I went by recommendations and research, but mostly it was a gut feeling while interviewing the schools. My kids went to a daycare before we moved which was for ages 0-4, I LOVED it and so did they...the owner is such a wonderful person that she immediately made me feel comfortable leaving my kids with her and her staff - which, btw were all certified in a variety of things and screened with the FBI, also I agreed with all their philosphies re: positive reinforcement, discipline, potty training, etc. I was heartbroken to move them out, but my DD was approaching 4 anyway... I moved them to a school that is a bit more structured than the daycare, which makes sense as they get older, its more preschool environment than daycare environment. I chose that school again, based on recommendations and after you visit a few, you just know which feels right to you. Good luck!
at 4:41 PM on Dec. 2, 2009