Selection of Daycare for Special Needs Children
Many parents have to come back to work either to meet the financial demands of the family or for personal commitments. For such parents daycare are boon. If you don’t work and stay at home, then also day care can help children to develop their social and learning skills. Couples look for a daycare nearby their residence to ease pick and drop of the child. But the same daycare may not be helpful for the family who has got a child with special needs.
However parents of special needs children will be more considerate about their daycare provider. As the care provider has to go through challenges in handling the child and teaching him daily chores, she has to be patient to deal with these children. Children needs love and affection and are very sensitive to their environment. Any negative atmosphere can build fear which gets built-up over the years. An experienced daycare provider can give your son or daughter the best care giving them a positive outlook towards life.
How is Standard daycare different from Special Needs Daycare?
A standard daycare is operated by childcare professionals who give a defined allotment of time for leaning, eating and playing. They are experienced or qualified only to take care of normal children they will not know how to deal with the child behavioral issues or their disabilities. Special needs children are not easy to potty train either because of their mental or physical disability. Also the nutritional and diet requirement of these children will be different from normal children. A diet at special needs day care will be free of allergens and artificial colors and flavors. The standard daycare curriculum does not take care for the special needs of the children as required.
Special needs daycare children require individual attention of the caregiver. The physical activities should be specific to the needs of the children.
The right daycare will also customize learning and activities based on your child’s unique needs. Look for daycares that will do one-on-one learning and interaction with your child. Some daycares for special needs children even have specialized programs that you can coordinate with facility. These programs can include parent-child therapy, as well as speech pathology sessions.
Can a Standard Daycare accept a child with Special Needs?
The daycares are expected to accept child with special needs, they cannot refuse such children. The American Disabilities Act comes into force incase they refuse to admit the child. It is the responsibility of the daycare to evaluate and adapt the center as per the child’s needs.
How to evaluate whether a child needs a standard daycare or special needs daycare?
Parents usually list down the disabilities of the children. They analyze what the child is unable to do, ignoring the things which a child can do. List down the things which a child can do and rate on a scale of 1 to 10, the higher the rating the better is the performing ability of the child. If your child scores 5 or less than the child then a special needs daycare is required. Analyse the child behavior and abilities which helps in proper placement at suitable daycare.
Searching of Special Needs daycare:
You can start search with special-needs community, National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (nichcy.org) and Child Care Aware (childcareaware.org), state human service websites, or Easter Seals who can provide you best advise for the special needs daycare.
Every child is unique; the provider of your friends’ special needs children may not be the best provider for your child. Individual evaluation and analysis is required to finalize the daycare.
It is responsibility of the parents to frequently visit the daycare enquire about the child activities and clear doubts, if any.
It is the joint responsibilities of the parents and the daycare providers to bring best out of the child. The major things to consider while admitting child in the day care are
• Is the environment safe for your child
• Does the daycare restricts the child abilities or lets the child to be too free?
• Does the daycare allows behavioral development of the child?