Perhaps you have a young child and are considering the option of daycare. Listed are four pros and four cons of daycare that may be worth some consideration.
- Allows Work. This may seem obvious, but it is worth saying. If you want to be able to work a normal day job, but your spouse cannot provide around-the-clock care for your child, daycare is a great choice. Daycare clinics take care of your child for a certain number of hours per day. Many parents are able to manage both a child and work thanks to these clinics.
- Reliable. Daycare clinics are notably dependable. They typically have hours between seven in the morning to five in the evening. Beyond that, some clinics offer evening care. In daycare, there is usually a lot of pressure on employees to show up, more so than with a normal job.
- State Law Regulated. Daycare facilities operate according to State laws, so you can rest assured of their legality and general safety. The clinic must be licensed and must strictly follow laws regarding childcare. On a related note, the staff is usually trained in a field related to child care, such as education or early childhood development.
- Child Socialization. If you take your child to daycare, he or she will have the chance to socialize with other children around the same age. This can help prepare a child for preschool or kindergarten. It can also help build a child's confidence as well as give him or her the chance to hear new people and words, helping with language skills.
- Time Lost. Compared to having your spouse provide care or providing care yourself, sending a child to daycare means that valuable time with your child will be lost. You won't have as much influence in the child's life as you did before. Parting with your child like this will happen eventually with preschool or kindergarten, but for some parents, having too much separation before that time is a great sacrifice.
- Schedule Issues. Daycare clinics have long hours, as mentioned above. However, the time you must drop off your child and the time you must pick up your child are usually very rigid. The daycare facility will have a problem with a parent who is chronically late. If you have to start work extremely early, you may not be able to drop off your child when you wish. Schedule conflicts are common and you will have to become flexible.
- Sick Policies. One of the major, classic drawbacks of daycare is that they often will not take in sick children. If your child gets sick, the responsibility to care for them is all on you. However, if you cannot take off work to do this, you might consider hiring a babysitter or nanny or asking a relative for help.
- No Individual Care. At the daycare center, your child may not receive the individualized attention he or she deserves. Usually, there are only two or three caretakers per seven or ten children. This is worth considering if you want your child's needs met right away and if you want him or her to feel respected as an individual.