How do I choose a child care centre? |

Published on Thursday, 14 September 2017
Last updated on Wednesday, 17 August 2022

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Here are 10 factors to consider when choosing child care service for your family.

There are many different variables to consider when choosing a child care service for your family:

  1. Location – does the service need to be in a local area that's close to home or work, or somewhere else?

  2. Cost – what are the fees and what do they include?

  3. Availability – does the service have the days you require? Are casual spots available?

  4. Staff – do you and your children like the staff and feel welcome?

  5. Facilities – are the rooms and gardens interesting, well organised and inspirational?

  6. Food – can you see the weekly menus and are special requirements catered for?

  7. Sleep – what is the service's approach to sleep and rest time during school hours? Are they flexible with children who want to skip a nap?

  8. Program – are the activities interesting, and varied for the child's learning? Do they have fun and family-inclusive activities like child's day or family day?

  9. Quality – has the service been assessed by ACECQA and does it meet quality ratings?

  10. Communication – does the service offer digital or paper based learning stories where you can see what children do during the day?

When considering your childcare options it is very important to check out a number of child care services and visit the childcare centre to spend some time to get to know the staff. First hand experience is the best way to judge whether a service ‘feels right' as the right child care service for your child.

Be sure to print a copy of our Child Care Centre Checklist when you visit a local centre and do a centre tour to remind you what to look out for in a child care environment and in terms of quality early education for your child.

Remember, that every family is unique and the preferences and priorities of one family will be different from another. It's important to keep this in mind as you set about researching your options for your child's early learning, as you are likely to come across parents and carers with different experiences and opinions to your own.

Children thrive in high-quality early childhood education settings and you can learn more about how to identify high-quality child care service that is a legally approved provider for early education and meets the national quality standard here.

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