Summer Supervision of Your Children

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Despite what the weather indicates, summer is just around the corner! This time of year can be very challenging for parents in terms of what kind of care and supervision will be available for their children once school is not in session. Many childcare facilities take children only to the age of 12 or 13. Other options may not be available due to cost or capacity. It is a good idea then, to start thinking about the end of school care as soon as possible.

1. Determine what appropriate childcare options are available. What ages do they take? What is their child to staff ratio (this question is important even if your child is older)? What are their discipline philosophies? Have there been any complaints against them? Do they do background checks? What is their playground equipment like (if applicable). What trainings are the staff required to attend…CPR, Child Abuse training, etc?

2. Camps are another option for families…both day and overnight. Similar questions should be asked of any camp as well…trainings, background checks, staff to child ratio, etc. What kinds of activities will be available, and what are the age groups for each activity? For instance, you may not feel comfortable with your child being involved in a specific activity due to their age or development.

3. Relative\friend care is another option for families during the summer. Although it may feel awkward, it is just as important to ask questions of relatives and friends about their plans and skills. Be very clear with them about your expectations for care. Perhaps you don’t want your child sitting in front of the TV all day. Perhaps you don’t want them going to other friend’s homes whose parents you have not met. What is around their home that could pose a hazard…pool, lake, no fenced yard, wooded areas, etc. Again, even if you have an older child, supervision is imperative.

4. If you are in a situation where an older sibling is watching a younger sibling, be extra vigilant. How old, and more importantly how mature, is the older child? Will it be all day, every day for the entire summer (something that’s not recommended)? How well do they get along? How many children will the sibling be watching? Who is in the area (friends\relatives) that can assist if needed? Do they know what to do in an emergency? Insure they have taken a formal babysitting class. What hazards do you have around your own home?

5. Prior to summer’s coming, have your child spend time with whomever will be providing care. Leave them with your provider (if possible) for short amounts of time prior to having to leave them for an entire day.

For more information for both caregivers and parents, go to:

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.