How to Find the Right Early Childhood Education Program for Your Family in San Jose

October 24, 2022

Finding high-quality childcare can be an overwhelming process for parents. For San Jose parents, it can be even more difficult due to the number of programs available. What will work best for your family? And for your children? Is an in-home daycare or childcare center better for you? And what special features should you be looking for? In the post below, we’ll answer all of these questions in detail. Read on to learn more about San Jose childcare, finding the right fit, ensuring programs are safe, and so much more.

Step 1: Find the Right Early Childhood Education Program as a San Jose Parent

As a parent, you will have specific early childhood education program features that are important to you, not only for your parenting style but for your commute, budget, peace of mind, etc. Here are a few characteristics to consider in your search:

  • Cost of the Program — By far, budget can feel like the most significant concern for parents when choosing a childcare program. While you want to make sure the school or center is high-quality, you also need to feel confident in your ability to pay the tuition and continue bringing home enough of your paycheck to support your family. In-home daycares can be more affordable than centers. Every location varies in price, however — so it’s worth calling around.

We recommend starting your search with a budget in mind and making a list of schools you can comfortably afford. Then, move on to the next criteria on your list.

  • Child Safety — This is another top priority, as you will not want to send your child to an unsafe location no matter the cost. Some signs of safe childcare environments in San Jose include state-licensed caregivers, tidy environments with regular cleaning schedules to help prevent illness, and clear communication. Some other signs that have the potential to make an environment safer include teacher and director education levels and trainings, and low turnover rates in both staff and children.
  • Location — Your early childhood education program should be within a reasonable distance of your home, or located somewhere along your commute. If you choose a commute location, remember that it may be more difficult to bring your child when you’re not feeling well or working from home.
  • Communication — One often-overlooked aspect for parents is communication. As a parent, it matters how your childcare center communicates with you while you’re at work. Of course, you expect calls when your child needs to head home early. But do you also prefer updates throughout the day? Or is a note sent home in your little one’s backpack okay for you? Some early childhood education programs use apps to upload information on naps, meals, diaper changes, and activities. Others may text you photos throughout the day.

Step 2: Find the Right Early Childhood Education Program for Your Child

When you've narrowed your search down to locations that will work well for you as a parent, it’s time to focus on your child and what’s most important to them. Here are a few of the top factors that affect children’s fit into early childhood education programs:

  • Age Ranges — Will your child prefer being with a group of children their own age, or do they enjoy the mixed-age feel? This may be a determining factor in whether childcare centers or in-home programs are right for them.
  • Curriculum — Depending on your child’s age, they may be ready for some preschool preparation. Is this offered at the early childhood education programs that you’ve chosen? Would they do better if they had the opportunity to spend all day outside, as a forest school provides? Or are they more of a play-based learner? Narrowing down their learning style and what they enjoy most could help you find a good fit.

If you’re looking at centers, try to find accreditations For in-home centers, look to make sure they follow similar guidelines, even if they’re not yet recognized.

  • Schedule — Does your child still nap, and is rest time available and enforced at the childcare you like best? What time are meals and snacks offered? How much outside playtime is provided each day? These questions can make or break how your child feels at school. Try to choose a program that resembles their home schedule to keep them most comfortable, especially if they’re on the younger side.

Step 3: Ask Questions to Ensure the Program Offers Quality Care

Lastly, it’s important to ask questions when you visit your favorite early childhood education programs in San Jose. This guide includes some of the most effective topics to bring up, such as daily schedules, outdoor time, parent reviews, teacher demeanors, and more.

Finding quality early childhood education programs in San Jose involves a long process, but it’s completely doable. This particular location is lucky to be so jam-packed with incredible choices for both parents and students. Here are some of our favorite, high-quality early childhood education programs in San Jose to start your search.

Four Top Child Care Programs in San Jose

Little Geniuses Family Childcare — A bilingual, play-based program offering full-time and part-time care.

Little Ducklings Preschool —  A STEAM-based program run by a director with a Master Teacher Child Development Permit. (Featured Image)

The Rising Stars of Sunnyvale — A quality bilingual program offering an excellent location for parents who work in Sunnyvale.

Aisha’s Bilingual Family Wonderschool — An incredible program that focuses on providing a structured environment with individual learning opportunities.

Join Wonderschool Today!

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