Finding Quality Care & Early Education for Your Child
Start Your Search by Touring a School
Use this checklist to keep track of the information you gather when touring schools. When you’ve visited all the programs you’re interested in, compare the information to help determine the right fit for your family.
Locations & Hours
- Is the location convenient to your work or home?
- When is the school open?
- Do the hours fir your schedule and care needs?
- What is the tuition?
- Does tuition include breakfast, lunch and snack?
- Does tuition include transportation to/from your child’s school?
- Does tuition include school readiness, literacy and Spanish programs?
- What are the extra fees (registration, supply fees, late pick-up fees)?
Staff & Teachers
- Do the children and teachers appear happy?
- Is the teacher involved with the children (i.e. on the floor with infants)?
- Do you feel comfortable with the teacher?
- How long have the teachers and director been with the school or working in childcare?
Atmosphere / Facility
- Is the classroom equipped with a wide range of materials?
- Do classrooms have observation windows so you can easily see what’s going on?
- Are the rooms designed for interest centers, such as dramatic play, art and literacy?
- Are there separate playgrounds for older and young children?
- Do the children seem to interact well together?
Program & Curriculum
- Is the facility licensed?
- What is the name of the curriculum being taught?
- Is the curriculum state-approved?
- Is there a weekly lesson plan or schedule posted?
- Is there a balance between free choice/free play and teacher planned/structured activities?
- Can children choose not to participate in activities?
- Is the children’s work creative and individualized or all look the same?
- Does the curriculum help children prepare for elementary school?
- Is there a literacy or character development program?
Health, Safety & Nutrition
- Is the front door locked for security?
- Does the school have a family handbook with policies on discipline, illness, medicine, emergencies and accidents?
- Is there a teacher in each classroom trained in first aid or CPR?
- Are toys and equipment cleaned and disinfected daily?
- Are nutritious meals and snacks served? Is there a menu posted?
Communication & Family Interaction
- Is there an open door policy? Can you visit anytime?
- Is a daily record kept of feeding, naps, diaper changes?
- How often does the facility provide feedback and reports on your child’s progress?
- Are there periodic parent-teacher conferences?
- Does the school communicate to parents through email, letters or an app?