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With one more long summer month to go and a babysitting budget that’s already low, do you find yourself asking how most people afford reliable summer childcare? Finding quality child care institutions or services you can totally trust can be difficult, not to mention expensive. Parents need caregivers who they can trust to keep their children safe and healthy. So how do Arizona parents do it? AllKids Urgent Care, a pediatric urgent care in Mesa and Gilbert, offers parents some advice on how to choose a childcare provider you can trust, while keeping costs down in the process.
Hire A Trusted Relative
Family is a great resource for many parents when it comes to finding someone to care for their child during the day. If you have teenage brothers and sisters or retired parents, these are obviously a great first choice. But what if your immediate family doesn’t live nearby? Maybe you have a niece who is home from college on summer vacation. Maybe you have a friend who also has a kid around your child’s age. Use your friends and family as resources for finding reliable childcare options. While some family members may be willing to watch your kids for free, it is courteous to at least offer some compensation. After all, as you know, caring for children is a big job! Finding more than one babysitter to trade off with will also be extremely helpful for your loved ones if you need a caregiver for an extended period of time.
Interviewing a New Babysitter
Registered babysitter service websites like www.care.com or www.sittercity.com do a good job of connecting parents to reliable caregivers, but their screening methods are not always foolproof. You should always do your own research on a stranger before you leave your child with them, to ensure they will be a good fit for your child’s needs. Here are some tips on conducting your own background check:
Check their references.
Ask former employers specific questions about the sitter’s punctuality, professionalism, discipline techniques, demeanor in stressful situations, and if the children respected and liked the sitter.
Check the ages of previous children watched.
Just because someone is great with 7 year olds doesn’t mean they’ll jive with your newborn. Make sure they have experience caring for children in the right age range.
If you’re hiring a young babysitter, talk to their parents.
Some 13-year olds may be more mature than a 17 year old. Talk to their parents to find out if they are reliable and mature enough to watch your child. They’ll usually be willing to work for less money too!
Finally, talk to the sitter!
After you’ve done your research and talked to others about their experience with this sitter, it’s time to do a test-run. Ask the babysitter questions and see how they get along with you as the parent (and their future boss). See how they do watching your child for a while.
Check out the Day Care
If neither of these options is available to you, check out the day cares around you. Make sure the staff’s vision and caregiving methods align with your ideals as a parent. Vocalize any hesitation you have and see how they respond to what you’ve expressed. Is the daycare center easy to get in touch with? Do they have policies and plans in case of emergency? Read online reviews of the day care and don’t be afraid to ask questions or take your business elsewhere if it just doesn’t work out.
For more information and parenting resources, be sure to visit more of our website at www.mysickkid.com. AllKids Urgent Care has a mesa pediatric urgent care as well as a gilbert pediatric urgent care, open every day from noon to 10 p.m. All Kids Deserve the Best.