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The best child care environment for your child is the environment that best responds to your child’s needs. Cost and location are important factors, as are the qualifications of staff, the activities offered, and the ability of the provider to meet the unique needs of each child. Child care settings should offer a variety of activities for your child, both alone and with other children. Activity settings must be designed for safety. Click here to learn more about choosing the right child care setting for your child. Click here to download a copy of national health and safety standards for early care and education programs.


Choosing Infant and Newborn Care

Tips from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

Choosing Child Care for Newborn to Two Years Old

What to Look for in an Infant Program


Choosing Toddler Care

Tips from the NAEYC

What to Look for in a Toddler Program


Choosing a Preschool

Tips from the NAEYC

What to Look for in a Preschool Program

Choosing Child Care for Three to Five Years Old

Tips from the Mississippi Department of Education


Once you have selected a child care provider, remain involved. Talk regularly with your child care provider about activities, your child’s development and behavior, and any other concerns you, your caregiver, or your child may have. Drop in on the program at different times and assess how things are going.