Schools should 'provide sleepovers' to help parents with cost of childcare

(384 Posts)



kilmuir Tue 16-Jul-13 19:29:36


bico Tue 16-Jul-13 19:33:50

Lots of schools do this already. Ds loves it and it means when I'm away I don't have to sort out complicated childcare.

hufflebottom Tue 16-Jul-13 19:37:47

erm, i'm the same.....i'm sure the government used to complain that families didnt spend enough time together, surely instead of asking school to take on more, they should be helping businesses becoming more family friendly.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 19:39:51

Schools are about education-they are not childcare. These people need a boarding school.

FannyMcNally Tue 16-Jul-13 19:46:22

Lol at sleepovers! There won't be room in the classroom cupboards for resources any more as teachers will need somewhere to store their camp-beds.

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 20:07:58

Erm... hello?!?

Are all the naysayers on this thread HOUSEWIVES?!? Or not living in the MODERN WORLD?!?

How I wish I could be a Doris Day-like SAHM!!!

My (female) colleagues and I have been discussing schools, and everyone agreed that school that ends at 3pm does not really bode well for a parents' career (mostly the mother's)!!! If there was a school offering this kind of stuff, we'd all be supporting this in an instant.

It's not too different from a preparatory school with a flexi-boarding option! It's just you have to pay a lot more for that.

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 16-Jul-13 20:16:52

Bonkers sad

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 16-Jul-13 20:19:01

I'm aware of what boarding schools are btw, to those on here who think it's great.

There is a reason why many parents who could afford it choose not to get their kids to board - it doesn't suit all children.

Elibean Tue 16-Jul-13 20:19:26

I'm with huffle. Make businesses more family friendly, not schools more business friendly. Within reason.

GrimmaTheNome Tue 16-Jul-13 20:20:00

Breakfast clubs and after school clubs till about 6pm, yes. Holiday clubs yes. (its what most private schools offer - for a price of course)
Sleepovers are probably going too far - logistically far more difficult.

At the moment, too many parents find that they can manage up till school age because nurseries have long enough hours for enough weeks of the year (or if they're lucky, have a nanny) - school days are really difficult unless you've got local grandparents or other family or suchlike to help. I downshifted to half time when DD started school - between dropping her off in the morning and picking her up in the afternoon there really wasn't time for more in between. I don't know how people manage to continue full-time jobs once their kids are school age.... I don't know many mothers who do, apart from those with young enough grannies nearby.

spudmasher Tue 16-Jul-13 20:20:35

Children need to be with their parents.
If this is how it's going, then the next stage is battery farm type places for children.
Parents need to bring up their children, not schools.

spudmasher Tue 16-Jul-13 20:21:32

Childminders are great...home setting. Affordable.

Maryz Tue 16-Jul-13 20:26:34

Maybe we need to return to commune or kibbutz living.

All the children live in "children's houses" and the adults have their own rooms. They meet up occasionally.

Actually, sounds tempting grin

Arisbottle Tue 16-Jul-13 20:27:06

I think childcare provided by childcare professionals is a good idea .

If we are at the stage that children need to sleep at school something has gone seriously wrong

FourGates Tue 16-Jul-13 20:31:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wasabipeanut Tue 16-Jul-13 20:31:58

The best interests of children clash with the best interests of industry. It's just the way it is. The two will never match. This article mentions one school offering sleepovers thus I think the headline is misleading.

It's a shame. Wrap around childcare will be more convenient for parents but I'm not convinced it's in the best interests of the children.

musicalfamily Tue 16-Jul-13 20:32:56

There is definitely a need for the government to think about affordable childcare and I think this is a step in the right direction.

With regards to sleepovers, I am not sure how easy this is to organise, but I know loads of times DH and I have had to take leave/go on sick leave/make excuses as a business trip away coincided with the other person's. Great if you have family willing to babysit overnight, but not so great if you don't.

This would be very occasional but we know some single parents that struggle with this hugely and these days you have to travel with a large variety of jobs and saying no is not taken kindly.

mummy1973 Tue 16-Jul-13 20:33:57

Who would actually want that job? I can't cope with one friend for a sleepover!

mummy1973 Tue 16-Jul-13 20:35:04

And what Four gates said grin

mimitwo Tue 16-Jul-13 20:35:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 20:42:49

Fantastic idea,school could do 24-7 allows parents work even harder
Love it
Maybe install webcam can watch kids on Internet whilst working

Feenie Tue 16-Jul-13 20:46:23

Fuck it - just hand them to us at birth - we will return them to you at 18.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 20:47:31

Great idea

BadMannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 20:48:21

I wander how the government could afford to pay teachers (presumably) an extra hourly wage to look after children all night.
I think a school is a school and many provide wrap around care already.
THe practicalities of this would be ridiculous- where would the children sleep? What happens if they're ill? WHat would be the bed time? What about children with additional needs? The list goes on
Bad idea...

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 20:51:06

I don't see the teachers taking extra hours,they claim they're overburdened as it is
The govt could get the kids gainfully working on a piece rate whilst detained
Sure to go down a treat

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 20:52:08

Jesus do the needs of children just not really matter anymore?


MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 20:53:37

It wouldn't be teachers it would be underpaid,poorly trained,young staff in a concrete building said children had been in all day.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 20:54:31

Well,it's cost effective and many willing to do it
Great idea

IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 16-Jul-13 20:55:29

This is nuts! Madness!

And Tasmania believe it or not I do work in a professional job and manage to fit it around school hours (I know that I'm very lucky) so it can be done. Our school don't offer breakfast or after school clubs either.

As parents we make a decision to have children and that involves bringing them up - ourselves, not farming them out to whoever offers the longest hours of care at the cheapest prices.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 20:56:40

Children need to be with their parents.
It is madness for people to be against boarding schools and then want to leave their child at school overnight.
People couldn't afford if. I would be happy to provide the service but I would want paying for unsociable hours.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 20:57:39

Where are the beds going as a matter of interest?

Portofino Tue 16-Jul-13 20:59:25

But that article isn't all about sleep overs , more that school buildings are used for per/after school,clubs and holiday clubs. I am in Belgium and that is exactly what they do here. Plus they employ students through the holidays, extra staff though the school term and holidays. Sleepovers might be pushing it, but the rest, heck affordable childcare is the main factor in letting parents who want to work.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 20:59:48

Bunk beds,all compressed together
In a concrete brutalist building with whey faced nmw teenagers
That's what you all expect

Portofino Tue 16-Jul-13 21:00:02

The HEADLINE was about a sleepovers.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:00:13

Oh there wouldn't be beds,blow up mattresses on the floor I suspect.Say they didn't get a good nights sleep,they'd be shite the next day.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:02:18

Well lets face it they aint going to be hiring Norland nannies and kitting out 4* sleeping quarters when the emphasis is on the word affordable.

The needs of children need to come first. Not the needs of businesses. What a sad state of affairs...

Wasn't it in Eastern Germany, just after the war, that mothers were encouraged to leave their children in a childcare / education setting from 6am until 8 pm in order to effectively be 'raised by the state'? (although the idea was sold to them in a 'how wonderful you can now go out to work' way...)

Is that what we want for our children?

My dc love school. But they are happy to have a change of scene every afternoon and evening. I would imagine that for them to be there till 6pm most days would drive them mad...
(and no, this proposed scheme is not comparable to a boarding school, which for a large part is a way of life with adequate facilities and a separate boarding house away from the actual educational rooms and thus providing a complete change of scene on a daily basis...)

Crap idea sad

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:04:51

Well neither does ft nursery have ft norland nannies
Extended school day is great idea,which i dont expect teachers to support
Good to see the tired ole cliches trotted out any suggestion of extending school

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:07:02

Because it's a shit idea and bad for children.

Would you like to be tied to a crappy poorly designed school building 24/7 because I wouldn't.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:10:19

Your heavy on hyperbole but light on a coherent answer,exaggeration for effect
School day is simply not fit for purpose,it does need extending if sufficient demand
I already use extended childcare til 6pm,as do many parents,I'm amenable to extended day

Extended school is NOT a good idea purely because to keep children confined to the same four walls (and same playground and same view) for extended periods of time is surely not good for them...

(and it cannot be compared to nurseries where dc are younger and thus less aware of their outside world, and where the facilities are set up for play, sleep, social interaction etc.

Schools are set up for learning. And no matter how fun you make the after-school activities, they are still taking place in the classroom with maps and examples of work on the wall, with reminders about homework and grammar rules, with school desks and school equipment.
It will still feel and look and smell like a school.
Which means the child does not get a break from that environment no matter how well-planned the after-school activity is.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:13:10

It is a v good ideas it realistically meets need of working parents,I expect teachers to dislike it
The school day isn't fit for purpose it is antiquated and does need revision
There won't be compulsion to use extended day,if you want to use its optional

Bunbaker Tue 16-Jul-13 21:15:42

"Erm... hello?!?

Are all the naysayers on this thread HOUSEWIVES?!? Or not living in the MODERN WORLD?!?

How I wish I could be a Doris Day-like SAHM!!!

My (female) colleagues and I have been discussing schools, and everyone agreed that school that ends at 3pm does not really bode well for a parents' career (mostly the mother's)!!! If there was a school offering this kind of stuff, we'd all be supporting this in an instant."

So you get childminder that does school pick up - they do exist. Simple.

But will children think it is a good idea? Or do they not matter?

It is not about teachers not liking it, they won't be the one running the extended day, they already work until 6pm so could not fit it in.
Nothing to do with the teachers.

I work in a school. I can confidently say that it is not fit for after school care. It does not have the facilities. Most state schools are barely fit for educating, let alone anything else. I know that most pupils are glad to leave the building at 3pm for a change of scene. I would imagine most children would rather go to a child minder than stay at school until 6pm every day...

I agree there is a need for extended child care, but extending the school day is not the way to go.

Feenie Tue 16-Jul-13 21:16:48

Exactly - what do you think working teachers do?

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 21:17:43

Do occasional sleepovers really help with child care?

I think a financially viable model already exists for sleeping over on a more regular basis - boarding school. However the clue is that they are generally private and quite expensive.

The thing that stops your average state school being like a boarding school is not red tape, it is money.

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 21:18:19

So if the school day were extended does that mean that all the parents that want to see their children at 3pm can't?
Does it mean they eat their evening meal and do their homework at school without parental input?
When would the younger ones see their parents?
Again, the list goes on...

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:19:34

School is a good location and setting for extended day,and another option to cm
Govt should be supporting working parents,and utilising existing school as potential base
It wont be compulsory if doesn't meet your requirements don't use it

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:22:03

It's not enforced gulag it's option of extended day on school premises
If you don't want to use the extended day you'll not be compelled to
But it's a useful option for working parents,and may mean women not shoehorned into pt to it schoolday

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:22:53

Yes it meets the needs of working parents not the needs of children,you've hit the nail on the head.

My dp however late he has to work always drags himself home as he simply needs to get out of the work environment.

It is not healthy to be tied to a working environment for hours.Have to say most office buildings are like Claridges in comparison to the vast majority of crappy state schools,many of which are falling to pieces.

