I leave my daughter at a daycare.
There are 40 other kids there ranging from 1 year to 10 years. There are loads of ayahs and four teachers apart from the other helper guys who come and do odd jobs here.
When you leave your child at a daycare, the questions of her safety, physically, emotionally and sexually always run through your mind.
No, I completely trust all the teachers in the daycare, I even trust all the other people there.
But there are few things I definitely do to ensure she is safe. I write this to let other parents of who leave their children in the daycare, that even if leaving your child there is inevitable, these are few pointers which may help in ensuring the safety of our children.
1) Talk to her EVERYDAY about what she did (Now that she is almost three, I definitely get responses)
2) Ask her who all she played with, did she get hurt (did she hurt anyone also)
3) Ask her if she did potty in school and if yes who washed it for her? did it hurt when that person washed it (Yes I do ask such questions to her, however stupid they sound)
4) Talk to her teachers EVERYDAY. I know its stupid that I give a call to the daycare at 1.30 EVERDAY, but I do that, ask them if she is fine, blah blah blah
5) Tell her that she can say hello, good morning and bye to her friends,the helpers etc from a distance and avoid her from kissing or hugging anyone unless its someone I trust and that too in front of me
6) I always ensure that I get to know the new people in the daycare, the helpers, teachers everyone so that I have a level of confidence and trust in them to take care of my child
7) Tell her everyday since she is about 2.5 years, that no one except her mom, dad, grandparents and two didis in the daycare are allowed to touch her su-su place or bum. If anyone else does, she HAS to tell me (How much of this she has understood, I dont know, but I am sure she will get the idea in a while)
8) Ensure that she is never naked anytime. She definitely has a chaddi on and in the nearly 2 years I have kept her at the daycare and gone before time or after time, I have never seen any kid there naked meaning that the teachers are very particular about that
9) I make it a point that its either me or hubby who drop or pick her up (except for about 3 months last year) so that we interact face to face with the teachers. When I go to pick her up, I often stand outside just watching her interact with other kids or teachers. This is my weird way of ensuring whether she is comfortable there or not.
10) I look for any signs of hurt on her body and always ask her how she got it and from where she got it (She is a playful child who gets sratched and stuff over her body and I want to ensure its just hurt while playing and not abuse)
I dont have an alternative to daycare, these are some things I do religiously to ensure she is happy and safe.