Whether you are returning to the workforce full-time or require part-time assistance, it can be nerve wracking to find a babysitter you can trust enough to leave your most precious little ones with.
So how should you conduct a search? And, more importantly, how do you provide a good orientation for a baby sitter that will ensure your child’s safety?
Beyond making sure that you like the personality of the babysitter, here are other ways to make sure the selection process goes smoothly:
- Obtain recommendations from people you trust such as neighbors, co-workers, friends and staff at your local pre-school centers.
- If you want to search through a Nanny Organization, be sure they are registered with a recognized association.
- Have the babysitter come over and observe your child interacting with them.
- CPR and First Aid certifications – Every sitter should have passed these courses, regardless of the age of the sitter.
- Babysitting courses – If you are searching for a young sitter for evenings out or during the summer, ensure they have taken a babysitting course.
- Hire someone to perform a background check. You can also do it yourself by visiting the local police department.
- Follow through and check on every reference that the candidate provides.
- Have a list ready with questions for the interview.
- Review the kid’s routine such as homework, bedtime and what to eat at mealtimes.
- Establish rules and limits for television viewing, computer use, video games and playing outside. Let the sitter know who the children are allowed to play with.
- Instruct the sitter to never leave children alone around water.
- Store all medicine out of reach and give clear instructions if children need to have medicine administered.
- Have a list displayed prominently with all emergency contact phone #’s and review each number with the sitter.
- Medical emergency – If a medical emergency is detected and the sitter is unsure, call 911 immediately. Leave the door unlocked for the medics. Phone the parent(s) at the designated phone #’s.
- Point out the locations of emergency exits, smoke detectors, and fire extinguishers and how to use them. Give a demonstration on the security and alarm systems.
- Fire – Take the children and go to an agreed on neighbor’s house. Call 911 to report the fire. Call the parent(s) at an agreed upon phone #. If a place has been designated as a point to meet, go there after leaving the neighbor’s home.
- Earthquake – Instruct the children to take cover immediately underneath a sturdy piece of furniture or along an interior wall. After shaking stops, check for injuries and damage to the house. If you detect the smell of gas (like rotten eggs) or smoke, evacuate the home and follow the fire instructions.
Finding the right fit will give you peace of mind while you are away from your family and provide a loving and caring environment for your family.