When you begin looking at your child care options, especially if you have children that have special needs, you may be looking for specific points. If this sounds like your current situation, you may be considering the options between family daycare and a child care centre. Here are some things you need to know about the differences, and why a family day care may be suitable for your needs.
Smaller Teacher to Child Ratio
One of the leading differences you should know about family day care versus a child care centre is the smaller teacher-to-child ratio. Child care centres tend to have larger numbers of children, which puts the ratio of teachers to students much higher. This means fewer chances for one-on-one time with the students. If your child has issues with speech or reading, or has other special needs, the smaller teacher-to-student ratio can form an ideal situation for learning and development. It also can give the teachers a chance to learn what is normal for your child and what behaviors may be alarming or a call for attention.
Full Time Child Care
There are times when you may need child care overnight rather than just during the day as an educational option. If this is the case, you could be having a difficult time finding a suitable child care option. One of the things to know about child care that offers 24 hour a day, 7 days a week care options is that family child care is the only approved service offering this option. Though child care centres may be ideal if you have a daytime job and only need daytime assistance for child care, a family day care option can offer you a more flexible option for your children.
One of the key points to know is that some family child care providers do provide certain provisions. For example, they may provide snacks as well as nappies and other items. This is ideal if you need overnight care or if you are on a limited budget and have multiple children. A child care centre will likely not offer any of these provisions and will have the parents provide those provisions. If your child has specific dietary needs or sensory needs, then you may be required to provide those items.
If you feel that a family day care environment will be ideal for your family's needs, contact a local family day care provider. They can help you with registration, questions and fees. They can also assist you if you have specific therapy needs for your child with special needs. Testing for speech and autism may also be available.