What to Ask About

If you are considering a group child care arrangement, ask for a
complete written list of policies. Ask questions if you don’t find all of your answers in the documents. Learn the basic facts about the center
as well as details about safety, rules, activities, and what’s expected of the

General operations

  • Payment, including amount, due date, and reasons why extra fees might be charged
  • Hours of operation and
    holiday closures
  • Security procedures, such as sign in/sign out of
  • When a child must be kept home or sent
  • Notice requirements for ending arrangement

Emergency procedures

  • Fire
  • Medical
  • Bad weather
  • Severe contagious illness (such
    as meningitis)
  • Staff training: First aid and CPR

Food preparation

  • Is any food prepared on-site? If so, in what area?
  • Are meals and snacks nutritious?
  • Are there restrictions on
    what food can be brought in?

Hygiene practices

  • Hand-washing
  • Diapering
  • How often
    are toilets, sinks, and countertops disinfected?
  • How often are
    floors and carpets cleaned?
  • How often are toys disinfected?

Rules for children

  • Are there behavior policies and rules in place?
    If so, what are they?
  • How are children disciplined? How is physical
    aggression handled?
  • Are toys from home allowed?

Other information

  • Record-keeping: Are the children’s records kept
    in a private but easy-to-access place?
  • Parent involvement and
    expectations: Are parents invited to be on committees or on the governing body
    of the child care center?

For examples of questions to ask, see:

Related Information


ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer John Pope, MD – Pediatrics
Kathleen Romito, MD – Family Medicine

Current as ofMay 4, 2017