Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Safety Checklist for Childcare

During this month’s series on back to school for toddler and babies, we have to think about child care options for the working parent who is not home all day.

When you’re looking for a childcare provider or facility for your little one, it is number one that you feel COMFORTABLE. Mom knows best (or dad!) - your heart has to feel right, and trust those voices inside if something doesn’t feel right. Having peace of mind that your little one is being safely cared for is invaluable. When you are looking for providers, be sure to check or ask for each of these items:

  • A center that is licensed and inspected for health and cleanliness
  • Clean, age-appropriate toys that are in fair condition
  • Safe sleep environments
  • Separate and clean diapering area
  • Covered electrical outlets
  • Easily accessible first-aid kid
  • Posted emergency numbers
  • Working smoke detectors
  • Emergency plans
  • If there are stairs, be sure there are security gates
  • Written emergency policies
  • Written protocols for caring for sick children
  • Cleaning supplies and other toxic items should be locked away, out of reach
  • Look for a staff to child ratio that you are comfortable with. 1:3 or 1:4 is appropriate.
  • Lastly, make sure you ask for a list of activities; TV and movie time should be limited.