Daycare Update

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Two weeks ago, Chris and I decided to change daycares for the kiddies. After a series of events that I just wasn’t comfortable with, we started looking around and found a daycare that was closer to our house. The format and systems that the daycare uses (ex. potty training, daily routine, curriculum, etc.), which is fine because we liked all of that about the other place. Our biggest criteria this time were the teachers. We wanted kinder, gentler teachers, and we really think we found them at our new daycare. The kids start at the new place on October 31, so we have one more week at our current daycare and then onward and upward.

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The situation at the old daycare has been a little tricky, but I think I’ve handled them as best I can. On the day that the final incident happened at the daycare, I went to work fuming. And crying. And fuming some more. My first instinct was to pull the kids out that very day. But Chris convinced me that:

a) we had to give two weeks notice at the daycare
b) we didn’t have anywhere else to take the kids
c) we needed to talk to the administration at the daycare before we did anything

So, I cooled off at work and when I went to pick the kids up that afternoon, I stopped in to see the manager before I got them. Very calmly, I explained the problems I had seen and told her about the incident that had happened that morning. I told her that we expected more from our caregivers and that we had been very disappointed and concerned with the care Michael was getting. The manager listened intently, assured me that she would speak with with Bean’s teachers, and apologized for the problems we had experienced.

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Nevertheless, Chris and I began our daycare search the next day. Once we found a daycare a few days later, I had to give notice at the old daycare. I really dreaded that. But actually, it wasn’t so bad. The next morning I dropped the kids off, I asked the front desk receptionist for a withdrawal form, completed it at the desk right there, and – voila! All done!

The kids are starting at their new daycare next Monday and while I’m really nervous for Bean Man, I know that this is really such a great thing. Not only will I feel better about his teachers, but because it’s a daycare in our neighborhood, he’ll be going to school with our neighbor’s kids and children that he’ll eventually go to kindergarten with. Not to mention, it’s so much closer to our house, so Chris can help with drop off and pick up now.

Looking back, there are a few things I would have done differently about picking a daycare. First, I wouldn’t trust other people’s judgment more than my own. I chose this daycare because so many people I work with had kids that went there and they had such glowing recommendations. But the fact is that even if 100 other kids had wonderful experiences, for some reason my kid didn’t. And I should have listened to my own voice instead of following everyone else.

Secondly, I would have looked closer to home for a daycare. It has been really rough to be the only parent responsible for regular pick ups and drop offs because when I started to notice problems, I didn’t have anyone else’s eyes to take a look around. Actually, Chris and I got into a little bit of a tiff over the whole situation. I was mad that he kept saying he didn’t know enough about the situation to help me decide whether to move the kids or not and I kept saying it should have been his responsibility to be at the daycare more (even though it’s over an hour away from his office). It wasn’t really either of our faults, but it was definitely something to learn from. When it comes to caregivers, I’m going to always prefer now that they are somewhere both Chris and I are close to so that we have two sets of eyes checking things out and the responsibility to make major decisions about them doesn’t fall just on one person.

Even though we’ve had this one negative experience, I am still a fan of daycare. When it’s a good one, it’s a place where my kids can learn and grow and be encouraged and stimulated. But if my kids are going to be in daycare, it had better be a place where they are happy and I am comfortable. My standards are high, but my kids are worth it.

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19 Thoughts to “Daycare Update”

  1. claire

    I find it really interesting when you think about the differences between child care systems in different countries. In Australia there is a MASSIVE shortage of child care places, and parents often have to commit to, and sign their kids up to, a child care place before they’re even born to guarantee a place. To be able to leave one place, and sign up to start at another two weeks later, is kinda unheard of here. So glad that you’re able to do it, and that you’re happy with where the kids will be now.

  2. Good luck! I hope the transition is easy. I also hope the teachers don’t dress up scary for Halloween. Can you imagine . . . “Here, Bean, meet your new teacher, the zombie witch.”

  3. Our daycare here in Pgh is a block from our house and having it so close is just so convenient. I’m so glad that you have found someplace you like. It is really great that Bean will be at the same place as the kids in the neighborhood!

