Phone Interview
(reprinted with permission from Alexander Day Care)

Information

Date: __________

Referred by:________

Name: __________

Phone #:_________

Address:_________

Full Time _ Part Time _

Days needed: M T W Th F

Hours needed:_______

Looking to start care by: ____________

Children's ages: __ M or F __ M or F __ M or F

Have they been daycare before? Yes or No

If yes, Reason for leaving previous provider:______

Previous provider: _____________

What are your Day Care needs: __________________________

What are your Day Care expectations: __________________________

What duration of care do you need: Long Term Temporary

Does your child(ren) have any special needs, such as medical or dietary: Yes or No

Please explain: __________________________

Points to Cover

~ Fee (disclose now if the fees are paid in check or cash)+ Hours of day care are:

~ Days we are open are:

~ We are closed for the following holidays during the year, (and if holidays are included in fee state so now)(if you have registration fee, or deposits state so now)

~Provider Vacation, let them know what dates you plan to be off. (if you do not charge for your personal vacation time off tell them now, or if YOU DO charge let them know now)

~ Lunch and snacks are provided (unless child has food allergies) (if on a food program, state so now)

~ I am CPR and 1st aid certified

~ Sick Policy: flu, temp 101 or higher, vomiting, strepe throat, diarrhea, sore/discharging eyes, communicable diseases, undiagnosed/oozing rash.(Children cannot attend if ill and contagious, if your contract states that you are still paid regardless if child is present or absent, state this to parent now there are no deductions)

~ There will be occasional short field trips(only if you do these things, if you do not take the kids off premises, state so now)

~ Promote my day care (anything extra you do for your daycare, example, parents day, pot lucks, holiday get togethers, parent involvement, parent volunteer time at day care, any awards, recognition's you might have, if accredited say so, any education in Early childhood development, how the kids interact with each other, etc. don't be bashful)

~ Activities (such as home preschool program if you have one, learning environment, arts and crafts, etc.)Story timeIndoor / Outdoor play areasWalksTrips to the park (if you do this, let them know)Let them know now if this is a structured or non structured environment. and mention other activities: lessons are still taught through activities such as circle time, calendar, weather, music time, games and songs, arts and crafts, numbers, letters, shapes, etc. (example)Each child gets individual attention:our enrollment here is a maximum of ______kids. This is a FAMILY childcare, the children are involved in family type things such as helping to prepare lunch, clean up time, birthday celebrations, etc. These are self help learning activities.

Information for You

Do I want to meet this family: Yes or No

Do they want a personal interview: Yes or No

Interview Date:_______

Time: __________

* Be sure they have directions to your home.

Some Questions They Might Ask You

~ How many children enrolled now?

~ The age group of the children enrolled, how many of each age group

~ Types of outdoor equipment you have, indoor toys or equipment.

~ How long in this business.

~ References to call now before setting up interview.

~ License number so they can check you out in advance (have this written down on your interview sheet, a long with references so it's handy when they ask this. Have you had any citations. (if so simply state them in simple terms not always necessary to go into full detail)

~ Do you have children of your own there? What are their ages?

~ What types of meals do you serve?

~ Do you have a helper? Who is this person?

~ Can I drop in any time I want during the day (all states have an open door drop in policy, so you have to say yes, but I always let parents know, that...
1. Lunch, and nap times is not always best: Kids will stop eating lunch if parent shows up, and people coming in and out during nap time can disrupt the group, and wake them up.
2. If you come and your child becomes upset because it confused him into thinking it was time to go home, would you be willing to take him? Something to think about when you drop in because kids don't understand that you are leaving again, and can become very upset, making him miserable, and emotionally stressed. (always make sure you speak of their child and what this does, never what it does to you, they could care less)

~ Do you keep your doors locked? If yes, Why" I thought we are allowed to drop in anytime. It is wise to keep your screen, or security screen locked at all times, or door with a peep hole. YOU ARE ALLOWED TO DROP IN, BUT IT DOESN'T MEAN THAT YOU CAN'T STOP AND KNOCK FIRST, OR THAT I CAN'T LOCK MY DOOR. I ANSWER QUICKLY SO THAT IS NOT A PROBLEM. FOR THE SAFETY OF THE KIDS, DOORS AND GATES WILL BE KEPT LOCKED AFTER ARRIVALS. THIS IS TO PREVENT A CHILD FROM WANDERING OUT THE DOOR, OR GATE, IT ALSO PREVENTS SOME STRANGER FROM JUST WALKING IN. I am sure you have heard about the person who walked into a center and took the whole center hostage a couple of years ago? WE UNLOCK THEM AGAIN BEFORE PICK UP TIME, All parents do knock before entering so I can see who is at my door, plus respecting that it is still my home. Since I will answer my door in a timely fashion, it is obvious I have nothing to hide or worry about. However, I must keep the safety of the children first and foremost. I am here alone with these kids, or it's just me and my helper.

~ What do I need to bring for my child? Do you have someplace to keep his supplies, i.e., diapers, wipes, spare clothes, or do I bring them daily?

~ Explain your illness policies to me more.

~ Explain your fees to me more. Do you take checks or cash? If cash only, why not a check? To avoid delays on checks that can be held up to 10 days for clearance, or avoid receiving a check that might bounce, we only take cash. You can bring it in a money order or Bank cashier check, you will receive a receipt.

~If a parent asks for advice to help her in her search for childcare, give her the advise, it opens up more comfort between you and her and communication. I am new and never put my child in day care before, I don't know what to look for, can you help me so I know a bit more with the other interviews?

Advice for Parents

1. Make out a list of questions to carry with you, so you don't forget what to ask.
2. Ask Licensing what to expect when doing a home day care visit so you now that they are in compliance, here is the phone number for licensing ___________
3. Go with your gut instincts, if you are not comfortable with the provider for any reason, thank her for her time, and go on to the next interview.
4. Be sure there is plenty of activities, toys, and equipment for the age level of your child and other ages as your child grows.
5. Check her license, make sure she has one, call licensing for clearance on her license.
6. Get references as well. Current parents and past parents, find out why they left.
7. Check for normal cleanliness of the house, but don't expect spotlessness, because it is a home, there are kids there and it should look like kids use the house and enjoy it.
8. If the provider is to involved in keeping it totally spotless throughout the day, who is watching the kids?
9. Check the yard and make sure it is clean and free of anything really hazardous, play equipment should be in good condition, children should not have access to the street or front yard.
10. She meets all licensing standards.

*Final note from Pat:I hope this information helps you with your phone interviews with parents, and parent questions. Use the girl scout motto. "always be prepared" and remember the more professional you conduct your daycare, your interviews, and how you handle the business end of the day care the better the parents will treat you. And thank you Monica, since I borrowed your phone interview list, even though I added to it.
Miss Pat


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