Questions to Consider When Selecting a Summer Camp for Your Child
What to ask day and overnight camp staff
It may be cold outdoors, but summer camps in our region are thinking ahead to this year’s summer camp season. As you’re thinking about the best type of camp for your child, explore the following questions to ask when considering camp options for your child.
What to ask day camp staff
What’s the background and experience of the camp director?
What criteria do you consider for hiring staff? In other words, does the camp check for ages, experience levels and criminal history backgrounds?
What’s the ratio of staff to camp attendees? The American Camp Association’s recommended ratios range from one staff member for every six campers ages 7 and 8 to one staff member for every 10 campers ages 9 to 14 to one for every 12 campers ages 15 to 17.
What’s the expertise level of staff at specialty camps such as music, art and drama? For example, a music camp should have professional music teachers who conduct activities for children.
What’s the cost? Find out about tuition and any other expenses. Inquire about the possibility for financial aid. Ask about refund policies.
What’s the condition and safety of equipment? How does the camp take steps to ensure campers’ safety? Find out what types of safety and security protocols are in effect.
How is medical care handled?
What’s the camp’s mission? Every camp should have a clear statement of its goals and an explanation of its programs that meet those goals.
What are the types of activities planned?
What does a typical day at camp look like?
What is the age range of the campers?
What are the camp’s hours?
What is camp transportation like?
What to ask overnight camp staff
In addition to the questions above, parents considering overnight camps for their children should also inquire about the following areas:
How available is the camp director outside regular business hours?
What type of overnight supervision is available?
How do camp staff handle children with homesickness?
What are the sleeping arrangements like? Does the camp provide electricity in the cabins? Are bathrooms available?
Taking the time to answer these questions can help you ensure you and your child make the best summer camp selection. To view camp offerings available in our region and beyond, browse the camp directory on our website.
This piece first appeared in the February 2022 issue of MetroKids.