<wonders if Gove will fire up the school kitchens too overnight as a packed non cooked tea would be verboten going by this weeks headlines>

wasabipeanut Tue 16-Jul-13 21:23:08

"The school day is not fit for purpose." Who's purpose Scottishmummy ?

What about doing something regarding cost of living compared to most wages/salaries?

Im fortunate enough to earn enough to pay my rent and bills and have flexible hours so I can be home when the children are but I know plenty of people heavily reliant on free childcare by other family members and top up benefits like tax credits because the cost of rent and council tax is so high a percentage of their take home pay.

Who has children to never see them? How is that good for the parents or the children?

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:25:40

Yes I'd like to see option of extended day,suits my needs
Yes me who fulfils the children need like safe secure home,stability full fridge by working
If its safe,adequate and regulated I cannot see kids always have fitted in around our is case for most folk

Bonsoir Tue 16-Jul-13 21:26:06

Horrendous. Just horrendous. Because we all know it won't be anything like prep school flexi boarding.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:27:03

In fairness the article alludes to 8-6 day,that's not onerous

BeQuicksieorBeDead Tue 16-Jul-13 21:27:13

I imagine it would create a rather sad picture of your priorities in your child's mind, if you would leave them at school overnight because of work. I know it is hard to earn a living and that many jobs are cutthroat...but if you decide to have kids, work is no longer your priority. I work with children that don't see their parents for 12 hours a day. They are not necessarily badly behaved, messed up or disaffected...but it does have an impact. I can only imagine that being left overnight in a school not fit for purpose (as boarding schools are) would have an even bigger impact.
But this government don't give a monkeys about children, particularly those from less than wealthy backgrounds. They want to please the employers who should be doing something about working hours and conditions...for goodness ake, we live in a technological whirlwind world, why are we considering living like Victorians in the poor house?!

Bonsoir Tue 16-Jul-13 21:28:49

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:30:41

Yes most of my friends and family have highly successful careers and not one has Scottish's attitude.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:31:12

That's a very lame and obvious attempt at goading
Im not rising
Try harder

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 21:32:10

I think having a before and after school club ran by childcarers is a bit different to extending the school day.
As mentioned upthread the government should be supporting working parents by making work places more family oriented. E.g Childcare vouchers.
The other problem is paying the people to look after the children, you either employ someone who's qualified up to the eyeballs who will provide quality care and activities or you pay a pittance to someone who hasn't a clue. Obviously the more qualified the staff the more expensive for parents...
Childminders, IMO, are a great option.

ravenAK Tue 16-Jul-13 21:34:27

I'm a teacher. I'll happily have my tutor group overnight.

So long as I can be paid £3.50 per kid per hour - the rate for CMer or babysitter round here.

30 x 14 hours (6pm - 8am) x £3.50 = £1470.

Obviously I'd be deducting £147 each night to pay for my own dc at their school sleepover, but still not a bad rate...wink.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:34:56

Good qualified staff won't be queuing up to sleep overnight in a crappy school building with several fed up kids for the minimum wage.

wasabipeanut Tue 16-Jul-13 21:36:19

I just find the terms of this debate so depressing. The assumption underpinning the whole discussion is that children are just a massive PITA who get in the way of parents economic productivity.

People have really odd ideas about childhood in this country. We seem to have this rosy vision of what childhood should be yet we are also prepared to shove our children into school from 8-6 with no down time or freedom to have space and do their thing.

I just think it's really sad. And before anyone accuses me of being a "Doris Day SAHM" I work - freelance.

ZingWidge Tue 16-Jul-13 21:37:15


I'm a SAHM and I say yes, take them!
as long as they will have all 6 I'm in!wink

I am in the extremely fortunate position to be able to work in a school. Mine and dh's income is very modest, we live in a modest house, we don't have many family holidays (and certainly not abroad).

BUT, the dc know I am home for them after school. I can therefore take them to swimming / hockey training / friend's houses / emergency shopping trip for new school trousers etc etc. I can be there for them.

If I had to work all day I would seek out a child minder or approach a friend / family member.
I would NOT NOT NOT leave them in the same building where they have already spent 8 hours that day.

I appreciate it is a great solution for busy mums (who perhaps don't have the time / energy / inclination to seek something better for their children) but to my mind it is a lazy solution which does not have the interests of the child at the forefront.

camtt Tue 16-Jul-13 21:37:24

I can think of 2 or 3 times over ten years when a sleepover option might have been genuinely useful to me, I doubt there would be a lot of take up for that. But before and after school clubs make all the difference. I am in the ridiculous position of possibly needing to cart my youngest to school in the next village rather than use the very good school across the road because the further away one does wrap around care, the over-the-road one does not. The cost of before and after school care for the nearer school would be more, and even more important, every CM in the local area stops work at 5.30, whereas after school club continues till 6. Unless I leave work early every day I can't get to the CM for 5.30, the extra half hour makes all the difference, plus the fact that wrap around care is quite flexible and I can book occasional sessions on top of their regular days. It's not because I don't want to see my children, but because I work full-time that I need adequate childcare during working hours.

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 21:37:41

Exactly buttercat

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:38:29

You're v het up with emotive terms about crappy locations,is your school a dump?
School my kids attend is not a crappy environment,far from it
I can see though if your experience is crappy poorly designed school you feel aggrieved

KnittedWaffle Tue 16-Jul-13 21:39:33

I'd quite like to bring up my own children. Not send them for increasingly long periods into the care of other people who probably never get to see their own children

The working day needs to change so it's easier for parents, not make the day even longer for children with even less time with their parents.

How about everyone works part time. 20 hours a week.
That means more people can be employed, more time off work for everyone, less benefits needed. (I am being flippant, of course)

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 21:39:39

I can't see anywhere in the proposal where it say school sleepovers are compulsory. It offers the possibility for those who cannot afford the cost of prep schools that provide flexi boarding or aren't able to get scholarships and/or bursaries to cover the costs. Those who are against it or who think their dcs wouldn't like it don't have to participate.

For me flexi boarding makes my life so much easier and yes I have used a CM before. When I used a CM I had to fit around her and her other school aged mindees. It meant if ds wanted to do an after school club at school he could only do so if it suited the CM. I got thoroughly fed up with negotiating with the CM, arranging for ds to do something and then discovering that he couldn't because the CM changed her mind or could no longer pick up at the time she had agreed. As for cost it is only recently where the annual cost of a CM (including holidays) is less than the annual school fees plus holiday clubs and ds is at the end of year 4.

When I travel for business I can arrange for ds to stay at school safe in the knowledge that I am not relying on a number of different people to do the school run, for ds to stay with etc etc. It suits me perfectly and ds loves boarding. It isn't for everyone but it is for some. I'm lucky that ds has a very high scholarship and that I can afford to pay the balance of his fees. Fwiw the boarding cost for one night at ds's school is £35 including all meals which is cheaper than it would be to pay a CM for overnight care.

camtt Tue 16-Jul-13 21:40:29

BehindLock: as you say, you are in an extremely fortunate position.

By the way, at after school club my children (and this is true of all the after school clubs I know of around this area) are in a different building, they do different activities, not more school work, and get a chance to relax with their friends. They like it.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:40:59

I've done supply,you visit a lot of schools,most are shite. You wouldn't believe how shite. Teachers do a fab job at making the best of crappy facilities.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:42:35

It's a proposal to help working parents,not housewives who don't dont need provision
No were is there discussion of compulsion to participate in extended day
It is option for working parents,and a useful topic for discussion

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:43:09

Probably why the gov is spending 10 billion ££££ patching them up.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:44:00

Most working parents I know wouldn't touch it with a barge pole.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:44:40

Great!theyll be nicely refurbished to accommodate the extended day

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 21:44:43

But bico your dc's school is set up for overnight care. Most state schools aren't. To get schools prepared for overnight care for some children, sometimes, would be ludicrous and unfair, government spending wise.

Portofino Tue 16-Jul-13 21:45:19

But I get so cross when I say that my school is open 7.30 til 6 and this implies that kids are left there all that time, whereas what it offers is flexibility. Mum can drop kids early and dad can collect early or the opposite, this is what happens in my reality.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:45:32

Most working parents I know would be keen to be offered such a scheme

morethanpotatoprints Tue 16-Jul-13 21:46:45

So sad

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:47:46

So,there is demand for extended day.if one requires it

Portofino Tue 16-Jul-13 21:47:46

About what?

IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 16-Jul-13 21:47:56

Our experience of our ds's school is not crappy - far from it, but the actual school building is Victorian and no longer fit for purpose. They are bulging at the seams - this is recognised by the teachers, governors and council but there is no money to do anything about it.

I struggle to see how they could possibly provide the type of care mentioned in the article on-site and taking it off site would surely only increase the costs.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:49:17

Erm not all that need repairs get funding,those that do don't get a Grand Designs makeover.Our school had to wait years to get loos in the same building.The rest of the building was still a creaking,poorly heated Victorian school with crappy lighting.

Your flippant,couldn't give a shit attitude is quite sad.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:51:39

Either they are getting billions refurb or they aren't?my kids don't attend crappy school
As I've repeatedly said,yes I'd use extended day on school premises as would majority I know
There is demand,the govt is discussing how to meet demand.participation wholly optional

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 21:53:58

I think after school clubs are great for children, if they're the type of children who enjoy it and want to go or if used occasionally for a one off.
What i don't agree with is childern's needs coming second to the parents, they're being disregarded and placed after work and money.
Purpose made buildings seem to work well and when children have lots of play space/ free play but these are rare. Most are in a teaching environment, not suitable for play. Children and staff are restricted as it's not thier space.

ravenAK Tue 16-Jul-13 21:54:34

Seriously, I'd be happy to have a flexi-boarding option at my dc's state primary; build it, equip it & staff it properly & I'd probably use it occasionally.

But I don't think this is what's being mooted here - the 'sleepover' bollocks is an eye-catching headline distracting from a cheapo childcare sop which in turn is to distract from the awful mess this govt. are making with education generally.

musicalfamily Tue 16-Jul-13 21:54:56

It's sad that people still see working as a sin, something to be ashamed of, something terrible that makes one a lesser parent.

Surely it is better than living on benefits, with no prospect for oneself or one's children, surely single parent families who struggle need help to get back into work by provision of adequate and cheap, reliable childcare, surely this is a real issue which as a society we cannot keep shying away from.

Sure I agree it would be great if we all could work 20 hours a week from home, and I am one of the uber lucky ones who does work from home, BUT I recognise it isn't all ABOUT ME it is about the wider society and the reality people are living right now.

As for overnight care, the rich have been using it unashamedly and unjudged for hundreds of years, it only seem to become a problem when it is offered more widely, if you don't like it don't use it, I don't see why you would have a problem in it being offered and helping others who have a genuine need.

Haha regarding the funding and the school makeover....

