Austin >Community & Social Services > North Oaks Country Child Development Center
8830 Cainwood Ln, Austin, TX | Directions 7872930.455851 -97.773251
I am a first time mom who is extremely attached. When I had my daughter I cut my work back to part time and begin working at home so that I could be with her all the time. I did this till she was 18 months old. At that time it became obvious that she was ready for more socialization with children her age. I was also ready and wanted to start back to work full-time, but the idea of leaving her with anyone else terrified me. As every parent knows, it is just plain hard to trust another with the care of the single most important person in your entire life.
I researched many schools in the area and then I discovered NOC. The directors Nikki and Mark made me feel very comfortable and answered all my questions as I toured the facility. I was immediately impressed by how large and immaculate the school and playgrounds were while still keeping a loving home like environment. It is truly a nice facility, but honestly that had nothing to do with my decision.
It was the teachers and caregivers that I met that made me feel at ease about leaving me daughter. I saw the other kids learning, playing and happy. From the young kids to the older kids everybody seemed genuinely happy to be there. They were all involved in activities. The walls are lined with pictures of happy children from the past 31 years of operation. Many of those kids on the wall have grown up and had their own kids now. It just felt right.
Those were my first impressions of NOC and now that my daughter is a student there I can say that they were spot on.
I have watched her grow and learn so much in the last two months, it blows my mind. She has learned sign language and even some Spanish. A couple of weeks ago they learned about manners and she uses please and thanks you correctly all the time now. It is so wonderful to see her thriving at NOC. I never know what little surprise might be waiting for me in her cubby when I go to pick her up. (Maybe a little note from her teacher telling me about her day, or artwork she has drawn, or some other project she completed that day) Our fridge is covered.
Her teacher (Ms.Jibri) has been wonderful with her and I can tell she has really taken the time to get to know my daughter as an individual. The staff at NOC is grade A and second to none. I could go on and on about how awesome the people that work at NOC are. It’s easy to see they really love their jobs.
The main thing is I see is how much my daughter loves her school. She wakes up chipper and basically skips out the door. She was sick a couple of days last week and had to stay home, but even feeling yucky with a 102 temp she was begging to go to school. “So she could play “Ppleeasse”. It was so sweet.
If you are looking for an exceptionally caring and educationally valuable school for your child you really can’t go wrong with this place. We look forward to many years as part of the NOC family.
Our children love North Oaks! The new owners are amazing! The facility is very clean, the staff is nurturing and highly competent and we have peace of mind that our children are in wonderful hands!
Top Notch – I love this daycare center. All three of my children have gone there over the years. I work for the state and visit many daycare centers and this is one of the best. My daughter went through Pre-K and after school programs and loved it. They have a great summer program. The lesson plans are great and the communication from staff is excellent. I want to be called when my child has issues or is sick. The teachers are experienced and love what they do. I highly recommend this center.
My son loves it here – This is the third day care we've tried with my son. At the first center (which will remain nameless), he would sob uncontrollably when we dropped him off. I didn't think anything about this at first, as it was the first place we tried, and I just figured the crying was because he'd rather stay home as he was used to. As time went on, I was really feeling guilty about sending my son somewhere that he seemed to hate so much, so I tried to make it sound like fun, and engage him about his lessons in day care, or daily activities. That center absolutely did not communicate with parents. We had no idea what our son was (or wasn't) learning all day. Needless to say, we pulled him immediately. The second center (also to stay nameless), was somewhat better, with written curriculums and some parent participation; but I swear I think they were training future MMA fighters there! It seems like at least once a week, we were getting notes that someone had hit or bitten my child! Although he seemed somewhat happier here, I'm not okay sending my child somewhere that violence is the norm. It made me wonder what kind of supervision was actually conducted. After a rough 11 months of terrible treatment, I was really beginning to consider being a stay-at-home mom, until we found North Oaks. My son absolutely loves it here. The curriculum is always posted on the bulletin board, so I always know what my son is learning on any given day or week. This is great, because after day care, he's excited to tell me about his day. He loves his classmates, teacher, and Mrs. Patti (the director); and is so excited to see them somedays, that I have to remind him to come give me my goodbye hug, before he takes off into class. Overall, at the end of the day, the knowledge that my child is safe and happy is priceless. Choosing a day care was a scary task, and I'm glad we finally found this one.
Be prepared to be called constantly at work.... – For over a year my daughter attended North Oaks. The Director appeared to me mindful of her staff, stayed on top of things, and I did not see the turnover I had seen in other facilities. Do not be deceived by the matronly Director with the grandmother persona, she is only concerned with the bottom line.
With North Oaks, expect to receive frequent calls by the Director. Most daycares provide written notes of incidents during the course of the day. Do not expect this from North Oaks. The Director will call you every time your child bites, has a snotty nose, skinned knee, or the slightest behavior issue; granted as a parent, I want to be informed but to be interrupted constantly during the workday was extreme.
We signed our daughter up for the Tumblebus and within a few weeks of enrollment, the Tumblebus cancelled the sessions at North Oaks. This happened two summers in a row at North Oaks. Later I discovered the Director had gone behind my back and cancelled my child because the Director thought my daughter was too small. The Director never once stated her concerns with me or allowed me as a parent to decide; instead, her interest was the potential “liability” of her facility.
