I'm starting to look into childcare options; if possible, I would prefer to have an au pair, nanny or child minder for the first couple of years, and a pre-school (for social reasons, mainly) from the age of 2-3 years. So it may be that I don't need to worry about this just yet; however, if I end up placing my child in a childcare centre as an infant, I would like to feel confident that I will trust in that school when the child becomes older and impressionable.
From what I know and what I've witnessed personally, there isn't need to worry about daily prayers or crucifixes. I'm a little more concerned about holiday seasons. I've done work experience at two pre-schools locally, but only one of them during the holiday season. This first one coloured pictures of the nativity scene, sang songs like "Away in a Manger" and performed a Nativity Play.
To be honest, this doesn't bother me too much, as long as it's mixed in with songs/colouring sheets with Rudolph and Santa and Christmas trees. At the end of the day, I can just say that they're stories. I think the Nativity Play is a bit over the top, though.
I'm also not worried about Easter, because it seems to me that even Catholics realise it's better to let toddlers colour in pictures of the Easter bunny and decorate eggs with sticker and glitters than inform them it's the celebration of a man rising from the dead after being tortured and nailed to a cross.
I didn't like this first pre-school at all, but the second one was wonderful, with a fantastic designated baby room and great teachers in all the age-categories. I don't, however, have any knowledge of how they treat religious holidays.
So (long story short), I'm wondering what the general level of religion in pre-schools is: Is Christmas the only time it's mentioned? Do some pre-schools not bring the Christian aspect of Christmas into it at all? For those that do talk about "baby Jesus, etc;", do they at least do it in a light, no pressure way that I'll get away with saying it's just a Christmas story?
I plan on asking this at the schools themselves, of course; just trying to gauge whether or not I should expect complications, first.