Questions To Ask A New Day-Care
Leaving your baby in the care of others can be a nerve wracking experience and we all want to be sure that the people caring for our babies when we aren’t around are doing it in a way that aligns with our parenting style and personal beliefs. In the case of parents who are raising their child vegan, there are certain things that need to be made clear to potential carers- for a start, many non vegans aren’t aware that there’s more to veganism than just eating a plant based diet. These questions are aimed at building an understanding between parents and caregivers and nipping any potential problems in the bud.
• Are you able to accommodate my child given that they are vegan?
This one is obvious but it will serve to gauge how much this potential cater knows about veganism as well as whether they’re willing to learn more. Every child should be as important to a caregiver as the next so they should be keen to learn how to care for your child as you would at home.
• Can you provide a sample menu?
With the prevalence of food allergies and intolerances among children these days, as well as dietary restrictions based on religion and other beliefs, all child care centres should have alternatives to their base meal plan and be able to provide information on the food your child would be offered while in their care. This will also give you an opportunity to spot any mistakes on their part (eg: omitting eggs and dairy but including honey or animal based additives)
• Is outside food allowed?
In the event that an alternative plant based menu can’t be provided for whatever reason, you will need to be allowed to provide food for your child while in care- For some centers, outside food is not allowed due to strict allergy policies.
• Do you provide sunscreen? Is it vegan friendly?
One of the many things that may not have been considered by a caregiver who is accommodating to vegan children, some sunscreens contain animal by-products and/or have been tested on animals. Hand-wash is another item that may need to be checked.
• What activities are on offer?
This topic is pretty broad, basically covering everything your child does while in care apart from eating- how you handle this comes down to personal views on how to teach your child about the use of animals for textiles and entertainment. For example, is wool felt or yarn used for art and crafts? Do they sing songs or play games about farms, zoos, and circuses?
• Do you offer excursions?In most day care centers this won’t be an issue but a lot of holiday programs take the children on day trips to places such as the zoo, which may be against your morals. In this case it would be personal choice how to handle each situation but it definitely helps to be prepared ahead of time if they’re going to come up.
At the end of the day, no child care center is going to perfectly replicate the experience of being at home for your child- nor should it! The great thing about spending time with other children and adults is that your child will gain a greater knowledge of the world as a whole.