L. asks from Dallas, TX on August 25, 2006
How to decide if I should send my child to daycare or a nanny?
I have had a nanny for the last 4 years. Okay, well, I was on my third. She suddenly took a week off, leaving me with no childcare for a week - okay that and other drama. I started looking for a new nanny and the more people I talk to, the more I realized there is a common problem with nannies: lack of discipline. So, I am considering putting my 2-year-old in a daycare. That was always the "D-word" for me, but I just can't have my kids running around all over town with a nanny and the nanny giving them everything they want. Has anyone else been in this situation? Has anyone else experienced the leap from nanny to daycare? Any feedback? thanks!!!! Pardon my grammar!
Different family have different needs for their child. The good thing about nannies is one-on-one care and the obvious one of not being around all those germs. Some parents think being in daycare is better as they love the structured environment of day care, the learning, the activities and the socialization.
D.L. answers from Dallas on August 25, 2006
L., Just my oppinion but I feel better with childcare centers than I do home care. You have one person there with your child that normally you don't know. In centers at least you have people coming into the schools. They are monitored by State,Health and Fire. Even if a home is registered with the State they seldom go out to them. They are short handed so it's hard for them to get to individual homes. The one thing you won't have to worry about with a childcare place is them not showing up or being dependable. Don't feel guilty that you are upset over her not being dependable. If you can't depend on her, why have her. With anything you have your good ones out there and bad. I would check out some schools and then just go by your gut feeling. A mothers gut feeling is usually right on. Make sure if you call schools that they will allow you to come by anytime to check them out. If you have to set up an appointment it makes you think it is staged. I wouldn't like the idea that my kid's were taken to alot of different places. Everytime she get's them out they are at more risk for something to happen.
A good one to check out if it is close to you is Childtime on Hedgcoxe in Plano. They have a very low turn over with their staff. Their staff is older and have been at the school for a long time.
What ever you do, I wish you luck!
R. answers from Dallas on August 25, 2006
Foremost, ask yourself -- why am I hiring a nanny? Is it so that my kids can have a one on one care? Is it mainly for your convenience? Is it due to economics? What is the main reason you want a nany.
I have one and I learnt midway that I needed to bring perspective into the picture. When I did, I accepted my nanny with all her flaws (like we don't have any) because she met my basic needs and the rest was just the price you pay for getting what you want -- she takes care of the kids and provides the one-on-one care I wanted. I look for other ways to fill the gaps where the nanny isn't able to -- educational etc by putting them in an MDO. My nanny also helps with cleaning when the gals are in the MDO. I am sure there are days we get on each others nerves but let me tell you one thing is that she didn't just happen in my life...she was brought in it to teach me a thing or two about patience, acceptance and appreciating other human beings without expecting perfection in imperfect situations.
In short, what is the number one thing you need from the nanny? Does she at least fulfill this need within reason... and considering that no one person can and should be expected to meet each an every need in our lives, does she come close enough.
Just my two 2cents...
T.C. answers from San Antonio on August 25, 2006
I would go to a quality inhome daycare. I looked at daycares and was horrified. I found a WONDERFUL in home daycare and to me that's the way to go. I drop in off at her house and pick him up there everyday. It is a low ratio. He just is with one other little boy and gets LOTS of love and spoiling (the good kind). You get what you pay for so, look for someone good. You can check out if they are licensed or have had any violations and what they were.
M.B. answers from Dallas on August 25, 2006
I made the transition from nanny to daycare when my son was just over a year old, as our nanny was relocating with family. There are bad daycares out there and there are some good ones. I chose daycare after interviewing new nannies and finding that we truly had a gem (I asked for non-smokers only and one woman showed up smelling like an ashtray). The problem I saw with nannies is that there are no checks and balances that you have in daycares. I also checked into inhome daycares, but was concerned with the caregiver wanting to take the kids to the mall and she had teenage sons living in the home and there seemed to be alot of different people in and out of the house during the day. The place was also kept nearly as tidy as I would like for young kids that spend alot of time on the floor.
I chose a daycare near my office and since I was breastfeeding, I went by everyday at lunch. Your daughter is older, so it might be more difficult to check up on her during the day. But, I found that with the daycare near work, they know you can drop by at anytime. I also worked to establish a good relationship with the care providers and chose one that had a 5 to one ratio for the younger kids. I did see some situations that upset me and made the director aware and they were corrected. I would suggest checking with other mothers in your office to see if there isn't a nearby daycare that they use.
I don't think there's a standard answer in terms of nannies being better than inhome providers being better than daycares. Each of these options has their own share of horror stories in the news, as well as distinct advantages. I would suggest you evaluate all alternatives and choose what seems best for your situation. I found the educational focus of most daycares very appealing for my kids and they were only in two different daycares through first grade (I switched them when the older one was ready for pre-K and the younger was just over two). So, with your girl's ages, you should be able to find a daycare that will meet your needs for the next 3 years.
S. answers from Dallas on August 25, 2006
i have a 14 month old and choose to have her at home with a nanny.If you find the right one its the best thing that can happen to your kids and you.
I am planning to send her to a Montessori program when she gets to about 2 years and have a nanny part time.I will avoid all daycare unless i have NO CHOICE.
there are some good one out there but i cloth diaper, EC and my DD is vegetarian so all daycares are not really a option..
my 2 cents