Top 21 Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

There are lots of ways to increase enrolment for your child care program.

Success depends on many factors, but I guarantee if you try at least one of these ideas, you will see an increase in enrollment over the next few months!

I know of so many wonderful childcare and preschool programs that are just waiting for the perfect families to find them.

Some of them struggle to find clients despite the high quality and super affordable prices.

They are diamonds in the rough, and I know that if they had the right tools, they would be constantly getting calls and inquiries.

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 Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

Children grow. Who says your family child-care business shouldn’t grow, too?

There are different reasons to consider expanding your at-home child-care business into a facility-based one.

Maybe your business has reached capacity and you have a waiting list of parents who want to enroll their children.

Maybe you’d like to increase the physical footprint of your business or provide more playground equipment for your “clients” to enjoy.

Maybe there’s a growing need in your community for quality day-care services, and you simply want to fill the void.

There’s also the profit motive. Expanding your child-care program from a home-based enterprise to a larger.

Facility-based setting offers the obvious benefit of being able to serve more children.

Which in turn will allow you to increase your revenue.

As the demand for child-care continues to surge, successful at-home daycare facilities can expect a yearly profit of $50,000, while larger commercial day-care centers can gross several hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.

That’s not all. Expansion may also make you eligible for federal funding through programs like the Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships.

The program is administered by the Department of Health and Human Services and provides $500 million in funds annually.

With so many compelling reasons to expand, why doesn’t everybody do it?

The answer is that expanding a business isn’t for everybody, and it certainly isn’t child’s play.

The road to expansion is filled with obstacles.

There are expansion costs to consider. Licensing issues.

The regulatory burden is higher.

Not least, operators that do make the switch quickly discover that facility-based child-care centers are more expensive to run on an annual basis.

The key to growing your business is to do it efficiently, and to look before you leap.

Here are some of the key factors to consider before you take your business to the next level.

1. Financing Your Dream:

Your dream is to expand, and you’ll likely need a loan in order to achieve it.

Be prepared to issue up to two years of financials or profit and loss reports to your creditor.

It may also be helpful to complete a start-up budget for full capacity and a separate budget that reflects 50 percent of capacity.

Doing so will give you a realistic view of how much money you’ll need to make, and how much you may need to borrow to get your new business up and running.

2. More Children, More Space: 

Adding more children will require more classroom space for the kids and more storage space for equipment and supplies.

Many states require a certain number of square feet per child.

The right physical space will be critical to your success.

Spare no effort making sure you find the facility that’s the right fit for you, and that you do a comprehensive background check of the building’s history before you sign the lease.

3. Licensed for Growth:

Licensing is everything. It’s important to remember that at-home day-care centers and commercially run centers are classified as different businesses.

Every state is different, but it’s safe to assume that your licensing will need to be updated before you make the switch.

Typically, there are more regulations for commercially run entities than there are for at-home day-care centers.

Without the proper paperwork, you’ll be sunk before you can even get started.

4. Staffed for Success:

Child-to-teacher ratios are critical to many parents.

They can also be mandated by law.

As part of your expansion, you will probably need to increase the number of staff hires in your center in order to remain competitive/compliant.

The good news is that, with more staff, you won’t have to do everything yourself, but keep in mind new hires may need to undergo additional training.

This is especially true if your plans include applying for federal grant dollars.

While many states require child-care workers to have a high school diploma.

Or GED, a new federal grant program stipulates workers must have a college degree before they’re qualified to care for certain age groups.

5. The Oversight Will Amaze You:

The fact is group-run child care centers are held to a higher level of scrutiny.

There are annual inspections for food, sanitation, health, program, safety and fire.

There are health requirements, including employee drug tests and annual TB tests for staff members ages 18 years or older.

It’s a lot to keep track of, but it will be vital that you do.

In addition, child care facilities that receive federal funding will be subject to federal monitoring and be required to comply with the 2,400 Head Start Performance Standards.

These dictate everything from staff qualifications to cot placement to how to clean the bathrooms.

6. Those Costs You Never Saw Coming:

Ongoing expenses you may want to account for in your operation budget.

May include office and classroom materials, advertising/marketing, printing and postage.

And voucher participation including CPR/First Aid, drug testing, and criminal history checks.

7. Meeting the Need, Embracing the Challenge

Home-based day-care centers are largely personalized by the provider in charge. The operator determines the type of development growth and caring he or she provides while building the business.

