Finding the right childcare for your family can be overwhelming. To help you find the best childcare option, begin by assessing your situation. Consider the following information:
- How many children do you have and how old are they?
- What is important to you in a childcare setting (educational activities, structure, age grouping, etc.)?
- When do you need care and how consistent is your schedule?
- Do you need transportation?
- Do you need back-up care options if an emergency arises?
- What is your budget for childcare?
Potential Provider Considerations
Once you determine your childcare needs, it is time to tour and interview potential providers. During the interview, ask questions about policies and procedures, hours, class size, rates and rules related to tardiness or absences. Some sample questions include:
- Is there a late pick-up fee?
- What training do providers receive?
- Who cares for the children when the primary provider is sick?
- What licenses or accreditations do your providers hold?
- What is the daily schedule?
- What types of meals/snacks are provided?
- Where do the children nap?
- What is your approach to discipline?
- How do you deal with incidents like falls, bumps, bruises, etc.?
- How often are toys cleaned?
In-Home Daycare Considerations
If you are considering in-home daycare options, consider asking questions specific to the setting, such as:
- Are there any pets?
- Is the home non-smoking?
- Is anyone else in the home during the day?
Your Employee Assistance Program is Here to Help
Your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) can help you narrow down your choices from a wide selection of childcare options. Call your EAP and provide them with your location, the ages, and the type of childcare you are seeking and they will provide you with options that fit your needs. For more information, contact your Component EAP, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.