When I notified the Director of our withdrawal, the Director called in the middle of the workday to ask me the reason for leaving, I told her of the constant calls during the workday, the Tumblebus issues, and inconsistent communication were the reasons. The Director began to argue with me for the reasons we were leaving her facility and her behavior on the call convinced me the choice to move my daughter was justified.
If you cannot afford to be interrupted during the workday for the slightest things, do not enroll you child in this daycare. The Director is a control freak and has little concern for the working parent or child. Her focus is to keep her facility under control and minimize personal liability. The only positive thing I can say is the two teachers, Ms. Teresa and Ms. Maria, were wonderful but I would not expect them to stay long under the dictatorship of the Director.
Do not be fooled by the price. The cost of packing and bringing a lunch daily, providing wipes monthly, Kleenex, etc., will offset whatever tuition savings. Finally, the facility is dated, old, and poorly heated and cooled.
Teachers – you should always get references on your teachers!
Home Away From Home – North Oaks is a home away from home. Hidden away from the Austin's hustle and bustle. Large shaded playgrounds. Caring staff and very experienced director.
Ms.Patty has run this center for 20 years +. That takes dedication and a love for children.
After reading other reviews posted I was disappointed on some of the reviews. First they all appreciate the cost but wanted to complain about old playground equipment, no lunches provided. If you want a fancy child care center you have to be willing to play for it. Believe me fancy child care centers does not always mean the best "CARE" for your child.
My son attended NOC since he was 2 yr old. I can only sing praises about Ms. Patty and her staff. Sure there is turn over but there is in any daycare. I feel Ms. Patty does the best in her ability to keep my child happy and healthy. Unfortunately that means dismissing staff that is not doing adequate job. I rather they be let go that kept.
I give North Oaks Country Five stars for loving my active, unruly, "son" as much as any girl in their care.
I would not trust him to any other child care center.
Don't just take my word for it...stop by for yourself.
Some things good, but smells bad most of the time – I really liked certain things about it. The separation of the age groups on the playgrounds was good. Made me feel more comfortable with my toddler being able to play with only children only in her age range. I also liked the teachers. but it smelled horrible most of the time. Also there was no daily report sent home for my toddler. I thought that was strange.
It really is a – When our second child was born, I had hoped I wouldn't have to return to work, but reality struck, and after 18 months, I was back at the grind. I was terrified about finding a place for my kiddos, but these fears were quickly put to rest when I got to North Oaks. Ms. Patty was a blessing! She made me and my little ones feel completely comfortable, and the center was just like a little country home. North Oaks was everything that I was looking for in a daycare! Other centers seemed to either be too clinical, or unprofessional. All three of my children have grown up at North Oaks, and now that my youngest is officially too old for daycare, it breaks my heart to have to have said goodbye. Ms. Patty and all of the staff at North Oaks were pivotal beacons in the early lives of all of my children. I am thankful for the stability that North Oaks was able to provide. North Oaks does not force these little peanuts to grow up too soon, but instead focuses on nurture from an early age. The benefit of this to a little one's early socialization skills is transcendent! No matter what issue a child faces in these pivotal years, Ms. Patty and her staff were there with a solution. No one here was ever anything but nurturing, and the staff at North Oaks is a prodigous one. It is obvious that everyone here loves children, and loves what they do. With an awkward work schedule, I was able to arrive to pick up my children at anytime during the day. I was pleased to always find them busy with activities and projects no matter what time I showed up! The kids also adored the tree-filled playground, and still ask if they can play there when we pass by. Finally, I was pleased that my most prized possesions were at a safe, nurturing environment, tucked back in a nice neighborhood, rather than a building lining a highway. I proudly give North Oaks two thumbs up, and would recomend it to anyone looking for a great place to nurture their little ones!
Not after age 3 – My daughter had been attending NOC since she was 2.5. Prior to that, she was being taken care of at home. Two years ago, the transition took about two weeks, so we kept her half days until she got the hang of it. Nap times at the time were considerably long, and I appreciated it...almost two hour. Lunch a little early, I believe closer to 10 than 11. She had the same teacher for over a year, and then moved up into another class due to her age, closer to 4 yr. During the transition, she was cared for by one teacher, where we had witnessed other children getting yelled at, and even witness out own child alone and without guidance or attention. This teacher was either let go or quit a little after the incidents/complaints. Eventually, they hired a great teacher who stayed with the older class for quite a while, she stuck to the curriculum and always offeredf encouragement to the kids. However, over a year later, her teacher accepted a new position and the class teacher changed three times to the point that we stopped getting notifications of who her new teacher would be. Her behavior was increasingly negative and her desire to go to school in the mornings decreased every day. She would ask me if I could pick her up before TV time. TV time????
When we first started the program, we had great expatations of the school, set by Patty, but over the past four months, those expectations have not been fulfilled. We are seeing an increase in TV time, and no attention to curriculum that is outlined monthly in the calendar.
This center needs to bring back more positive role models and encouragement of their staff. Granted tuition is inexpensive, but at least educate our children with the money we do pay so we can see positive results.
Laslty, for the family, I hear of other daycares offering a picnic for the parents on their "Day"; all we get is a paper bowl with some items glued to it. I think they need to reconsider their curriculum and offerings.
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