Parents and Families > Tips on Choosing Child Care

1. Start Early

Start looking as far in advance as you can. No matter what type of care you are considering-a child care center or care in someone else's home-finding the right child care option can take some time.

2. Make a Call

Begin your search by calling your local experts-your child care resource and referral (CCR&R) center. CCR&Rs can give you the facts about child care, and a list of child care options in your area that may meet your needs. Click here to find your local CCR&R Agency or call 1-800-3DAYCARE to find the CCR&R center in your area.

In addition to what is on this page, make sure to ask your CCR&R these things:

3. Visit and Ask Questions

Make sure you visit the child care options you are considering. Bring the Child Care Checklist found in the CCANJ website (www.ccanj.org) publications area in the Parents section. Find out about these key indicators of quality:

4. Make a Choice

Think about what you saw at each visit, and make the best choice for your child and family.

5. Stay Involved

The work isn't over when you find good care for your child. You and your child's caregiver are partners now. Here are some ways to be involved:

Even if you can't get time off from work during the day, you can still check in at drop-off and pick-up times. Ask the caregiver how things are going, and how your child is doing. Visiting and participating in events at your child's provider sends a strong message. It tells your child and your child's caregiver that you think what your child is doing and learning is important.

Find out more about efforts in your community to improve the quality of child care. Is your caregiver involved in these activities? How can you get involved?

Find out how you can get involved by joining your local Parent Voices group.

Printed with permission from Community Coordinated Child Care of Union County