Last week in an attempt to find childcare one day a week for my 2 1/2 year old so I could focus on graduate work, I interviewed a provider who works from her home. To say the least, I wasn't impressed with her services. I had taken the paperwork home still undecided if he would return there on Monday. (I know, I know, but I felt so bad wasting her time if I wasn't going to return. I also have a hard time saying no face-to-face.) Out of that visit and disappointment, I created a list of must-ask questions. I also strongly encourage you to visit the home in full swing before you commit to leaving your little one there.
1.) Are you licensed? Have you had any complaints? (check their info on your state's database)
2.) Cost? Late pick up fees?
3.) What is your routine?
4.) Do you provide educational activities?
5.) Do you potty train?
6.) What methods of discipline do you use?
7.) Do you provide food and snacks?
8.) Will you administer medicine?
9.) Is your CPR & first aid certificate current?
10.) Do you have animals? Any bite incidents?
11.) Do you have a pool? Is it gated and locked?
12.) Do you or anyone else in the home smoke?
13.) How much computer time and TV do you allow?
14.) Can I call or drop in unannounced to visit? (If they say no, be very suspicious.)
15.) Can you provide alternate snacks options for my special needs or special diet child?
16.) How many children do you have? Can you comfortable taking on one more without feeling overwhelmed?
17.) What is your fire evacuation plan?
18.) Are your CO2 detectors and smoke detectors properly installed and working?
19.) Do you have parent references I could call?(If they say no, be very suspicious.)
20.) What made you start a childcare service?