The Cost of Unregulated Child Care
Child Care Resource and Referral agencies (CCR&Rs) throughout the country report that due to the high cost of care, some families choose to move their children from licensed programs to informal/unlicensed child care settings. Although child care in informal situations may be an affordable arrangement in the short run, there may be hidden costs that are paid later. Unlicensed care is not subject to basic health and safety requirements, minimum training requirements or background checks for providers. Unlicensed care is also not inspected. The parents are the only ones checking the home for health and safety standards. How many parents are willing to ask a friend to let them inspect the cupboard under the sink for poisons or ask for a criminal history check?
School readiness only becomes evident when children enter kindergarten. Many states in the US including New York has consistently found that children who have experience in regulated programs do better when they enter kindergarten than children who had child care in informal settings.
Many states allow informal care to operate legally.
Why Child Care Costs are High?
Child care is a small service-oriented business, like a restaurant or a beauty salon.
Other business expenses for child care centers and family child care providers include:
Other necessary costs include:
State licensing regulations govern issues related to children's health and safety while they are in childcare:
Unfortunately, Commercial Programs are forced to make compromises to balance what they think parents can afford with financial considerations about the quality of the care they provide:
Because in-home daycare usually don't have the same overhead as a commercial daycare, these compromises do not have to be made by home childcare providers.
Child care costs are what they are — and there is not a lot of “fat” that can be trimmed without impacting any programming. It is important to maintain the regulations we do have – particularly around ratios and teacher preparation—if we want to achieve quality of care. We expect this in K-12 education, why not in early education?As the owner of my own In-home Childcare facility, I do not want to compromise the quality of care I provide. I am currently using Mother Goose Time Curriculum which costs me over $100/month. Mother Goose Time not only meets but exceeds the national standards as defined by the National Association for the Education of Young Children, NAEYC, giving parents the assurance that their preschooler is not just attending a "babysitting" program. By the time your child leaves my program, you can rest assure that I have done my absolute best to have them ready for kindergarten.
As a full time working mother when my son was attending a private commercial daycare, I understand the issue we as working parents are faced with when it comes to paying for childcare. But I can tell you that I would have never thought of placing my child in any facility (home or commercial), that would compromise his safety, that was just non-negotiable. Let me be clear here, I truly understand how financial issues may back some parents up against the proverbial wall, yes, we all have to do what we have to do for our children. Lets just do our best to keep them safe!
Hi my name is Margo; I've lived in Valley Stream for over 15 years. I am the loving and very, very proud mother of one amazing 18 year old son, Isaiah. Thankfully, I am able to live my dream of caring for and nurturing young children.