Daycare in Waterloo, ON
March 21, 2018 12:06 PM   Subscribe

My partner and I are moving temporarily to Waterloo, Ontario and have been trying, with no success, to find a daycare for our 3-year-old. Is there anything that would help us actually accomplish this?

We are currently living in Austria and our child currently attends a Kindergarten. We've found that the daily contact with a group of other children has been really good for him and would like him to still have that for the four months that we're in Canada.

We started calling daycares there, and signed up for OneList Waterloo Region, as soon as we knew that we'd be there, but the most positive answer we've received has been "come by once you're in Canada and maybe we'll have space". Mostly, we've either been told, "no space" or "call back in a month."

We're in Canada from the middle of April through the middle of August and are flexible with the type of daycare, the number of hours/day and the number of days/week, so long as it's somewhere remotely resembling a German or Austrian Kindergarten – i.e. that it has age-appropriate activities rather than being a supervised room full of toys.

What are we overlooking? Are there further resources that we might not have thought of?
posted by frimble to Education (5 answers total)
If you're moving for work, check if your company offers a childcare concierge service. My multinational corporation sends a lot of people on temporary assignment to a region where childcare is hard to come by, and they have a small staff whose specific job it is to help people with this. Worth a shot :)
posted by potrzebie at 12:18 PM on March 21, 2018 [2 favorites]

Do you need a full time daycare program while both you and your partner work, or is this solely for the child's enrichment?

I'm not Canadian, but in the US, if it's the latter, you'd also want to look at preschool programs which may be part time or not every day. I don't know if you've already explored those options, but googling preschools in Waterloo, Ontario brings up different results than searching for daycares.

If those don't work out, I'd be surprised if you can't get a daycare placement for the summer, at least. Around here, many school teachers will take their kids out of daycare while they have summer break.

Also, look for local parent groups on Facebook or Meetup where you can post this question.
posted by Kriesa at 12:23 PM on March 21, 2018 [4 favorites]

I live in this area and it can be very difficult to find childcare. There isn't really any secret trick - there is just a low supply of spots available. Kids & Company may have availability, if you haven't contacted them yet. If you are willing to go outside of Waterloo, Owl Child Care has a new location in Ayr that may have spots available. I have no experience with separate preschools as opposed to preschool curriculum at a daycare centre, but they might have more spaces available.
posted by Vicmo at 12:27 PM on March 21, 2018 [3 favorites]

Maybe you could try posting your question on r/Waterloo, on the off chance that you might get some ideas from locals there?

I'm Canadian, but not in Ontario. In most cities, you would have needed to have gotten on a waiting list months ago to get a daycare spot. I'm not clear on whether you would just like care, or 'need' care. If it's the latter, you might end up being stuck with a dayhome.

Have you tried also googling preschool-type facilities? Again, I know nothing about Waterloo but I assume there would be a couple of Montessori preschools, for example. Have you tried tried the YMCA daycares?
posted by kitcat at 1:59 PM on March 21, 2018

When I looked for daycare remotely I totally got the brush off. Once I was there in person they took me seriously. Can you travel a few weeks earlier to tour places and get on a list.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 10:26 PM on March 21, 2018 [1 favorite]

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