  4. 3fites

    Yay! so glad you found a new place! And I totally agree that Daddy should take on some of the burdon/privledge of being involved in drop off/pick up. My husband picks up most every day and it’s facinating to talk about the differences in what we both experience there. I also pop in unannounced quite often so I can see what REALLY goes on!

  5. Good for you, sounds like a step in the right direction. If this is the right one you will know, don’t be afraid to move them again if you need to. Once they are in the right spot you will know. Also thanks for the tips on what to look for, I think having it close to your house sounds like it will be full of benefits, good luck. : )

  6. ugh. i hate that yall had to go through this but it sounds like you have handled it like a pro and that the kids will be in a much better place!

  7. Andrea

    We did the same thing this year after nearly 3 years at one daycare. The one we switched to is out of the way, but the teachers are much more caring and educated/trained to properly care for our son. You won’t regret doing it!

  8. I’m so happy you’ve found a new place! You will feel so much better, and so will your sweet babies. Good luck!

  9. I think it’s good that you followed your gut with this one. We picked our daycare for when I go back to work, but I’m starting to get nervous about whether I’ve made the right decision and how will I know if it is the right decision, etc. It’s tough b/c you don’t want your kid to ever be in a situation where they aren’t happy and comfortable. But it’s just so hard to know b/c you’re not there. I think you made the right decision, though, for what that’s worth…

  10. I’m so glad you found a daycare that fits your needs. We live in a small town so our daycare/preschool choices are extremely limited. This year since my son was 3 at the start of the school year, I was able to switch him to a great preschool. My husband is now able to help with drop off and pick up and it has been such a relief. It has also been a relief to have in a stable daycare environment. His other school would switch the teachers around all the time which was really confusing for the kids. I completely understand your feelings and hopefully, Bean will adjust quickly.

  11. momiss

    I cannot believe that you could possibly ignore your feelings long enough to wait 2 weeks.

  12. I have been wondering what the outcome of this was. I am glad to hear you went with your gut and changed places. I also think it’s a good thing to hear that you and Chris fought over it. It really shows how involved and invested you BOTH are in your kids’ well-being. Always a silver lining, right?

  13. Cindy

    I have been wondering what happened after your last post. I really think that you did the right thing. I had a similar situation with my son (who is 12 years old now). It’s important to go with your feelings because you want to feel comfortable with your childcare situation. Also that is great that the new daycare is closer to where you live so that Chris can help with drop off and pick up!

  14. Tressa

    Glad you followed your gut feeling Katie. Good luck to you all and I hope both kids adjust fast. You and Chris truly make beautiful children together!! 🙂

  15. Sonya

    You were right to follow your gut. Just because one place is great for one person, doesn’t make it the right place for another.

  16. HeatherM

    Your mother’s intuition will never steer you wrong.
    I do have to disagree with Chris that you have to give a daycare two weeks notice- you certainly do not, especially if it is related to the safety of your child. I don’t know if this was a safety issue or more of a kindness/ engaging the kiddos issue, but if it was the former, follow your intuition and get the kids out ASAP. If there is any refund issue, threaten to report them to DCFS for the safety issue and to your local or state health department for the roseola issue, and that should take care of it pretty quickly. I’m glad you had such a great experience at Bean’s very first daycare, so you can compare this experience and have a frame of reference for why it is not right.

  17. LOL love Lindsay’s comment…that’s too funny!

    I hope Bean does well with the transition. You did what you felt was best for him, and that’s all you can really do. He’s a tough little dude…he will certainly adjust to it over time. You have to go with your gut, and when it is telling you something is off, you do what needs to be done.

    And your babies are so stinkin cute that it makes me want to have my own. But in the meantime, I’ll just enjoy the cute pictures!

  18. I’m surprised your day care has a two week notice rule! We’ve never encountered that and we’ve been to practically every day care in our town. We always just left one and went to the new on the next day with no issues. I’m glad it worked out though, day care choices can be extremely stressful.

  19. When we had Connor in daycare, we picked one close to our house so we could split the drop offs and pick ups. It was great that we could both be involved with the daycare that way. So, good for you. 🙂

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