If you’re looking for someone to help care for your children this summer, trust is key. From infants to older kids, finding the right provider gives you peace of mind — and your child a safe, fun and healthy place to learn and play when you’re not around. Use our checklist to find an individual or collective that’s a good fit for you and your family.
1. Consider your child-care options: Day care and learning centers, live-in nannies, in-home day care and babysitters — there are many options to consider. Cost, location, availability and convenience can help guide you to the best type of child care for you.
Explore options for child care well before you need it, so you won’t feel rushed into a decision. If you’re a parent who’s planning on heading back to work, take some time to scope out situations long before you restart your job. Once you have a list of potential child-care providers in mind, you can check their information at askbbb.org and then visit facilities in person to evaluate the location, staff and environment.
2. Define your priorities: Create a list of the policies and rules you’re looking for. How will your care provider handle discipline, electronics use, schedules, snacks and meals. Does the provider’s approach match your wishes?
Be sure to check with potential care providers about first aid and CPR certification and insurance, and discuss how they handle emergencies. Some companies offer the opportunity for parents to search databases of sitters and nannies, filter by preferences, and even do background checks, prior to making a hire.
3. Don’t forget learning centers! Many child-care providers include teaching in their services, as well. Some companies employ professionally trained teachers who incorporate educational programs and classroom learning into child-care services.
Many learning centers double as child-care centers, too. So, as you start your research with askbbb.org, consider preschools and tutoring centers.
4. Do your research: Take your time! And be sure to ask lots of questions when speaking with possible child-care providers. Go to bbb.org, for gathering all the information you need. You’ll find a list of Accredited child-care providers you know you can trust, plus customer reviews and in-depth information about the service providers you’re considering working with — including records of complaints.
5. Interview your candidates and make a selection: BBB Accredited Care.com — an online community of parents, friends and family members that provides information and referrals for care services for children, pets and elderly family members — has a comprehensive list of questions to pose when you meet with child-care candidates. They recommend asking:
- Basic background questions (referrals, experience, availability)
- If there are work parameters to be considered (schedule flexibility, things the provider will and won’t supply)
- Questions about the candidate’s personality and interests (what they like most about child care, views on discipline, how they handle difficult situations)
Once you have covered all of your questions, take a few minutes to have an open conversation and invite the child-care provider to ask you questions, too. As you come to a final decision, Care.com recommends you reach out to the candidate’s references. “Ask about creativity, dependability, communication abilities, strengths, weakness, and why she’s no longer working for them,” they advise.
Don’t leave an important decision like selecting a child-care provider to chance!
“Look for the Seal” and Start with Trust®. BBB Serving Acadiana is a private non-profit organization. BBB strives for a trustworthy marketplace by maintaining standards for truthful advertising, investigating and exposing fraud against consumers and businesses.
Please contact Better Business Bureau at bbb.org 24 hours a day for information on businesses throughout North America. Consumers can also sign up for our free BBB “Scoop” eNewsletter by visiting bbb.org and clicking on the “Programs & Services” tab.
BBB Serving Acadiana services the parishes of Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Martin, St. Landry and Vermilion.
Article originally posted by theadvertiser.