Selecting childcare is one of the most important decisions you will ever make for your child and your family. Finding childcare can sometimes be frustrating and frightening. Ginny Sinclair, the Referral Specialist at Mary Johnson Childcare Services can help families, at no cost, learn about the childcare options that are available in the Addison County community. Mary Johnson Childcare Services makes referrals to family home childcare providers and licensed childcare centers. Mary Johnson Childcare Services is accredited by National Association of Childcare Resource and Referral Agencies, Quality Assurance Program.
Types of childcare available are registered family childcare homes and licensed centers. The Referral Specialist will work with you through this process. Information and materials will also be provided about finding and choosing a quality childcare program.
To reach the Referral Specialist, Ginny Sinclair, at Mary Johnson Childcare Services, please call (802) 388-4304 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further information is available from the State of Vermont at: www.brightfutures.dcf.state.vt.us. Once you arrive at the web site click on Find a Provider for a list of providers by region.
Questions to ask when looking for child care:
There may be other areas of information that are important to you, so use these questions as a guideline. You can expand on the questions to cover information that is pertinent to your family.
Quick Check Phone Questions:
- Do you have a suitable space for my child?
- Are you a STARS program?* Download the STARS: Information for Parents and Programs brochure for more information about what the STARS mean.
- Where are you located?
- What do you charge for child care?
- What is your daily routine?
- Do you serve meals?
- How long have you been caring for children? Education?
- Do the children watch TV?
- Is your home/center smoke free?
What to observe when visiting:
- Are the children engaged, busy and happy?
- Is there a wide variety of clean, appropriate and safe toys available:
books, dress-ups, playdoh, dolls, blocks, paper, markers, crayons, etc.
– Are these materials accessible to the children?
- Is the environment clean, safe and cheerful?
- Are teachers interacting with children in a supportive, encouraging and interested manner?
- Is outdoor equipment sturdy, safe and well-anchored to a safe surface?
- Does a teacher sit and interact with children during meals and snacks?
- Are children supervised at all times?
What about PreK?
Last year, Vermont passed a law (Act 166) to provide 10 hours of publicly funded high-quality prekindergarten for any 3 or 4 year old whose parent/guardian enrolls them in a prequalified program.
How do I find a prequalified PreK program? If your child is already enrolled in a private program, you should check to see if the program is prequalified. Addison County programs that are currently prequalified are:
- Addison Central Supervisory Union Early Education programs at Mary Hogan Elementary
- Addison Northeast Supervisory Union Early Education program at Bristol Elementary
- Addison Northwest Supervisory Union Early Education program at Vergennes Elementary School
- Bridport Elementary PreK
- Bristol Family Center
- Champlain Valley Head Start (Middlebury)
- Mountain Road Preschool
- Evergreen Preschool
- Lincoln Cooperative Preschool
- East Middlebury Cooperative Nursery School
- Mary Johnson Children’s Center
- Otter Creek Child Center
- Quarry Hill School
- Ripton Elementary PreK
- Salisbury Elementary PreK
- Starksboro Cooperative Preschool
Check out our Preschool Page to learn more about Act 166 and other school options.