Selecting daycare for your child can be one of the most important decisions you make in your little one’s early life. A lot of research points to the advantages of daycare however, not all are created equal. This means that you must take even extra thought and precaution with your selection. There are specific criteria that you must look out for when selecting your child’s daycare. Some are more practical and target the logistical and practical nature of enrolling your child in daycare; others can determine the quality of care that your child will receive.
Before diving into criteria to look out for in a daycare centre, let’s briefly take a look at how daycare centres can impact both your and your little one’s life.
- Enable your child to be more communicative with various persons
- Improve their cognitive ability
- Ease the transition to pre-school
- Give you more opportunity to improve your financial situation
Now, that we understand how beneficial childcare centres are, let’s take a look at how you can select the daycare centre that right for you and your child.
Determine the type of daycare that suits you
There are different types of daycare centres in Australia. For example, there are family daycares which are hosted at a home, offer longer hours and care for children of both school and toddler age. Long daycare centres concentrate on babies and pre-kindergarten aged children, are more professional in term of their carers’ training and usually are only open during business hours. Each has its benefits and advantages with family daycare being regulated in the number of children per carer, ensuring more attention for each child. Depending on your child’s needs, choose the one that’s right for them.
Even though you may really like a specific childcare centre, if it’s not within your work or home range, we do not recommend selecting it. It’s important for pick-ups, drop-offs and in the cases of emergencies (sickness or accidents) that you are as close to your child as possible so always look in your home or work area.
Ensure that you select a childcare provider that is within your budget range. Though subsidised, providers vary greatly with cost in NSW so, before you become committed, ensure that you can afford the childcare of your choice.
Some daycare providers vary in terms of their opening hours and flexibility. Family daycares are usually more flexible and are open at varying times throughout the day. However, long daycare centres while only open during business hours, will not close if a carer is sick, unlike a family daycare. So, ensure that you do your research and select the daycare that’s best for your schedule. For example, if you’re a nurse or you travel for work, you may require a family daycare as they are open at different shifts and with more flexible hours.
We hope that this article helps you make a decision that’s best for you and your child. Remember that childcare centres play an important role in the development of your child, so, it is important that you select one that your child loves and that treats them like family. However, it is also important to take into consideration practical aspects as this can determine your child’s experience both at home and at the daycare centre.