This autonomy is compromised when an at-home day-care center decides to convert his or her business into a facility-based one.

The need is there, and there is plenty of money to be made.

But it comes at the price of more licensing, more regulations, and more oversight.

Is it worth it? Good child care is vital to every young child’s early stage development.

Moreover, there continues to be a critical shortage of quality day-care options in many communities across Nigeria.

Growing your business may not just be a sound business move.

It may help to fill a critical void in your community.

And yet, it’s not just about creating a warm, caring, and educational facility for parents to entrust their little ones.

8. Marketing Your Child Care Program:

Marketing” is a scary word for a lot of child care directors, and for good reason.

It can seem very overwhelming to add marketing to your long list of things you have to do.

Here are few simple things you can do to ensure your marketing is on the right track.

Just spending a few hours every week on marketing can make a world of difference!

9. Ensure you have a website.

Even if it’s just 4-5 pages, it’s better than nothing.

Don’t cheap out on this either.

You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on a professional website design, but options like Wix and Squarespace offer amazing designs for reasonable prices.

  1. You want a homepage that describes who you are and what you’re about.
  2. A pricing page or a page describing enrollment procedures.
  3. A contact page so people can get in touch – even if it’s just your email and phone number.
  4. A page listing your programs, daily schedule and other relevant information.
  5. Optional would be a page on your staff or the main teachers.

10.Create a Facebook page

Make sure you link your website to the Facebook page and vice versa.

Updating your page weekly with pictures from your programs, announcements and programming details is a great start to being active.

If you are a part of online parent groups in your area, it’s a great idea to be able to link to your Facebook page if someone asks for a great childcare program recommendation!

11.Consider investing in some local marketing campaigns.

Create relationships with local elementary schools and be present for campus-wide events they might have.

For example, many schools have a Harvest festival, or Halloween type event.

You can come host a game tailored for the little brothers and sisters and it’s a great opportunity to meet parents with younger children!

12. Get on social media

Facebook and/or Instagram is a great way to share photos of students and daily life at your program, and works both for current parents and as material for marketing your programs as well.

13. Quality Staff

I asked my facebook friends to chime in about what was most important in a preschool program.

The results were unanimous! When it could have been a stellar curriculum, state-of-the-art equipment, or exciting field trips, every person agreed that the most important part of a child care program was responsive and caring teachers.

I must admit that I completely agree.

You can always improve a building as the budget grows, or add more enrichment programs, or invest in/create a fantastic curriculum.

But you need quality teachers and caregivers each and every day.

When parents know that their child is well-cared for and treated with love and respect, it’s hard to top anything else.

This is by far the best way to have a solid foundation for your program.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

14. Discover Your Niche

As I mentioned earlier, my enrollment has been full almost since I opened my in-home program almost four years ago.

However, my waiting list tripled once I changed my program.

When I opened my in-home program, my son was an infant, and I took infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.

Once my son turned two years old, I made my program preschool only.

It was more for me so that I could focus more on a curriculum for those ages instead of balancing the needs of mixed age groups.

That’s when the fireworks started, and I realized that while I focused on my expertise, I had more interest than ever before.

It can be so tempting to try and do what everyone else is doing.

However, it’s important to stand apart by focusing on what you do well.

I know of programs that have made huge changes that seemed risky because it wasn’t the norm and have hugely paid off.

Some have decided to only take school age children, others are just for part time care or a mom’s morning out, and there are even very successful drop-in programs.

Now I can’t guarantee that making a change such as this will automatically equal more business, but I can tell you that it could be what is stifling your program.

15.  Look at the Needs of Your Community

When I worked at a center as a program administrator, it was part of my job description to help increase our enrollment, and I was pretty good at it.

One center that I was the Assistant Director at had six classrooms and four of them were preschool aged.

We were at about 70% of our capacity.

One day while talking to the VP of our corporation, I mentioned that if we turned one of the preschool rooms into a toddler room, I thought it would increase our enrollment.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

I knew that we received lots of calls for that age group, and there were several children on the wait list for those ages.

She decided to go along with my idea, and we re-licensed one of our preschool rooms as a toddler room.

The decision paid off, and that toddler room filled up in record speed.

Then that led to higher preschool enrollment as they moved out of the toddler room into the preschool room.

It wasn’t a simple process because we had to have licensing come out, and that involved extra costs and some preparation and work.

