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Thread: family day care/ childcare sentres

  1. #1
    maggie Guest

    Default family day care/ childcare sentres

    Hi
    Sadly i am returning to work for 2days in april., DS will be 7weeks. I am tossing up whether to do famiy day care. or childcare centre.

    He will be in carea ppr 2 mornings, as DH will have him one arvo, and my mum the other afternoon.

    Family ay care i am worried about as they may take him out for the day, for a drive etc, and this would worry me..

    Childcare, i am worried about as u hear so many bad stories.. but then i have also heard good stories.

    If any of u have gone back to work, how did u pick a good childcare centre, or family day care.. i am dreading it, and just want the best for my DS.

    Last edited by maggie; February 5th, 2007 at 01:56 PM. Reason: spelling error

  2. #2

    Join Date
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    Maggie I'm going to move this to the Childcare forum, you may have more responses there.
    http://bellybelly.com.au/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=78

    Also... Matilda has been in family day care now for 20 months. I love our carer and feel completely safe with her looking after Matilda. I was a bit funny about going out but she's so good at it (I went on an outing with them to see what she did ). I don't worry anymore. When I go back to work 1 day a week in June I plan on having Jovie with the same carer and Matilda will be starting a kindy type program.

    NOW having said that I really love our carer but some pro's & con's about FDC:

    Pro:
    home environment
    continuity of care
    able to observe individual children and gear day schedules around children's needs

    Con:
    It all depends on the particular carer you use. Some are better at it than others
    If carer is sick there isn't a back up.
    They do take the children out (if this is a concern to you) sometimes

    I'm sure there are more pro's and con's but alot depends on the particular carer. I love ours and can not fault her, I have had to put Matilda in with other carers a few times when I've been sick & Liz is full or when Liz has had holidays and I had to get a back up. Both times were okay for Matilda, but not somewhere I'd want to leave her on a longer term basis.

  3. #3

    Join Date
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    For me, family day care is very much dependant on the carer, and I would see how many kids she had at one time when she has your DS. Some family day carers have more kids per adult than the ratio at daycare.

    I never felt comfortable with Family daycare, I guess I didn't find someone like Christy has. I couldn't just pop in unannounced and surprise her to see what she was doing liek you can at daycare there was no one else she was accountable to, sure the council popped in a few times and that helps but it's just her and the kids all day usually.

    To pick a good daycare, look at the ages of the staff, if they are all young 18 yr olds, RUN! no, it's just a guideline that lots of young staff means the care centre appears to be more concerned re. cost than care of children. Plus older staff are more likely to speak up if the regulations are not being adhered to.

    The cheaper council run centres seem to be better for the same reason, they aren't about making money. Nice uniforms and new centres make parents feel good but don't always translate into care for your kid.

    I put Ruby in daycare 1 day a week at I think it was 3-4 months. There was a gated off area within the toddler room for babies who couldn't crawl adn this was where she ws. Once they started crawling they moved the babies to the other side of the gate so I knew no-one was going to sneak up on defenceless little Ruby!

    The babies also had a seperate play area from the older toddlers so don't have to be treated roughly by the bigger toddlers.
    They had lots of staff around so I knew that there would be accountability if someone was doing the wrong thing. It sounds weird but sit outside and watch during the day how they deal with the crying toddlers - I think this is one of the best indications of the quality of staff at a centre. also before you start pop in with DS several times at different times of the days, especially cactus hour (about 11am and 4pm) and see how they deal with a number of crying children because you don't want your little bubby to get ignored because he is the smallest.

    Also ask the staff individually how long they have been at the centre (just casually) and if they have all been there less than 2 months say, it might mean the center has a high turnover of staff which isn't a good sign either.

    the other thing is, do they make BOTH of you feel welcome, when you arrive do they talk to your DS, and want to hold him, do they talk to you, do they know your name and his name. If the centre is big, what is the security like?

    You are VERY lucky it is only for 2 mornings, he will probably adore the attention and different environment and will be absolutely wasted on those afternoons. GOOD LUCK!

  4. #4

    Join Date
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    Mya has just started at a Montessori daycare centre today. I agree with nickel where shes says "do the staff make u feel welcome". It makes such a big difference to me if they take the time to show u around,learn ur name & ur childs.
    Also ask questions, i had a list of things i wanted to know, especially because it is a montessori daycare, & there philosophy is a bit different to normal daycare.
    Make sure u check a few centres out aswell.

