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In Home Family Child Care (NOT a center)

Posted by on Jul. 14, 2013 at 11:23 AM
  • 12 Replies

 I own and operate a small home child care.  I am a bit unique because although I run this child care out of a residential home, I don't actually live there. 

I bought the house just for running a child care.

I am always trying to grow and adapt my business to meet the needs of working moms. 

So if you use a family child care, what are some things you really like about it?

What are some things you don't like or don't understand why they have a certain rule/policy?

If you don't use family child care, why not?

Thank you all in advance for giving your opinions....Maybe I can even help some understand why we do some of the things we do as child care providers.

by on Jul. 14, 2013 at 11:23 AM
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by Group Admin on Jul. 14, 2013 at 11:51 AM
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Nice idea for a post and I wish you well in your childcare business.  My kids are no longer in childcare, so I'm not much help I'm afraid.  The younger two were in an in-home childcare many years ago, but I can't remember enough about it to ask questions or give ideas.  Sorry!  So, here's a bump for you instead :)

by Platinum Member on Jul. 14, 2013 at 12:21 PM
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I had him in an actual daycare facility. The reason was that in home daycares weren't as structured and all the kids were together (opposed to separated by age).
I looked at kid to adult ratio, meals, open hours, number of holidays closed, how were details of the day reported to me. One daycare sent home detailed notes, one called for any injury (scratch, kid bit him, hit by a toy). The other one I was typically only told of any abnormal behaviors frpm ds.
by Bronze Member on Jul. 14, 2013 at 8:27 PM
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I used an in-home daycare provider when my oldest was an infant. The main reason I switched to a center and never went back was that I didn't like having to plan my vacations around my provider's vacations. She had a backup, so it was rare that she had to close for illness, but I didn't want to be stuck taking a week of vacation at Christmas every year. I had some other issues with her, but that was with this particular provider and not in-home providers in general.

by Silver Member on Jul. 14, 2013 at 8:37 PM
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Similar to the above poster, we wanted to know our dcp would be open for business. If a teacher was sick, they didn't close, they just adjusted staff. I also needed to know our dcp would be open late enough for DH to pick up if for some reason I couldn't.
by Group Admin on Jul. 14, 2013 at 8:59 PM
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I like the center because of the number of kids she gets to interact with. They also have a set curriculum. Everything is pretty well scheduled and works with our schedule at home. They provide healthy, balanced meals and helped with potty training. The home cares around here don't offer a lot of that.
by Silver Member on Jul. 14, 2013 at 10:04 PM
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We don't use in home care because the first place we went was in home, they were not willing to work with me on the feeding of ydd (a bf preemie with reflux and they were pushing for solids and 16+ ounces of bm in an eight hour day to the point they intro'd solids against my wishes), there was no real accountability or regulation- the evening workers had no idea what happened before they got there, there were no daily sheets, we had a lot of random discipline issues with odd that suddenly resolved when we switched, there was very little structure and from what I could tell little to no discipline (one morning at drop off there was a school aged child standing on top of a table screaming and the worker was doing nothing), they were not on top of odd's dairy allergies and gave her food that clearly had dairy in it.  I tried addressing this with the director and she was unwilling to work with me, especially with the solids and ydd- she told me she was required to offer solids per state which is not true, and that she needed a doctor's note to elay solids until ydd was developmentally ready.  They continued giving purees without my permission and after I requested they stop.  I gave my two weeks, parked the girls at my parents house for as much of that two weeks as possible, and found a great center that did everything I needed and more :)  I know there are great in home daycares out there, but I was burned badly by that bad daycare, and I love the center we have now.

by Platinum Member on Jul. 14, 2013 at 10:04 PM
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We chose a daycare center because:
We like the structured curriculum they offer. It's nationalized and very formal. Education was very important to me.
A majority of the lead teachers have formal early childhood education degrees or training.
More parents making impromptu visits felt safer to us.
More staff to relieve tired frazzled trachers because everyone dealing with children needs a break!
Never a worry of daycare closing for sick days.
The location is quite convenient for us.
Exposure to a larger culturally diverse student/peer group
Low sugar, lower processed food menu.
And a plus, it is NAEYC accredited.

I looked at home daycares, and the majority I interviewed admitted they ran a daycare because they wanted to be home with their own children. So I immediately questioned their passion and skills for such a job, as caring for kids 12 hours a day is exhausting if you don't love it! But you seem passionate beyond that, good luck!!
by Silver Member on Jul. 14, 2013 at 10:13 PM
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More about the center (I do miss the mixed ages, I liked that aspect of the in home daycare because my girls are close and odd liked being able to keep an eye on ydd.  They are pretty structured, they teach simple sign to the babies, older kids start basic letters, numbers, colors, etc once they move into the two year old and up areas.  They were willing to work with me on the solids with ydd, as well as the bm, even accepted the food I sent instead of the purees they provided, they offered to use the cloth diapers we use at home there, the kids move straight to prek as they get older, most of the teachers are certified, they have a lot of activities for the kids during the summer like weekly library trips.  My biggest praise for them though is the fact that they took the time to learn about odd's allergies, and to accomodate them in cooking so she isn't restricted to one or two things- they have a cook and do not use pre packaged foods so they have a lot of control over ingredients.  I have trouble getting family to be mindful of ingredients, so for them to go the extra mile means a great deal to me.

by Member on Jul. 15, 2013 at 9:19 AM

 Wow!  Nice feedback so far ladies!  I can totally understand and empathize with you about the reasons why you went with a center verses an in home provider.

So far, I feel as though I have a couple of the biggest issues under control.  I don't live in teh house I have my child care in so it is set up more like a center.  I have no adult furniture and everything is kid sized.  All the rooms are set up for specific age groups so there is a safe and inviting palace for infants, toddlers and preschoolers.  I also have two main rooms where we do all of our eating, arts/crafts and group activities together.

I also don't have any young children of my own so I don't ever have to worry about parents feeling like I am only doing this to be with my own kids or that I might favor my own compared to a daycare child.

I also try to meet the parents needs/wishes as far as care for their child in regards to feeding schedules and allergies or any medical conditions.  That is why I think family child care is a positive for me because I CAN tailor things for each family whereas the centers around here are rigid and expect all parents to work with their schedules because there are so many kids enrolled.

I also have a Bachelor's degree in Early Childhood as well as my teachers license so I have that part covered too.

I have used one sick day in 20+ years of doing this and try my hardest to only take my vacations when parents can arrange back up. Obviously I can't please everyone but if more than 50% of my families (I have 10 different ones) need me over a scheduled vacation, then I will just try and arrange it to happen at a different time.

I don't bend over backwards to make sure everyone is happy but I try to find a happy compromise so that it is a good meeting place between what I personally need and what my families need.

Thank you all so much for your replies.  Keep the feedback coming....this is VERY insightful.

by Gold Member on Jul. 15, 2013 at 9:26 AM
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I don't use a home daycare because I work at a center, so my daughter just comes with me. ;)
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