We had to wait years before the problem of the sewage smell seeping into the ICT suite was resolved. (some plonker built the ict suite over the drains and did not sort it all properly, bleurgh...)
And our leaking roof was finally sorted a few months ago. After an interesting few years involving lots of buckets and quite a few mops!!
The water stains on the ceiling are there as a reminder of those damp days... (and it will no doubt be years before these are overpainted)

Then there are the walls, solid, 1920's building. Walls riddled with damp and rot. Crumbling away. Paint flaking off, damp spores and mould on all walls underneath the windows. Caretaker scrapes off flaky paint and repaints the walls but it makes no difference sad

Oh yes, parents are queueing up to let their children spend more time here!!! grin

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:56:43

Address your query to buttercat he reckons billions £££ being spent on refurb

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:56:45

Bollocks nobody has said working is a sin.

10 billion doesn't go far when it includes rebuilding schools.

musical, no one sees working as a sin. And everyone appears to be in agreement that child-care is much needed.

But I for one do not agree that this should take place in schools. The same schools in which the child has already spent 6 hours that day... The same schools which, for the large part, are not for the purpose of extended child care....
It is not the solution. It is a solution, but not a good one...

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 21:58:11

And that amount is tiny compared to what labour was spending which doesn't seemed to have made much of a dent.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 21:58:24

I doubt that the proposals mean dcs will be sleeping under their desks. Whilst there is a cost factor it doesn't have to be hugely expensive. I'm sure we all know shiney new academies where plenty of money has been spent.

I also doubt the intention that this be available in every single school everywhere. Where we live there is no before or after school provision because there was not the demand. Three schools got together to share and after a year gave up when they had a total of three pupils out of a total of 500 using the after school provision. One of the three continued to offer a breakfast club but the other two didn't bother. It is a very wealthy area so most mums are SAHM or have nannies or au pairs to do the school run. Those of us who don't fit into that category ended up choosing private schools that offered good wraparound care provision at very low cost on top of school fees (£4 a day to have cover on top of standard school hours, 7.30am to 6.30pm).

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 21:58:30

It fulfils a need that working parents have,that's bottom line

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 21:58:41

But loads of schools have breakfast and after school clubs already. Schools that don't tend not to have adequate facilities or staff. I think this sounds like the nurseries thing - cut costs by allowing standards to be lowered.

FannyMcNally Tue 16-Jul-13 22:01:15

What will happen if all schools are forced into extended days is that some children will access high quality wraparound care but the majority won't. There just aren't the qualified personnel to go around. It will be nuggets and chips and a few colouring books supervised by pressganged MDAs. <cynical>

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:01:27

Sorry at some point you have to put the needs of kids first- like the nursery U turn.This is another crap back of fag packet idea which no Tory would dream of using for their children.

To be honest it's insulting.

IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 16-Jul-13 22:01:54

musicalfamily. I agree with the sentiment in your post, but really don't think that children spending extra hours in premises that aren't intended for play and relaxation is going to do them any good at all.

I wholeheartedly agree that making childcare more affordable needs to be a priority - making it tax free, using childcare vouchers, subsidising it in a means tested way etc, but the children's needs have to be at the centre of it and not the government just going for the cheapest option.

musicalfamily Tue 16-Jul-13 22:02:28

Fair enough, I just get annoyed at the old "why have kids if you want other people to raise them" tripe.

I am not entirely convinced about this school idea either, but I am pleased that it has been recognised that something has to be done as it is a huge problem having a school day that is so short and doesn't fit into most parents' working day.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:04:48

Of course schools are fit for purpose. They are to suit the child. They are nothing whatever to do with childcare- parents need to sort out their childcare around it.
I agree with ravenAK and I would do it for £3.50 perhour per child.

FannyMcNally Tue 16-Jul-13 22:05:19

But don't people think about what will happen when their children start school? It seems to come as a shock that the school day is basically 9 - 3. Why?

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:05:37

Erm the point of school isn't to fit into the parent's day.

School is there to educate,it has nothing to do with the needs of parents- nothing!

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:07:01

Nuggets and chips?good grief where do your kids go to school
A lot of you are just chucking about hand wringing scenarios and what ifs to suit pov
If its so abhorrent,don't use extended day you'll not be compelled.and those who want to have option to do so

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 22:07:54

^ what she said

MadBannersAndCopPorn Tue 16-Jul-13 22:08:15

Not you scottish, sorry x post

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:08:59

I know Fanny,don't people realise prior to ttc that at some point they will have a bundle they will have to care for and if that isn't possible they will need to sort out and pay for childcare?

Not sure why it has suddenly become the responsibility of schools.The sense of entitlement re childcare is starting to get a tad ott.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:10:59

School day isn't fit for purpose it's a challenge for working parents,need review
The premises are owned by local authority,if they want to extend day on site they can
The education day is 9-3 this should be extended to include afterschool provision if parents require it

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:13:37

It is very weird that people send their child to school and expect it to have normal office hours- they are schools.
If you can't organise childcare around it then you need a boarding school and even then you have allow for very long school holidays.
No one is going to do it without a lot of extra pay- I would say it is unaffordable.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:14:12

Err the school day is fit for purpose ie it's a period of time which educates children at an optimum level.

Your purpose is neither here nor there.Get a childminder or nanny if you don't have another parent or family member to cover your overnight meetings.hmm

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:14:39

Having booked nursery at 12wk pg I was well aware of need to plan.i did
I see no reason Local authority cannot maximise its resources and use school as base
It's use of premises,not extended teaching contact time

NoComet Tue 16-Jul-13 22:14:50

Sorry I had children with the intention of actually seeing them and bringing them up, not parking them in indifferent before, after and holiday child care.

And it will be indifferent, No way can it be an enriching experince to spend that long in the same buildings with the same peer group, day in day out all year, especially with it been done as cheaply as possible.

Children need down time in their own space, they need time for interesting extracurricular activities, they need to spend time away from the gossip and pressures of their peers and chose friends with shared interests not shared postcodes.

Children even need time to get bored.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:14:51

Are you actually going to pay £42 a night Scottishmummy?

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 22:15:11

BUT, the dc know I am home for them after school. I can therefore take them to swimming / hockey training / friend's houses / emergency shopping trip for new school trousers etc etc. I can be there for them.

A lot parents actually do not do that despite not working full time! There are plenty around where dc just sits at home watching TV, and in that case a boarding school-like environment would be MUCH, MUCH better than being with a moody mother who does not want to do anything...

IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 16-Jul-13 22:15:13

The school day is perfectly long enough for our 2 ds's - it's quite fit for their purpose which is to be educated.

It doesn't appear to fit in with your working arrangements scottishmummy and that it something quite different to the needs of the children that the state is educating.

The school day IS fit for purpose - it educates the pupils for the duration of their time there.
After school care is NOTHING to do with school or the school day and it is a sad day the two are rolled into one...

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:15:21

With meals extra?

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:15:39

A nanny would be waaaay cheaper if you had several children and they'd be tucked up in their own beds on a school night.

Arisbottle Tue 16-Jul-13 22:15:46

There could be a core day devoted to education which we all use and then extended time at the start and end of the day which is optional and acts as child care.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:16:47

What's the significance of overnight meeting?has someone said they need them
I don't have a work pattern that include overnight meeting
Are you making things up to suit yourself?

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:17:04

If you want a boarding school - like environment you will have to pay boarding school- like fees.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:17:46

Tas speak for yourself most sahp I know are nothing like that.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:18:22

Who are you addressing exotic?

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:18:23

Then why do your kids need to sleep at school?

NoComet Tue 16-Jul-13 22:18:51

Thinking about it, spending 8 hrs a day 300+ days a year with the same group of people, doing not a lot, is perfect preparation for working in a office grin

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 22:19:01

But there already are extended days. The point is that the government seem to think that the only thing standing between your local primary and hogwarts is a bit of red tape.

Chicken nuggets? Cooked where? Many schools struggle to provide adequate facilities for lunch.

Actually, if only every school had a room of requirement this plan would be quite workable.

Child care costs money. You can fiddle about with bits of paper as much as you want, but labour and facilities are not free.

Yes TAS, but feckless parents are a whole different discussion.

And we are not talking boarding schools. We are talking state schools, most in a bit of a run down state, where dc will be contained and kept amused until the parents finish work. Nothing like a nurturing, cosy boarding school which is a home from home...

Bonsoir Tue 16-Jul-13 22:20:17

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:20:19

You're simply making things up to suit yourself buttercat,with an accompanying facehmm

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:20:37

I am addressing Tasmania who said that she wanted a boarding school like environment- but presumably without the cost and the long holidays!

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:21:09

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exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:21:53

I wouldn't work for Scottishmummy - she has no respect for child care professionals.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:22:39

No Scottish simply wondering why you are so desperately in need of overnight school care?

Bonsoir Tue 16-Jul-13 22:23:09

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:23:29

Again your simply making things up
My children went nursery ft for years before p1
Staff v able,we were v appreciative of their work

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 22:23:56

My job includes overnight meetings, or rather meetings that I have to be away fom home overnight for. Business travel isn't a rarity amongst those of us who work.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:24:21

Tsk,you're getting repetitive and somewhat unimaginative in your putdowns

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:24:49

Well quit banging on about how necessary overnight school care is then.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:25:35

Exactly, Bonsoir. I have had 4yr olds crying when they have to go into after school club- it is too much at that age- staying beyond 6pm would not be suitable.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:26:34

Bico yes my sister works away overnight several nights a week,she manages to make arrangements herself without relying on school to act as a doss house.

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 22:26:36

Where we are, flexi-boarding is sth. like £25-£35 per night.

If one is on a business trip, that would be a great option to have.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:26:48

Is that your best riposte?
Banging on?
I will disregard that I'll thought out outburst

TheCrackFox Tue 16-Jul-13 22:26:57

I don't mind the thought of an extended school day but not doing school work.

Mind you I live in a city without breakfast clubs and after school care is as rare as hens teeth so anything would be an improvement.

Sleepovers, however, are a shit idea.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:27:06

If you have to go away overnight bico that is nothing to do with school.

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 22:27:38

I don't think there is anything wrong with providing a service of overnight child care for parents.

I do have a problem with the idea that it can be done on the cheap.

Bonsoir Tue 16-Jul-13 22:27:45

Every time I talk to someone whose DC are in wraparound care they express sadness and regret. It isn't good for DC.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:28:49

This isn't a school issue,it's local authority maximising use of it facilities
Extended provision on school site to meet demand
Great idea

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:29:03

I used to have that Exotic.My dd has friends in year 3 who just want to go home instead of after school club and I'm sure it's one of the best.

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 22:29:24


Not everyone is lucky enough to work at home, be a SAHM, etc.

And France is a much easier place to live than the UK...

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:30:17

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IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 16-Jul-13 22:30:54

Tasmania that is part of the school that you have chosen to pay for to educate your dc, and that has appropriate facilities.

What's being proposed in this article is in no way comparable.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:32:27

No but all wp I know aren't saying "damn why won't they open school over night I could do with dropping little Johhny of at 8am and pick him up 24 hours later"


morethanpotatoprints Tue 16-Jul-13 22:33:01

Every time I hear another hair brained stupid idea, I am so glad I'm a sahm and home educator, but its each to their own.
If others feel this would be right for their dc, its up to them what they decide to do.
I can't see it happening tbh, too far fetched.

