Quality Childcare

By: Danielle Banks
By: Danielle Banks

Children usually enter childcare at around three-months-old and usually stay in until they are ready for school. But, deciding where to leave you kids can be a nightmare.

Diane McDonaldson has provided childcare to the public for ten years. She says, "It provides a really good start to their learning years when they can learn how to interact with children that don't always come from the same background they do."

She's been recommended to dozens of parents by the Childcare Connection which helps people in the valley find quality childcare. They said you should first decide what type of environment is right for the child. Spokesperson Susan Ribelin says, "Whether their child excels in just a group of a few kids or whether they will excel somewhere like a center."

Ribelin says safety should be your be your number one concern. Ribelin continues, "The children should be in an area that is visibly seen by the provider so that the provider knows what's going on pretty much all the time."

You should feel comfortable asking the provider questions or making requests. "It's okay for a parent to go in and make requests," says Ribelin. She says, "Chances are you're gonna have to be a little bit flexible because there are more children than just yours at a providers home or a center."

Go with your gut instinct.

McDonaldson says, "I've been there and I know what it's like when you're trying out a new childcare provider and you leave your child and you go to your work. It's so hard to get into your work. All you can think about is your child and if your child is safe. Are they happy? Will the provider be able to see their needs?"

And remember to ask the child how they feel about daycare.

Ribelin continues, "I think you have to respect the feelings of your child. It may just be another child there that doesn't mesh with your child's personality. So I think it's worthwhile for the parents to investigate what's going on.”

Weekly rates for childcare can range from $65.00 to $150.00. Each provider typically has a different price.

50 North Main Street Harrisonburg, VA 22801 540-433-9191 - Switchboard 540-433- 4028 - Fax 540-433-2700 - News Fax

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