It’s an unfortunate fact of capitalist life, maternity and paternity leave can’t last forever. And while you may schedule your life around caring for your child, there comes a point when you need the village. Choosing a daycare for your child at any age fills parents with dread, often citing concerns of safety, engagement, and cost. However, knowing what your options are is half the battle of reaping the full benefits of daycare.
For the younger population, choosing a daycare commences with finding a good preschool. What services can you expect from preschool for your children to get an edge on their education? Preschools and youth daycares prepare your children for life and the education system by helping them develop emotional and social skills. While this may appear in the form of play, the benefits of preschool emerge in your child’s initiation into a community of their peers. This same objective is found in kindergarten and choosing a daycare that prioritizes your child’s socio-emotional learning.
What can you do when finding a good preschool, kindergarten, or daycare seems like an endless applications process? Especially if you’re new to the neighborhood, connecting with your surrounding community can help you eliminate schools that don’t suit your child’s needs. When it comes to private schools, having access to the participating community can help you find out a lot about the school you are considering. Private schools make up 24% of schools in the U.S. and enroll 10% of all pre-K through 12 students on a national scale. So when it comes to choosing a daycare, choosing a preschool, or formally enrolling your child in a K-12 school program, you have the opportunity to assess your options.
Perhaps you already have your September through June schooling needs set, but choosing a daycare program or summer camp for your child is proving more difficult than expected. Summer is a time for kids to get out into the sun and engage with their peers, so when considering the benefits of summer camp for your child, prioritize their physical wellness and safety. Summer programs run through private elementary schools that focus on wellness and physical activity can greatly aid students from homes who don’t have easy access to parks or recreation centers. Likewise, towns with parks and recreation departments often have more affordable summer camps that focus on providing educational opportunities alongside opportunities for play.
Choosing a daycare can appear overwhelming given the breadth of considerations, but by breaking down the different options available and assessing what your child’s needs are, you can make sure that they get the full benefits of daycare, preschool, and their subsequent education.