I worked in a very well known daycare when I was in college. I was the head of 2 infant rooms. Do a drop-in tour. THAT IS THE BEST SUGGESTION I CAN MAKE! Have your appt and when you settle on a daycare or two, just show up. See if they’re are following what they told you. Are they in ratio? You have every right to drop-in. I also suggest asking the following things:
-Is crib bedding changed every night and do they swap cribs?
-How much “down time” do they get? Some daycare centers, even at infant range, follow programs. How much time max are they allowed in a crib when not sleeping, in a bouncer seat, in a swing, etc.
-What are the qualification requirements for the staff in the room or that will be working with your child.
-Are the people on staff carrying up-to-date CPR, First Aid, Fire Safety, and other needed and important certifications?
-Has the staff taken medication classes? I know it sounds crazy, but it’s why Tylenol and Advil have new med guidelines. People screw up medications all the time. Are they trained in using basic med equipment such as a nebulizer?
-What is the policy to remove a child from the center? Is there a passcode to enter the center? Will they call you to make sure even if Grandma is on the pick-up list you are ok’ing it?
-What happens if there is an incident? Will you be notified of bumps & bruises?
-Are they taken outside? Even infants should be strolled outside on a nice day.
-What are the evaculation policies for fire or other emergency?
-Will they alert you before adding foods or drinks to their diet? May sound like a stupid question, but trust me, ask it.
-What happens if you run out of diapers and/or wipes? Is everyone sharing them?
-How do they handle food allergies?
-If a bottle of breastmilk is dropped, how is the situation handled?
-What is the sick policy?
-What happens if I’m late to pick-up?
-Here’s a big one: DISCUSS BEFORE THIS HAPPENS…Do you want to be alerted if your child does something for the first time???? If she smiles, or babbles, or walks. DO YOU WANT TO KNOW IT HAPPENED??? A lot of parents don’t because they know they’re missing “firsts”.Tell them not to bring up first steps until you let them know LO is doing it at home. I had a few babies take their first steps in my room and we acted surprised when a mom came in on Monday to tell us.
I am sure I can think of other questions. If you have any, I can try to help you. Good luck!