What Questions Do I Ask During A Daycare Tour? | Newtown Moms

It’s always great when the early childhood school or care center you are considering provides you with a parent handbook or answers many of your questions before you have to ask, but here is a guide to help you get the important information you need to make the best possible decision about where and how you child/ children will spend their day when not with you. Below are four main categories that should help guide your conversation.  

General Childcare

  1. What’s your general philosophy on childcare?

  2. How many children attend the daycare? What is your child to caregiver ratio?

  3. Do you serve meals and snacks? Or do parents need to provide food? (If your child has allergies, be sure to ask about how they handle that.) If babies are taking bottles, ask how they handle frozen or pumped breast milk or formula preparation.

  4. What activities do you do with the children? What is a typical day like? Do you use or follow a specific educational philosophy or use a curriculum? 

  5. How do you handle discipline or behavioral problems? For instance, how do you handle biting, hitting, or bullying situations?

  6. Family-specific questions: if you use cloth diapers, be sure to ask about that, or if you have an unusual schedule that requires some flexibility, bring that up as well.  How do you handle breast milk and or nursing? 

Daycare Policies

  1. Can parents drop by whenever they’d like or swing by to breastfeed? What are your visitation policies in general? Who else is allowed to visit during care?

  2. What happens if we’re late to pick-up or need to miss a day due to vacation or illness?

  3. What’s your sick-child policy? What are your policies regarding immunizations?

  4. What is the potty-training procedure? (Some daycares will start potty training your child once they reach a certain age.)

  5. Do you transport children in a vehicle? Where would you go? Ask to see the vehicle or bus, and inspect the seating arrangements.

  6. How, and how often, do you sanitize the toys and materials used by the children?  What is your cleaning protocols? 

  7. What are the tuition and fees? Is there a waitlist? Are there any types of discounts available (paying in advance, second sibling discount, etc.)?

Employees

  1. What degrees or certifications does your staff have? What training do they have? Do you conduct background checks on all your employees?

  2. How long has the current staff been here? Do you experience high employee turnover?

  3. Do you have a nurse on staff for medical care? Do you administer medicine and/or emergency allergy treatments? Sunscreen?  Bug spray?  Etc.

Safety and Communication

  1. How do you keep parents up to date on their kid’s daily activities or behavior? Do you offer a daily report?

  2. What security measures do you take for your facility?

  3. Are you licensed? Are you accredited? By whom?

  4. Do you have references I can contact?

Virginia Brown spent 24 years in the public school system in Connecticut focusing on early child hood education as a kindergarten teacher, special education teacher, principal, and Director of Special Education. In 2011, she founded The Global Child. The school’s newest location is in Bethel (formerly Bee U Learning) at 15 Park Lawn Drive. Learn more by visiting www.globalchildschool.com. Contact Sue Canfield by phone at (203) 798-0015 to set up your tour today!

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