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Au pairs and English classes

(19 Posts)
Mummyoftheyear Sat 02-Nov-13 20:06:39

My au pair would like to take English classes. The only ones that are on when I'm not working start at 9am. To go to them, this would mean that she'd be leaving the house at 8am. Her mother and aunt just came to visit and said that she should be doing them as it's an exchange and that she needs to get out of the house. I agree entirely but have an au pair (vs babysitter) so that she can finish up house chores until about 10 am. It's going to mean extra stress and pressure to get out of the house in the mornings
I'm a teacher and began my teaching career as a TEFL teacher. I have been giving free lessons to her and to her friend for one hour, once a week. I agree that it'll be good for her to get out. Just the timings are rubbish. I work from home 5-8, so can't have her going to evenings. It's a tricky one. Tbh, I'm wondering whether I should just get a babysitter instead.

rubyslippers Sat 02-Nov-13 20:09:24

why can't she finish her chores in the evening?

Genuine question - i have a nanny and don't mind if she does the breakfast dishes in the morning or when she picks the kids up from school later on

and i am currently trying to recruit an au pair (for next year) and understand that language classes are a part of the 'Deal" as it were in their child free time

Mummyoftheyear Sat 02-Nov-13 20:12:29

I was really clear about the hours at the outset and will just do the dishes, kitchen, laundry and washing machine myself rather than look at it until 4 or. 5 o'clock. Hence my point about getting a childminder. It's not as if I'm sitting on my laurels at home. I assess children and am busy writing up reports. I just couldn't live in a shit hole and would end up running out of time to get my work done.

Artandco Sat 02-Nov-13 20:15:40

I thought an au pair just helped with older children and tidied up the odd bits mainly what they use in day ie breakfast things after making children and themselves food etc? No laundry for the whole house amoungst other things

Mummyoftheyear Sat 02-Nov-13 20:36:57

Do you have an au pair?

Artandco Sat 02-Nov-13 20:59:34

No but Iv been an au pair, a nanny, a maternity nanny and worked in childcare recruitment .
IMO you need a part time nanny 5-8pm and a cleaner

Mummyoftheyear Sat 02-Nov-13 21:00:56

I already have a cleaner. I've been an au pair three times myself.

Artandco Sat 02-Nov-13 21:02:42

Really? Why the problem then? Surely au pair can go to classes and cleaner can clean? If you just mean tidy then prob need to do that yourself

Mummyoftheyear Sat 02-Nov-13 21:19:55

I don't have a cleaner and au pair at the same time of day / on the same day.
My frustration is actually in finding a class for her at a time when she's not working (ie between 10am and 5pm).

MinesAPintOfTea Sun 03-Nov-13 06:33:53

I don't understand why the breakfast things can't be stacked until she comes back from her clad. Surely its only a few bowls/plates? Aiming no problem with children Geoff to school etc

LedaOfSparta Sun 03-Nov-13 06:43:50

Aren't there any lessons at an alternative time? They may be a bus or train ride away but it's all part of the experience!

Mummyoftheyear Sun 03-Nov-13 06:59:39

I've had a look and can only find a decent school in the mornings 9-12.30 am. She'd have to get the bus at. 8.07 to get there in time. I think I'll do some more research.

HomerPigeon Sun 03-Nov-13 08:41:15

Why can't she tidy breakfast things before leaving? We have an au pair - kids and she are out the door by 7.45 to get to school and then she goes straight to college for lessons which start at 9.30.

Anotherdayanotherdestiny123 Sun 03-Nov-13 08:48:10

Surely she can do the breakfast things before she leaves. Ask her to start at 7 fully dressed and then she can help with breakfast, do the childrens beds and be out the house by 8. If you are going to be flexible about her getting to class at 9 she can be flexible and start a bit earlier to get things done.

Mummyoftheyear Sun 03-Nov-13 09:36:04

Yes that's what I plan to do. Suppose I just had it easy with more flexibility while she was happy to be taught by me at a time that I could manage. Her mum has offered to pay for proper classes now, so I'll have to help to find a way to make it work ;) shouldn't be too hard. Just annoyed me last night as her mum and aunt visited and she'd said that they wanted to meet us. We made them a tea and it turned out not to be a lovely get to know each other chat, but mum putting pressure on to get her to join classes. I wouldn't have minded if she'd asked me herself. I looked into it when she arrived. I did mind, however, when her mum and aunt came in to put pressure on with something I'd have agreed to if she'd only asked. She'd never even mentioned wanting to and I didn't like having her family here creating an atmosphere. I can't quite explain it but it was v uncomfortable.

lovelynannytobe Sun 03-Nov-13 11:42:08

Maybe she didn't know how to say it. TBH the classes are a part of the deal and it should have been researched BEFORE her arrival. This is where they make friends so it is extremely important. You teaching her is not the same and 1 hour a week is not enough ... sorry. I think her family was quite right to talk to you. Don't be upset how it came across as you know yourself that a lot of things get lost in translation and are influenced by cultural differences. Us Brits are sometimes too PC and we like to have it delivered in a nice way. I'm sure the mother and aunt didn't mean to be rude they were just looking out for their daughter/niece. I would be really peeved myself if my daughter was an au pair but the host family wouldn't allowed her to attend language classes because of some chores that can be done later. I would probably insist she finds another family who are more flexible.

Artandco Sun 03-Nov-13 13:10:07

When I was an au pair ( 10 years ago), I had language lessons paid for as standard as did every other au pair I know. I was booked into classes etc before I even flew over ( was in another European country) and started the following week. An aupairs main thing is learning language and culture in exchange for a little childcare

Personally I think you should have thought/ researched and paid for this before she even arrived.

Let her do the 9am classes. Get your children and yourself to learn how to wash up a bowl or put in dishwasher instead of using others as your personally slave!

Nowdays I have a cleaner also - she cleans. She doesn't tidy our crap that's our job.

Mummyoftheyear Sun 03-Nov-13 19:10:14

Lovely nanny, the issue isn't in not letting her go. This is the first time that she's ( her mum ) has asked. The issue is finding a class at a good time.
Previous poster, your insinuations of laziness are ridiculous seeing as you've no idea of her working hours or set up here. We are currently all in the car together on our way home from taking her with us to a firework display.

finefatmama Fri 15-Nov-13 00:30:45

I have just agreed with mine that she can attend weekend classes as weekday ones are a bit of an issue. she started after registration at the local colleges were closed and will have to commute so she's decided to hang out with her friends in London every weekend and attend courses.

all my au pairs pay for their own classes and I have been advised by the agencies I have used that it's not an expectation that I do so maybe things have changed from 10 years ago.

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