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  1. #1
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    Default Tips for finding good daycare

    I'm likely to be heading back to work 3 or 3.5 days per week when baby is 12-13 months. I've got my name down at the day care centre where I work, but would like to look at other centres, including family day care options.

    As new parents, we quite anxious at the thought of this! I think once I find a place (or places) that I'm comfortable with, I can get my name down on a waiting list (or 2... or 3....) and hopefully we can relax knowing he's going to be OK when I go back to work. I've heard stories about wonderful day care, and terrible day care, so I'm hoping to go into this as prepared as I can be.

    Any tips on what to look for in centres and family day care facilities for babies 1-2 years old? Any tips on what questions to ask?

    Some things I can think of after reading threads here:
    - number of children in the room/house and ages
    - staff:child ratios
    - continuity/consistency of carers - how many different people will be looking after our little one on a regular basis
    - continuity/consistency of other children in the room/house
    - training/experience of carer(s) who will be looking after our little one
    - what activities will our little one be doing when awake
    - for FDC - what other people are coming into house
    - quality control and standards - who checks/accredits them
    - for FDC - will my little one have to go on trips in car or errands with the carer
    - policy on sick children attending
    - where will our little one sleep, how are the babies helped to sleep
    - where will our little one be playing when awake? Safety? Comfort in hot/cold weather? Fun activities and other little ones to play with?
    - meals - how, what, when

    So - what do you look for? What questions would you ask and what answers tell you that you are onto a winner? What should I be looking out for when I visit? What would set off warning bells for you?

  2. #2
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    One that has vacancies was my only criteria.


    Mummy of Max 2 from donor eggs from my lovely sister.

  3. #3
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    It's 100% feel or a good vibe.


    Mummy of Max 2 from donor eggs from my lovely sister.

  4. The Following User Says Thank You to lilypily For This Useful Post:

    clbj  (16-11-2013)

  5. #4
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    Drop in unannounced and see if they invite you to look around. I was always a bit put off by the ones that would offer me a spot then and there but weren't willing to show me through. Also the ones that required me to book in a time to look around.

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by lilypily View Post
    It's 100% feel or a good vibe.
    So no serial killer vibes from the carers and babies that seem relaxed and happy when you visit?

    Oh, and I totally understand the "has vacancies" comment! Some of the waiting lists are mad! I have name down at one place that has an estimated 2 year wait for baby room (0-2 years)...

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarvestMoon View Post
    Drop in unannounced and see if they invite you to look around. I was always a bit put off by the ones that would offer me a spot then and there but weren't willing to show me through. Also the ones that required me to book in a time to look around.
    Good one! I hadn't thought of that, so thanks for replying. I can understand a centre wanting appointments so they can make arrangements to have someone free to show someone around or make it at a time to visits and not to disturb babies as they are being put down for naps/busy drop off or pick up times, but if they won't let you pop your head in and have a quick look any time if you are there already, then that would set off warning bells...


 

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