While a majority of offshore team members are male, now a days, there are considerable numbers of female IT and software engineers with H1-B or L1 visas in hand ready to take their spouse and child(ren) to the U.S. for short or long term assignments. For those with children, the question of daycare arises, especially if both spouses know they will be working once landing in the U.S.
Handing over your child to a stranger for a few hours up to a day is a scary experience for parents. Add to that handing your child over to strangers in a foreign culture, where the mannerisms, interactions, parenting and socialization are all very different. It can be overwhileming, emotional and stressful. This post will provide some guildelines to the practicalities of childcare in the U.S. to help you make the best decision for your family's situation.
It's important to note that children as young as newborns up to an average age of 12 can attend American daycare centers. While there are federal and state guidelines around age, the facility itself can decide their own age ranges within legal limits. For instance, some daycares only work with infants, some only with toddlers, and others only with school-going children of particular age groups. Let’s look at some more features of daycare centers in the U.S.
What are the types of daycare centers available in the U.S.?
The below article authored by Language Intelligence, showcases the seven types of daycare, along with their pros and cons.
How much does daycare cost?
Daycare costs are no drop in the bucket. Recent reports, such as in the YouTube video below, highlight that some states calculate one year of daycare for newborns to be more expensive than one year of college tuition.
For more information on childcare costs across various states, read the article below from Babycenter.com.
How do parents manage or cope up with daycare expenses?
While some expat families in the U.S. may elect to have their children stay back in their native country to be cared for by extended family or grandparents, families based completely in the U.S. do not always have similar options. Such families have different coping mechanisms to handle the rising child care costs, the video below showcases one family's approach.
Daycare expenses in the U.S. are expensive and continue to rise. It's important to do your research before choosing a childcare provider. For expats relocating to the U.S. through their employer, a good option is to ask your onsite Human Resources (HR) representative or other colleagues with children of the same age group to get their feedback and recommendations.
Author of this post, Jennifer Kumar, provides cross-cultural business and lifestyle coaching to expat employees and their spouses traveling to the U.S. from any country. Contact us for more information on onsite or virtual training programs.
Reverse Culture Shock Faced by NRI Kids
Back to School Season in the U.S.A.
3 Ways to Make U.S. Relocations Easier for Expats
Onsite may last longer than you think!
Welcome to Las Vegas: Slack12, under creative commons, Flickr
Mother and child: Harsha KR, under creative commons, Flickr