MrButtercat Tue 16-Jul-13 22:33:09

Any hoo bed calls.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:34:10

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tiggytape Tue 16-Jul-13 22:37:12

everyone agreed that school that ends at 3pm does not really bode well for a parents' career

It isn't supposed to bode well for an adult's career, or fit in with the hours an adult can manage to work for without rest or provide childcare around the clock or offset childcare costs against earnings. It is about education and socialisation not supporting a parent’s career.

Many schools do meet parents halfway though because in the real world people need to work - there are breakfast clubs and after school clubs and from the child's point of view as well as the school's that seems about the right balance. Schools are already asked to do far too much to redress everything from the obesity crisis to child protection to bridging the rich/poor divide without expecting them to pretty much pick up the entire slack caused by long and demanding working hours.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:38:58

Given youre a housewife with home ed kids your not requiring such provision
So no why exactly it provokes your sad facesad given your wholly unaffected
The demand will come from those who need an extended day

wordfactory Tue 16-Jul-13 22:40:16

Lot sof pruivate schools now offer flexi boarding.

Most parents have completely gone off the idea of full boarding but might find one nioght a week useful. Or a few days from time to time.

Last year, my DD did two nights during one term. Not becauase of work, but because she was involved in school activities until very late and it seemed daft her coming home only to brush her teeth and go to bed. It also meant she could sleep later the following mornings!

That said, it would have been useless as child care due to the holidays grin...

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:41:41

This need not be a school issue,or about school staff.On school premises yes
It's not an extended teaching day,it's not about teachers or their preferences
It's about meeting a potential demand on school premises

morethanpotatoprints Tue 16-Jul-13 22:42:46


The sad face is for all the dc, that would attend the workhouses if this did go ahead.
It stinks of redundant parenting, tbh.
I am sad that maybe some of my dds friends could end up being raised by the state and think it gives feckless parenting a new image.

RustyBear Tue 16-Jul-13 22:43:59

Last holiday we had a new wireless network installed and a wall built to create a new storeroom.

The holiday before that, an extensive asbestos survey.

In the holiday that's just coming up, the caretaker will be repainting several classrooms, as well as doing a lot of minor repairs/refurbishment and the whole school will be deep cleaned by the caretaker and his wife. There might be two weeks during the summer when the building would be available for 'activities', but we'd have to find a temporary caretaker to open up because ours would be having a well-earned holiday...

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 22:44:00

MrButtercat I don't understand why you think that sleeping at school must mean sleeping in a 'doss house'. When ds boards he gets to play tennis, swim in an indoor pool, play basketball, use a scooter in the playground, go bowling, watch a film, play computer games like Wii and Xbox all with his school friends. Other than watching a bit of a film he could do none of those activities at home, hence he is happy to board.

When ds was 4 he used to cry if I collected him early from after school club.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:45:04

Workhouses!oh that's priceless
Given you don't work,don't use schools how on earth can you speak with any legitimacy
Workhouse yes that could work,as I said pay the kids a piece rate for needlework or packing

tiggytape Tue 16-Jul-13 22:45:33

I'd hope schools with boarding facilities are properly geared up to it - I am sure they are. Such schools have proper bedrooms / dorms, showers, bathrooms, cooking facilities and most importantly dedicated staff. There is a definite divide between the 'school' aspects of the school and the 'home' aspects of the school.

It is nothing like a child going to a regular school at 8am and then just staying there for 24 hours on a cheapo, adhoc basis with no proper thought or care in terms of provision.

FourGates Tue 16-Jul-13 22:46:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Mominatrix Tue 16-Jul-13 22:46:02

Not sure I understand this one - surely if you need an extended day/overnights, it is far, far better for all to simply hire an au-pair, after school nanny, or occasional trusted sitter? What about those who need to be away over the occasional weekend?

FannyMcNally Tue 16-Jul-13 22:46:02

But schools can't afford to have a dormitory and overnight staff just sitting there waiting for your call.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:48:01

Lets spell it out fanny,there would need to be demonstrable demand and a business plan
You're off on one,quite simply there won't be staff and dorms just in case
Any provision needs to meet adequate demand

morethanpotatoprints Tue 16-Jul-13 22:48:10


I have 3 dc 2 of which have been through school, one of which left last year.
I have been in enough schools to know what facilities they have.
Now properly run boarding schools are different, kids get a room grin

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:49:12

Gosh next you'll say you work too to over the housewife angle

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 22:50:35

Of course there has to be a demand. There is a demand though so it makes sense to consider providing the necessary resources to meet that demand. I really don't get all these comments about delinquent parenting or having your children 'raised by the school' because you allow them to sleep at school. Ds has a very clear idea of who is his parent and it definitely isn't his boarding master.

tiggytape Tue 16-Jul-13 22:51:21

I don't expect schools to have dorms and dedicated staff - because I don't expect them to provide overnight care. I think overnight care should either be provided in a home environment or in a school that does have specialist facilities i.e. dedicated boarding schools.

Overnight care cannot be adequately provided for in a normal school without adding extensively to its facilities which of course isn't going to happen.

ouryve Tue 16-Jul-13 22:52:34

I'm sure the boys' school could cram a dozen mattresses into the corridor. In fact, if they doubled the size of the raised beds, instead of gardening club growing vegetables, reception kids could sleep in them! DS1 would probably find a nice hole under the stage to climb into. Genius!

wordfactory Tue 16-Jul-13 22:53:47

fanny lots of private schools work this way.

They know (from experience) what the likley take up will be and administer accordingly.

And actually, boarding facilities are good earners. You basically charge the parents for sleeping DC.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 22:54:27

There are academies currently being built and have recently been built that will and do have a boarding provision

Harefield Academy

Holyport College

wordfactory Tue 16-Jul-13 22:55:52

Stae boarding schools alreay exist no?

As a parent who works full time and has struggled with childcare in the past I think this is crazy. After school clubs and holiday clubs (at a cost) yes. There are no decent holiday clubs here and one at the school or in oir local community would be amazing. Overnight stays should be limited to trips, as they currently are, and to benefit the chlchildren not the parents

agnesf Tue 16-Jul-13 22:56:40

I work part time to fit round school hours. I could work longer as there is before and after school childcare at our school but I wouldn't choose it because I feel it is too institutionalised. Where we live there is pre school and after school provision but it is not well used as although lots of people work they have found other arrangements such as childminders/ childcare swaps and relatives.

I would rather see the government giving more support and incentives to childminders and other less formal types of childcare. Children, especially primary age, don't need more education and organised activities after school & in the holidays - they need a break to play or have time on their own away from the rigidity of the school day.

Many primary schools are too small to provide after school care any where other than classrooms or small playgrounds. Its not the same as private boarding schools which usually have more space and options for children to have a change of scene.

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 22:57:09

Actually, looking at the article, it looks like one school had children staying overnight a couple of times. I don't think this is really childcare, or that any one is actually suggesting that it is. It's just a rather provocative headline. Boarding schools provide a quite different service.

Many, many schools already offer before and after school care and clubs and have done for years.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 22:58:28

The boarding aspect has been wholly misrepresented its a suggested option not norm

purits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:58:31

Our local state schools didn't offer wraparound care so we went private for Junior school. The DC loved it. It wasn't a case of 'the workhouse' or 'concrete prisons' or whatever emotive stuff is being spouted upthread. They used the big, roomy Hall or the Nursery Department (fully equpped with toys, sand pits, dressing up, etc) or went outdoors to play on the grass. They saw it as extra playtime with their mates. I repeat, they loved it.

As for the argument about DC self-combusting if they are on the same premises for more than six hours ... what happens in your home at the weekend? How do your DC manage to cope?hmm

The DC are grown up now and have turned into reasonable human beings. Wraparound care did them no harm at all. In fact, it may have improved their social skills as they are both popular with many friends.

bico, your dc's school sound great, but am I correct in understanding it is a boarding school / private school with optional boarding and day boarding?
Because your average state comp would not be able to provide the same facilities as your ds's school. It would be games in the playground (same as at morning and lunch break and at outdoor PE), it would be board games in the classroom (same as wet play and those pre-holiday afternoons at school), it would be dvds in the hall (same as wet play and those pre-holiday afternoons at school) and it would be ict in the ict suite (same as ict lessons at school except they can play some computer games)
Realistically, looking at my dc's school, that would be all the extended care could offer.
And no where comfy to sit (no sofas in school, a few cushions on the floor if you are lucky), no where to have some personal 'me' time away from others (at boarding school you can retreat to your room if you wish), no swimming pool, tennis courts etc etc...

It is not a fair comparison...

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:01:07

A lot of parents actually have to work to provide food and shelter for their kids... believe it or not.

DH and I can just about afford flexi-boarding at a prep school when the time comes, but for many, the fees would be impossible to master. This would just allow people who can't afford the above to benefit from the same type of flexibility.

I used to love sleepovers as a child. To be honest, if the kid's afternoon is full activities, and suitable sleeping quarters can be found, I'm not sure what the whole fuss is about?!?

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:03:10

If Tasmania is only paying £25- £35 a night it means that she is in private education and already paying heafty fees. State schools are not geared up and it would cost more.
The whole idea is so mad I don't know why we are discussing it- most teachers, and most people working in after school clubs have families- they are simply not available.

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:03:17

As for the argument about DC self-combusting if they are on the same premises for more than six hours...

grin I had to laugh at this...

agnesf Tue 16-Jul-13 23:03:48

My DC aren't in the same premises for more than 6 hours at weekend.

We go out to the shops, on outings and do lots of different things which they can have a say in choosing. Also they have a lot of independence e.g.they can go out themselves to the local park, down to the shop, to the swimming pool, to see their friends.

These options are much more limited in a group childcare setting - especially at primary age due to H&S contraints.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:04:29

Cross posted- I knew it was hefty fees- and then the holidays are longer where there is no option.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:07:43

I can't think that you have any experience of an infant class, Tasmania. They are tired - at about 11am they are asking if they have already had their dinner. They want to go home with the rest- they don't even want to do after school club. Even when I was older I would have hated the idea.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:08:39

So all things considered exotic do you want to retract that I don't care about childcare staff
Seeing you made it up and all that
Ta in anticipation

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:09:22

Behind ds's school doesn't have a whole magically different area where the dcs go after school hours, it is all the same facilities as they use during school hours just without loads of other children. He shares a dorm with up to 6 others. Some boarding schools we have looked at have 13 in a room (and cost £32,000 pa for the privilege). If he wants to send an email it is from the ICT room, which he has access too as a boarder. They have a small common room each in the boys and girls houses, nothing fancy at all.

We had a common room with sofas and I was state educated. We also had tennis courts (aka school playground with tennis markings and nets put up in the summer). Both my state primary and my state secondary had swimming pools, albeit both outdoors and always pretty chilly.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:10:38

exotic that is a pretty sweeping statement. Not all children are exhausted by their school day.

