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  #1  
Old 07-02-2015, 04:40 PM
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Default Client Wants To Visit the Home When Children Present

I live in MN and I don't see anything in the rule that says it cannot be done
I have never done it before
Has anyone ever done it in a way so that it works out with the kids
Short time span, right time of day, consent with families, individual background of potential client and how they understand children.

I have never had a client come during childcare hours but if they might or happen to be an educator with experience working with young children it might be ok, or say a teachers assistant from a center. I would not want any other parent though unless they understood the dynamics of children, the different temperments, etc.

So what do you think, some part of me says it can be done, but some other part of me says what about the consequences.........Visitors and children going crazy for your undivided attention= problems
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  #2  
Old 07-02-2015, 04:47 PM
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I don't provide that service. My parents wouldn't want strangers in the house while I'm caring for their kids.
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Old 07-02-2015, 04:54 PM
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I wouldn't do that, I would not be comfortable allowing that for many reasons, privacy for the other children in my care, throws my routine off schedule, kids act different, parent watching my every move, a second goodbye which could be an issue, parent wanting to chit chat which takes my focus off of the kids, etc. Even if all those things could be resolved I still wouldn't do it because it not how I have my business set up, it's not something I want to do. If a parent needed that they would need to choose a different provider.
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Old 07-02-2015, 05:20 PM
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I don't allow it. WAY too disruptive and a possible safety issue.
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  #5  
Old 07-02-2015, 05:22 PM
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I don't provide that service. My parents wouldn't want strangers in the house while I'm caring for their kids.
This...
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  #6  
Old 07-02-2015, 05:32 PM
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Sometimes I just need that extra advice even though I know it would be a disaster. Thank you everyone
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  #7  
Old 07-02-2015, 07:10 PM
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I'm a little late in the game but I do it. I require it actually ... but not before a telephone interview and an in person interview during non business hours. I like to see who I'm dealing with and get together with both parents (if there are two) and the child.

Then I have one parent come back with their child for a short 30 minute "play date". I like to see how the parent handles the way that I handle the kids. I also like the extra chance to see the child actually interact with the other kids. This way I can try to catch any "red flags" regarding the child's behavior or an overprotective parent. It also gives me an extra glimpse to get a little feel for the dynamics in the family (is mom firm, overbearing, critical, too casual etc)
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  #8  
Old 07-02-2015, 08:02 PM
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I always invite families to visit during my time with kids. They may come in the mornings between drop-off and lunch, or after nap but before pick-up. I want them to see what our day is like--not just what the environment is like. If I were a parent looking for child care, I'd want to see how the provider interacted with children, what the tone of the group was, how children were allowed to use the space, etc... I let them know that I may not be able to talk much then; that the children must come first. I put out something interesting to keep the kids pretty independently engaged (this week while we had a visitor, it was play dough, and watercolor painting). So usually, I am able to talk. I also have lots available for them to read/look at: parent handbook, sample documentation of learning, project work, etc. So if I'm busy, they have plenty to do. I let the kids know we'll be having a visitor, and what my expectations for behavior are. I also let parents know (I don't ask permission).

Inevitably, something will go wrong at some point. My own daughter once hit a younger girl when she was visiting. Her mother still enrolled her, and later her sister. I think the question is not "how will the kids act," but rather, "how will I handle it?" A good parent will understand that stuff happens, and if you handle it well, it's a great example of what kids will learn in your care.
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Old 07-02-2015, 10:14 PM
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I wouldn't, for the sake of the privacy of the other children.
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  #10  
Old 07-02-2015, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa View Post
I'm a little late in the game but I do it. I require it actually ... but not before a telephone interview and an in person interview during non business hours. I like to see who I'm dealing with and get together with both parents (if there are two) and the child.

Then I have one parent come back with their child for a short 30 minute "play date". I like to see how the parent handles the way that I handle the kids. I also like the extra chance to see the child actually interact with the other kids. This way I can try to catch any "red flags" regarding the child's behavior or an overprotective parent. It also gives me an extra glimpse to get a little feel for the dynamics in the family (is mom firm, overbearing, critical, too casual etc)
I do it exactly the same. The parent is told up front to expect the kids to act out and that they can only stay for about 20-30 min because no parent can be left alone in a room with the kids at any time.

