CHOOSING A PRESCHOOL OR AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM:

Choosing a preschool or after-school program: 

It's not for the faint of heart.  Whether you need to enroll your child in a preschool or after-school program because of a work schedule, you want your child to have additional interaction with other children, or any other reason, it’s not an easy decision.  There are many options for Fort Wayne day care.  Let’s face it – we all want to do what’s best for our children.  And sometimes, what we need to do or want to do for ourselves can feel like its rubbing up against that desire.

I learned one thing when my now-adult daughter was a toddler:  all parents have to make choices.  There are few right or wrong choices, just different.  I wasn’t “bad” because I chose to continue in my career after she was born, and my friend wasn’t “unmotivated” because she temporarily halted her professional life to stay at home.  We both made choices, and we both gained because of those choices – and we both lost something, too.

Choosing a supplemental caregiver from amongst the Fort Wayne day care choices is challenging because the consequences are so high.  We all worry about making a mistake that has negative consequences on our child.  But knowing what matters – and sticking to that – can make the difference between a successful arrangement for you and your child with a Fort Wayne day care, and one that adds to the stress of daily life.

Here are four things to consider when making your selection; this isn’t an exhaustive list, but rather a place to begin.

Location

How far are you willing to drive for Fort Wayne day care with a preschool or after-school facility?  Will your child be with children he or she knows from school, church or the neighborhood, or will he or she have to make another set of friends?  Does the program pick up at your child’s school (or the school he or she will be attending)?  Can you get to the location reasonably quick if your child gets sick or hurt?

Location should never be the sole deciding factor, but you want to consider it carefully.  Moving your child from one Fort Wayne day care facility to another can be stressful – for both of you – so choosing a location that fits your lifestyle is important.

Qualifications

Who will be with your child during the day?  Is this someone you trust?  Does your child seem to warm up to him or her? 

Don’t just look at the teacher or aids in your child’s classroom.  People move on, and the teacher you love may not be at the Fort Wayne day care center next month – there are no guarantees.  So get to know as many of the staff as possible.  Are the qualities that you want visibly present in all of them?  Are you comfortable with the admissions director, operations director, assistant directors, the aides, the teachers, the interns, activity leaders, and anyone else who will interact with your child?

Ask about the center’s requirements for hiring.  What kind of background checks are done, and what is the minimum educational requirements?  This can vary at Fort Wayne day care choices.  For example, at Carepointe Academy, all of our staff have passed national background check certifications (which goes far beyond the standard of just passing an Indiana background check).  This means that they pass the background check of all 50 states, so you will have additional assurance and peace-of-mind. 

Fun factor

Children know how to push the right buttons to cause Mom guilt or make Dad feel like he’s failing.  So if you choose a preschool or after-school facility that your child enjoys, he or she will be much less likely to engage in that “button pushing.” For older children, finishing homework will be important, but after that, what kinds of activities will your child participate in?  If he or she enjoys active sports, a facility that offers video games may not be very “fun.”  On the other hand, if your child doesn’t enjoy organized team sports, having to be on the soccer team may be pure torture. Fort Wayne day care choices offer many different types of programs.

Atmosphere

While a site visit is important, along with a meeting with the Fort Wayne day care center staff, one preplanned visit may not give you a true picture of the atmosphere of a center.  Try to visit three times, at different times of the day.  Look at what activities the children are engaged in, the cleanliness of the facility at that time, the student to teacher ratio, and the response of the children.  Do they seem to be having a good time, or longingly looking at the door, wishing you were there to pick them up?

Of course, all children have a bad day from time to time, so don’t overreact if you see one unhappy child.  You’re looking for a peaceful but energetic facility full of children who are engaged in a variety of activities.  And finding that will make your experience with Fort Wayne day care positive – for you and for your child.

Questions?  Feel free to reach out to Tina Smith, our admissions director, at tina.smith@carepointeacademy.com to help you get the information you need to find the right childcare fit for you family.

Posted by Ray Harris at 3:26 PM

Our Admission's Process

To start the admission's process at Carepointe, contact our Admissions Director, Tina Smith, at Tina.Smith@CarepointeAcademy.com or call her direct at 260-610-4569.