Looking for child care in Travis County? Austin Public Health has this handy map. You can see where centers or in-home day cares are located. You also can see which ones have been Texas Rising Star certified and or National Association for the Education of Young Children certified. These measures look at the director, the teachers, the ratios, the amount of education, the outdoor activities, parent involvement, and other rubrics.
To look at the safety standards of your day care, check out the Texas Health and Human Services database, which shows the size of the center and location as well as what violations or self-reported incidents the centers or in-home care have had.
And if you’ve ever thought to yourself, this daycare isn’t working out, read this story I wrote in 2014 on how to switch day cares;
Election Day 2008. I walked into my daughter’s day care room and saw another new teacher – her fourth or fifth of the school year. I was done. From my car, I called another day care center to see if by chance they had room for a 5-year-old for the next six months. They did.
Right then, I fired my day care of almost eight years.
The center that was perfect for my son and perfect for my daughter for the first four years of her life had changed. We needed something else.
Leaving your day care is a big decision. Sometimes there are obvious red flags: Is the center clean, are there a lot of accidents, are the children well-supervised, does anyone have access to the building and your child, are teachers doing what they…