The child care industry is a very competitive one. It’s not uncommon for parents to switch providers due to a variety of reasons. Whether it’s a result of high tuition costs or too much staff turnover, every family has their own reason for why they may unenroll their child from one facility in search of a new one. In order to improve retention rates and ensure that new families feel welcome, it’s important to understand the reasons why some families might leave, and how to address these types of problems moving forward. Keep reading so you can get a better understanding of the main reasons why families leave, and what you can do to prevent these issues at your center.
Lack of staff or insufficient supervision
Child care providers need to make these two areas their top priority if they intend to run an effective and functioning child care facility. In order for children to feel safe and secure, they need to know exactly where their caregivers are at all times. Providing quality care in a nurturing environment is essential for any facility that cares about retaining families long-term. If any of your teachers are frequently distracted (or even worse, nowhere to be found) then you may need to re-examine your staffing decisions, consider hiring additional staff members for assistance, or even search for a replacement. Lack of supervision not only creates unnecessary chaos, but it also poses a significant liability issue. If a child gets injured under your staff member’s not-so-watchful eye, parents will ultimately hold you accountable, and rightfully so.
Not enough stimulating activities
Child care providers need to consider the types of activities in which kids are engaged during various seasons of the year or after-school hours so that every child feels included. Providing a wide variety of activities ensures that both parents and children are happy, which is important for the overall health of your center. Fun activities may include things like scavenger hunts (if the weather permits), yoga for kids, crafts and collages, volunteering, and lots more. If you don’t provide enough engaging activities for children, then it may be time to upgrade your program or hire additional staff members who can keep children actively engaged and stimulated each day with new workshops, games, and events.
High staff turnover
When a center has excessive staff turnover, it can be an issue because it creates inconsistency for children, as they are not sure who will be responsible for them from one week to the next. Consistency is key when it comes to early childhood development. If children aren’t familiar with their caretakers, they may be more prone to acting out as they try to navigate and figure out how to behave with new people. When parents see that staff turnover rates are high, it can cause their children to experience unnecessary stress and anxiety, which ultimately leads to unhappiness.
Staff turnover is most commonly a result of low pay, however there are other underlying reasons as well. Some employees may not be able to handle the stress of running a classroom on their own, or they may feel under-appreciated. A great way to combat these issues is by creating a team-oriented environment so that no one feels like they are ever on their own. Offer benefits you may offer include flexibility with scheduling, free child care for their own children, and encouraging parents to show staff-appreciation as well.
Nowadays, parents are even more conscious than ever before about germs, and rightfully so! This is why it is so important to maintain a clean and organized environment at your center. This means having fresh diapers at all times (no waiting for laundry), sanitizing toys regularly, and wiping down tables after every meal or snack time. When parents are touring your facility, the last things they should see are sticky toys and tables, and filthy floors. Child care providers need to maintain certain standards to ensure that all surfaces with which children and staff come in contact are clean throughout the day.
Parents don’t think your facility is secure
Each child’s safety is paramount when it comes to early childhood development. That is why, in order for parents to feel comfortable leaving their kids with you each day, they need to feel confident that your center is secure and safe. Safety measures include things like security cameras (or a monitored system), locked gates/doors, fences around outdoor play areas, and inaccessibility to roads near water features such as ponds or pools. Parents should be able to go on-site at any time during the day without having to call first, so that they can check out the space whenever necessary. Ensure that you have a protocol in place for each security measure, and that there is some form of accountability among staff when it comes to these precautions as well.
The most obvious reason parents may leave your child care center is because they’re not happy with the level of service. Providing a clean facility, engaging activities aimed at intellectual growth, having proper security measures in place, and hiring staff that are dedicated to giving both children and their parents a positive experience will go a long way towards ensuring that all families are highly satisfied with their experience at your center!
Contact Local Child Care Marketing for a free consultation today so we can help you get started with meeting your family retention goals!