Get covered childcare during military training!
Military Childcare Assistance

How do I choose the right daycare?

My husband was just laid off and I need to start working full-time, at least for the time being. I’ve been a SAHM with our three-year-old since he was an infant. I’m a nervous wreck and having a super hard time leaving him with strangers. I worry that he won’t receive enough attention and care. How do you make the right choice and how can I vet potential daycares?

3 Likes 7 Replies


Ryan posted September 25, 2019

It’s normal to be nervous about a stranger caring for your child for the first time. Don’t freak out too much, though - think about how many parents have to use daycare from infancy, and most do so with happy kids and without any issues. When you tour a daycare, ask them about each teacher’s experience, certifications and credentials. Ask about the facility’s accreditation, background check policy and anything else you’re curious about. The more questions you ask, the more secure and confident you’ll feel. 0 Likes

Kyla posted September 25, 2019

Ask the daycare provider about their child to teacher ratio. The lower it is, the better chance your son will receive enough individual attention. Your instinct is right, though - many large daycare facilities and preschools are understaffed and individual attention isn’t always a reality. For your peace of mind, you may want to start with a nanny or a home daycare with a small class size and see how he does. 0 Likes

Michelle posted September 25, 2019

Ask to see parent references and reviews for any daycares you’re considering. Sometimes these are available online, but ask the daycare provider if they aren’t. Ask around to other parents in your network, too - they may already have a good daycare to recommend. I went through the same thing with my daughter and eventually ended up starting my own home daycare with WeeCare. It solved the problem. Not only is it a great way to earn money, but it also allows you to stay home with your child while simply caring for a few additional little ones each day. 0 Likes

Simone posted September 25, 2019

There is so much to consider but this really helped us in making a choice:

1. Weigh out your options - what kind of care are you needing? If you want more one on one attention then an in-home daycare environment is probably what you're looking for
2. Know your budget
3. Make a list of expectations and questions to ask ahead of time
4. Make sure your child care provider is properly licensed
5. Visit the facility
6. Start looking early
7. Find a back up - this is just in case the child care provider falls ill, always want to be prepared in this situation!
8. Don't settle - don't pick a provider until you are satisfied!
9. Check references - ask for real references so you can actually talk to other parents about their experiences

Maggie posted September 30, 2019

Make a list of what's important for you when choosing a daycare and make sure the daycare you choose matches your list. Many parents choose a daycare based only on pricing but you have to make sure the daycare is a good match for you and your child. When going to tour the daycare, make a list of questions for the provider to answer before you agree for care. 0 Likes

Cynthia posted October 1, 2019

Leaving your child with someone else is a huge step but there are many loving, experienced caregivers and childcare centers that can make your process an easy one. Make a list of your top 3-5 and make sure you visit the facility and meet the staff. First impressions are everything and you can tell a lot about how they will be with your child based on your first meeting with them. Bring questions to the tour and don't be afraid to ask them. Ask about a visitation when starting, some childcares will provide a day for the parents to visit with their child before their first day. Most importantly, reflect on which option made you feel most at home. If you feel at home chances are your child will too. 1 Like

Julie posted October 7, 2019

Don’t worry, it’s absolutely ok to be nervous out you little one going to daycare. First set up tours with the other children in care present. Come with a list of questions and don’t be afraid to ask away:) next watch how the children and teachers interact. Set up integration periods to allow you and your child transitioning time. If you Child wants to interact and play allow him-her that space and if they see your ok with letting them go play they will adjust much more quickly. 1 Like