Stop Hating on Daycare-It’s a Valuable Service
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What do you think of daycare? Is your first thought, why do people put kids in daycare? Are you just hating on daycare or do you know what really goes on? Can daycare be good for children?
I hear it every day. Something happens to a child in daycare and the whole world is ready to crucify them! If it’s the provider’s fault or not, crucify! If it’s a home or a center, crucify! ESPECIALLY if it’s a home daycare, crucify! Everyone is always hating on daycare.
Why is the first thing we think of when we think of daycare is bad? I have been in childcare for over 20 years, providing great quality care in my home. During this time, I have given all of myself. I have sacrificed having a better-paying job. And I have sacrificed tons of family time working long hours.
I’ve spent a good part of my life caring for kids and every day I hear something negative about the profession.
They’re just in it for the money (what money? I make less than $10,000 a year working 60 plus hours a week? Who would even do that if not for pure love?) Daycare costs a lot, but it also costs a lot to do it!
It’s easy (HA, it’s the hardest!)
All daycares are nasty (Do you know how much TIME I spend making this place not nasty? UGH)
Daycare or child care is not bad. There are bad people in every profession, but guess what? When a child dies of SIDS at home or at grandma’s house, they don’t plaster that all over the news. Do you know why? Because it doesn’t sell. Everyone will think, oh, that poor family. No one thinks, tie them up and set them on fire, they lost their child.
When a daycare provider loses a child in their care, they are destroyed. I personally know people this has happened to and they never get over it. Is their pain as much as the family that lost that child? No, of course not. But do they love the kids they care for? Yes. And they hurt when something bad happens to them.
SIDS in daycare
Did you know that 80% of SIDS deaths occur outside of daycare when babies are with their parents or grandparents? I bet you didn’t because that doesn’t sell in the news. Did you know that daycare providers are trained to cut down on the risks of SIDS? I wish that the families were too. I wish there was training before they left the hospital with a newborn so we could prevent even more SIDS deaths by reducing risk factors.
Accidents can happen anywhere. If a child is injured, it’s not necessarily negligence on the part of the provider. Yes, it does happen, and when it does, it’s blown up all over the media. Gross! But many times, it is no one’s fault. And I hate seeing human beings being destroyed over things like that.
Many times, when an accident happens in home daycare, the provider loses their own children. Did you know that?
Yes, DHS many times declares that all children are in danger when something happens during care. For example, a child could fall and sustain a head injury. Many things can lead to this, but say the DHS worker suspects the provider did something wrong.
The first thing that happens is she is closed. So suddenly she loses all income immediately. Her reputation is ruined. Next thing, DHS comes and gets the providers own personal children. This is happening to a provider near me right now.
So now, even if she is cleared totally and found to have no fault, her children are traumatized, her business is ruined, her job is gone and her life is in shambles. If that happened to me, I would probably go crazy.
I know that DHS has to be cautious because there are cases where children are in danger, but I’ve seen people “think” something is wrong when it turns out to be a birthmark or something totally innocent. I’ve also seen kids who really are in danger and person after person turns the family in only to have nothing done to help the kids.
I know that DHS workers are only human, but I also know their regulations stink. A lot needs to change! I’m not here to hate all over DHS. Regulating children’s safety is a tough job and people making the rules may not really know what is going on in the field.
When I hear people talk about child care or read articles on the internet hating on daycare, it makes me sick. Some of these things have actually been said to me personally.
“we’ll being under investigation she should go to jail obviously someone did something to this little baby that’s ridiculous and ppl that don’t have family or friends trust day care workers because they had no one else This is sad it’s very sad”
“so day care providers killed him????that’s why I don’t like home day cares. The state need to close them all. We don’t know what be going on inside the home day cares smh. Should have learned a lesson from what happened to other children at other home daycares in the past. Please stay away from home daycares”
“I don’t like home daycares. I don’t care what kind of training and stuff they do. don’t care if DHS comes to do visits. After dhs leave we don’t know what goes on inside the home. Shut the home daycares down.”
Classic negativity about child care
“our boy ain’t never going to a daycare!”
“unfortunately ppl in the business don’t always care and only do it for the money”
“they would never use a home daycare ever again cause no one was going to tell them WHEN they could take their vacation????”
“if you do daycare you just sit around watching soaps and get checks”
“I bet you make a lot of money”
“Why have kids if you’re going to put them in daycare with someone else.”
“Daycare is bad because of all the germs. The kids have Grose and discusting hygiene practices (digging in their Butts, toys in mouth, etc) the germs get people sick. Canr seeteachers having enough time or patience to catch each one before that child contaminates other tgings and people. don’t know how you are never sick.”
“Why would someone ever put their kids in a home? It’s much more dangerous. “
“Too many kids for one adult. High turnover for that adult.”
There is value in daycare
Wouldn’t you LOVE to work in a field where everything that ever came out of anyone’s mouth about it was negative? It’s hard to continually show up and give your best when society as a whole thinks what you do is crap.
This world would not function without daycare. Quality care is precious and a wonderful gift to a family. Good care helps moms succeed at work. And there is a ton of great things that kids learn in daycare.
