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Old 11-17-2011, 12:06 PM
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Abigail Abigail is offline
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Default My First Official Daycare Interview...

I already will have my friend's two kids in my daycare next month, so I technically have kids enrolled. I never did a formal interview with my friend, but she already filled out the food program information and did the general enrollment sheets. She knows the rate and I will have a contract and handbook ready for her soon.

I got a phone call from a person who was recommended to me by my licensor! I felt so special, LOL. We have an interview scheduled for next Wednesday at 1 pm. She already knows my rate and I hope she doesn't try to lower it. I am about 15% higher on my rates than other places so I actually compare closer to a center's price than a home daycare price. She has one infant who is almost 1, so I really don't want to lower my rate because I can only have 3 infants and she might fill my last infant spot.

Please share any DO's and DON'Ts with me! I have to finish my final revisions to my papers and print them off. I have a folder I will put everything into and once it's done I'll write and let you all know what I've decided to put into the "Welcome Packet"

PS, I don't have any kids enrolled so even though she is coming here at 1 pm, it would be just her and maybe her child. I do plan to call on Tuesday-day before- as a reminder of our interview for Wednesday as that will show professionalism.
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Old 11-17-2011, 12:14 PM
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Don't comprise your rates. You set them for a reason. My infant rates are higher than the rest until they get out of state ratios.

Put everything in your contract and be very explicit that way there is no question. Some topics I have are sick policy, vacation time, sick days, meal times, rates(be sure to include late fee charges, check return fees, etc), child is responsible for damages, transportation policy, med policy, picture policy, no pets, no smoking, etc. I could go on and on. My contract is 11 pages long right now!! I have been told I am very thorough and usually don't have many questions by parents because I've answered them all already in the contract for them.

Good luck
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:13 PM
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Take notes
Don't change your hours unless it's convenient for you.

If its an infant find out if they can consume from a bottle successfully.

Be yourself!!

I just learned that we should have all potential clients fill out an application with their information. Check their ID against it to make sure it's valid.

Have a sample menu of foods you will serve
Schedule of daily routine

Discipline policy is always a big one!

Don't fill the spot for the sake of filling a spot. Take some time to think about if this is the right family you can work with.
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Old 11-17-2011, 02:07 PM
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I agree with most of posts here. Don't lower your rate or change your hours. Stick to your contract and handbook (make sure that it is thorough). We can easily burn out early by giving in too much, just wanting to fill a spot and end up regretting it later. All the best.
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Old 11-17-2011, 03:00 PM
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I don't have any advice as I tend to interview by the "seat of my pants" but I wanted to wish you luck - I know you've worked hard to get to this point .
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Old 11-17-2011, 03:33 PM
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WooooHoooo! Yay congrats! You must be so excited! I'm so happy for you! You go girl!
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Old 11-17-2011, 04:57 PM
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I decided long ago I was only going to take one non-mobile infant because two is just too hard! The only way I would do it is if they are twins. My sister has twins and I have a soft spot, LOL.

My friend's children are about half a year and a year and a half so my non-mobile infant spot is taken. This girl coming to interview obviously cares about her child IMO because she had connections to social services to get recommendations and I was the one or at least one of them! She knows my rate and since her child is only 1 (next month) she is too young for me to budge so I'll keep my place with my rate. I really don't want so many young young ones so that is for the higher rate. I have a newborn-2 rate (10% higher than my other rate) and I have an ages 2+ rate (15% higher than most home daycares). So my "infant" category rate is really 25% higher than most of home daycares who don't charge according to age.

Thanks for reminding me about adding a menu sample. Right now I only have a week's worth, but soon I'll make another week trying to make at least 3 week's worth of menus before anyone starts. I wish I had more on my walls, my goal is to try to find something this weekend.

My plan: Have a folder ready. Greet them and do small talk like "Did you find the place easily" or a classic "Are you ready for this winter weather" LOL, then offer to give a tour and answer questions as we go. Then do I just ask if they would like to go over my handbook with me or then have them sit down at my 10 inch tall chairs/20 inch tall table and open the folder and show them all the contents and then ask if they would like to go over the handbook or do I just go ahead and go through my policies with them without asking? I'm guessing the tour would only take 5-8 minutes. Should I tell them the interview will be about 30 minutes if they ask? I also have water bottles to offer them!
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