RustyBear Tue 16-Jul-13 23:12:15

But does anyone seriously think the government is going to provide the money to make this work? High-quality child care, improved facilities, provision of meals, increased insurance, caretaking and cleaning costs, loss of income from letting school buildings etc. Like most government initiatives there will be an initial flurry of funding, which will soon disappear when they move on to the next bright idea, leaving the schemes to either close or start charging much higher fees to the parents.

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:12:23


Depends on the school obviously. I know a few state primary schools with tennis courts.

Local comp has parkland and a freakin' lake and gets mistaken for a private school sometimes.

"FourGatesTue 16-Jul-13 22:46:01

I never get the parents who Mn all the time but also work ft. How does that happen?"

It's a talent grin

thecatfromjapan Tue 16-Jul-13 23:13:33

Some private schools do this.

Done by the state, on a far-reaching basis, it would be done cheaply and badly.

I find it fascinating we are hearing more and more "stories" about extended, business-friendly, school hours. Poor families, getting screwed so badly. We don;t get much for our crushing, long hours, and our children being looked after by other, do we? It goes to mortgages and rents in the main. How crap.

Anyway, my feeling is that schools won't get turned into 24 hour youth holding pens. It would be too expensive to do in any way that wouldn;t raise huge safe-guarding issues.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:13:51

Where has all the money come from for all the academies that have sprouted up everywhere? They all seem to be pretty well funded compared to non-academy schools so why can't that money be applied to cover this?

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:14:23

Not really - you don't seem bothered that they have their own family and need to go home to cook the evening meal, take to football training etc etc and have no desire to work at night- or that schools are about education, the child- and nothing whatever to do with childcare.

thecatfromjapan Tue 16-Jul-13 23:14:50

I do think we're being softened up for a big change in school hours and holidays, though.

Totally agree with the earlier poster who mentioned post-2WW Eastern Europe.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:15:37

All 4and 5 yr olds are bico.

morethanpotatoprints Tue 16-Jul-13 23:16:18


Most state primary schools don't have the facilities you are talking about. I don't know any round here that have swimming pool, school field, ICT room, common rooms and the playground is small for all to use. No football or tennis. Lucky if you can swing a skipping rope.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:16:22

I have never met one who wasn't- not after about a month anyway.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:18:05

'all 4 and 5 year olds'. I assume you mean the ones you know? I know plenty who definitely aren't tired at the end of a school day nor at the end of an extended day.

rabbitstew Tue 16-Jul-13 23:18:31

As the stock of grandparents and other relatives runs out for free and flexible childcare (in the future, grandparents will either still be working, or too decrepit because the parents didn't produce children until they were in their 40s, as per their parents...), something has to be done to plug the gap. The options for childcare do not become more palatable over time - more and more people requiring childcare for less and less cost=more and more crap provision to choose from. Obviously, however, it's fine for the minority wealthy enough to avoid the crap. Even more interesting when the grandparents who are too elderly to help look after the kids start to need care: plenty of crap provision out there for them, already. I can see lots of jolly parents, putting their parents in homes where they can be neglected by poorly trained staff and then dropping their kids in school for the odd sleepover and thinking what fantastic lives they lead, isn't it great now men and women are equal and nobody has to care for anyone unless they are unlucky enough not to get a better paid job? Caring, after all, isn't women's work or men's work, it's menial work. So who cares?

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:18:59


When I started school (not in this country), it started at 7am and finished at 4pm, after which I had piano lessons. Yep... I was about 4-5 years old. Recently, former classmates put up pictures on FB. None of us looked unhappy or tired!!!

We moved to another country afterwards, I was about 7 years old. School started at 8am, and ended at 1pm... after which I walked (with a friend - sometimes alone) about a mile to the local after school club for lunch, homework and play. Mum picked me up afterwards.

No big deal!!!!

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:19:48

I have been a supply teacher and taught hundreds of 4and5yr olds. They need to get out of school by 3pm. Maybe a few are fresh at the start of term- but not a few weeks in!

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:21:32

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

rabbitstew Tue 16-Jul-13 23:22:03

Tasmania - you sound like you had quite a privileged upbringing. Would you have fancied school from 7am to 6pm being bored, mixing with badly behaved, fractious children who didn't have your staying power, followed by practising banging a tambourine, because it's cheaper than a piano and more easily replaced if a kid bashes it about too much?

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:24:05

This extended day won't be staffed by teachers or school,likely be external staff
It isn't extending the teaching day,it's extended use of premises to provide on site provision
There is absolutely no mention of this being staffed by existing school staff

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:24:23

The whole thing is ridiculous - no one could afford it- if they could they would be using boarding schools and they have been proved to be emotionally damaging for 4/5 yr olds. They also have huge long holidays with no child care.

Those who think 4/5 yr olds can cope with it I would absolutely love you to have 30 of them for a day!

It won't happen. Teachers are already leaving in droves. No way would I stay over night.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:24:36

Maybe ds and his cohort are different. At 4 he and several of his friends were in school from 7.30am to 6.30pm. At that age it is easy as they only have reading to do after school. It is harder doing those hours when they get older unless they can do their homework at school. Ds's school day (when he isn't boarding) starts at 7.30am and he doesn't get home until 7pm and then has homework to do. I still find it hard to get him to go to bed before 9pm and he's 9.

rabbitstew Tue 16-Jul-13 23:24:51

No, heaven forbid it would be staffed by people so well qualified and paid. That wouldn't be affordable.

thecatfromjapan Tue 16-Jul-13 23:25:07

rabbitstew - I agree with most of what you wrote there except that I think the majority will be outsourcing caring and feeling nothing but anxiety - they will be doing it simply to keep afloat. I don't think they'll even be thinking that they are pretty cool, and that caring is menial.

I also reckon caring, the caring we pay for, will be increasingly stratified: you really will know about it if you are going to pay for "good" care. And I think that is going to be interesting, because at the moment, what constitutes "care", and what differentiates qualities of care, is not completely "visible".

But I find your post really interesting. I think you are spot on about the sources of affectional and relational care are going to dry up, especially because retirement is going to disappear.

The impact of all this on care for the elderly hasn't even begun to be thought about yet by the majority of people.

I think this is a really interesting area, to be honest.

Though a bit grim.

exoticfruits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:25:11

And where are the external staff coming from and who is paying them at unsociable hourly rate?

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:25:59

I doubt the 'sleepover' provision would be aimed at 4 and 5 year olds hmm

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 23:26:41

Where has all the money come from for all the academies that have sprouted up everywhere?

Good question.

I was under the impression that the budgets weren't quite balancing.

Certainly in London there has been huge increase in demand for school places in past decade, and many schools have struggled to find space for classrooms and lunch, nevermind additional services.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:27:56

Doh,there's a recession numerous applicants seeking posts. Who'll pay?parents
Working from 3pm isn't unsocial hours.
The boarding thing is option in few school not the norm.thats not jist of article

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:29:10


Could your experience with these 4-5 years old be due to the diet??? Plenty of kids get very sugary food that makes them hyper for 2-3 hours, following which they are tired.

Protein early in the morning, etc. is a lot better than jam or sugary Kelloggs, etc.

thecatfromjapan Tue 16-Jul-13 23:29:44

exotic - If this ever happened (and, frankly, i don't think it will happen on a large scale yet - people just aren't desperate enough - there are enough decent childminders - women [it is mainly women] can still, just about, cut back on hours of paid work) it would be agencies supplying low-skilled workers, from poorer countries, or from a strata of the UK under-qualified. And there would be the occasional scandal.

But I don;t see it happening yet because people just aren't that desperate.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:31:59

That's complete speculation.there are more than enough folk here to fill such posts
And it's hard to get oversea worker sponsored in uk for unskilled work
There are existing applicants who could and would fill such posts

rabbitstew Tue 16-Jul-13 23:31:59

thecatfromjapan - I was being sarcastic about people being jolly. I have absolutely no doubt the situation will make most people miserable and anxious (except for those who can afford the sort of care for their children that it apparently makes their children cry when they see mummy and daddy at picking up time, because they are just SO happy in after school club...).

The DfE has overspent hugely on free schools and academies. So it will have to cut school budgets to make up for its overspend - so maintained schools suffer for something they had nothing to do with.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:32:55

I can't comment on ds's friends' diets but ds definitely didn't and doesn't get sugary food. He and his friends are just typical children with loads of energy. Even now if I manage to get him to go to bed at 7.30pm he is up before 6am.

rabbitstew Tue 16-Jul-13 23:34:16

Mind you, it might well say more about mummy and daddy than after school club...

piprabbit Tue 16-Jul-13 23:34:32

In this debate we need to treat the physical school buildings separately from the educational work of the school staff.

Fair enough to treat the school as a community asset and encourage the use of the buildings and grounds outside teaching times. Allow the buildings to be used as a base by commercial after school clubs, who come in and use the premises before and after school or during the holidays. Allow adult education classes to run in the evenings etc. (although there are safeguarding issues about allowing children and adults to share the space at the same time).

But I see no reason why any of this should be the responsibility of the head teacher and their staff to organise, or why their hours or responsibilities should change - they would just become another organisation that uses the premises (with the first priority).

If there is someone out there who wants to set up a "kidshotel" service providing overnight childcare and they want to use existing buildings (schools/nurseries/purpose build their own) to do that - then OK, let them knock themselves out working through how to make it happen, so that everyone is kept safe and happy. Just don't make it something that the school (as an educational organisation rather than a building) is responsible for.

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:35:07

Oooops - I did not mean you, bico

I means exotic

Tasmania Tue 16-Jul-13 23:35:31


thecatfromjapan Tue 16-Jul-13 23:37:13

rabbitstew - sorry for not picking up on the sarcasm. I think there will be a certain amount of symbolic capital involved in "working" rather than "caring" though - a kind of psychological/ideological push to further get people out there working away in a model worker kind of way. so, since I think that myself, I overlooked your (very justifiable) sarcasm.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:39:02

There never has been credible suggestion that school staff are involved
Only teachers on here protesting they don't want an extended day
Given teachers are not staffing existing after school why would they be involved in new scheme

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 23:41:42

Even in a recession people still require payment for work.

Schools already do operate extended hours and their facilities are already used for holiday clubs.

It all costs money.

bico Tue 16-Jul-13 23:43:15
scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:45:10

Of course work is paid,you're the only one suggesting unpaid workers
The scheme runs if adequate demand,and is run dpor profit
As existing after school is.all paid child care is for profit,why would this differ?

rabbitstew Tue 16-Jul-13 23:46:18

Oh, yes, the catfromjapan - there is a colossal ideological push to make people think that caring is not working unless done on an industrial, paid-for scale for profit. Heaven forbid anyone should do it just for love -unless you are actually only fit for menial work, unpaid work done through a sense of love, duty or commitment is a waste of a good economic resource and makes the giver of the unpaid work weak, vulnerable, exploitable and foolish.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:50:55

Can you accept people can get approbation,satisfaction outside home
Paid work is good for economy it contributes to tax,ni govt should support those wish to work
It's wholly legitimate to have paid external folk provide childcare if that's what required

merrymouse Tue 16-Jul-13 23:51:48

I'm not suggesting unpaid workers. My point is that none of the suggested changes make childcare more accessible, because fundamentally it is expensive to get somebody else to look after your children, unless they are providing substandard care.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:53:40

No,that's your opinion not reality of majority of childcare
Applying your logic cm can't be good as its cheap
Is good only expensive nannies?

purits Wed 17-Jul-13 00:04:51

But I see no reason why any of this should be the responsibility of the head teacher and their staff to organise, or why their hours or responsibilities should change - they would just become another organisation that uses the premises (with the first priority).

