Education
One of the highest priorities for relocating families is locating a new school for their children and providing a smooth transition so learning can continue and new friendships can be formed. This chapter will provide an overview about many of the education resources available in New York City (NYC) and the surrounding area. You’ll also find information about private schools, a list of recommended immunizations for children up to 18 and data about the NYC school districts.

The NYC region is rich in education and childcare opportunities, from early childcare to graduate school. With approximately 2,500 public and private schools within the city, the NYC Department of Education educates more than 1.1 million children in the five NYC boroughs. The NYC Department of Education is the largest school system in the United States.

Parents can select from around 800 private pre-K–12 schools, which include institutions rooted in religious traditions, schools that provide intensive academic experiences or reflect a particular pedagogy and schools that specialize in specific populations. This diversity of schools helps fulfill the American ideal of educational pluralism and collectively contributes to teaching, nurturing and inspiring young minds.

CHILDCARE
Upon arrival to the NYC, a priority for parents is choosing childcare, especially for children under the age of 6. Many couples are professional, dual-income earners and may not have close or extended family nearby to help. Luckily, the area offers many options and resources, including licensed facilities, independent childcare homes and in-home professionals.

DEFINING CHILDCARE TERMS
The many different types of childcare programs in New York City vary in location, age allowance, number of children and staff qualifications. The NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Bureau of Childcare registers all childcare centers, family daycare homes, group family daycare homes and after-school childcare programs in the area, but there are still unregulated informal childcare options, which are usually too small (three children or fewer) to be licensed or are run by nonprofit organizations, such as churches.

According to the Bureau of Childcare, childcare can be broken down into the following types of operations:
  • Informal Childcare
    • Usually located in a home
    • For children of all ages
    • Less than three children allowed in addition to provider’s own children
    • Not required to register because they are legally exempt

  • Center-Based (Group) Childcare
    • Not located in a home
    • For children from birth to 6 years old
    • Three or more children allowed
    • Must have an educational director
    • Teachers degreed in early childhood education or related studies or the required minimum childcare training
    • Regulated by NYC Health Code Article 47

  • Family Daycare
    • Located in a home
    • For children ages 6 weeks to 12 years old
    • Three to eight children allowed
    • Must have at least two years of experience caring for children under 6 years old OR one year experience plus six hours of training in early childhood development
    • Regulated by New York State (NYS) Social Services Law Section 390 Part 417

  • Group Family Daycare
    • Located in a home
    • For children ages 6 weeks to 12 years old
    • Seven to 16 children allowed
    • Must have at least two years of experience caring for children under 6 years old OR one year experience plus six hours of training in early childhood development
    • Must have an assistant present with the same qualifications stated above
    • Regulated by NYS Social Services Law Section 390 Part 416

  • School-Age Childcare (After School)
    • Located in a school or commercial facility
    • For children from kindergarten through 12 years old
    • Seven or more children allowed
    • Must have a director and staff with at least a high school diploma and two years of experience working with children under 13 years old
    • Regulated by NYS Social Services Law Section 390 Part 414

For more information about New York State’s daycare operations, including search directories of licensed childcare sites in your neighborhood and for help with choosing or paying for childcare, visit www.nyc.gov/html/doh/html/dc/dc-find.shtml.

OTHER CHILDCARE OPTIONS

Nannies
Nannies are employed by the family and can be live-in, live-out, part-time or full-time to undertake all tasks related to the care of the children. Duties generally are restricted to childcare and the domestic related tasks. Nannies may or may not have had formal training although they often have extensive childcare experience and a background in early childhood education. Typically, full-time employed nannies will work 40–60 hours per week and usually is unsupervised.

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