You and your caregiver

Even when your child is in someone else's care while you work, remember that you will always be the most important person to your child. But your child's relationship with a caregiver is important too, and so it's important that you and your care-giver work together and continue to talk about your child's needs. Parents often feel so happy and grateful to have found someone "good" to care for their child that they don't express their own concerns for fear of offending the provider.

Talk things over with your caregiver regularly, no matter what kind of care your child is in. Lack of communication can often lead to a build-up of tensions and affect how you feel about your child's care. Make sure your expectations are clearly understood. Discuss exactly what the job will require and what you expect of each other. Speaking frankly from the start of your relationship is important. Ask questions, share information often, and be available to discuss your child.

Establishing clear agreements in advance can help prevent misunderstandings. No matter what kind of care you've selected, it's a good idea to write down the details of your arrangement. If your provider already has an agreement or contract, make sure the things that are important to you are covered and add them if necessary. Both you and your provider should sign the agreement.

Here are some ideas that you might want to include in your agreement with your child care provider.

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