The school year is winding down, and if you haven’t already created your child’s summer plans, you might be doing so now. One of the activities that many parents consider is summer camp.
For some families, going to summer camp is a rite of passage. Whether it be overnight, half days all summer, or even just for a week, camp is an opportunity for your children make friends, create lifelong memories, and develop new skills.
For other parents, sending their child to camp is something that they struggle with. Although they know it can be a fun and enriching experience, it means that their children will be in someone else’s care and exposed to people and circumstances that are outside of their control.
If you’re considering sending your child to camp this summer, consider these 6 questions in order to find a camp that satisfies all your needs.
Is the camp accredited through the American Camp Association?
ACA accredited programs educate camp faculty on the importance of health and safety, as well as establish guidelines for policies, procedures, and practices. Although there are non-accredited camps which may be just as reputable, the ACA stamp provides many parents with assurance that their child will be in safe and capable hands. Learn more about ACA here.
What is the camp’s mission statement?
It’s important to send your child to a camp which shares a similar philosophy. This will help to ensure that the goals and values of the camp reflect your own and that your child’s experience will fulfil your expectations.
What is the counselor to child ratio?
When sending a child to camp, a major concern for parents is that their child will be well attended to – especially when it comes to young children or camps regarding a specific skill. Inquire about the ratio of staff to children in order to ensure that your child will receive the attention they deserve.
How does the camp accommodate children who have special needs?
Parents who have children with special requirements such as asthma, diabetes, or allergies should inquire as to how the camp will accommodate these needs. For example, what happens if the child has an allergic reaction? Will there be someone readily available to help with the episode?
It’s important to cover all bases in order to ensure your child’s safety and offer yourself peace of mind.
Will food be provided?
Depending on the type of camp your child is going to go, all, some, or none of their meals may be eaten at camp. If meal or snack times do fall during the camp day, are they provided or do campers bring their own?
What type of safety procedures do you enforce?
All camp staff members should be equipped with CPR and first aid certifications. If swimming or other water-related activities are involved, instructors should have lifeguard training and proper water gear should be provided.
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