Making a child care decision is one of the most difficult decisions you will have to make as a parent. You want your child(ren) to be safe, healthy and happy; and to be prepared for school. However, like many parents, you were shocked when you first discovered the high price of child care.
Child care is a small service-oriented business, just like a physicians office, tax preparers office, a beauty or nail salon, spa or even a pet grooming business.
* A service is provided
* The balanced budget is needed to stay in business.
Child care center and family child care homes charge fees based on a basic, simple formula:
Cost of running the program divided by the number of children served = cost per child
Other expenses child care centers and family child care providers have to include in their budgets may include:
* Facilities maintenance
*Insurance(business, liability, workers comp)
*Professional services(accountants, lawyers & health consultants)
State licensing regulations govern issues related to health and safety. These regulations can affect how much it costs to run a child care program. However, not all child care programs are covered by state licensing regulations, such as church run programs in some states. The following are types of regulations that can affect the cost of running a child care program:
* Group size- the number of children that can be in one group;
*Ratios- the number of children for each adult
*Staff education and training
*Square footage- the number of square feet required in the building and on the playground for each child.
*Activities and materials
*Health , safety and nutrition
Like most service industries, about 80% of the cost in a child care program is salaries. The major way to control budget is to control salaries and food costs. Moreover, despite the best responsibilities, the average salary for a full time child care teacher is $8.39/hour, which makes child care one of the lowest paying professionals.
Family child care homes are a little different as many will only have one person, which would be the owner/manager. Their fees can be even higher since its their main source of income, but you will have a smaller ratio of children. Every parent wants quality, safe and healthy environment for their child(ren) and child care centers want a safe work environment for their staff with a benefits.