3 Questions To Ask Before Choosing A New Child Care Provider

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Are you the parent of a young child? Do you need someone to watch your child while you go back to work or while you're running errands? Finding someone that you trust to watch your child can be difficult. Whether you prefer a daycare center or a babysitter, not everyone has the same idea as to how a child should be cared for properly. Unfortunately, when you're trying to find someone to watch your child, it's easy to forget that some aspect you take for granted may be viewed in a different manner by someone else. Some important questions that you need to ask before hiring anyone are:

What certifications do you or your employees possess? At a minimum, you should look for a child care provider who has CPR certification or who requires their employees to be CPR certified. While it's true that parents aren't required to get any sort of certification before becoming a parent, you undoubtedly want some assurance that the person who is looking after your child has been trained in what to do in the event of an emergency. Some centers will also require that their employees have degrees in early childhood education but will also charge higher enrollment fees as a result. It's up to you to weigh the various qualifications against the potentially increased costs.

What is your late policy? Although you will no doubt plan on picking your child up on time every day, things can happen. A minor fender-bender could cause you to be significantly later than you otherwise would be. Some child care providers will charge you a fee for every minute that you're late, while others will charge per half or quarter hour. Still, others might charge increasingly expensive rates for each time that you're late within a certain period of time. Whatever the policy, make sure that you understand it fully before dropping your child off for the first time. 

What is your policy on sick children? For many parents, the reality is that they simply cannot afford to take time off of work in order to care for their child, as much as they might want to do this. However, many child care centers will understandably not accept a child who has anything more than a runny nose or a minor cold. On the other hand, a provider who has the facilities and ability to look after a sick child may cost more than you could afford on a daily basis. You may want to consider having two providers: one for normal circumstances and one for when your child is under the weather.