This post originally appeared June 2011, but the information is still valuable. Reference checking can be a daunting task, but don’t delay in this important step in finding and hiring your nanny.
As the Placement Counselor for TLC for Kids in St. Louis, I often take for granted the things I do everyday. For example, this morning I was talking to a client who was ready to call references on a nanny she was interested in hiring. She said that she had her questions ready – but just wasn’t sure how to go about it. She didn’t know how to start the conversation and needed some tips. It dawned on me that this is definitely a topic that St. Louis parents are interested in learning a little more about.
When taking a childcare reference on a potential nanny:
- Introduce yourself and explain why you are calling. Let the person know you are a parent and the ages of your children. Explain that you promise to keep confidential all of the responses and that the feedback of their former nanny/babysitter is extremely important to you.
- When you ask the various childcare related questions, pay attention to the person’s voice inflection and pace of their answer. If the person answering the questions is hesitant or seems unsure of any of the answers, this is a definite red flag. Many people are hesitant to talk negatively and this is when you must push a little and assure the reference that you are considering bringing their former nanny into your home. You are counting on their honesty!
- If the reference seems unsure of information or answers to the questions, something isn’t adding up. This could indicate a false reference, which is something that is of course unacceptable.
When in doubt, trust your gut instincts and make sure that you are 100% comfortable with the applicant you choose. References are a great way to get a feel for the integrity and character, not to mention the experience level of a childcare provider.
At TLC for Kids, we love it when a parent gushes and is super excited to talk to us about their former nanny…usually, that means her other references are also stellar and she is a great find!
Good luck and if you have any comments or suggestions please let us know!
TLC for Kids, Inc.
Another great guest post from Sue Downey, Nannypalooza
A friend of mine posted this article– I figured it was the standard article about internet safety and warning of some new way kids were in danger using social media.
I was half right. The article does warn of the new way kids are using instagram to hold beauty pageants. It is alarming and the author made good points. But I stopped short when she said that her kids had to share their passwords until they were 13. What? Then she goes on to say these kids including hers that were on instagram were in 4th and 5th grade.
I had the standard nanny reaction You know- we all love kids and most of us rail against thee kids using tech. In fact I am always boring people about studies that show that TV is so harmful for young children and have been very strict with my former charges who wanted Facebook pages or the like.
With all the coverage of Hurricane Harvey the past two weeks, and now Hurricane Irma headed to Florida, we thought this would be a good reminder that children, especially young children can become anxious and confused about all that is happening around them.
We found a few great resources for you to share with your children and families.
Free PDF download! Disaster Preparedness Book from the American Red Cross featuring Mickey Mouse & Friends
Our thoughts and prayers to all affected by Harvey and we’re keeping an eye on Irma. Be prepared and be safe!
Our guest post today comes from International Nanny Association.
As modern families continue to grow, they have become more prone to hiring professional, experienced nannies to support the day-to-day management of their busy households. As a result, nanny roles have become much more complex and integral to the family dynamic than ever before. Nannies are expected to be more deeply involved in the physical and emotional development of the children, along with managing the basic needs of the kids.
Given the high demand, nannies have become more skilled in how to take care of varying types of children in multiple situations. Furthering their knowledge and continuing their education to include specializations and certifications, today’s modern nanny is well-versed in the intricacies of childcare.
Children with Special Needs
Families who have children with special needs often face different challenges than other families, and as they grow together they develop effective ways to best support and nurture their kids. Families with differently abled children often develop a dynamic support system to ensure that all members of the family are well cared for, respected, challenged, and loved.
As a result of generally busy lifestyles, this amazing family support system is not always available to the families in need of support, so this is where exceptionally talented nannies come in and play a gigantic role.
A nanny for a child with special needs is typically more skilled and often has more experience than their peers. Children with special needs can have varying communication abilities, dietary concerns, or behavioral differences, depending on the specific situation. No two kids are alike, so although personal experience is extremely helpful for nannies wishing to work with differently abled young ones, it is essential to approach each situation with an open mind and desire to identify what is best for that specific family and child.
TLC For Kids, Inc. has been St. Louis’ premier nanny and babysitting agency for over 30 years. TLC For Kids’ dedicated staff is ready to assist you in finding nannies, tutors, newborn care specialists, sitters and more. Reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 314-725-5660