Isn't that already happening? I remember someone talking about one of the local schools, which is a PFI. The school is just a user of the building. They get 'kicked out' at a certain time so that the next user (evening classes) can get their use.

Llareggub Wed 17-Jul-13 00:05:54

My DS2 is 4 and is in a nursery attached to a school. We are in Wales where 3 years get half a day in nursery every day. Our school offers a "stay and play" option on a flexible, sessional basis costing £3 an hour.

It is brilliant - so flexible as if does not need to be booked in advance. This is the kind of thing schools should offer IMO. My DS2 stays and plays in a lovely little nursery in a caring environment.

I suppose I could choose not to work but as a single parent I get slagged off enough as it is by the Daily Mail.

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 00:06:26

No, it means that as childcare is seen as 'women's work' many childcare workers including childminders are underpaid.

By substandard care I mean increasing ratios.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:09:25

So we encourage our daughters to work in a range of career not solely so called women work

Tasmania Wed 17-Jul-13 00:10:11


First school I went to was a private school where punishment was still allowed (not in the UK). Cane, etc. still in existence. You got a few slaps on your hands for not having a clean handkerchief / socks in the morning!!! We had trouble-makers, too, but they were pretty subdued, given what the outcome would have been.

I'm confident children can learn the recorder / flute / violin - not as expensive as a piano.

Also, not everyone has to go to the wraparound care. If parents want to use it, then their DCs better be well-behaved. Otherwise, they should just be able to "reject" them...

jellybeans Wed 17-Jul-13 00:11:27

Horrid idea sad School days are long enough. Imagine being with a bully or disruptive child for 24 hours without a break. School is not childcare ffs.

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 00:14:53

purits - it may happen in some schools (especially PFI where the buildings aren't state-owned), but I think that facilities management (caretakers, maintenance, providing someone to open the school for out of hours events, set up non-school events etc.) is still the responsibility of the HT and governors in most primary schools.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:15:36

A bully will bully in any setting inc classroom,not solely at after school
The article doesn't suggest 24hr all
Occasional sleepover in limited amount schoo, isn't 24hour care

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:20:32

School isn't being asked to provide childcare.the site will be used by external provider
There is no suggestion this is school,or that school staff are engaged in this role

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 00:21:36

Or we choose to pay the people who look after our children properly, whether they are male of female.

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 00:26:56

Actually, according to the article, providing inexpensive childcare does seem to be the responsibility of the school. Parents are supposed to trust the childcare because it is happening in the school according to Truss. Even if they get somebody else to do the work, it seems that the head is expected to provide his/her stamp of approval.

Not sure if its really been thought through.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:27:09

We encourage our children into wide range career,and stop seeing job by gender eg womens work
No job is naturally women's work,isn't useful to jobs conceive as such
Not so long ago firefighter wasn't considered suitable work for women

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 00:27:51

Well actually I am sure it hasn't been thought through.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:29:37

As goes on now,ht has role in approving after school quality,if it is lacking ht can intervene

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 00:33:36

But why should the HT have a role to approve the quality of the after school care? Surely that would be OFSTEDs role?

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:35:26

Yes it's ousted,but if a ht (or any staff) were to have concern/comment I'd expect they flag it up

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 00:39:24

I'd expect the parents to flag up concerns with the provider and OFSTED. I'm not sure what business it is of the HT, it would be a bit like complaining about the preschool staff to the lady who runs Weightwatchers in our local community centre - just because they happen to share a building.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:42:19

I'd expect any competent adult (staff or parent) to flag up any concern
Staff have professional registration and duty to report anything untoward
Your calorie counting analogy makes no sense

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 00:46:58

So are you expecting the HT to stay onsite after hours to check up on the commerical providers? After all they are only sharing a building? Or are you in fact saying that the HT does have some additional responsibility for manner in which out of hours care is provided?

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 00:50:36

You're completely off at tangent.i did not say did to try expand your point
Maybe stick to weight watchers

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 00:56:58

You said that there was no credible suggestion that school staff would be involved in the scheme. You said that there was no suggestion that the school or school staff would be engaged in the role.

But you then say that the HT will be responsible for approving the quality of care and imply that school staff will be responsible for some sort of monitoring so that they can report any issues to OFSTED.

So either they are involved, or they aren't - which is it?

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 01:00:04

I simply said a ht could comment if required on after school(as can any competent adult)
That doesn't convert to having managerial or professional responsibility for an external provider
This is not extending school day,it's school as a base for childcare if needed

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 01:14:43

The only point on which I disagree with you was when you said
"As goes on now,ht has role in approving after school quality,if it is lacking ht can intervene".

Because I don't think that the HT does have a role approving after school care quality. They don't approve childminders, nurseries, afterschool clubs held on other sites, there is no need for them to have any sort of role in approving what happens in the school building out of school hours.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 01:20:52

Maybe not formally,that's ofsted but if ht heard of something untoward I'm sure they can intervene
I'm not suggesting the ht vets afterschool,I am saying ht can legitimately comment if need be
In fact any parent user of an after school can comment to ht or ofsted

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 06:46:01

On a very simple level- where are the beds going? Is there to be massive building schemes with extensions? Sounds unworkable when many schools are waiting for refurbishment- and have been for years.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 06:46:33

Are they taking away the playing fields for the extensions?

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 06:50:31

The boarding thing is a complete red herring. No one is suggesting all schools are going to do this.

tiggytape Wed 17-Jul-13 08:10:53

Where has all the money come from for all the academies that have sprouted up everywhere?

The more immediate concern for schooling is the lack of places. Quite apart from keeping the children there 24/7, unless something is done very quickly some parents aren't going to be able to get a school place at all.
There is a case already awaiting legal challenge whereby Talbot council (Bournemouth) won't give fulltime school places to 4 year olds born in the right year group since there are too many 5 year olds wanting them.
In September 120,000 children will be without any school place and that number is expected to double by next year. That figure doesn't include children who won't be able to get a local school and will be sent by bus to neighbouring towns.

That is where all the funding is going - not to improving facilities just expanding them over and over.

And yes some schoosl may already have common rooms, tennis courts and even lakes but that is hardly the norm. Most schools have a hall, classrooms and maybe a kitchen and that's it. It cannot ever be comparable to the homely environment boarding schools create no matter how many specialist staff you bring in.

FannyMcNally Wed 17-Jul-13 08:13:37

Existing rooms are not really viable either. A lot of setting up of classrooms and hall/PE etc is done after school for the following day. It's not practical to put everything away in a classroom at the end of the day. So a dedicated space would need to be built with toilets and cooking facilities. That's before finding quality staff. And caretakers willing to work the extra. And the space to build. And the money. A lotHow can the demand be forecast? They can't even forecast the amount of school places needed in most boroughs let alone the need of wraparound care.

Floggingmolly Wed 17-Jul-13 08:15:56

Why have children when your life is so busy you need to farm them out on a 24 hour basis? confused

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 08:28:28

They ought to come with a warning- 'children are inconvenient and will change your life'.
It isn't possible to have them cared for by others and just pay a bit of attention to them when you can fit them in.
Reading it through of course it is possible but you have to pay for it, and if you want good quality care you have to pay a lot. It can't be done on the cheap.
School are not, and were never intended, to be about childcare. They have child friendly hours and it is up to the parent to sort out childcare around them. Breakfast club and after school club are not the best way for the child, especially the young child-they need to get away from the institutional setting.
I dare say that you can staff them- whether you can get high quality staff is a other matter.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 08:33:16

Looking back to the title it says 'schools should have sleepovers to help parents with the cost of childcare'. I can't see how it helps with the cost- I wouldn't provide it for less than £42 an night, with meals extra. I'm not even sure that I would do that because anti social hours should mean more than normal CM rates.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 08:35:11

There is also the cost of lighting and heating to factor in + more work for the caretaker. There are all the CRB issues when the school hall is hired out to exercise classes etc.

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 09:14:01

rabbitstew - great post at 23:18

RoooneyMara Wed 17-Jul-13 09:29:42

The government's plan seems to be fixated around both parents working all the hours God sends and very rarely having to see their own children.

How about the parents do the childcare, and the government subsidises people to be able to afford homes, or whatever it is that both parents are having to work for.

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 09:31:20

Oh - baby farming. Bingo.

How many threads do you read on here where women WANT to work and cannot afford to, or are restricted by school hours/holidays?

The article says clearly that the govt plans to change the rules to allow schools to be more flexible about opening hours and will offer help to let them provide more afterschool care - amongst other proposed changes. The sleepovers were offered by ONE school mentioned in the article and the headline is just goady toss.

This does not equal everyone being forced to send their kids to school for 24 hours a day. It offers more flexibility to working parents. That is all.

I mentioned early on in this thread that I am in Belgium and ALL schools offer this. Building is open from 7.30 to 6pm and a LA controlled holiday club is offered. They employ staff who work on a rota basis and perform other tasks within the school. So they do the lunchtime supervision, help with gym and swimming classes, provide homework supervision and afterschool care. In the holidays, they run the holiday club, assisted by university students. All of this is done within LA premises. My LA holiday club is 8 euros per day to include a cooked lunch.

In addition here, a huge number of other providers also use school buildings during the holidays. Example

The system works fabulously well. I am totally shocked at the horror and outrage this seems to cause here. My colleagues would think you were all barking mad.

soverylucky Wed 17-Jul-13 09:51:33

I am teacher. My children attend before and after school clubs. Next year a child minder is going to pick them up for me and drop them off in the morning. Teachers are working parents too.

The government could provide more schemes to help with the cost of childcare rather than looking for something "that will do". I do not want my classroom reorganised for an after school childcare setting, the hall is set up for exams from may onwards.

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 09:57:18

Exactly tiggytape.

I have no problem with proper childcare provision. However this is just the government pretending that improvements can be made by 'cutting red tape' rather than spending money. Holiday clubs and extended hours already exist. Meanwhile the government has been very quiet about lack of actual school places.

See also how cuts can apparently be made to legal aid because so much money is wasted on paper, but contrast and compare with admin costs of all this faffing around with the national curriculum.

Plus ca change.

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 10:08:19

And piprabbit, I completely see your point. The article specifically says that parents will trust this childcare more because it is on school premises.

Either the head teacher is responsible and providing childcare really is part of their job description and they really will be on site, doing spot checks and briefing staff, or they have no more to do with it than handing over a key and these parents would have been misled.