Always works out well for me.
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  #11  
Old 07-03-2015, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by nothingwithoutjoy View Post
I always invite families to visit during my time with kids. They may come in the mornings between drop-off and lunch, or after nap but before pick-up. I want them to see what our day is like--not just what the environment is like. If I were a parent looking for child care, I'd want to see how the provider interacted with children, what the tone of the group was, how children were allowed to use the space, etc... I let them know that I may not be able to talk much then; that the children must come first. I put out something interesting to keep the kids pretty independently engaged (this week while we had a visitor, it was play dough, and watercolor painting). So usually, I am able to talk. I also have lots available for them to read/look at: parent handbook, sample documentation of learning, project work, etc. So if I'm busy, they have plenty to do. I let the kids know we'll be having a visitor, and what my expectations for behavior are. I also let parents know (I don't ask permission).

Inevitably, something will go wrong at some point. My own daughter once hit a younger girl when she was visiting. Her mother still enrolled her, and later her sister. I think the question is not "how will the kids act," but rather, "how will I handle it?" A good parent will understand that stuff happens, and if you handle it well, it's a great example of what kids will learn in your care.
In my case I work with babies... protecting my new charges is my main concern & the fact that it's just me & 3 or 4 littles under 14 months at this time - Nope, it's crazy enough trying to get things done without people watching over my back. I use to do the 30 minute thing and stopped years ago because it was way too disruptive and my job is to care for my kids, not be answering a million questions from someone who may or my not have a clear background (if you know what I mean).
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  #12  
Old 07-03-2015, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by nothingwithoutjoy View Post
I always invite families to visit during my time with kids. They may come in the mornings between drop-off and lunch, or after nap but before pick-up. I want them to see what our day is like--not just what the environment is like. If I were a parent looking for child care, I'd want to see how the provider interacted with children, what the tone of the group was, how children were allowed to use the space, etc... I let them know that I may not be able to talk much then; that the children must come first. I put out something interesting to keep the kids pretty independently engaged (this week while we had a visitor, it was play dough, and watercolor painting). So usually, I am able to talk. I also have lots available for them to read/look at: parent handbook, sample documentation of learning, project work, etc. So if I'm busy, they have plenty to do. I let the kids know we'll be having a visitor, and what my expectations for behavior are. I also let parents know (I don't ask permission).

Inevitably, something will go wrong at some point. My own daughter once hit a younger girl when she was visiting. Her mother still enrolled her, and later her sister. I think the question is not "how will the kids act," but rather, "how will I handle it?" A good parent will understand that stuff happens, and if you handle it well, it's a great example of what kids will learn in your care.
^^^^^ This!!!!!!!!!!!

I've never scheduled an interview outside of daycare hours.

I WANT potential clients to see what truly happens here during the day.
I WANT potential clients to see me manage conflict, praise successes, encourage friendship, juggle kids' personal needs, initiate discoveries, promote manners and most of all, I WANT potential clients to see how I personally multi-task, maintain and manage the in's and out's of my daily routine.

I am also in the camp of NOT preparing my environment for interviews either. I read tons of providers that will deep clean, organize and go all out to make their homes presentable for an interview (on a personal note, as a parent I would not choose that provider because of that).
Again, I WANT potential clients to see on interview day the same things they will see on day #1 and day #100.

Presenting myself as extremely organized, hospital-like clean and without a toy or piece of equipment out of place would not be an accurate portrayal of myself or my program. I would feel fake if I tried to present myself in one way and then operated in a different way so when I interview NO special preparations are made at all.

I also think it's fantastic for the current daycare kids to get an opportunity to be ambassadors of our program and let them demonstrate their abilities to get along, play well, follow the rules and "show" the potential client what a portion of their day is like. It's great practice for them to use their manners and social skills!

I am also in MN and there are NO rules that dictate when or how we conduct interviews.
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  #13  
Old 07-03-2015, 09:36 AM
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^^^^^ This!!!!!!!!!!!

I've never scheduled an interview outside of daycare hours.

I WANT potential clients to see what truly happens here during the day.
I WANT potential clients to see me manage conflict, praise successes, encourage friendship, juggle kids' personal needs, initiate discoveries, promote manners and most of all, I WANT potential clients to see how I personally multi-task, maintain and manage the in's and out's of my daily routine.

