11 Tips to Find the Best Childcare Centre for Your Little One

With many childcares available in Sydney to choose from, it becomes a big decision for parents to find the right childcare centre for their children, their most precious creations of which they want to provide the best start in life. It is important to try getting it right from the start, as no carer would want to move a kid from a centre to another after he or she gets used to the new friends and teachers, and their new homes away from home.

Everybody wants a childcare that ticks all the boxes, while not paying a fortune, even if the carers are eligible for childcare subsidy, the amount they pay out of pocket would still need to be affordable. A childcare centre should be that unique place that works on nurturing children and assists their development during their first few years in life, which are considered the most important. Play-based learning is a concept that many of the best childcares in Sydney have adopted, in order to provide children an environment for learning and development while still keeping it fun for kids to enjoy.

When picking which childcare to use, ask yourself what the most important factor for you is to find in this centre. Ideally you would want a childcare provider that can meet all your requirements, with a name that is trusted and reliable. Some people are looking for long day care centres, or an occasional care centre, while others are an early learning centre, not just somebody to look after a child while the parents run errands.

So, what is it that makes the ‘perfect childcare centre’? Little Zak’s, as a leading group of early learning centres, have put these tips for you:

  1. Objective
    Decide what services and facilities are important for your family and your kid, is it after hours service? The extra-curricular activities? The size and capacity of the childcare?
    Make sure you set your goal in order to then start your research.
  1. Education
    Educational programs are one of the most important factors parents should be asking about when enrolling their kids at a day care centre, since it’s not just a place to leave the kids at while carers are at work, this is where the children spend a lot of time and it should be preparing them for school. Also, check if your child would be learning new languages at the facility or not.
  1. Philosophy
    There is no right or wrong when it comes to the educational philosophy, it simply means the centre’s philosophy and educational mission is in line with what you are looking for and can accommodate your parenting beliefs.
  1. Location
    Everyone has a busy life and schedule, between work, training, family and many other activities in this busy world, it is important to find a childcare centre that is conveniently located to your daily needs, and making sure it wouldn’t affect your routine, since it’s a long-term commitment until the child reaches school age.
  1. Availability
    It is a very bad idea to leave the decision regarding your choice of childcare utill the last minute, as many childcare providers have a long waitlist that could sometimes exceed couple of years, early planning is important as quality childcare centres in Sydney are usually busy enough and easily hits their capacity.
  1. Cost
    While all carers are willing to give their children the best start for their lives, it is important find an affordable childcare centre that meets your household income, since it can take a big portion of it based on what government subsidy you could be eligible for. It is also important to see what the inclusions within the fees are, such as fresh meals, language lessons, swimming, and other extra-curricular activities. Check the government childcare subsidy calculator to see how much subsidy you can get, if any.
  1. Licensing
    Any childcare service must be registered to align with the National Quality Framework, so it is important to check that wherever you will be leaving your child is a registered service on the ACECQA website.
  1. Cleanliness
    While some people take it for granted, it is not as simple as it seems. When you book a tour to see your local childcare centre, make sure you look out for the details, including hygiene procedures, how clean and fresh the centre is, are the staff presentable and clean or are there any red flags?
  1. Nutrition
    Check what sort of meals are offered at the childcare centre, and whether it offers healthy fresh meals that are well-balanced or not. Ask for sample menus to see how flexible the centre is, since some kids are fussy and would require a special meal. Some centres might allow carers to send food, while other might not. You can ask to see the kitchen when you book a tour.
  1. Reputation
    Read online and ask the parents about their experiences. Read reviews and testimonials of your local childcare centre and see if it aligns with what you are looking for. This only sets expectation and is not to be used as the sole indication of the childcare’s quality.
  1. Facilities
    Many modern childcare centres go out of their way to offer children a lot more than just a playground. Ask about the rooms and play areas, the other facilities available such as swimming pools, soccer fields, music rooms and any other extra-curricular activities, to create a fun and safe environment.

We hope we were able to help you with some tips to follow when looking for the best childcare centre for your child. Trust your gut and follow what you think is right for your family after you have done your research. After you do your research, make sure you book a tour when you find your local childcare centre. Check our childcare centres in Sydney to find a spot at a childcare centre near you.