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What to look for(7 Posts)
I'm pretty sure this has been done before, but apart from the feel of the place are there any tips when looking at a nursery for DD?
I've got a few questions about nappies and bottles (DD will be about 6/7 months) but anything else?
Policy on discipline.
Late collection fees.
Notice to leave
Flexibility to reduce/increase hours
Are the children happy
Are upset children being comforted or ignored (I visited one nursery where a crying child was left to cry for 10 mins I was in room. Straight off my list!)
Do they combine age groups ever. My DD nursery combine rooms for 8-9 and 5-6 but separate for rest of day/ Other nurseries may put all children up tp 2 in one room on quiet days. Do you mind this if it happens.
Outside space. Do they have free flow play - where children go in and out all day as they choose subject to reason or do they have set inside/outside times. If the room is a way from the garden it is more likely to be the latter. If the garden is right outside the room then the former.
Look for how old the staff are. IME older staff who have their own children are better than all 18 or 19 years olds. A mix of both groups is fab.
Staff qualifcations and turn over.
Is food freshly cooked on site?
Where do babies sleep and are they flexible about nap times? Also, how to they help babies to sleep?
Do they do a daily diary? What about other contact with parents (i.e. parents evenings, Twitter, email updates...)
How will they help your DD settle in?
The feel of the place is very important though. Like mnistooaddictive says, see how happy the children look and how the staff interact with them.
no appointment needed to look round
low staff turnover
staff really engaging with children - lots of cuddles and positive contact
Staff turnover and use of agency staff in addition to every one else's comments. Do they let you spend time just sitting in rooms? My DD and I spent 1 hour in the baby room, where she would be going on our viewing visit. It really gave me a feel for where DD ended up spending 4 and half years of her life.
Thanks all. We went to look at a nursery today and were pretty impressed. Your extra questions helped, although lots of them had been covered by the info they sent out before we visited.
All we have to do now is decide if using a nursery in combination with granny is what we want to do (but that's a whole different thread!)