A Daycare Story

People have very specific opinions about daycare and rightfully so. It’s an odd feeling to hand off your precious little one to be cared for by someone you may be unfamiliar with yourself. For many working parents, daycare is the only viable option. That was the case for me and my hubby when we had our little guy.

When it came time to return to work, we chose a larger facility for infant care after very extensive research on options in our community. At the time, we felt the larger facility would be safer because of the oversight within this type of business. Our little guy’s infant care was stellar but we started to notice a lot of employee turnover. Lucky for us, our son’s caregivers remained in-tact for the first year and a half he was there. Then things changed.

I started to have a bad feeling about the care he was getting. High employee turnover and inexperienced director(s) made me and my hubby feel uneasy. I started looking into other pre-schools in the area since our little guy reached two years old and more options became available.

My hubby and I were about to move him to a new school when my little guy along with one of his buddies escaped from the facility. Yep, they walked right out of the front gate!

I’m still not clear as to what happened but the two were headed down the road before one of the teachers chased them down. The boys were safe and sound following the incident but the damage was done. That was a deal breaker for us.

Our first priority was to get our son out of there and we did immediately. Our second priority was to contact local licensing to report the incident. Licensing investigated and the school was found to be at fault. I will spare you the details of the day I confronted the director. Let’s just say their director will never forget yours truly!

So let’s fast forward to today, I can confidently say my little guy is in a nurturing and safe environment. He has been at his new school for close to two years and he happily runs into school rearing to go each day (which speaks volumes). 

Referrals

Use your friends, colleagues and family to network. Our little boo is in a wonderful in-home (infant) care environment. My friend referred me and had glowing reviews. We are really happy with it, too!

Licensing

Call your city or county licensing office. A reputable in-home or facility care program will be licensed. Even if the daycare was referred to you, give licensing a call. It just takes a bit of time and you will gain valuable insight about the facility you are considering.

My son’s incident became public record. Any person who calls licensing to research his old daycare will be informed of the investigation, incident report and action taken against the facility. Check the facilities out!

Communicate

Talk with the care provider. Call throughout the day and make random visits. Keep in constant communication with the person caring for the kiddies. Open communication will help everyone involved.

Listen To Your Gut

We all have that inner voice or gut feeling when something is not on the up and up. Listen, listen, and listen!

I knew something was not right for a while at my son’s daycare. My hubby and I waited because we were concerned about the transition to a new school… don’t be worried about transitions! Toddlers are resilient and our little guy instantly loved the new surroundings.

While no situation is perfect, we want the best we can possibly get for our little ones. A loving, nurturing and learning (and safe!) environment can only help our babies develop into well-adjusted kiddies. Finding good care will also help working moms and dads alike gain some piece of mind each day as they head off to work.

The great ones are out there! We just have to find them.

7 thoughts on “A Daycare Story

  1. Alex says:

    Wow!! what a scary experience. But thank God everything turned out okay and you were able to get your son out of there. My son has been in daycare/preschool since he was 18 months and I did a lot of research before I found the pre school that his in today. I’m very lucky that he is in a great school. All the teachers have been there for years and most importantly, when I walked in to the facility for the first time, I knew I found the right one. Following that “gut feeling” is so important.

    Thank you for sharing.

    Alex

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  2. christina says:

    WOW! That had to be so scary for you guys! Being a childcare director I have to say that I work very hard to ensure the safety of all of our students. I work really hard to make sure that I have the right employees here too! Working in child care takes a very dedicated person, and I feel confident that I have a wonderful staff. I’m so confident, that I encourage prospective parents to check out other centers before they enroll with us. That “GUT” feeling you’re talking about is so important as a mom. You have to KNOW that your child is safe, loved and well cared for when you leave them!

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  3. Amanda says:

    Wow, how scary! I worked in day cares for several years and saw some pretty awful places. I also saw some fantastic centers where the workers truly loved their jobs and the families they helped. Finding the right caregiver makes all the difference in the world and brings parents a lot of peace.

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  4. Stephanie says:

    Yes, indeed. It was very scary! Looking back, I remember a lot of turnover. That is always an indication of poor management in any type of business. I count our blessings that he was safe and they did have some good people working there. The management and leadership was lacking though.

    When I think about what could have happened…. I just have to stop myself and be thankful for what didn’t. I know there are good facilities and people out there! Thanks Christina for your comments about your school!

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  5. Towanda says:

    You could not be more correct with your tips. When we moved to a new city I was forced to find childcare for two young children. I visited many of the larger facilities, but it just didn’t feel right. My mom and sister started preparing to take weeks of vacation from their jobs to help out until I couldfind a place that felt good.

    Then a friend of a friend recommended a home daycare provider.

    At first I thought, “NO WAY!”, but I went to visit and as soon as I walked through the door I had a feeling of peace. It was absolutely the best choice for my girls, especially at such a young age. Now the daycare provider is part of our family.

    Like

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