Due to the downturn in the economy, more and more parents must get their daycare payments subsidized by the government. As a daycare owner, you must realize that there are both advantages and disadvantages of caring for children whose daycare payments are paid by the state. We asked the OwnADaycare on Facebook members, “Do you accept state paid clients and if so what are the pros and cons?” Our members who are also daycare owners responded to provide their varying opinions:
- Cons – getting paid once a month after the fact, the turnover of children in some cases. Pros (at least with the program I am with) support from the subsidy office, free construction paper, paints, gloves, crayons, markers and more twice a year, assistance with problem behaviors, and the BIG one SUPPORT above all from the gal in the charge of the program. It is so nice to send a child home with an illness and if the parents complain the programs BACKS us providers up.
- The money is always guaranteed each month. You may get paid 2 months behind, but then you have that money coming 2 months at the end too.
- I am in Michigan and usually wait at least 6 weeks to get initial payment, and it is yours, not their, responsibility to make sure every T is crossed and I is dotted, or they will gladly NOT write you a check.
- It is a pain because in my state you have to wait a month for your first check but I still take them. I went into this business wanting to help people (by giving good child care for a decent price), staying home with my children, and supporting my family. I can still do all three and take state kids. But if you need the money right away then it may not be a good idea. Plus side is if they quit without any notice you still receive a check for a month. Gives you time to replace them.
- I don’t take clients with state pay. I have been burned twice by it. If they don’t work, you don’t get paid and you won’t know until you turn it into the state. I had a mom bring her daughter every day, and I ended up getting paid for 2 days and I couldn’t do anything about it. It’s not worth all the paper work and time and then wondering if the parents are holding up their end of the deal.
- I refuse to do the paperwork in order to have state aide families. I have had nothing bad experiences in the past either with the families themselves taking advantage and constantly trying to break the rules or by the state paying next to nothing — no thanks
- I do take state paid children. Co-pays must be paid in advance. I did get burned once by a system abuser, but over all have had pretty good luck with the program here in Nebraska. Pro: once a month payment. Con: Paid after the fact. Only pays for time actually in the daycare. No holidays or vacation pay. My private pay families pay a flat rate in advance.
- I don’t do it because it takes more than a month to be paid by the state. I can’t afford to do that. I wish it was a better program for the families needing the assistance, and for those of us who provide care.
- I have a facility so too many state subsidized children is too much of a loss in income and too much paperwork for the price you get paid. However, we do have a few and will continue accepting them, just will keep it at a minimum so it balances out. It’s like $160 less per month per child in WV. About 2 weeks to get a check, and once a month payments. We do get paid for a whole month if they are here at least 13 days. Just do your math
- Pros in NJ: I get paid if they are sick, if it’s a holiday, and if they leave early I still get full day pay. Full spots! Cons: Payment takes a month to get started, and then comes every two weeks AFTER I care for them. I do not get reimbursed if they suddenly leave my care, or move. I am paid the state rate, and not my private rate which is higher. While Private clients pay more, if I have a spot to fill I do not mind filling with a state child, I just budget carefully.
- It’s a pain!! They pay a month later. Parents have to pay a certain percentage so you need to keep track of that be sure to dot your “I’s” cross all your “t’s” I got ripped off 2 grand because of a parent that lost the aid. She didn’t make up the difference and the state stopped paying me and never told me they dropped her.
- I have good families but the con for me is the cap on unexcused absences. If they no show and the family has used up their max of unexcused absences I don’t get paid. I also don’t like the blatant misuse of the subsidy dollars.
- We have to wait until end of month to turn in and then it takes 10-14 days to get money. Once you have it going, it’s not too bad. BUT we can only charge the state what we charge our other families. Even if I can get $23.00 a day from the state, in my small town area I can only get $18-20 a day, so that’s what I have to charge the state too. And my state (IL) is in financial crisis and I have to wonder when I’ll get my check.
- It really depends where you live. In BC, Canada, it isn’t too bad. There is some paperwork at the beginning that you and the parent have to fill out. Then it takes minimum 2-3 weeks to be processed then another 1-2 weeks to get paid. The pros are that you get paid every month. You submit the paper work on the first of the month and you get paid 1-2 weeks later. The cons for me is that if there is a problem, and you the provider phone, they can’t tell you anything other than there is a problem and that the parent has to phone, so then you are waiting on the parent to phone. If the parent doesn’t submit all the paperwork or they get cutoff, you have to rely on the parent telling you the truth. I have had both success and failure with subsidy families. But I will continue to accept subsidy. Just make sure you get a deposit from the parent. That way if they lose their subsidy you have something for payment!
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