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July 11, 2003

The Day Care Curve

Michelle Malkin is justifiably horrified by a spate of hot car deaths involving young children in daycare centers. She tries to tie it into her theory of how Americans are indifferent to their children, but I'd be interested to know the average IQ of low-level daycare workers (i.e. the one that perform the actual childcare). Among my friends, relatives and aquaintances, women of average or better intelligence who want to work with children become teachers, social workers, child psychologists etc. The lousy pay assures that few people who are smart enough to earn a college degree will stay in the profession. This might create pressure for more courses to qualify for state certification, but I'd rather see the standardized test scores, along background checks, for anyone minding my child. But I'm sure NO state certification exam will include an IQ test.

Posted by duende at 09:08 AM

People can get very high-quality daycare if they pay for it. Montessori schools are an example. Regulation, testing, immigration reform -- nothing will really help if you pay minimum wage. If you were willing to pay $40,000 a year with benefits, you could staff a daycare with PhD's.

Posted by: zizka at July 11, 2003 03:39 PM

True enough. And don't get too hung up on intelligence as a qualification for daycare; if I were to choose someone to take care of my kids all day long I can definitely say that the four smartest people I know would all be disqualified. Conscientiousness and compassion are more key, though of course having someone reasonably smart is nice...

Posted by: bbartlog at July 11, 2003 07:29 PM