Daycare or nanny, finding the right caregiver for your family

Daycare or nanny, finding the right caregiver for your family



All parents must, at some point, come to terms with leaving their child in the care of others. For some it may be a matter of finding care for a couple of hours on occasion, while others require several hours a day. Regardless of the amount of time the care is needed, the task can be daunting,

“When choosing childcare, there are many things to consider,” says Shanna Mundell, director of TLC Nanny and Sitter Service in Kansas City. She goes on to mention factors such as the length of time a family needs childcare, the health and safety levels of the care and the cost of the care, including adjusting for tax considerations when hiring a nanny.

“When we were looking for care, we wanted something close to home but with convenience en route to work, low caregiver to child ratio to allow our son more personal attention, someone with high recommendations from people we know and trust, someone who could offer a home-like feeling as well as high behavioral expectations, and flexibility with attendance to pay structure since I have summers off,” says Sabrina Mitchell, Kansas City area mother of one.

Sabrina and her husband were able to narrow down the options by outlining their priorities. “We found an amazing and flexible in-home day care option with a lady who has 20+ years of experience across various age ranges, through recommendations from others, and I doubt we will ever leave her,” Mitchell says.

Kansas City area mother Ferryl LeDuff and her husband had similar considerations. “When we began looking for care, we placed our consideration value on location, experience, education, in-home options, security and love, and through referrals from others we found our ideal fit with an in-home nanny in collaboration with a couple days a week of care by my mother,” she says.

Even after determining the priorities and type of childcare you are considering, whether it be a nanny, a day care facility or private in-home day care option, there are still anxieties that arise over getting that particular care option just right.

“We had tons of fears when it came time to really consider the care options—pretty much anything you could imagine from what we would miss when we weren’t around to watch him to whether he’d be loved enough by his care provider,” LeDuff says.

Mitchell and her husband had fears as well, such as ending up in a care option that wouldn’t work out for one reason or another and then having to start all over again in finding a new location.

Regardless of what fears you face in this decision, there are things within your control. “Whether you choose to hire a nanny or put your child in a day care setting, doing your homework is important. Ask for references, and if using a day care, make sure to visit a couple of times before making a decision. If it is a nanny you are considering, be sure to do a background check, including criminal, driving and social security number verification at a minimum,” Mundell says.

She also notes that when considering an in-home individual, parents should keep an eye out for employment gaps that cannot be explained, a history of changing jobs often or a reference that cannot be verified. “Trust your gut instincts, and if something feels ‘off,’ it very well could be,” Mundell cautions.

Whatever options you explore, be prepared with what you want out of your care provider, utilize referrals from others, investigate and ask the right questions and pay attention to your instincts.

 

Karah Chapman is a school psychologist in the Kansas City area who spent several of her earlier years enjoying the nanny career.

 

You Might Also Like

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags