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Managing Your Child Care Waiting List

published | 5/17/2012

Preschool Business Planning

Waiting in line can be a hard thing to do, especially if you’re waiting for something important to you. For children, that might be as simple as waiting for lunch on pizza day. For their parents, it might be waiting for an opening at your child care, daycare or preschool. For you, as their provider, it might be waiting for the official pre-registration payment to hold their slot.

To make sure that families on your child care center’s waiting list actually enroll, it’s important to keep in touch with them through the process. Luckily, for child care administrators, it’s easy to create a contact list of parent names, phone numbers, and email addresses for your wait list families. By using a child care management solution like Procare Software®, you can create a printed list or choose to email or send text messages to selected families all at once.

Managing Your Child Care Waiting List with Procare Software

Wait List Directory

It’s easy to get a list of everyone on the waiting list with parent contact information. Start with the standard “School Directory II” report (found under Reports > Standard Reports > Family Data > Filtered Reports) and use the Filter button to include only children whose enrollment status is set to “Waiting List”.

 See Sample: Wait List Directory 

Procare Software: Filter Wait List Example

Customized Wait List

With the Procare Data Viewer you have more control over how the information is laid out and can include other fields, such as the date they got on the waiting list (the Status Date). Start with the Child Relationships view and add the fields you want like Primary Classroom, Enrollment Status, etc.

 See Sample: Data Viewer Wait List 

Procare Software: Wait List Headings Example

Use the filter icon (funnel) on the Enrollment Status header to include only “Waiting List”.

Procare Software: Filter Wait List Example

To group the report by classroom, drag the Primary Classroom header into the gray area just above the other headers.

Procare Software: Drag and Drop Header Example

You may also want to remove the page break so you don’t get a separate page for each class. Right-click the gray area next to Primary Classroom and uncheck Insert Page Breaks.

Procare Software: Insert Page Breaks Example

Then you are ready to Print or Export to another format, like a spreadsheet, PDF, etc.

Procare Software: Export and Print Example

Email or Text People on Your Wait List

To begin, use the Select Filter to include only families with children whose enrollment status is “Waiting List”. Then you’re ready to Email the Families or Send Text Messages to the people of your choice. You can even use the built-in Letter Merge to automatically fill in certain fields, like the name and address of each person, etc., and email (or print) the letter.

Procare Software: Select Filter Icon Example

Final Thoughts

As you get under way for the year at your child care center, it can be easy to lose track of the families on your waiting list. However, though your classrooms might be too full at the moment, at some point you will have space to accept new students.

It is important that you have family contact information for those on your wait list, and are keeping in touch with them regarding their status. Using child care management software, it’s easy to manage your child care waiting list to ensure a positive relationship with prospective parents and simplify their enrollment process.

Learn more about how Procare simplifies family data management at your child care center.

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