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Childcare software: Top 10 picks for daycares in 2024

Running a childcare center takes expert organization and multitasking skills. Even with the right skill set, many directors and owners feel overwhelmed by their to-do lists—paperwork, schedules, communication...oh hey, nice to see you! Many daycare centers look to their childcare software to help streamline operations and improve the experience for both staff and parents. But with so many daycare softwares to choose from, how do you find the right fit? In this post, we’ll explore the top options for childcare centers available in 2024. With this handy guide, you’ll find the right software to make your day-to-day easier than ever.

Looking for a quick take? Check the bottom of this article for a 2024 childcare software comparison chart.

Best childcare softwares for childcare centers (2024)

1. Safety Culture

Safety Cultureformerly iAuditor— is a versatile platform used for safety, operations, and quality management across various industries, including childcare.

Key features: Customizable forms/checklists, incident reporting, real-time data, analytics, parent communication tools.

Best for: Centers seeking a comprehensive solution beyond just childcare management.

2. Procare Solutions

Procare Solutions is widely considered an industry leader with decades of experience specifically in childcare management.

Key features: Attendance tracking, billing/payments, parent portal, staff management, reporting.

Best for: Established centers seeking a through, childcare-specific platform.

3. Lillio

Lillio (formerly HiMama) is a modern childcare software known for its ease-of-use and focus on child development tracking.

Key features: Daily reports for parents with photos/videos, lesson plans, staff communication, and payment processing.

Best for: Centers valuing parent engagement and child development documentation.

4. Kangarootime

Kangarootime is an all-in-one solution balancing administrative and child-focused features to eliminate everyday stressors.

Key features: Billing/invoicing, child portfolios, attendance, scheduling, and parent app.

Best for: Centers seeking a balance of child development tracking and business management tools.

5. Brightwheel

Brightwheel is a popular choice amongst millions of educators and families, emphasizing parent communication and ease-of-use.

Key features: Real-time updates for parents, messaging, digital sign-in/out, billing, and child observations.

Best for: Centers wanting strong parent communication and a user-friendly platform.

6. Jackrabbit Care

Jackrabbit Care is an online-software, designed for childcare centers of all sizes.

Key features: Attendance, billing, parent portal, curriculum tools, and activity tracking.

Best for: Growing centers with multiple locations or those in need of scalable software.

7. Sandbox

Sandbox offers streamlined features with an approach focused on simplicity and affordability to grow your business in one place.

Key features: Attendance, billing, parent app, and enrollment management.

Best for: Smaller centers seeking essential features without overwhelming complexity.

8. Kisi

Kisi emphasizes contactless sign-in/out, security, and technology-driven solutions. 

Key features: Sign-in/out, door access control, parent communications, and simplified attendance tracking.

Best for: Centers focused on security and technology-driven solutions for streamlining daily operations.

9. Wonderschool

Wonderschool focuses on supporting in-home childcare providers with simple business management tools and a platform to reach more families.

Key features: Marketing tools, enrollment management, family communication, billing, and payments.

Best for: In-home childcare providers seeking to establish or grow their business.

10. iCare

iCare offers comprehensive childcare management solutions designed to simplify operations and enhance parent engagement.

Key features: Childcare management, parent communication (real-time updates, photos/videos), contactless check-in/out, staff management, and child development tracking.

Best for: Centers seeking user-friendly software with features for administration, parent communications, and child progress tracking.

preschoolers color at a childcare center

Choosing the best daycare software

Finding the right software is a big deal for you, your staff, your parents, and the well-being of your students. Take time to carefully consider your center's needs. Prioritize the features that are most important to you (whether it's advanced billing, parent communication tools, or features for the children). 

You’ll also want to consider your budget and the type of pricing model that works best for you. Some softwares employ a per-child pricing model, while others offer subscription-based plans. When you’ve zeroed in on your needs and priorities, use this chart to help your narrow down your decision.

 

Software Key Features Best For Pricing
SafetyCulture Forms/inspections, incident reporting, parent communication, data and analytics Centers prioritizing safety & compliance Varies by feature set
Procare Attendance, billing, staff management, reporting, parent portal Established centers focused on core operations Subscription-based or per-child
iCare Childcare management, parent communication, contactless check-in/out, staff mgmt, child dev tracking Centers seeking user-friendly, all-around tools Contact iCare for pricing
Kangarootime Billing, child portfolios, attendance, scheduling, parent app Centers seeking balance of admin & child focus Per-child
Brightwheel Parent updates, messaging, digital sign-in/out, billing, child observations Centers wanting strong parent communication Per-child
Jackrabbit Care Attendance, billing, parent portal, curriculum, activities Growing centers with multiple locations Per-child
Sandbox Attendance, billing, parent app, enrollment Smaller centers seeking essential features Per-child
Kisi Child Sign-In/Out, Door Access, Parent Communications Emphasizing security and technology Contact Kisi for Pricing
Wonderschool Enrollment management, billing, marketing tools, family communications, operations management In-home childcare providers seeking to grow their business Subscription-based plans, % of revenue options

Your childcare software is only as strong as your team

 

A childcare software can do wonders for your operations—there’s no doubt about that. But what really keeps your childcare center running smoothly? Your staff. If you need subs to cover lunch breaks, vacations, or call outs, SitterTree can help. You’ll connect with experienced early childhood educators in your area. You can even post jobs for full and part-time hires. Sign up and post a job—all in the same day.

Or get started with an introductory phone call.

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SitterTree does not employ any service provider nor is it responsible for the conduct of any service provider on our app. SitterTree operates an app for end users to book and pay service providers for child care services. Each user is solely responsible for completing necessary due diligence prior to booking child care services from any other user. All information provided in member profiles, job posts, and chats is provided by users and is not generated nor guaranteed by SitterTree.

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