Daycares are broadly divided into two main categories: family-based and center-based childcare facilities. To start with, center-based daycares offer their services in non-private facilities. You will find children of various ages in these centers. Charges vary from one center to the other based on the age of the child and where the facility is located.
Childcare centers are not allowed to operate without a license from Virginia Department of Social Services. However, a center-based childcare facility can operate without a license if it is exempted from licensure in accordance with the law. Exemption happens if the center is a private certified preschool or due to their religious practices. A center that is licensed should have a minimum of two children in the facility other than a private home. If the setting is a private residence, the center should hold a minimum of 13 children.
Family childcare is provided in the owners home. In a family-based daycare facility, unlike center-based, requirement for licensing depends on the number of children. Every family-based facility with more than five children must have a license. In Virginia, family-based daycares are preferred to their counterpart because their services are cheap, and the setting is more of a family than a classroom.
Safety should be the first thing to consider when looking for a suitable daycare for your kids. Some of the safety standards to think about include staff-to-child ratios, licensing and staff behavior. Make certain that the daycare you are about to enroll you kids into upholds these standards.
Children are your most valuable asset, so you should have a good plan in place for protecting them. One way of ensuring their safety is checking off the items on the safety list above to make sure the center is safe. For instance, the center or family childcare program should at least meet all the licensing requirements in accordance with the law. In case of any doubts regarding the daycare, call up their licensor to find out if they have had any violations.
The fact that Virginia has many children in unregulated daycares has really blown things in these settings out of proportion. There are actually fewer licensed daycare providers than the number of children who need these services. Another challenge is that daycare is no longer affordable and reliable.
Whether you have elected to take your child to a family-based or center-based facility, it is wise to ensure they are licensed. Also, the daycare should have an experienced doctor for consultation in matters related to health and safety. Finally, the workers should be well-versed with the early child education.
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