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5 things you should check before putting your kids in daycare

Updated on April 19, 2012

I have recently started a job at a child care center near my home and I must say, it's far from perfect.

I used to do Family Child Care out of my home. I always had to have things a certain way because inspections were done all the time and at random times and we never knew they were coming. I never failed an inspection, I was always able to keep kids healthy (except the minor colds).

Now that I work in a "Center" everything is different. Here are 5 things you should look for to make sure a child care center is going to be good for your kids.

1. Make sure the cubbies where they put their stuff (or baskets in my case which I don't like and am trying to get changed) are CLEAN! Kids touch their stuff multiple times a day and if the cubbies aren't cleaned regulary germs will stay and spread everywhere.

2. Make sure the floors look clean and there aren't toys spread all over the floor. Nothing is worse then walking into a room and getting the feeling that it hasn't been cleaned in several days. If there are toys all over the floor it could mean that the teacher in that room doesn't clean it up or have the kids clean up after themselves.

3. Make sure there is the approriate hangings on the walls, windows, from the ceiling, etc. I just started work last week and there are still Veteran Day cards hanging up and nothing to do with Christmas. It made me wonder if the center even cared about holidays.

4. Make sure the sign in sheets are correct and easy to use. Nothing is worse then not having the appropriate stuff to drop your kids off in the morning and picking them up at night. No one wants to stand around for 5-10 minutes waiting for a pen or trying to find their page to sign in.

5. Glance at the toys and stuff your kids will be using during the day. You don't have to inspect them but glance to make sure they are all in the correct spots and put up nicely. Not all over and mixed up. The toys should also be for the correct age of the children in care. There shouldn't be baby toys in the school aged room and vice versa.

There is so much more that I look at when I am looking at child care but these are some of the most important in my opinion. I also look at the restrooms, the craft items, the food schedule, the emergency care plans, etc. What are some of the most important things you look for in a child care center?

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