QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN CHECKING FOR QUALITY CHILDCARE FOR YOUR CHILD
• What star rating does the center have? North Carolina utilizes a 5 star rating system with 5 being the highest. 1 star means that the center is meeting minimum standards only. A five star means a program meets the voluntary enhanced standards required for the highest star level.
• Get recommendations from people you know.
• Observe interactions between staff/child/parents.
• Check for operational policies-do the hours meet your needs, do they serve meals, what is the late pick up policy?
• Tour the center so you can see it first hand and check for the following:
o Are separate spaces available for the different age groups?
o Is the quantity of toys and materials sufficient for the number of children in the classroom?
o Are furnishings in the classroom child sized?
o Do the children have an opportunity to play outside each day?
o Is the schedule of daily activities posted and current?
o Are children allowed to make choices throughout the day?
o Are childcare providers handling conflict among the children in a positive manner?
o Does the center encourage parents to drop in and visit at any time of the day?
o Does the facility serve nutritious meals/snacks?
o Does the center participate in any subsidized child care programs?
o Do all staff have current CPR and First Aid certifications?
o How are children disciplined?
o What kind of security measures are in place to assure the safety of the children?
o If you were a child, would you want to spend your day at this center?