(Wonder if this logic also applies to schools being used as polling stations? Can I complain to head re: Michael gove?)

mumeeee Wed 17-Jul-13 10:13:41

I think that's a ridiculous idea. Yes offer before and after school clubs which wilk help parents. However having children sleep at school wll take away family life which is very important. Children are not just things that need to fit in with thier parents needs they also have needs and need to spend time at home with thier family. It will also cause already over worked teachers more work.

Redlocks30 Wed 17-Jul-13 10:21:37

Well, I for one don't want school buildings used for holiday clubs etc Long holidays are the only time they can get all the furniture out to deep clean the rooms, carry our essential maintenance, building work and decoration.

Children have been at school from 9-3 for a very long time-it works just fine for them. If people's childcare is an issue, a solution needs to be found but I don't think having it on school grounds is it.

As for the Poster who had a common room with sofas? Really? My sixth form block had a common room with two sofas in, but I've never heard of a (state) primary with a common room?!

Tasmania Wed 17-Jul-13 10:53:43


They are all barking mad.

OR mums who don't like working, and think any scheme like this would discredit an excuse to not go back to work.

I also don't get the "poor workers" point (the ones to look after kids) when other countries DO this.

Elibean Wed 17-Jul-13 10:58:24

I think Rabbit (at 23.18) hit on a huge, huge point.

Care needs to be valued more highly. There is this mad war going on between working v caring - until women, people, understand that a community needs both and cannot possibly be healthy without both, the situation is unlikely to improve.

Families are mini communities. And they need care as well as work, whoever does it (not outsourced).

Shoving kids into school sleepovers, IMO, is a symptom of a society that is frantically trying to avoid the real problem.

Tasmania Wed 17-Jul-13 11:00:12


Are people in the UK really that ignorant to what goes on outside of this tiny island??? Brits typically blame Americans for being so... but this forum makes me think they are guilty of this themselves!

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 11:09:25

I live in France where the set up for wraparound care and school holiday care is very similar to that described above by Portofino in Belgium.

Except that no-one thinks it is fantastic and works very well. It is at best just adequate. It costs the council a fortune to provide. Most DC hate it.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 11:10:07

I don't think that people are unaware of what happens elsewhere- it is just unaffordable here. The tax payer isn't going to fund it, the majority of parents can't afford it and qualified staff are not going to work for peanuts.
You can have whatever childcare you please but it has to be paid for.

jellybeans Wed 17-Jul-13 11:12:43

'OR mums who don't like working, and think any scheme like this would discredit an excuse to not go back to work.'

Perhaps it is people concerned that the needs of parents/government are being put before those of a child.

'School are not, and were never intended, to be about childcare. They have child friendly hours and it is up to the parent to sort out childcare around them. Breakfast club and after school club are not the best way for the child, especially the young child-they need to get away from the institutional setting.' Totally agree with this exoticfruits

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 11:19:35

Paying for a child minder or nanny is a much better option for the child- especially the young child. You are going to have to pay so you might as well pay for individual care.
Even back in Victorian times, with the first education act, or Ragged Schools etc it was to benefit the child ( and possibly the later work force) it was never about free childcare.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 11:21:26

In those days many parents would have preferred them to be out at work, or at home minding younger siblings. Schools were about children and not about parents.

mumeeee Wed 17-Jul-13 11:33:39

I agree exoticfruits. Schools should be about children and their education not about childcare for parents,

RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 17-Jul-13 11:53:07


We know this is the sort of topic that gets people hot under the collar, but please stick to the Talk Guidelines and cut out the personal attacks.


MortifiedAdams Wed 17-Jul-13 11:59:01

Its all well and good saying businesses need to be more family friendly but in most cases, ut just isnt possible. I cant kick customers out of my place of work because all the staff have to go and pick their kids up from school - or I could just let the guests serve themselves their own drinks or change their own bedsheets.

CMs and Nurseries dont open at weekends so Ill just tell the Bride and Groom whos wedding im.running on the weekend that either I bring my child along or theyll have to run their own day.

Businesses cannot always become more family friendly.

soverylucky Wed 17-Jul-13 12:00:19

The thing is with comparing it to other schools is that many think that it won't be implemented in the same way here. It won't be staffed the same way and it won't be of the same quality. It will probably cost more too. People in this country simply don't pay enough in taxes for this sort of scheme to be implemented in any decent way.

soverylucky Wed 17-Jul-13 12:00:31

I meant schools abroad.

jellybeans Wed 17-Jul-13 12:04:53

It should also be easier for a parent to stay home or both parents to work part time/one part time instead of both parents being pushed full time. It would probably work out cheaper in many cases and free up jobs.

MortifiedAdams Wed 17-Jul-13 12:07:34

It would be good if you could run a house, a car and have a few days away jn the sun once a year on 20k. Then families could have one parent at home or both parents PT.

SoupDragon Wed 17-Jul-13 12:26:47

Some people seem to be getting confused as to the difference between the facilities offered by state schools and private ones. Some of the comments are laughable - swimming, wonderful facilities including X Y Z oh, but, we went private because state school didn't offer wraparound care. LOLOL.

As for the school day not being fit for purpose. It is perfectly fit for it's purpose which is to educate children.

I have no problem with schools offering after-school care at a cost but the sleepover suggestion was simply stupid. If you need extended childcare then organise it and pay for it.

Trigglesx Wed 17-Jul-13 13:04:15

I can't imagine this ever flying anyway. First of all, if the "care group" uses the facilities for the afterschool hours/evenings or overnight (which is an awful idea IMO), there will be huge issues over who is responsible for what. I assume there is some sort of insurance on the buildings, which could be affected by subletting (which is what it would be) a large portion of hours to an outside company. The insurance would either go up or cancel and not be willing to cover.

And what about risks of theft and damage to not only buildings/school property, but to student/teacher property as well. Add in the health and safety issues, along with the extra cost of cleaning, utilities, staff, and food (as many schools don't have the equipment to do an evening meal which they'd need if they were running until any time after 6pm). There is no way on earth it would be affordable.

And what about the inconvenience to the school itself? Schedules would be disrupted (because childcare needs to be consistent or what's the point), so parents evenings, setting up in the afternoon for morning or next day activities, deep cleaning/repairs/refurbishment in the off hours or holidays is suddenly a whole lot more difficult.

Security is also an issue. In order to run this type of programme, people other than school employees are going to need keys and passcodes for the property. The more this info is shared, the more likely it's insecure. And if they leave a door unlocked or gate open, it's going to be a "who's fault is it?" issue.

And it doesn't matter if the "care group" rents the space for the afternoon/evening, if someone gets hurt, the LA is going to end up being sued, deep pockets and all, because they are technically the owner of the building. And I highly doubt the LA wants to open themselves up to this.

If the government is so concerned about safe affordable child care in off hours, why don't they work on making more safe affordable childcare available in general? There's absolutely no need to use school buildings. IMO this is just (as someone else has already said) to soften everyone towards the idea of longer school days. They need to stop trying to make school be "work-friendly" and fitting it into work hours and start working on what's best for the children.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 13:13:31

Easier for whom if there is a housewife or two pt working parents?
I don't need to work I chose to work,I want to,I'm enjoy it i good at it
I don't want my job pt I'm happy ft at full pelt, I welcome govt thinking about childcare after school finishes

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 13:17:38

A lot of I's in your post, scottishmummy.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 13:19:10

Exactly- nothing about the child- just the parent.

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 13:19:24

Naturally salmond would have to embrace the sentiment in Scotland too
He can maybe do so when not worrying about trams or devolution

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 13:21:18

She never ever posts about her DC.

jellybeans Wed 17-Jul-13 13:21:28

You could still choose to work ft though SM even if the norm became two parents each working pt.

I agree there should be good childcare for those who need it. Our school has a good before and after club. But it isn't extended school.

Many people don't need extended childcare though and many have family childcare or friends and childminders. So as long as they don't try to force all kids in school 8 till 6 then those who don't agree can continue 9 till 3 as they do now or using out of school childcare and after school clubs. .

scottishmummy Wed 17-Jul-13 13:23:17

lol,cut to the chase bonsoir why don't you just shout boo hiss!she's behind you
Give you seem to pop up on this thread to tell me what a bad un I am.i like the predictability
Maybe embellish with some bold a few humphysadhmm faces and wahey you're set

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 13:25:06

Just trying to give you some insight, scottishmummy. I'm reaching out and trying to help you smile

Strix Wed 17-Jul-13 13:30:36

The role of school is to educate. There are better ways to reduce the cost of chldcare. I know... stop taxing parents on the income they use to pay for childcare. Then more parents could afford to work.

bico Wed 17-Jul-13 13:45:26

Triggles your post reads as if you think the children will be sleeping under their desks. grin My boarding ds spends as much time in the classroom as his day pupil classmates.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 14:08:22

State schools only have classrooms and the hall- possibly a library- they may well end up shoving the desks to one side!
Swings and roundabouts anyway- if you go private to get boarding you are going to have much longer holidays to find childcare for.

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 14:29:13

I don't have any kind of issue with boarding school per se or parents using different forms of childcare to suit their children's needs.

I do have a huge issue with totally inadequate premises and infrastructure (and probably people) being used to keep DC under control to force allow their parents to work.

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 14:34:37


But we do have this kind of childcare here.

However, the government is struggling to find school places for all children, never mind put more money in to childcare.

Who is supposed to be the recipient of this PR brief?

They are not proposing to subsidise more childcare (whether by increasing school budgets or benefits/tax breaks for parents) and they are not proposing to fund capital expenditure that would make schools more suitable for childcare as opposed to teaching.

They are also not proposing to raise taxes.

It just doesn't add up. (But then neither does the free schools/academies budget, or the proposals about ratios and nurseries, so no surprise there then).

Tasmania Wed 17-Jul-13 14:47:31


From my recollection, you and DH are quite well-hreled. DH and I fare well, but it is far easier when you have a lot of money to come across as the heavenly mother.

My SiL has a horrid (female) boss who has no empathy for her struggle between career / commute / child / living cost. That's because SiL and her DH both have to work and can just afford nursery while horrid boss can afford TWO nannies on a rota basis.

There is no other woman in her company that has a young child... wonder why?!? It's not a small company either.

Tasmania Wed 17-Jul-13 14:51:55

That said - I do think tax credit on cost of childcare is also necessary. But there aren't quite enough childcare places available...

Llareggub Wed 17-Jul-13 14:55:21

Not all state schools are pits.

The one my boys go to has a sea view and plenty of green space, plants, outdoor play equipment and other useful stuff. I am more than happy for them to spend time there before and after school, and so are they.

There is plenty of good stuff that could take place in school facilities with a bit of thought and planning.

Trigglesx Wed 17-Jul-13 15:26:03

bico I hardly even mentioned the overnight part, other than saying I thought it was a bad idea. How you read that I practically said they were going to be sleeping under their desks from that is beyond me. hmm Specsavers might be helpful.

Bonsoir Wed 17-Jul-13 15:35:06

Tasmania - then your SIL should look for another job. Not all companies are as unenlightened. My DP runs a company where well over 90% of the employees are women, mostly of childbearing age and huge swathes of them have small DC and are on minimum wage or quite modest salaries (though his senior management team is also 3/5 female). It is quite possible for companies to be understanding, as his is, about the necessity of give-and-take on both sides.

merrymouse Wed 17-Jul-13 16:40:55

The thing is, companies also need to be sympathetic towards men with children, not just women.

