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5 Things to Look for When Selecting a Preschool in Tampa

Childcare tampaGuess what parents? It’s that time of year again! For some, back-to-school season can be a breeze, for others, it can be a challenge. If you are enrolling your little pumpkin for the first time, there is definitely a lot to think about, especially when it comes to choosing the right preschool in Tampa.

For some parents, the school of choice may simply be based a factor of convenience or price. Others may be swayed by the by the school’s activities. Although there will always be different reasons and opinions about what is right, ultimately, parents will make the best choice based on their own scenario. However, to help sort through some of the choices for your little prince or princess, below are five things to consider about where your child spends his or her first years.

  1. If a little Einstein is what you desire, thus, the proper education is what you’ll require
    Starting off an education early is always a positive gain, but with so many programs out there, how do you choose the right one? Many preschools will offer early learning programs; however, the curriculum may not be certified. The preschool you select should encompass a well-rounded and state-approved VPK (Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten) agenda. Besides building early literary abilities, an effective learning program such as VPK will teach the following skills in order to prepare for kindergarten

    • Language
    • Math
    • Science
    • Social studies
    • Fine arts
    • Health and safety
    • Personal and physical development
    • Technology
  2. With or without diapers; that is the question
    When it comes to preschool, sometimes diapers can be an issue. Before enrolling your child, don’t forget to ask about potty regulations. Although Suncoast Academy does, not all preschools in Tampa will accept a child if they are not accustomed to the big flusher.
  3. To the corner or back home to Mama
    There are many methods of discipline and some are certainly more effective than others. If you have a certain belief in how your child should be approached when unacceptable behavior occurs, it would be beneficial to speak to the school and ask about their discipline policy. They may just be on the same page. Some schools feel that positive reinforcement is the best solution, while others prefer to give a child a “time out.” Whatever the case may be, the result will affect your child in one way or another, so make sure the corrective actions practiced by the school are right for your child.
  4. Staff reflections
    How the teaching staff acts with the children is an easy and telltale sign that distinguishes whether a preschool is worthy or not. Moods are sometimes hard to keep to one’s own self. Therefore, a bunch of grumpy teachers could easily turn a class into unhappy students. Stop by the preschool and take some time to observe what is happening. Pay close attention the interactions between the staff and students and observe the smile to frown ratio. The more happy faces, the better! Another piece of key information is checking into the staff turnover rate. If the employees are sticking to their jobs like glue, it sends out a positive clue. A few other key points to take into consideration are:

    • The number of staff members present among the percentage of children
    • Teacher and staff certifications
    • Real feedback and references from other parents
  5. Squeaky-clean or seeking Mr. Clean?
    A very important thing to consider is the cleanliness of the classroom. Having and maintaining a clean classroom environment not only looks good, but is healthier and teaches useful organizational skills to the children. Not to mention, a clean environment shows a sense of pride and respect for one’s business. If a business is treated well, more than likely your kids will be properly taken care of too.

Now that you have a little more guidance, hopefully finding the right school will be as easy as 1-2-3!

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