choosing a child care provider


Choosing the right child care provider to take care of your children while you are away can be incredibly difficult. After all, it seems as though every time you turn around, you hear another horrifying story on the news, like the story of the nightmare nanny who refused to leave.

Most people are good and trust-worthy, though. You just have to find them. These eight tips will show you how

Here are 8 tips for choosing a trustworthy child care provider:

1. Assess Your Needs

Start by assessing your needs. Do you need a full-time nanny to watch your little ones while you work during the day, or do you just want a sitter on call for an occasional date night? Do you need someone who can watch your children at their house or someone who can come to yours?

2. Ask Around

Once you know what you are looking for, you are ready to begin your search. Start by asking friends and family members if they personally have someone they know and recommend. You might also try calling a local college with an early childhood program or a local church and asking for recommendations. Care.com is another good option, but avoid sites like Craigslist.

3. Do a Background Check

While it may seem strange to look into someone’s personal life, the more information you can dig up about them, the better. Do a formal background check, and research them on social media and the Internet. Talk to a few of their friends and family members to find out what they are really like, and listen for any hesitation. If your babysitter also takes care of other children, talk to some of the other moms for the inside scoop.

8 Tips for Choosing a Trustworthy Child Care Provider

4. Ask Questions

Grill your child care provider like a burger (in a polite way, of course!). This will help you make the best decision. Ask about her discipline strategy, her nanny philosophy, her knowledge of safety hazards and her availability. If you are interviewing a center, ask about turn-over rates, child-teacher ratios and procedures.

5. Observe Your Child Care Provider In Action

Your ideal child care provider absolutely must be a good match for both your children and you. You’ll probably get a good feel for her yourself during the interview, but be sure to watch her with your children as well. You want someone who is warm, energetic and genuinely excited to play with your kids.

6. Be Clear with Your Expectations

Most child care providers aim to please, but they can’t do so unless you tell them what you want. If you want your childcare provider to clean the house, cook, have the kids in bed by a certain time or limit snacks, you have to speak up and say so. Make sure she agrees to anything you are particular about.

7. Drop By Unannounced

A great way to get a feel for your new sitter is to drop by unannounced. Check to see if the children look well taken care of, if the place is relatively tidy and if there are any safety hazards on the floor. If you are considering hiring a nanny that will come to your house, you can always try a few hour test run.

8. Don’t Be Afraid to Say No

At the end of the day, you have to choose a child care provider that you and your children are comfortable with, so do not feel bad saying no, no matter how long you have interviewed her or how many questions you have asked. When it comes to the safety of your children, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Did you have a difficult time leaving your children with a babysitter or nanny? What was the hardest part for you?

Maybe a Nanny Share is an option for your family? The Nanny Share Contract.


BrittanyWife and mom to two very energetic little boys, when Brittany isn’t busy chasing after her kidlets, you can find her reading, writing or sneaking chocolate so she doesn’t have to share–probably all of the above!