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Child Day Care Rules

by Melissa Lewis, studioD

Because you, your child and your child's provider must follow the rules, carefully read the contract between the parent and provider, then read it again. Providers might also have a separate handout that covers their policies and procedures. It is in those two places that your child's day care rules are likely spelled out. If is not addressed, ask for clarification.

Sign in and sign out when your drop off and pick up your child. Let your child care provider know who can pick up your child -- that's often stated on your child's emergency form. If your provider has not met the person picking up your child, know that she might ask him for identification. The person should be prepared for that.

Pay and pick up your child on time, or expect a late fee. Even if your provider is understanding at times and does not charge a fee, if it states it in the contract that late fees can be collected, she can expect them at any time. The contract will also specify paid holidays, sick days and weather closings, as well as time off for the provider.

Be polite, even in the face of a conflict. This is especially necessary in front of other children and parents. Your provider might have a clause in the contract that states she can end your child's participation based solely on a parent's or guardian's behavior.

Provide your provider notice, per your contract, before withdrawing your child from child care, especially if you paid a deposit when you first enrolled your child. Unless you provide adequate notice and are paid in full, you will likely forfeit the deposit. Adequate notice is necessary so your provider can begin to advertise and fill the soon-to-be open slot.

Expect your child to follow the provider's rules, even if they are not the same as the rules in your home. Rules will be similar to school rules, including children are expected to be respectful, follow instructions, be a good listener, not hurt others and share. If your child consistently breaks the rules and appropriate measures have been taken, such as a behavior modification chart, then you could be asked to remove your child from the day care. Some acts could cause immediate dismissal, such as an extremely violent act, or threatening another child, parent or provider with violence.

Keep your child at home if she is sick and pick up your child as soon as possible if she gets sick at day care. Most child care centers have similar policies that state when a child is not permitted in care, such as when the child has a fever more than 100 or 101 degrees Fahrenheit, diarrhea, lice or chicken pox. Depending on the contract, you will likely still expected to pay for days your child is out.

Understand that your child care provider must follow state laws that pertain to running a licensed child care facility, even if it is a home child care center. Your provider might need a copy of your child's current immunization records and lead test results, for example, and if a licensing specialist makes a visit, the provider is expected to have those records on hand. Your provider might also need to take time off to take professional development courses, such as CPR re-certification or child development classes, as mandated by her state. Other rules she must follow will likely include provider-to-child ratios, medication procedures and discipline methods.

Items you will need
  •  Contract
  •  Policies and procedures handout

About the Author

Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Photo Credits

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