Unfortunately, nobody knows what goes behind closed doors…
It is also not accurate to stipulate that branded schools are staffed by more loving and more educated teachers. if you’ve read our fellow insider‘s posts, she has quoted that it is not compulsory for a centre to get better qualified teachers who are paid much higher even if fees are higher for branded schools, cause if centres can minimize on manpower salary, the better profit margin the school will benefit from. So, to not sugar coat your thought on a more expensive childcare set up, it is not a guaranteed thing.
You may consider sitting in the childcare centre yourself to orientate your child prior to confirming your enrolment. What I meant was, certain childcare centres have the option for new/first time parents to go for "trial class". During this trial period, parents will not be eligible for subsidy but upon sign up, the ctr may allow the subsidy to run immediately and the fees for the following month will be lessened that (you paid without subsidy – due to your trial period). This policy also varies between centres.
Trial classes can be catered from between a week to a month depending on the different centres. One parent/guardian may sit in thru the trial period to have a feel of a first time childcare experience. Flexi-care is also available at most childcares esp for hours that they aren’t very full.
Must find out from the centre. Flexi can be sending your child for 2 days, 3 days or 4 days a week at certain hours. This interim period will allow you to gauge if you are comfortable with the environment (whether it is conducive for learning – ie. brightly litted, child size toilets/sinks etc), not too big a ratio for child’s class, carng teachers and teaching assistants, etc… just to name a few.. You can also monitor the menu variation at the same time and observe the portions given to children to eat and whether it is value for money you paid for whatever they serve in a week.
As this is trial period, you as the parent shud manage your own child during this time. Once you find you are more comfortable and thinking of confirming your enrolment, you may highlight to the teacher and the teaching assistant for them to take over on and off from you. At this stage, you shud consider letting go of your child bit by bit to be more independent and request he/she goes to teacher when unsure of any thing or when he needs something. During this handover, you may consider sitting in a corner of the class and encourage your child to join in the class activities with his/her friends and teachers as much as possible and that you are just a shout away.
Once you confirm enrolment but not sure whether he/she will be okay without you around, continue with the flexi-care until you are sure that your child is comfortable and comes home happy. Older children who like a certain centre will ask how come there are days he doesn’t go to the centre. That is the indication that he/she is so looking forward to going to school. Then, you can consider signing up for full day then followed by daily.
At times, children who see their other friends subjected to corporal punishment may feel sad and traumatised and hence cry together too. But it may not mean that your child got it too.
Corporal punishment is not allowed in pre-school centres. Some centres go a little further by not allowing emotional abuse as well. it simply means, teachers do not belittle the child or say hurtful words to make the child feel angry, sad, depressed or unwanted.
If my child were in a centre where they have been abused and i have seen it with my own two eyes (four eyes if including glasses), i WILL make a BIG issue out of it. But proof and witnesses are important. And on top of that, i want every penny of my hard earned $$$ paid be returned to me, IN FULL!