I am also in the camp of NOT preparing my environment for interviews either. I read tons of providers that will deep clean, organize and go all out to make their homes presentable for an interview (on a personal note, as a parent I would not choose that provider because of that).
Again, I WANT potential clients to see on interview day the same things they will see on day #1 and day #100.

Presenting myself as extremely organized, hospital-like clean and without a toy or piece of equipment out of place would not be an accurate portrayal of myself or my program. I would feel fake if I tried to present myself in one way and then operated in a different way so when I interview NO special preparations are made at all.

I also think it's fantastic for the current daycare kids to get an opportunity to be ambassadors of our program and let them demonstrate their abilities to get along, play well, follow the rules and "show" the potential client what a portion of their day is like. It's great practice for them to use their manners and social skills!

I am also in MN and there are NO rules that dictate when or how we conduct interviews.

...my feelings exactly! I only interview during business hours. They are being interviewed for a place in my daycare not my family. I will however try to schedule around any difficult behaviors I may have at the time.
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  #14  
Old 07-03-2015, 10:03 AM
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We do it at our daycare often because people might be interested in meeting their child's teacher and get a feel for what their child would encounter during the day as far as routine.
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  #15  
Old 07-03-2015, 10:04 AM
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I in no way mean this snotty but I wont do it unless absolutely necessary. Too much pressure for me.

I don't want to do it. I don't have to do it. Therefore it wont be done.

Kudos to you that do! As a parent I would want that opportunity as well.
I just personally couldn't handle feeling judged my every move. Perhaps I'm not as trained as you all either.

I like my peace.
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  #16  
Old 07-03-2015, 01:50 PM
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I let them come before their first day to introdue them to the other kids and show them our general routine, but it is a short visit (15 min or so) and then I send them on their way. Their first day is a quick drop off and we go from there. It is a hassle sometimes, but I make sure to schedule it when we are done with breakfast and everyone is ready to play. I also try to do it when we are out in the backyard too. My dcks are too busy playing, so it is a little less intense for the newbie and not such an inquisition for the m by the other kids. They are always curious when someone new comes around! I keep a small group, though, so I can definitely see why those with more kids wouldn't want visitors durig daycare. Just do whatever is best for you!
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  #17  
Old 07-04-2015, 09:14 AM
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I am so up in the air about this and I know why. I feel that as a parent I would want to see the childcare/preschool in action. I think though that I have heard so many stories of chaos occurring when this happens in homes.

I see that certain expectations of behaviors should occur with the children when there are visitors and certain expectations of the visitors should occur prior to a visit and honestly it would be great practice for the children to learn from the experiences.

My concern is when you have that one child who just does not give a .....and does what they want, or when you have a parent with no background working with children.

How I handle it is important and I want to try it but honestly I am a little intimidated as it would be my first time doing it.

It would be my first time doing this. I will look over the advice and go from there.
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Old 07-04-2015, 02:19 PM
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I've never scheduled an interview outside of daycare hours.
I scheduled an interview only outside of daycare hours. It usually takes around two hours. I can not imagine to do same when children are here during an interview.
If someone asks me about a first visit during the daycare hours I always answer "NO". Just because I have a rule "no any strangers near my daycare kids". A second or third visit can be during my daycare hours, but an own kid of visitor must be here too.
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Old 07-04-2015, 02:58 PM
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The interview/going over handbook/answering questions is after hours. If someone wants to drop by for 10-20 minutes in the morning or after nap with their child that is fine. I think it's great for the child to see what the center is like beforehand so he/she knows where they are going to be going for child care is wonderful.
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Old 07-05-2015, 07:19 AM
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I scheduled an interview only outside of daycare hours. It usually takes around two hours. I can not imagine to do same when children are here during an interview.
If someone asks me about a first visit during the daycare hours I always answer "NO". Just because I have a rule "no any strangers near my daycare kids". A second or third visit can be during my daycare hours, but an own kid of visitor must be here too.
I keep interviews on site during business hours to one hour max. Everything that can be discussed on the phone is done so before the actual face to face meeting. I don't do multiple meetings.

