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Most parents today need daycare for their children, but finding quality daycare is not easy. Here are some tips to help you find the kind of care that's right for your child. I might also include some of my own daycare experiences on this page.

Be clear about what you want
There are a variety of child care options, so be clear about what you are looking for. Do you want in-home care or center-based care? Do you need full-time care, or can you manage with part-time? Sit down with your partner and decide what is workable from your point of view, as well as what is in the best interest of your child.

Start looking early
Daycare providers can have waiting periods of up to a year, so make sure you sign up for the center you like well before you actually need to use the facility. The best time to begin your search is when you find out you're pregnant.

Take advantage of public services
Many towns have services that help parents find quality care for their children. You can check for such programs with your city hall, your local church, or with friends who have children of their own.

Interviewing Potential Caregivers

When visiting a potential caregiver, come prepared with questions such as these:

* Are you certified in infant/child CPR?
* What qualifications do you have?
* Do you hold a degree in child education or development?
* How many children are in your care at any given time?
* How does this number compare to the state requirements for child care facilities?

Looking for online resources? Check out this site:

Child Care/Parent Provider Information Network

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