Running a daycare business can be a great choice for someone who loves to work with children. Every day is different and rewarding, and the work can make you feel like you’re making a difference in many lives. The world of daycare can be a great second career for someone who has spent many years in the corporate world and would like a change of pace.
However, there are a number of important elements that go into starting or purchasing a daycare business. These include legal matters that need to be attended to, as well as settling on a type of daycare business to invest in. Every facet of your daycare business will build off of your first important decision: the size and location of your daycare.
The number of children you expect to enroll at your daycare center is important to keep in mind when deciding on a location. You can start your daycare business from home if you have the space, but if you’re dreaming big, you may want to start looking into a different location. If you plan on caring for varying age groups, you may need to consider a building with classrooms to make age separation easier. Regardless of its size, however, your location will require child-size amenities (sinks, restrooms), safety features and a location convenient for drop offs and pick-ups.
Toys are, of course, a must when it comes to the daycare business. It’s wise to keep in mind that all toys and activities need to be age-appropriate. More specifically, find toys and activities that encourage learning and development. An outside play area with fences is a great place for kids to play and get proper exercise. If you plan on providing meals, make sure you have enough room to prepare them in and a place for the children to eat.
There are various regulations governing daycare businesses in Georgia. These include licensure, training, safety regulations and criminal background checks. All of this may seem daunting; fortunately, there is a world of information online to help you navigate a move into this field. Here are a few great links to help you:
Georgia Child Care Association – a non-profit trade association representing more than 800 private, public and corporate child care centers located in Georgia. Among the many resources they provide is a business toolkit and a criminal records checking service.
Association for Early Learning Leaders another non-profit, this one devoted to professional development for owners and directors of child care facilities.
USDA Approved Menus – one of many online sources of healthy menu planning ideas.
CPR and first aid training – child CPR and general first aid training is necessary for daycare centers.
School supplies – supplies, toys and curriculum for daycare centers.
Daycare Provider Blogs – many providers blog about their business, or specialize in advice for this niche. These can be a great resource to someone starting out in the field.