Parents Looking for Child Care
Where do parents start finding quality childcare providers or facilities?
First, parents may contact Child Care Aware at (785) 357-5171 for a list of child care facilities or at: http://www.ks.childcareaware.org
Second, parents may contact the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) for a compliance history of a home or center. This can be done by:
- Sending a written request to: KDHE, Bureau of Child Care and Health Facilities, 1000 SW Jackson, Suite 200, Topeka, KS 66612-1274
Go online to: http://www.kdheks.gov/bcclr/capp.htm
What things should parents pay attention to or look for when interviewing?
"Quality Child Care" is when a provider or facility is following the regulations, going above and beyond the requirements, has a safe, clean, positive, and healthy environment for the children in care, and all staff interact well with the children.
First: Parents should look for a posted license issued by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. Licenses will not transfer from one address to another.
Second: Parents should look for any health and safety issues. Some issues might include diaper changing procedures, hand washing procedures, enough clean/safe areas for children, safe indoor and outdoor equipment, and hazardous items should be stored properly, etc. Look and listen for a "child friendly" facility.
* Smoking is not allowed in the home or facility during hours of operation.
Note: All children are required to have outdoor playtime (weather permitting), including infants.
Third: Parents should watch and listen to how providers/staff talk to and interact with the children. This gives the parent an opportunity to see how the care will be provided for their children.
Fourth: Parents should ask many questions of their provider/staff. What are the facility's procedure for emergencies, care for sick children, illnesses, etc.?
Fifth: If a provider asks you to sign a contract, which many do, completely read it and understand each aspect of it before signing. Please note that signing the contract binds you to the requirements stated therein. It is a legal document. Always ask questions if you need clarification and request a copy of the signed contract for your records.