Questions to Ask When Choosing a Daycare Center

Posted on Thursday, October 20, 2022

Deciding who will be responsible for your children while you are at work is one of the biggest decisions you will make. Sierra Vista is located near several excellent daycare centers. Which one you choose depends on your family’s needs, parenting philosophy and budget. To find the one that is right for your family, you will need to ask a lot of questions. What should you ask? We made a list:

Are you licensed?

A licensed daycare center has met certain standards set by the state. They are inspected regularly. You can ask to see recent copies of state inspections, any violations and the plan to resolve any violations. If the childcare center you are looking at doesn’t have a license, that is a red flag. The Texas Health and Human Services Department maintains a searchable database of all licensed daycare centers in the state.

What is your teacher-to-child ratio?

For optimal learning, the National Association for the Education of Young Children recommends one staff member for every four infants, one staff member for every six toddlers, one teacher for every 10 pre-school students and one teacher for every 12 school-aged child from kindergarten to 3rd grade. These ratios ensure that your children are constantly supervised and receive the individualized attention they need to thrive.

What is your discipline policy?

Think about how you handle discipline at home. Do you raise your voice? Use time outs? What are the consequences for bad behavior? Make sure you and your childcare provider are on the same page to avoid confusing your child. As a follow-up, ask how the daycare center informs you about disciplinary actions taken. Will staff members call you, send you a note or talk to you in person?

How do you handle conflicts between children?

In any daycare setting there are bound to be conflicts between children. Ask how these conflicts are handled. The answers will probably mirror the provider’s discipline policy, but you should still ask.

How do staff members comfort children?

You know how you respond when your child needs to be comforted. It is important to ask how a staff member handles the same situation. Will staff members hug and talk reassuringly to your child? Will they pat them on the back and tell them to tough it out? There is no right answer, but it should be similar to what you would do at home.

How do you communicate with parents?

This is a big one. Will staff members text, call or email you if there is a situation? Can you call the center to check up on your child? Some daycare centers have apps that update parents in real-time — often with pictures and/or video.

How qualified are your staff members?

If your center offers early childhood development programs, you should ask about teacher qualifications. A good center will only hire teachers with degrees in early childhood education. Most centers have a bio section on their websites where you can learn more about the center’s administrative and caregiver staff members. All staff members should be certified in CPR.

What about sick days?

For the health of your child, there should be a policy in place about sick children. Are sick children allowed to come to daycare? If so, are they segregated from the rest of the class? Most centers require that parents keep sick children at home. Ask if you are required to pay on days your child is sick.

How clean are the toys?

Cleanliness is very important when it comes to childcare centers. Ask how often the bathrooms are cleaned, whether toys are frequently washed and if everyone uses hand sanitizer.

What’s your policy in the event of late pick-up?

It happens. You are running late and won’t be able to pick up your child on time. What happens then? Will you be charged for a late pick up? Are you able to give last-minute permission for a friend or neighbor to pick up your child? The center should have a written policy to cover such an eventuality.

What is your childcare philosophy?

A lot of what you need to know to make a good decision is encapsulated in this question. Whatever the answer, it should mesh with your own philosophy. If it does, you may have found a winner.

Day Care Near Sierra Vista

Little Rascals Child Care Center

19935 Hwy. 6
Manvel, TX 77578

Primrose School of Pearland

2350 County Road 94
Pearland, TX 77584

Tottenberry’s Private School & Daycare

7302 Broadway
Pearland TX 77581

The Goddard School of Pearland

2151 Kingsley Dr.
Pearland, TX 77584

Kiddie Academy

1340 Broadway Street,
Pearland, TX 77581

Silverlake Kinder Care

2325 County Road 90
Pearland TX 77584

The Lux School

2555 County Road 58
Manvel, TX 77578

Ivy Kids of Manvel

4434 County Road 94,
Manvel, TX 77578