However, sometimes a program has to change or invest in a change to meet the growing needs of the community.

In our case it paid off big time as our enrollment jumped at that point and continued to grow.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

16.  Daily Communication

When a parent signs up for your program, that is just the beginning.

A relationship will be developing over time, and it is important to cultivate that.

Part of growing enrollment is keeping it from turning over constantly.

Communicating with my clients regularly not only builds a relationship.

But it also helps me gauge changes that I may need to make to better my program.

While I have the luxury of talking to each of them personally each day, I know that not every program can do this.

Pick-ups and drop-offs aren’t always the best time to communicate to parents, especially if several families come at once. Another form of communication that I use is daily reports. I love giving families a report of what we did and how much lunch their child ate. My daily reports include the child’s favorite activities, what and how much he ate, and how long she napped for.

I used to use paper reports, but there are much more efficient ways to communicate with parents nowadays.

There are some incredible apps to use that are free and make it so easy! I have made a list of parent-teacher communication apps .

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

That allow you to message parents, send photos to them, give them all the important details of their day, and get information from them quickly and easily.

Facebook or a blog could be another great supplemental tool to communicate with parents if you are able to update them regularly.

Overall, growing a preschool or child care program takes lots of work and effort. In an industry with lots of competition and options, you really have to stand out over the crowd.

17. Focus first on children’s safety, health, and happiness.

Regardless of setting, children’s safety, health, and happiness are the non-negotiable elements of quality care and education.

Minimizing risk and maximizing children’s opportunities to engage with teachers, caregivers.

Other children, and the world around them are essential strategies for promoting physical health and social-emotional, language, and cognitive development.

Rigorous licensing regulations and regular monitoring of programs are essential.

Yet a review of existing state regulations indicates that current protections for children are inadequate.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

18. Support the early care and education workforce.

The administrators, teachers, and caregivers working with young children each day are at the center of creating high-quality early care and education.

The current workforce has a low education level.

And average annual incomes for some workers are under the federal poverty level for a family of four.

Despite efforts to promote higher qualifications and access to professional development.

Further efforts should target improvements in the quality and content of early childhood education preparation programs.

Opportunities for supervised internships and student teaching; ongoing professional development that is rigorous and relevant; compensation parity; and coaching, consultation, and mentoring that facilitates the application of new knowledge to everyday practice.

 19. Use observations and assessments:

High-quality programs regularly collect information about children’s physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development.

The National Research Councilhas published guidance on choosing and using child assessments that are appropriate for children’s developmental, cultural and linguistic characteristics.

The results of assessments should guide communications with parents, teaching strategies, curricula, and activities to help each child learn and develop in the way that works best for him/her.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips

20. Create a culture of continuous quality improvement.

High-quality early care and education programs never stop improving.

Continuous improvement starts with program leaders.

Who engage themselves and staff in reflecting on strengths.

And growth areas through self-assessments, feedback from colleagues and parents.

And data collected about the quality of their program, classroom, or child care home.

Professional development and technical assistance can be linked to growth areas.

And programs as a whole can annually update goals, objectives and strategies for improving services.

State Quality Rating and Improvement Systems offer quality standards, professional development supports and incentives to guide the quality improvement process.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips


  21. Build partnerships to support quality.

Quality early care and education programs are supported by a larger early childhood service system.
That includes access to health care and medical homes for young children.
Social-emotional development and mental health services.
That focus on prevention and intervention, comprehensive parent engagement that is responsive to parents’ needs, and family support services to help families access resources and build their capacity to support their children’s development.
An effective early childhood system is dependent on strong partnerships among early childhood settings and across service-delivery systems; coordination of resources; and alignment of standards, which are critical for promoting quality early care and education programs that can meet the full range of children’s and families’ needs.

If you want more tips, I highly recommend checking out child care marketing solutions and grabbing the free e-book.

Pre Nursery Population Increase Tips


President early learning initiative proposal includes strategies to increase access to high-quality preschool and expand the Early Head Star.

Child Care Partnership program serving infants and toddlers.

While Congress will debate plan funding and implementation, research provides solid guidance for bolstering quality across the diverse array of early care and education settings and programs.

As the country considers a historic expansion of early care and education opportunities for young children, Child Trends offers ways to improve their quality:

It’s about not forgetting to dot the i’s and cross the t’s along the way, too.

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