If you own and operate a daycare center, there are some things to be aware of first. While it can be a rewarding business and something you’re passionate about, you don’t want to ruin your reputation as a business owner by keeping yourself open to certain risks. You have a wide array of business risks, but many of them can be prevented or mitigated with the right actions.
The people you choose to staff for your daycare center can make a difference in your overall risks. There are different laws in regards to who can work for a daycare center, and you can reduce the risk of a lawsuit by employing an experienced daycare worker. Perform background checks and ensure they have experience with children. Also be sure you have the right worker to child ratio, which varies by location.
In addition, it’s vital to ensure that you have the right licensing according to your state and county. There are certain rules and regulations to follow in what type of license you must have to run a daycare center. It will differ depending on if the daycare center is in your home or another location. To obtain the license, you need to have the daycare set up with quality equipment, proper facilities, a clean and orderly space and submit to a thorough inspection.
To reduce risks associated with the building itself, make sure everything is safe and up to code. The building for your daycare center should have proper safety features and only be built and decorated with non-toxic materials. Proper equipment and furniture will need to exist in the building, and the structure must be safe and stable.
Safety and Health
The safety of the children you look after is top priority. Not only should it be an important factor, but it also helps to mitigate a lot of risks from owning a daycare center. Make sure all toys and equipment are always working properly and remove any that need repairs. Keep an eye on children t all times to make sure they are only playing with a toy appropriate for their age. Their health also should be extremely important, which goes hand-in-hand with their safety. Have a first-aid kit in the building just in case.
Prepare for Emergencies
Emergencies unfortunately may happen at some point, and it is your job to be prepared for them. This will reduce the risk of a lawsuit if you didn’t act quickly enough when an emergency situation or accident occurred. Make sure you know of your local Red Cross and emergency contacts, have trained your daycare workers how to take care of emergencies and have an evacuation plan in case of a fire. Your children should also be aware of what to do if a fire breaks out or you need to evacuate the building for any other reason. You should also know of nearby safe facilities to bring the kids to in case of an emergency with only your building.
Report Incidents Promptly
If an incident occurs, make sure to react quickly. Along with emergency situations that could happen, any incidents in the daycare center must be reported. This also includes evidence of abuse. If you suspect any time of abuse of a child you take care of, you are liable to report it to the right local agency, otherwise you could be liable at a later date for not bringing it up. Other incidents, even minor accidents, should be reported in the right manner and everything must be documented.
Get Business Insurance
Lastly, always make sure you have proper business insurance. If something happens and you don’t have the right coverage, you risk paying out-of-pocket or possibly losing your business because of the overwhelming costs. Be adequately protecting by having the most vital business insurance policies, including general liability, business owners property, liability and workers compensation insurance to start with.
By following these tips, you are managing the majority of your business risks. It may not prevent incidents, but it ensures you follow the right safety precautions and manage your business in a legal and protected way.