(Closed) What to ask daycare providers (infant)?

posted 6 years ago in Babies
Post # 3
3176 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

If you’re looking at centers make sure to ask how long the teachers have been there, there is a high turnover rate for most daycares but the best ones know how to retain teachers!

Ask about sick policies and how strick they are – this is good not only to protect baby but to make sure they don’t make you keep baby home all week for having a little sniffle on Monday.

Look at the airwork…is it dated, if so how old is it? Does it match the lesson plan? Check out the toys…any tears on pillows/mattresses/etc. Do the rattles actually rattle? – A lot of daycares get their toys second hand and they aren’t always in the best condition which doesn’t really matter, what matters is that the teachers know when to remove something from the classroom!

Since you will have a little one ask what they specifically target that age group, do they have rules about how long baby can stay in one place? Will he/she ever be in a room with older kids? We often combined kids at the end of the day so that a 10 year old could be in the same activity room as a 2 year old.

Ask about diaper changing and cleaning policy, ratios, etc….JUST KEEP ASKING QUESTIONS. Also once you’ve narrowed down your choices make sure you shedule a tour when their are kids present and don’t be afraid to go in for a follow-up!

Post # 4
817 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

@MrsPinkPeony:  +1

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!


Post # 5
367 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I’m bumping this because I’m wondering, too!  We’re starting out daycare tours in a few weeks and it makes me so sad!


The questions above are GREAT! 


@FutureMrsShrewsbury – great point about the meds.  I train direct care staff to give meds to adults with disabilities per state regs at my job…and it is sometimes terrifying to see who is giving medications out!!!  I would check out your state regs, too, to see what trainings are required.  It’s different for different populations and funding sources.


Great point about the “firsts.”  I don’t know if I would want to know.  It makes me cry to think about missing it and my LO isn’t even born yet!!!

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