    As for family daycare, i can't realyy help u there. I dont know much about it. I have heard good & bad stories.

    Just do ur research on both b4 making a decision.
    I hope u find something that is right for u

  5. #5
    Fruitwood Guest

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    Hi, my daughter is at an ABC centre and we both absolutely love it there. The staff are really friendly and highly qualified. My daughter is in a nursery room with other children her age and the staff are all trained to deal with younger babies. With FDC I didn't feel comfortable having someone who didn't have any formal qualifications looking after my child. All their knowledge was based on their own experiences with their own children.

  6. #6
    maggie Guest

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    thanks guys.. for you who have there babies in childcare ctrs.. did you feel that they would look after and comfort your baby if he/she was distressed or unsettled?

  7. #7
    Fruitwood Guest

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    My daughter is a cryer and I've found the staff to be exceptional at our childcare centre. The ratio for our centre is 1 carer for 4 children and 2 carers for 5 - 8 children. The class quota is 8. Everytime my daughter starts to cry one of the carers pick her up and cuddle her. I've also found that with my daughters class, they are all under 15 mths and if one is upset the others will all come and crowd around to check they are alright. It's the sweetest thing i've ever seen, lol.

  8. #8

    Join Date
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    I had an interview with the family day care centre today and felt very reserved about doing it the last few weeks. Elijah has a 5 hour spot this term in occasional care which starts this Friday (was 3 hours last term) and he's familiar with the centre, which was what made me hesitant about family day care - I was hoping FDC would get back to me before kinder did so he was only doing one day, but might do two and see how he goes, what he likes best. He's a bit clingy at the moment and I didn't want to upset him with change. That said, he's much more sociable than Marisa ever was and is paying much more attention to other kids and will initiate play.

    I felt better after going today, you get to interview the carer so you can choose them and you can stop whenever you like and it's much cheaper. The carer they have lined up is both verified by the family day care program and external bodies as well - she's very experienced and sounds great. She takes the kids out to the park everyday with other day care women, which I think is great as they would all help and look out for one another. Elijah LOVES the park and I think he'll love having a little friend (there is a boy his age) and the carer will be the same. Kids attach to people - yes the carer may be sick but so may a day care centre worker. Obviously there will still be more staff at a centre, but because I am not working for someone else, I can luckily be flexible.

    I think its a matter of meeting them all and seeing how you go. You can always change.
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children

    BellyBelly Birth & Early Parenting Immersion - Join us in Melbourne on Saturday April 7th!
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  9. #9

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    Sounds like you got a good one Kelly?
    As long as there aren't too many kids, a FDC can be good. I have found that most child care centre staff love kids, and problems are usually more with the director/system.
    Some ABC centres are great, some aren't. The staff are everything.

    Sorry - to answer your quesiton yes I do think my daughter would be comforted at the particular centre she is at, but I would have reservations if she was in the 3 years room simply because I don't think the staff are as good - at the SAME centre! They should have 1 staff per four children all the time, and like someone else said, the other kids get very concerned for each other. They are currently all in love with "baby Ruby" and ask after her all the time! They can't wait to hold her when I walk in with her which is great too.

  10. #10

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    Indah goes 3 days a week to FDC, I prefer this for us as I knopw who will be looking after her everyday, not random staff that can change at a whim.

    Indah knows she spends the day with her & now wants to continue playing & stuff when we get there, our carer doesnt drive so I know they go for walks but if they do go on a trip it is organised by the council a bus collects them all they all go together & are dropped back off together which I am happy with.
    I specifically wanted a non Western carer & our carer is Sri lankan which is great.
    As Indah is under 2 she can only have 3 other kids aged 2-5 when she has Indah, she has a huge stack od First Aid qualifications, was a nurse in Sri Lanka & Malaysia, she has a number of Child acre certificates & always has the back yard or 1 room set up with games, toys, activities etc for the kids, Inda is always so busy there!
    She writes a daily diary of anything that happened, bowel movements, meal, activities any accidents, outings etc...

    I am extremely happy with my carer, although I wont need her when I commence maternity leave but would have no hesitation in putting Indah & bubs in there..

    I prefer the one on one contact that Indah gets with this lady rather than a variety of carers who may not have time to get to know my child.

    I got to interview her & go through all her stuff, she has been a FDC with the council for over 8 yrs & proudly displays photo's of all the kids she has cared for...

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