day nursery

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day nursery,


day-care center,



(krĕsh), institution for the care of the children of working parents. Originating in Europe in the late 18th and early 19th cent., day nurseries were established in the United States by private charities in the 1850s, the first being the New York Day Nursery (1854). Early day nurseries cared for children of all ages, but problems arising from inadequately trained and motivated staff caused most states to limit day nurseries to serving only children from two to five years old. The women's liberation movement, as well as other social developments of the mid-20th cent., spurred the growth of day nurseries and led to efforts designed to lower the age at which children may be cared for. Many centers now provide infant care. The federally funded Head Start program (est. 1965) was designed to provide a combination of educational and day-care services to children from poor families. The day nursery should not be confused with the nursery schoolnursery school,
educational institution for children from two to four years of age. It is distinguishable from a day nursery in that it serves children of both working and nonworking parents, rarely receives public funds, and has as its primary objective to promote the social
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, an educational institution with different objectives.


See E. S. Beer, Working Mothers and the Day Nursery (1947, repr. 1970); E. B. Evans and G. E. Saia, Day Care for Infants (1972); M. Steinfels, Who's Minding the Children? (1974).

References in periodicals archive ?
Santos had a job working at the university, but out of the $425 she took home every two weeks, she says, $328 went for day care.
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Published in the September issue of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and based on a study of about 340 preschool-aged children in 30 day care centers in Hamilton County, Ohio, the study found that children consume more calories and less fruits and vegetables and milk outside of day care than recommended.
She said that 65 day care centres had been set up in various institutions under Women Package 2014, adding that facilities of international standard had been provided in these centres where trained staff was deputed for care of kids.
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A proposal to enable workers at day care centers to unionize would represent a gross overreach by state government, with the potential to drive up the state's already high costs of child care, reduce access to the services families need and trample on the autonomy and rights of small, family-based day care providers.