From the Mouth of Babes:
Provider Insight

What Child Care providers want all parents to know...Please take these thoughts with you while you’re on your search for a loving & caring home for your child to be cared for...

‘The Professional Provider’
Why We are NOT Babysitters!!!
by Positive Provider Members

Renae N. said; ”The time spent with the kids.  The educational experiences they are given like art, group time, music, outdoors, large and small motor activities.  The detail on health and safety of each child and their families.  The hours we put in.  The "stuff'' we have to deal with!”

Laura C. Said; “Providers work hard every day to improve their businesses to include ongoing childhood education, meeting with other providers for support, keeping up on changes in our child care laws and following them, offering healthy meals, learning the proper ways to educate children, such as the DAP method where children learn as they play!  Each step a provider takes to improve themselves and what they have to offer, along with lots of good old fashioned love & attention, makes them a Professional Provider...and worth every penny!”

Copperrr said; “To me a "Professional Provider" is someone who chooses childcare as a career not just a job... some one who continues their education to keep up with the latest developments in early childhood education....someone who devotes their time and days to making life better for children.... someone who enjoys teaching children & watching them develop at their own pace..... someone who has the time and the patience to make sure that the children in their care receive the proper love, nurturing and emotional stimulation that they deserve to get a good start in life.”
What makes me a professional provider and not a baby-sitter? Allot of the things that I have mentioned above.... and also the fact that I have turned my home into a place that I feel is best for the children in my care. I further my education so that I am aware of the latest information in early childhood development...... and I actually teach the children in my care. They don't just come to my home and watch TV and play all day. I try and give them a good start in their education that that they will need to succeed in school.

Mel G. said: “A babysiter is just that "a sitter". Someone that you can leave your child with and know they are safe. A "Provider" is someone that is going to provide you more of a service. They are there to teach your child the basics of day to day life. They have the devlopmental training to help your child through their devlepmental milestones. It is not tv and snacks. It is a learning environment with a goal in the end. It is learning through play.”

Cassie D. said; “As a professional in the field of early childhood education and family life, child care providers are a part of a vital and evolving profession committed to understanding and improving the practice of quality child care. A competent provider develops and renews skills by taking advantage of opportunities for professional development.”
Signs of professionalism:
~Demonstrats a positive attitude and enjoyment in working with young children
~Understanding and carefully following all state regulations where applicable
~Keeping all information about children and families confidential
~Evaluates their own performance to identify needs for personal growth
~Membership of a professional organization or association to keep informed about child care practices
~Shows desire of exceeding any and all child care standards
~Knows their limits

Julie K. said; “Having policies and structure to your business and running your daycare as a "business".  Becoming certified/registered/licensed in your area and taking advantage of continued education. Having organized activities for the children and a routine to your day.  Not just plopping the children down in front of the TV all day.”

Sue D. said; “A professional child care provider is a person who has gone extra steps in child care.  Besides the CPR and First Aid, the training involved in areas of Brain Development; Child Development; Special Needs; Nutrition; Safety; Curriculum - the same things that teachers in ECE learn.  A Professional Child Care Provider is a Resource to parents.  A person a parent can come to for advice on their child whether or not it's health issues or where to find a place to visit with them or other kinds of advice.  A Professional Child Care Provider loves her job - this job certainly isn't about the money (as we DO make little after expenses and good ole' Uncle Sam) but about a love for children and a concern for the well-being of children in a world that sees so much violence and hate.  A Professional Child Care Provider means stability and safety to a child on a daily basis.  A "constant" in that child's world.
A babysitter is a person, usually a teenage girl, who will watch a child or two in the evenings or during the weekend and is paid an hourly rate to entertain children for a couple of hours or just to be there while children are sleeping while parents go out.  There may be little to no knowledge of training in the area of children.  They are not required to take any classes.  This is a job for spending money at the mall.”

Tama B. said; “A Professional Provider provides children with structure and a learning environment.”

‘Actions Speak Louder than Words’
What Parents do that make us feel taken advantage of:
by Positive Provider Members

Renae N. said; “Being called a 'baby-sitter' I'd like to be called a provider instead.  Not getting paid on time, parents should give us the same respect (if not more) as any other business, that is what it is no matter if it's in our home or not.  So, parents should pay us on time.  Not following our policies, Parents should follow all policies and not argue about them or think they can break them.  All businesses have rules and they should all be followed!”

Tama B. said; “I feel taken advantage of when a parent assumes that I do not have a life after hours and does not pick up on time.  I would like them to think about how they would feel if they were not able to leave their job at the scheduled time.”

Copperrr said; “I think the #1 thing that parents do that makes me feel like they are taking advantage of me is late pick ups or early drop offs without calling first. Some parents think that since we are open from a set time to a set time, that it's ok for them to drop off anytime within that time frame or pick up within that time frame. Some parents think of us as just an easy way to get rid of their children for awhile. I feel that if a parent has the day off or gets off from work early, they should either keep their child home with them or pick them up immediately. If a parent was to call and let me know that they got off work early but need to do something important, and they asked me to watch their child a little longer..... then that’s fine. But just leaving them here from open to close because they feel that they can..... to me that’s them taking advantage.”

Mel G. said; “Call me a "babysitter" and think that I am their personal employee. I want my parents to understand what it is their child will actually be doing in my home. Don't just drop your child off and pick them up but be aware of what actually goes on with their child. If they do this, they will call me a sitter.

Julie K. said; “Violating my policies and assuming I will do something or telling me to do something instead of asking.  Treating me like "hired help" instead of working together for the wellbeing of their child.”

Cassie D. said; “A child care provider can easily feel taken advantage of when they are not appreciated. If you are happy with the service they are providing, be sure to express that to your provider.”

Sue D. said; “Be PROMPT in picking up your child.  A Child Care Provider has a family of their own and their own obligations to her children and her husband.  If a parent infringes on the time after hours of the Provider it's not a small inconvenience, it's a HUGE one.  Be on time.  Should an emergency come up, the Parent is just that - the Parent of that child.  It is the Parents responsibility to make other arrangement for the pick up of that child - the Provider only provides a service and the parents problems are not the Providers”.

Laura C. said; “I would have to say that being made to feel like a Baby-sitter is the worst thing I can think of....along with this goes parents not communicating with the provider, not following policies and trying to get out of them, not calling when they will be late...and just showing up when they feel like it....but most of all, talking down to the provider like they are not important or you are more educated then us, because I guarantee that a provider who has been caring for children for many years has more experience with children than most parents do, and we want to be treated as intelligent people that ARE educated in this field!”

‘Show Your Appreciation’
What a Parent can do to make you feel Appreciated:
by Positive Provider Members

Renae N. said; “Recognition of what I do is important.  Recognition that it is a small business and not just for "fun".  Payments on time and following all written policies.  Showing their appreciation with more than words.”

Laura C. said; “I don’t need a lot...but a simple Thank You each day would go such a long way...and not complaining about policies after the parent has agreed to them and enrolled their children!”

Copperrr said; “Accept and follow ALL of my policies in my contract~!!!! To me, that would show that they respect me as a person and as a professional small business owner.”

Tama B. said; “Just a little note once in a while that says ’Thanks’ ”!

Sue D. said; “A cup of coffee in the morning; or a simple thanks for all you do for us.  A nice "gift" would be if all of the parents got together one day and called each other and said, "Let's surprise her and give her a day off!"

Parents should remember that they are their child's best advocate. Before enrolling their child in any day care, parents should be educated on how to choose a quality child care setting / provider.”

Show your provider you care by remembering her on Provider Appreciation Day, May 7th, 2010!!!

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