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Childcare Challenge

(10 Posts)
EJP9 Tue 12-Jan-16 14:13:24

Hi there,

I know there must be a solution to my childcare needs, I’m just not sure what that is and who’s better to ask then other working parents, so would really appreciate your advice here.

My 3 year old son currently goes to a childminder for 3 days a week and has started to complain he’s a little bored there. The childminder is very accommodating of my shift work and covers from 6am when I work earlies until 6pm when I’m on my late shift. Since beginning of Jan my son has started going to playgroup for 3 hours each morning and my childminder takes him and picks him up for the 3 days she has him. I’m using my 15 hours free childcare to pay for the playgroup, but I’m also still paying for my childminder as I did before he started playgroup. Now the child minder has increased her daily rate by £5 per day and I’m struggling a little with the extra cost. Can anyone suggest a better why I can arrange my childcare so I benefit more from the 15 hours I get free but still cover the hours I need for work?

My parents also help out by having my son 1 day a week (paid for in love), but feel I can ask them to do any more than they already do.

Also no partner involved so no support there either.

I would really appreciate any suggestions/advise you have to offer.

Thanks E

writingonthewall Tue 12-Jan-16 14:19:16

Am I right that you sometimes need from 6am and sometimes need til 6pm but don't need the whole 12 hour cover each day. That is going to be very difficult to find and I doubt will be cheaper elsewhere. 6am is very early.

nephrofox Tue 12-Jan-16 14:19:59

A private nursery would knock the 15 hours off your overall cost?

Or a pre school which offers wrap around care?

HSMMaCM Tue 12-Jan-16 15:51:00

If you hadn't said your son was bored I would have said use the 15 hours at the cm. If you got him into a nursery or another cm with normal hours would your parents be able to cover the days you need to start at 6?

Karoleann Tue 12-Jan-16 22:12:11

Unless you can find another childminder who would cover your shifts at a cheaper rate I suspect you have a pretty good deal.

Nurseries usually don't start until 7.30am at the earliest.

Unless your shift pattern is fixed? Then you could use a day care nursery on the days when you have a later start and then the childminder/pre-school on the days when you have an early start. You wouldn't save any money, but your DS may be less bored.

lovelynannytobe Tue 12-Jan-16 23:18:41

WOW ... with 6am start I'd be so happy to have found somebody to do this for me.
I think unless you work fixed days there's nothing you can do. If you work fixed days you could use one full day in a nursery and another half a day (the 15 hours) but bear in mind very few daycare nurseries are happy to take the children just for the funded hours. That would still involve the childminder taking your son in the morning but dropping him at nursery and you collecting from there.
To get the financial benefit of the funded hours you would need to use the funding with the childminder.
Tbh for the sake of £15 a week I would just leave it as it is ... she's flexible to cover your shifts and start so early and your son still gets the excitement of going to pre school. Also please consider that for a CM having a child to drop off at pre school and then collect 3 hours later is very inconvenient (I was a CM and absolutely hated doing this and when those children eventually moved up to reception I stopped taking new business that required this sort of commitment). Also consider the future ... when he eventually starts school you've got a ready made arrangement. I wouldn't rock the boat.

Forresitters Wed 13-Jan-16 00:00:22

I agree with lovelynannytobe. I'm a CM and pre school/nursery runs can be really difficult.
I think you have a good deal here as I don't know any CM's who start at 6am never mind nurseries. Is this her usual opening hours or does she do this just for you as I would feel very unappreciated if I found out one of my parents had posted this.
Have also just put fees up to £5 extra per day because everything has gone up and have not have fee increase in 4 years.

Perhaps you need to speak with your CM so you can all try and make this situation better. Tell her your son says he's bored. Do you have a daily diary where she writes what activities he does? Has he said why in particular he is bored? Or is he just saying it to get extra attention from you? Maybe he might be better suited to nursery now but again most nurseries start from 8am.

Blondeshavemorefun Wed 13-Jan-16 11:11:30

Is he the eldest one there and other 2 under 5 are younger

Agree very unlikely to find someone to start at 6am and sadly all things go up so £5per day so 50p per hour ish is good

jclm Thu 14-Jan-16 14:14:18

Not even a nanny paid £10 per hour would be happy with a 6am start. I'd stick with the cm

EJP9 Thu 14-Jan-16 22:56:59

Thanks for all your really helpful posts.

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