Finding the right care for your child is one of the most important decisions your family can make. Here are some tips on how to approach your child care search. A printable version of this checklist is viewable here.
1. Learn About the Services and Policies
☐ Determine the services provided.
☐ Ask to see the license.
☐ Review the parent handbook and contract.
2. Observe the Program and Ask Questions
☐ Check for a safe and nuturing environment.
☐ Count the number of children/adults.
☐ Meet the caregiver(s) who will be with your child.
☐ Imagine your child in the environment.
☐ Observe the children.
3. Make Your Decision
☐ Ask for references.
☐ Check the licensing complaint history.
☐ Call Community Care Licensing at (408) 324-2148 for information about licensed family child care homes and licensed child care centers.
☐ Consider your instincts.
4. Evaluate and Re-Evaluate
☐ After enrolling your child, continue to evaluate your decision.
☐ Call the Child Development Resource Center for further assistance.
☐ Evaluate after your child has been in a program 4–8 weeks.
At any step along the way, the Child Development Resource Center can answer your questions on the phone, by email or in person.