I also live in a small enough community that I don't have to worry about strangers around my kiddos. All my enrollments come from word of mouth from current or past clients so everyone knows everyone in one way or another.

I don't allow parents of enrolled children to stick around at drop off or come spend some time before actually attending though as once they decide to enroll, hanging out at drop off on the first day serves no purpose to anyone in my opinion.

Love hearing how others do things as it brings a ton of interesting ideas and thoughts to the table.
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Old 07-05-2015, 08:39 AM
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I am split on this. On one side I see protecting the kiddos, on the other, I see and understand that the parent wants to know what is really going on. I have done it both ways, but I try not to let my first meeting with parents be while children are here. A second meeting I feel better about, because I have met them.
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Old 07-05-2015, 08:45 AM
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I am so up in the air about this and I know why. I feel that as a parent I would want to see the childcare/preschool in action. I think though that I have heard so many stories of chaos occurring when this happens in homes.

I see that certain expectations of behaviors should occur with the children when there are visitors and certain expectations of the visitors should occur prior to a visit and honestly it would be great practice for the children to learn from the experiences.

My concern is when you have that one child who just does not give a .....and does what they want, or when you have a parent with no background working with children.

How I handle it is important and I want to try it but honestly I am a little intimidated as it would be my first time doing it.

It would be my first time doing this. I will look over the advice and go from there.
I tell parents that the children like to show off when a new adult is around.... They might get wild and not listen. I then explain that once the new adult is gone, the children go back to behaving.
I also schedule them during outside time... The kids have less trouble to get in while they are outside running around.
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Old 07-05-2015, 02:06 PM
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I am split on this. On one side I see protecting the kiddos, on the other, I see and understand that the parent wants to know what is really going on. I have done it both ways, but I try not to let my first meeting with parents be while children are here. A second meeting I feel better about, because I have met them.
The worst provider on the planet will act like Mary Poppins and Nanny McPhee rolled into one while being watched.

Even the best provider in the world may be caught on a bad day with difficult, cranky kids and appear out of control.

So I feel that they never REALLY see how things are run.

I always tell parents to watch for happy kids coming and going from daycare. That's the best indicator.
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Old 07-05-2015, 02:11 PM
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So I feel that they never REALLY see how things are run.

agree!
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Old 07-05-2015, 02:12 PM
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The worst provider on the planet will act like Mary Poppins and Nanny McPhee rolled into one while being watched.

Even the best provider in the world may be caught on a bad day with difficult, cranky kids and appear out of control.

So I feel that they never REALLY see how things are run.

I always tell parents to watch for happy kids coming and going from daycare. That's the best indicator.
That is true, anyone can look awesome for an hour I suppose. I guess I just hate to think like that.
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Old 07-05-2015, 02:13 PM
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I always tell parents to watch for happy kids coming and going from daycare. That's the best indicator.
Yes, it's right!
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Old 07-07-2015, 08:14 PM
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Every time I have done an interview with as little as 2 kids in care it does not work out. I wouldn't do it. Tell her you arent allowed to have strangers in your dc during business hours. After all you want to be able to focus on then interview. I have found that it's to much of a pain, and way to stressful. Offer to do an after hours interview at least the first time then do another one if she really wants to.
Deb
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Old 07-08-2015, 05:57 AM
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The worst provider on the planet will act like Mary Poppins and Nanny McPhee rolled into one while being watched.

Even the best provider in the world may be caught on a bad day with difficult, cranky kids and appear out of control.

So I feel that they never REALLY see how things are run.

I always tell parents to watch for happy kids coming and going from daycare. That's the best indicator.
Yes and no.

It's really hard to sustain the act the longer the parent is there.

And there are people who do/say things to the kids that they feel are appropriate but would make you go
For instance I had a kid in my care whose last day care provider thought it was a good idea to bite him to show him why biting was bad
And she *proudly* told mom that at pick up... She wasn't hiding her stupid.

I'm in the camp of allowing parents to visit during dc, and I also refuse to do anything differently. So kids who act up sit in time out even with a visitor here Also, most parents understand the kids will act up to an extent, but they are looking to see how it's handled. They are looking to see what goes on in the program. I would do the same. And honestly I'd wonder about the provider who claimed they didn't want to have a parent visit due to poor behavior on the kids part.
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Old 07-08-2015, 06:09 AM
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Yes and no.

