Identifying a Good Daycare Center

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When the time comes for mom and dad to both return to work after baby is born, the task of choosing a daycare facility for your child can often seem like a daunting one.

How do you identify good qualities? What are some red flags to watch for? How do I know if a daycare is right for us? These questions and more might be running through the minds of anxious parents before touring a childcare facility. To start, be sure make a list of all the concerns and questions you might have, just to make sure no important topics are missed.

With that in mind, here are some important factors to take into consideration when choosing a daycare facility for your child, according to

  1. Get recommendations from people you trust who hold the same values. If you value structure and a planned-out daily schedule, find parents who hold these same standards in high regard and talk to them about the best options in the area.
  1. Look for definite signs of a well-thought-out, organized schedule. A posting of lesson plans, bulletin boards with recent artwork completed by children, parent newsletters — these are all positive signs.
  2. Know your priorities and be realistic about about smaller details. If a certain teacher doesn’t click with your child, this can be a deal-breaker. But if the snacks offered aren’t the best, and you have the option of bringing your own, this could be worked around. Keep in mind that no daycare facility is perfect, but never settle in an area that is very important to you and your family.
  3. Look for low staff-to-child ratios. The less children per adult caregiver, the more one-on-one time your child is likely to get. Overburdened caregivers can’t meet the needs of children as quickly or fully, and this could compromise both a child’s safety and his learning experience.
  4. Low turnover in caregivers. A daycare facility that tends to keep caregivers for long periods of time is definitely a good sign. This shows that they are valued, and it also allows children to develop trusting and positive relationships, which promotes a positive learning environment.
  5. Trust your gut. If you’re having difficulty deciding between two or more facilities, listen to your instincts. And, if something just feels “off” about a certain daycare, do some more digging and go with your gut instinct.

For even more tips on choosing the best daycare facility, check out this helpful list from Parents.


  1. Carmen Beatriz Moore

    May 2, 2016 at 3:23 am

    Todd Moore read this!

  2. Lisa Andrade

    May 2, 2016 at 4:51 am

    Jason Morales

    • Sam Palacio

      May 2, 2016 at 6:28 am

      I can help you guys in this area also 🙂 I have my fair share of experiences working in some

    • Jason Morales

      May 2, 2016 at 11:50 am

      Sam Palacio cool thank you cuz!!!

  3. Lillian Schaeffer

    July 29, 2016 at 4:33 pm

    This is some great information, and I appreciate your suggestion to look for a daycare with low turnover in caregivers. I just got a new job, and now my schedule overlaps with my husband’s, so we need to find a daycare to leave our daughter at for a few hours. We’ll definitely look for somewhere the caregivers stick around so my daughter can build good relationships. Thanks for the great post!

  4. Kate Hansen

    October 25, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    I’m nervous about sending my child to day care, but I know that it’s the best thing to do when I go back to work. I’d like a day care that also focuses on teaching and educational activities and not just watching my child. It’s also interesting how you mention to look for low staff-to-child ratios. I never thought about this, but having a low ratio would make my child safer since they would get more attention from a caregiver. Thanks for your tips!

  5. Olivia Nelson

    April 17, 2017 at 10:03 pm

    I agree that you need to consider staff to child ratio when looking for a daycare. It would seem that you would want to keep this ratio low so that your kids can get individual care. I’m looking for a daycare for my son so I’ll have to find somewhere that has plenty of staff for the kids.

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