Selecting a Day Camp

Day camps are a good beginning for youngsters who prefer sleeping in their own bed each night. Choose a camp that fits your child’s needs and interests.

Sending a child who enjoys art or science to a sports-oriented camp will guarantee a miserable experience. Although the child will return home each night, it’s still important to ask:

  • Is the camp accredited by a national organization?             

  • What is the mission or philosophy of the camp?             
  • What qualifications does the camp director have?             
  • Do they have adequate liability insurance?             
  • Does the camp handle special needs?   
  • Do they provide references?             
  • Is there an open house where parents can meet counselors before camp begins?     
  • What is the cost and length of the camp?             
  • Does the cost cover all activities or are there extra charges for some events?             
  • Is lunch served? Are snacks and drinks provided?             
  • If transportation is offered, where is nearest pickup and how are drivers qualified?             
  • Will children be taken on field trips away from the facility?             
  • Can parents drop by for visits?             
  • If an emergency arises, are parents called immediately?             
  • How are behavioral problems and discipline handled?             
  • Are children’s swimming skills tested before taking part in water activities?             
  • Are swimming lessons offered?             
  • Are qualified lifeguards available during all water activities?             
  • Are there a variety of activities from which the child can choose?             
  • Are children under seven years of age given rest periods?             
  • What is the counselor/child ratio and ages of counselors? Should be no more than ten children to one adult counselor.              
  • What training is required and what is the screening process for hiring counselors?             
  • Are the same counselors with a group all day?             
  • How many counselors have previous camp experience?             
  • Are all staff members trained in working with young children?             
  • Are available staff members trained in CPR and First Aid?

Return to the Safety Resource Center