It's really hard to sustain the act the longer the parent is there.

And there are people who do/say things to the kids that they feel are appropriate but would make you go
For instance I had a kid in my care whose last day care provider thought it was a good idea to bite him to show him why biting was bad
And she *proudly* told mom that at pick up... She wasn't hiding her stupid.

I'm in the camp of allowing parents to visit during dc, and I also refuse to do anything differently. So kids who act up sit in time out even with a visitor here Also, most parents understand the kids will act up to an extent, but they are looking to see how it's handled. They are looking to see what goes on in the program. I would do the same. And honestly I'd wonder about the provider who claimed they didn't want to have a parent visit due to poor behavior on the kids part.
I've had many parents enroll BECAUSE of how I managed the conflict, occasional chaos and "showy" behaviors from the kids that happen when there was a new audience present.
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Old 07-08-2015, 08:07 AM
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I let parents that they can choose whether they'd rather come during the day or at night. During the day they can meet the children but it's harder to talk uninterrupted; at night we won't be interrupted but they won't get to see the children. If they choose to come during the day I schedule it for mid-morning when it's least crazy.
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:32 AM
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I let parents that they can choose whether they'd rather come during the day or at night. During the day they can meet the children but it's harder to talk uninterrupted; at night we won't be interrupted but they won't get to see the children. If they choose to come during the day I schedule it for mid-morning when it's least crazy.
This is how I've always done it. It's worked out well for me conducting interviews both during the day or after hours. I leave it up to the parents to decide which one they'd prefer.
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:47 AM
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For those of you who do daytime interviews....

How do you go over policies, expectations, etc in depth? Or do you?

I like to use the interview to go over my handbook and ask questions and can't imagine trying to do that while trying to keep an eye on everyone, too.
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:50 AM
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For those of you who do daytime interviews....

How do you go over policies, expectations, etc in depth? Or do you?

I like to use the interview to go over my handbook and ask questions and can't imagine trying to do that while trying to keep an eye on everyone, too.
A majority of the policies are discussed over the phone and via e-mail.

I will go over highlighted or bulletin points during the interview but that is more of a review of what has already been discussed before meeting face to face.

HTH
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Old 07-08-2015, 11:37 AM
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For those of you who do daytime interviews....

How do you go over policies, expectations, etc in depth? Or do you?

I like to use the interview to go over my handbook and ask questions and can't imagine trying to do that while trying to keep an eye on everyone, too.
I don't go over my policies in depth during the interview - my Handbook is 58 pages and way too long to read over together. I email the Handbook to parents before the interview so they can look it over and bring questions to the interview. I realize that means that some won't read through it, but they agree to abide by the policies so I figure it's their problem if they don't know what they're agreeing to.
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  #35  
Old 07-08-2015, 12:08 PM
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Crazy8 Crazy8 is offline
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I do not do interviews/visits during daycare hours. I am in my house alone with children all 3 and under, I am going to keep it as safe as possible and not allow someone who I have no background on into my home. I do initial interviews in the evening when my husband is at home. I require both parents and child to attend. I will allow a parent to stay for 15-20 min. on the child's first morning but that is after I have all their paperwork on file.

I also agree that they will not see the REAL daycare setting in that visit. Kids act up much more than they would without the audience and I think most providers would be on their best behavior for that time as well.
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Old 07-08-2015, 01:32 PM
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Snowmom Snowmom is offline
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I love hearing the differences in what everyone else does.

My process is this:
1. Parents (calls or emails) are directed to my website where they can see my hours, general location, basic philosophies, rates and what's included.
2. Initial interviews are set up on the weekend where we can talk uninterrupted, as well as the fact that I do not want strangers around the kids and I want my husband home (so I feel safer). My handbook is given then and I highlight important areas during our talk. Usually no more than 30 minutes- 1 hour.
3. If they want or require a quick visit during daycare hours, that's fine as long as it's very brief as I have a couple kids who like to seriously test boundaries when another adult is around.

On an off topic note; I've had a couple past parents "comment" on my webpage with a reference, so I don't have to give those out anymore. I never understood why someone would ask for a complete stranger's telephone number to talk about another complete stranger.
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