Thursday, November 5, 2009

Why Yes, I'd Love for You to Watch My Child

Tuesday night I visited one more in-home child care provider. I'd like to share with you three red flags that should always warn you not to allow someone to watch your child 40+ hours per week...

1) When asked why she's registered than licensed, she said, "Well, if you are registered, the state allows you to self-police and if you are licensed, they police you. Besides, it's extra paperwork, which I'm not a fan of." That's right, she pretty much said that she didn't want anyone coming into check on the safety and cleanliness of her care.

2) I asked to see which part of her home infants sleep in. She led me to her living room, pointed at it through a doorway (we couldn't go in because there was a babygate up), and didn't even turn the lights on so I could see the room clearly. If there are sections of their home that they won't let you walk through or even see, that's a problem.

3) I asked whether she thought she'd have any openings in March 2010. She said that she has an open slot right now. I, of course, said that I assumed she'd fill that slot prior to March 2010. She said that if I gave her a one-week deposit, she'd save the slot for me. That's right, she has so little faith in her ability to attract one more child that she'll take $200 to reserve a slot four months in advance.

Now, my personal pet peeve is that she had some derogatory political cartoons on her fridge. I'm generally pretty liberal and I know that not everyone is, but I don't want my child to be watched by someone who is going to push their political views on him, particularly if I disagree with their politics. In addition to the political cartoons, she started talking about health reform and how Obama's trying to turn us into Canada. Big. Mistake. I just so happen to work in health care and have a masters degree in health policy. I also happen to be very supportive of health reform. Again, I don't think everyone has to agree with my politics, but I think it would be a wise business strategy to not push your politics on parents.

So, the end result is that she absolutely doesn't have our business.

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