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What Should You Look For When Choosing A Child Care Center?

There are several factors that you should consider before choosing a child care center for your child. It is always better to find a facility in which your child can develop long term relationships and familiarity with the staff and surroundings, so you should attempt to find a center that best suits both the needs of your child and the rest of your family.

Obviously, some factors are based upon your personal needs and limitations, but there are usually several options in most areas that offer services to fit most families' child care needs.

What are your personal needs when choosing a child care center?


Cost is often a primary factor when choosing a child care facility. It is likely that both parents must work outside the home if child care services are needed, so budgetary concerns are paramount.

However, parents can still get quality child care at affordable prices, but it requires extra research and footwork in visiting facilities that offer varying prices. Lower cost facilities may also having a longer waiting list for openings, so you may need to plan farther in advance of your planned need for child care.

Hours and distance

You must be able to drop off and pick up your child according to your own commute times and the facilities schedule. This means that you must allow additional time to traffic and other delays. Most child care centers must be relatively strict  with their operating hours to keep their labor costs to an acceptable level and to provide structure for their young charges.

Choosing a child care center for your child's development

There are multiple factors that you should consider that will affect your child's development when you decide upon a child care center.


Each child care worker should manage no more than five children. A higher worker/child ratio would result in much less individual attention in the important developmental years of a child's life.

Of course, this will usually mean a higher cost, but it is important if it is within the constraints of your budget.


Activities should include both play and learning components.. Monitoring of developmental progress, such as socialization and fine motor skills, is an important indicator of a quality child care center.

Your child's relationship with the center

After you have chosen a child care center, your child's assimilation will be an important indicator to know if you've made a good choice. After a possible initial separation anxiety or reluctance, your child should easily join the rest of the children when dropped off at the center. 

When you return to gather your child, they should be actively engaged with the rest of their group or in an activity. Of course, the attendants may look tired and less enthused, but that just means they they have done their jobs well.

In short, just like any other service, you must shop around and do your research, but you are not buying a new TV, so due diligence is in order. There are many pearls in the ocean of child care centers, but you may need to open many shells to find the best one for both you and your child. For more information, contact companies like Learning Tree Schools.