Maternity nurse, Teresa Boardman, gives the three most important factors to consider when choosing a childminder.
Choosing childcare can be a daunting task, particularly for new parents. There are factors that will make an impact on your final decision. What are the three most important factors that a parent should consider when choosing a childminder or nanny?
Always choose a candidate with ample experience. It is important to make sure that the potential candidate’s experience matches your family’s needs. For example, if you have a busy toddler at home it is best to go with a nanny who has experience with a growing toddler and is familiar with the various phases of development your toddler will go through. The same is true for newborns; choose a candidate that has proven experience with babies and is more than familiar with the techniques of winding, weaning, and so on.
Sometimes families are under pressure to find a candidate by a certain time frame and in doing so may overlook relevant experience as long as a nanny has the right qualifications. It is important to note that employing a nanny with the experience that matches your needs is paramount in ensuring she is a long-term childcare solution for your family.
A candidate with several solid references readily available is usually a good indication of a good candidate. While a nanny that is able to supply written references on demand is usually indicative of a good nanny, it best to follow up with as many references as possible via phone. This way, you can ask questions that are tailored to suit you.
A good nanny always has her references readily available and the references should be easily contactable. Personally, I look for nannies who still maintain a good standing relationship with the former families. I always look for examples when interviewing nannies myself, someone who is passionate about their job usually demonstrates this by telling stories about the children that they have been looking after. Maintaining a lasting relationship with the children she has previously worked with is one of the most excellent indications that she will most likely be a good future and longstanding addition to your family.
First aid and Garda vetting
Safety is the most important factor to consider when employing a nanny. The process might seem daunting, but checking that a candidate is Garda vetted and has an up-to-date First Aid Certificate is absolutely vital. If you find that a candidate’s certificate is out of date but she fulfils all other criteria, you could also offer the possibility that you attend a course together to give both you and the nanny peace of mind when dealing with any potential emergency situations.
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