may be surprised by the huge difference in rates from school to school. Some parents may assume that the best schools cost the most, but this is not always the case. Because you likely have a fixed budget that you need to stay within, it is important to determine what your budget is before you spend time touring different venues. You may find some childcare center rates posted online, but most centers may require you to call and make a direct inquiry.
Make a Few Phone Calls
When you contact childcare centers that are conveniently located close to your home, to your workplace or somewhere in between, you should ask a few questions in addition to those related to fees. For example, inquire about how many children will be in each room and what the student-to-teacher ratio is in each room. In addition, ask about the curriculum. Some schools have video cameras so that parents can log in and see their children online at any time. Other schools do not even permit parents to drop in during the middle of the day. Learn as much as you can about each school’s policies.
Tour the Facilities
Through your phone calls, you can likely eliminate several schools from consideration. The next step is to tour several schools that you are most eager to see. As you tour the facilities, pay attention to how clean and happy the kids are. As a parent, you know that there will always be times when children are cranky or upset, so it is reasonable to see some tears or frowns when you walk through the classrooms. However, most of the children should be happy, and the teachers should be caring and observant. Look at how clean the facility is, and focus on the activities that the kids are doing in each room.
You may have numerous things to consider as you search for a childcare center that you want to entrust with the care of your children on a daily basis. By walking through these steps, you may be able to confidently choose a center that is affordable for your budget and that properly meets all of your needs.