Most of the time, the quality of care kids receive in a licensed facility like a home or center is far better than what they would get from a relative such as grandparents or an aunt. Not always, but most of the time. Obviously, grandma is going to love the child. But there’s more to consider.
People think family is best, but the training and hours of research we providers put into what we do adds a lot of value to what we do. I always tell everyone I know, if I could start over as a mom after learning what I learned doing child care and getting my child development associate, I would be a far better mom.
I’m not saying I’m better than anyone else, I just know I’m better than I was before I had years of training and experience.
I get sick of hearing people say moms belong at home. It’s not always possible for a mom to be at home. She may not want to. The mom may not be good in that isolated role. She may be a single mom. What if a mom loves working? Whatever her reason, it’s okay for a mom to work, it takes all kinds of people. And whether a mom works or not is up to her and not your business.
I can assure you, working moms do not destroy the family. If a mom takes the time to find good quality care for her child, she’s doing a great job.
Here are more hating on daycare comments I’ve seen on articles about child care:
“This is EXACTLY why I don’t want Ella going to daycare, especially at this age were she might not be able to understand what happened, to be able to tell me”
“that’s exactly what we did with our son. I stayed home with him until he was old enough to be able to tell us if something had happened!”
“My daughter is three and talks pretty good, but I still don’t trust. We struggle, but it’s worth it to know that she’s safe.”
“Close it down!”
“THIS IS WHY OUR KIDS WILL NEVER SET FOOT INSIDE OF ANY DAYCARE!”
It goes on an on. I could add comments all day of people hating on daycare. Each time I see or hear these things, it hurts me and my image of what I do. I know there are bad providers, I understand that, but we all get lumped together and it hurts.
If you could see a small glimpse of the time and effort I put into each day with my kids, it would probably blow your mind. I am a great provider and put my whole heart and soul into what I do. My body is breaking down from it. My mind is slowing down from it. I have given it 110% of me. I see a ton of value in what myself and many of my colleagues do.
If you think daycare is nasty because kids get sick, think about how they are building their immunities for their future school careers.
What about all the wonderful skills kids learn in daycare like getting along with other kids and managing their feelings. How to interact with other people and developing empathy and social skills. Self-help skills that build self-esteem.
Learning to separate from parents earlier helps make the transition to school easier on kids. Kids learn a routine and a schedule which impacts future academic success. Kids build wonderful relationships in daycare settings.
There are so many benefits of daycare for kids that I could go on all day. Not all daycares are good, but there are many that are. But guess what? No one wants to put that in the news. When I got accredited the first time years ago, I had a press release for the paper to tell my home town about all the awesome things I was doing. Guess what the editor said? “We already have too much positive news”
I got a letter from our local senator congratulating me and asking me why it was publicized. Guess what? It never was…
Anything positive I try to shed light on gets shut down by the media. A group of home providers got together and wrote a pitch for the local news station. We worked hours on our presentation to no avail. The news station wasn’t interested.
Another time our neighborhood flooded and the local news came by to interview us. The cameraman saw our preschool garden and asked about it. He said, “wouldn’t it be awesome if we could put what she’s doing in there on the news?” The reporter agreed and they pitched it to the producer. Nope, not juicy enough for tv either.
Good things going on do not sell. So, don’t look for the truth about daycare overall to ever be covered by the media. It just isn’t going to get ratings. So think about that before you are hating on daycare.
Some of the providers I know offer great physical education classes, outdoor nature-based play, loose parts play, personal care such as oral hygiene and personal hygiene, cooking, and healthy eating. Many providers run their homes like a family with inclusion being at the core of everything that’s done.
Some provider’s main focus is healthy attachment and building relationships. Some homes provide a 1:3 adult to child ratio for more specialized care. Planting and harvesting fresh food from a garden. Teaching life skills, manners, and social skills.
I know a provider who has an art immersion program and every activity is reinforced with an open-ended art project. For example, if they were studying gravity, they would drop paint on paper and see how it paints. Another does a full Spanish immersion program teaching kids a second language. Many providers teach second languages such as Spanish or sign language.
A special benefit of home daycare is multi-age setting. Younger kids teach older kids nurturing, empathy, and patience while older kids teach younger kids vocabulary, motor skills, and so much more. Family child care is a very special setting!
Did you ever imagine all of that was included when you were hating on daycare? Did you ever think childcare was that involved or meant that much? I know most people don’t. I’d love for people to see a day in my life. I think it would really change their mind.
Wouldn’t it be great if child care was seen in the light it deserves? I always see memes and comments about how awesome nurses are for being on the front lines. Teachers are like heroes in people’s eyes. A firefighter is looked up to. But a daycare provider is seen as a slacker, a slouch, a loser.
I hope these few words can help open your eyes to what an amazing gift daycare is to families, to children and to society. I hope you are hating on daycare less and thinking about what really goes on more.
If you’re interested in the most important job in the world, check this out.
I like how you mentioned that quality daycare helps parents succeed at work. My wife and I are struggling to take care of our kids and work full-time jobs and we were wondering if it would be a good idea to put our kids in daycare. I’ll be sure to let her know that putting our kids in daycare will help us do better at work.
I’m glad it was helpful.