my little guy is in year 2 of preschool...
biggest thing is go with your gut when you walk into the preschool...how do you feel?
some of the questions we asked was:
- What is their philosophy of education.
- What discipline techniques do they use?
- what are their postive reinforcement techniques?
- copy of the curriculum
- how is drop off handled? do you go in with child?
-does the teacher/aide get down to child's level and greet them/talk to them?
-how long has the teacher been teaching? if younger ask them their goals in education...or are they there just for the jb or do they have a passion for kids/education
-how is the room decorated? are there activity centers? computers? dress up for role play? kitchen set? blocks?
- emergency plan? do they call an ambulance or does a staff member take the child to the hospital
-are the teachers and staff CPR/first aid trained - also if allergies are an issue - epi pen trained
- do they have fire drills
-what is their close policy for inclement weather? Is there another space they can take the kids into if there is an emergency? like a basement
what time is drop off pick up and at what time does the first structured activity start-make sure there is not too much lag time.
- if they notice a child is struggling or can do something with ease - how do they keep the child engaged? How does the teacher give added value to the lesson?
-are the teachers certified
-what is the ratio NJ is 1:12 pretty sure - in my opinion is crazy!
-what is the turnover...how many different teachers/aides have been in the class over the last year...do not be suprised but it seems it is a revolving door for preschool
-what is the max # of kids they would have in the class
-do they provide the snack or do you - what are they offering?
-do the kids in the class look happy and engaged?
-are the toys current and clean? age appropriate?
- get examples of hand out and worksheets
- what is their goal for each child by the end of the pre K program - we looked for reading readiness
- field trips? can parents accompany the child
- what is the invovlement? will you be expected to provide items/be at parties/etc...my son's preschool it is a minimum-which at first I did not like but it is for the best in my opinion
-how much time to they play outside? is the ground cover soft?
- do they celebrate all holidays? talk about current events?
- what is their policy on sickness?
- cost? do you pay even if you do not attend or on vacation? My son's pre K is $25/day for 3 hrs 3 days a week
-check out bathrooms..if they are not in the classroom who goes with them? Plenty of soap?
-what kind of arts and crafts do they complete - how do the supplies look?
One of the best things to do is...when you narrow it down...go to the parking lot around drop off time and approach the moms/dads after they drop off the child and just ask them how they feel about the preschool and would they recommend it -
guess I sound like a crazy mom, huh? ha ha ha
just feel like you are paying for a service and you want your child to be safe, happy and engaged - this is their first experience with school and you want it to be positive. Warning you will never be 100% happy with everything - wo you will need to weigh what is important to you.