Looking after school age children should not affect mothers more than fathers.

(I know we are along way from this, so am not trying to blame mothers)

Men should also be equally responsible for ageing parents - come the revolution....!!

morethanpotatoprints Wed 17-Jul-13 16:41:50


I don't think it has anything to do with how much money you have tbh, its if you want your dc to board.
Personally, I wouldn't touch the state sector with a barge pole. Maybe one day I may agree to a couple of nights boarding in the Private sector, because these are purposely built premises with good facilities and experienced/ qualified staff. I'm not talking level 1-3 childcare cert here.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 17:14:37

I was quite happy with the state sector and wouldn't have gone privately if I had the money. My DCs have ended up exactly where they would if I had paid- their first choice of career.
There are state boarding schools - I wouldn't want to use them ,but I wouldn't want a boarding school full stop.
Of course they are purpose built with good facilities but you are paying for it- paying more than most people can afford. They are businesses- not helping parents with childcare out of the goodness of their hearts!

tiggytape Wed 17-Jul-13 17:23:02

morethan - I agree. In the real world parents mostly work and schools already accomodate this with some wrap around care that balances a child's needs with parental ones. However employers need to change and adapt too - not just schools and families.

The idea that schools should meet increased demands for longer and longer childcare hours bothers me. There comes a time when it is not good for a child to be in the same 4 walls 24/7 and away from home. And I am not talking purpose built boarding schools - they do offer home comforts. I am talking about crazy ad-hoc schemes to offer overnight care on the cheap for the convenience of parents but ultimately employers.

There was an article article a while back that showed even in 2013, 1 in 7 women lose their job as a direct result of getting pregnant. And that doesn't include the countless women forced out because companies refuse to consider flexible working however sensibly it is offered or refuse to accomodate school hours even when there is no business reason that it couldn't be done.

A Q&A on MN straight afterwards showed this is very common. Too many employers are not at all supportive of any measures that help family life even if it is of little consequence to them. In fact some of them barely follow the legislation that already exists let alone help further.

Too many employers take the attitude that family life is not their problem. Instead children, schools and parents need to go to increasingly ridiculous lengths to meet employer expectations but nobody questions this. They just run around setting up beds in class rooms wondering how to meet greater demands.

Tasmania Wed 17-Jul-13 18:28:48


Re. SIL finding another job: Minimum wage does not pay a mortgage in this country.

What really has to be addressed is the cost of living in thos country. But not many want house prices to drop by 50% - which I beloeve to be the real fair value...

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 19:44:34

They are not setting up beds in class rooms! Many people seem to get quite hysterical about this.

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 19:45:47

Though actually in Belgium they do to let the maternelle children have a lunchtime nap. wink

rabbitstew Wed 17-Jul-13 19:54:43

Nah, it will be be billed as an alternative to Brownie or Cub camp for people who aren't in the Brownies or Cubs. Have a jolly night on a camp bed in the classroom, or in a tent on the school playground (inner city)/field (if not sold off), set fire to a few books and toast a few marshmallows. Sounds like fun to me! Just an extension of Forest Schools, really. wink

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 19:54:59

I struggle with this really. My previous experience of uk school was when I was there. We used to come home at 3.30 and watch tv, or play outside with friends according to the weather. My dd plays outside with friends , or plays board games/does crafts according to the weather. There is a larger choice of games than we have at home and certainly more willing participants. I don't recall getting quality one on one time as there were chores to do and dinner to cook. In fact I remember very little interaction. We were supposed to get on with it. Dd is 9 and complains if I turn up early and interrupt.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Jul-13 22:21:44

Where would they set up beds Portofino?

Maryz Wed 17-Jul-13 22:57:22

Porto, I've been horrified over the last week or so by the threads complaining about the "long" holidays, or about children playing in the last week of school, or about how much schoolwork parents make them do during the holidays.

We spent a lot of our lives as children being just that, children. Playing. Hanging around. Doing nothing. I think it made us nicer people.

If this went ahead, it wouldn't be children hanging around with their friends. It would be structured, and every minute would be filled.

I worry about children these days not having the inner resources to occupy themselves and always needing to be "entertained". I think it makes them unhappy adults.

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 23:22:56

Maryz, I totally agree, but this is optional remember.

My childhood was entirely different from dd. I never lived in a city. I had liberties that even if I was sahm i could not offer due to location, traffic, main roads etc.

Maryz Wed 17-Jul-13 23:29:22

Sorry, the point I was trying to make is that it could be a good idea if it wasn't too organised.

I think children are in danger of being too organised and entertained. I'd love to see after-school clubs that encouraged children to just "hang". But I recognise that it is difficult, because a proportion of them will become unmanageable if not constantly organised.

I'm a fan of scouts/guides for this very reason - as they get older they have to entertain themselves in a field in the rain. Character-forming stuff grin

Portofino Wed 17-Jul-13 23:29:56

Exotic, in the Belgian maternelle system. Where they start aged 2.5. They do put beds out for the little ones to have a sleep. Some schools have purpose built areas for this. Much like the NHs crèche I went to 40 years so.

notanyanymore Wed 17-Jul-13 23:32:34

Maryz I agree too. It seems now like your expected to fill every minute of your child's time with 'activities'. Whatever happened to children being allowed to just play and learn how to occupy themselves and be comfortable in their own company?

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 06:51:43

Yes - but schools in UK do not have purpose built areas- I am intrigued as to where the beds would go.

I agree Maryz. I think that people forget what it was like to be a child- and yet most if them are younger than me! There was a thread saying how dreadful it was that schools were not working up to the last minute and they might as well take their DC on holiday now. From the child's point of view that last week is lovely and not one they want to miss. So many are planning to make their child work everyday of the holiday even though the school is enlightened enough to give no homework. There seems to be no imagination that you can learn a lot without a deadly worksheet.

No one seems bothered that even though it is after school club they are still in in institution, having already had 6 hours of it. They can't get away from others. Just doing nothing is so important, especially doing nothing on your own- curling up in silence with a book.

I love Scouts/Guides too- for the very reason that you say. Probably the only place you can get the Famous Five/ Swallows and Amazons type experience these days.

yamsareyammy Thu 18-Jul-13 10:12:28

I want happy children.
On the whole, I dont think children are going to be happier with this arrangement, far from it.
Most children run happy out of school at 3.15pm or whatever.
They would not want to stay till goodness knows when. Even one night a week would be pushing it for most.
Actually there may be exceptions thinking about it. Those with no siblings. And possibly those with an unhappy home life.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 10:34:57

You need space and a pleasant environment to be able to learn to learn how to just play and occupy yourself in wholesome and innocent ways - it's not quite so easy if you live in a 2-bed flat in a City in a rough area and share a tiny bedroom with one or two siblings, even if you do have a "happy" home life.

Elibean Thu 18-Jul-13 10:54:24

Even in a 2 bed flat, with all the restrictions and frustrations/deprivations, time in and with a family is very important.

The bit that worries me about kids spending more and more time away from home is that it is happening because of parental needs as opposed to their own

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 11:14:46

I agree Elibean- it isn't as if anyone is saying what is best for the child, which may well be a longer school day and sport everyday, it is all 'how can the parent use the building and/or staff for cheap childcare.'
Schools were not set up for childcare and schools are not about childcare.

purits Thu 18-Jul-13 11:38:54

Schools were not set up for childcare and schools are not about childcare.

I don't get this argument. Most people's lives have changed dramatically in the last few decades; if we can move with the times, then why can't schools? Some schools have a dedicated police officer on site. No-one thinks that that turns schools into police stations so why should having childcare on site cause confusion.
It is crazy to have expensive buildings that are used for only six hours a day for only 30 weeks a year. They are designed with children in mind so why not use them for children. The childcare is not provided by teachers, it is provided by - would you believe - childcare workers.

It's funny how when kids go to secondary school, one of the biggest causes of concern is the moving around different classes and different teachers. Yet people on here are complaining about the children having to stare at the same four walls all day! They like the security of the same place, interspersed with going off to somewhere like the art room, the dining room or the playground.

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 11:54:19

I would be horrified if my DCs school had a dedicated police officer on site!

All schools have after school care-they go by 6pm. The issue is staying longer. I still don't understand where the beds go. It will hardly be cheap anyway- I can't see how it can be done for for under £50 a night.

tiggytape Thu 18-Jul-13 12:32:30

They are designed with children in mind
But not for children being there around the clock on sleeping on site.
They are designed for education and short bursts of play not comfort or relaxation or sleep.

Yes times have changed but that shouldn’t mean children and schools constantly have to bear the brunt of those changes. Nobody ever suggests employers should build more crèches or sponsor holiday schemes or be more open to flexible working arrangements or be more supportive of working families.
Instead, it is always about finding cheaper places for children to be in formal childcare for longer and longer hours (even if it is ad-hoc and totally unsuitable - as it would be under this scheme unless actual facilities are going to be purpose built) and their parents finding more and more money to pay for it.

Elibean Thu 18-Jul-13 13:08:30

Expensive school buildings can be, and are, used for things like keep fit classes, parenting courses, cookery clubs, etc etc etc.

They don't have to be used as overnight/evening childcare to justify their existence.

Why doesn't anyone in this Government ever, ever consult a child psychologist? Or simply do a bit of research into emotional health? confusedangry

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 13:38:31

This is why I keep going about the beds and where they fit in- no one has said yet. I don't know how you work around keep fit etc in the Hall until 9pm. School buildings are already heavily used.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 13:46:20

Good heavens. Consider emotional health?! Are you mad?! All these children need are phonics, grammar, punctuation and mathematics tests to sort their lives out, and a good dose of computer programming.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 13:47:14

Children should learn to sleep on the floor - provided the Keep Fit class avoid treading on them, it should be fine.

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 14:10:16

Why do you keep going on about the beds? It mentioned in the article that ONE school offered this - and presumably they have the facilities. Everyone seems to be under the impression that all schools will be FORCED to do it and every child will be obliged to stay at school til 6pm. This is complete nonsense and not what the article says at all.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 14:13:43

But it's so much fun referring to it.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 14:15:21

And since it's about the only thing many schools don't already provide, it's hard to see what it is the government is urging schools to do that they aren't doing already. grin

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 14:16:07

And my child's school is open til 6pm. I have seen the afterschool club with mine own eyes. It is not packed with forlorn, hollow eyed children desperately awaiting their parents. It is filled with children playing games, running around, playing monopoly, making masks with their friends etc. Are UK children so precious and feeble compared to their Belgian counterparts? Are all the schools SO shit? I am glad I am here in that case.

Presumably they ALL have unhappy home lives? hmm - what a fucking rude thing to say.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 14:21:20

Portofino. You swore. Suck-lemon face. Who said all children in after school clubs have unhappy home lives?

LimitedEditionLady Thu 18-Jul-13 14:29:48

I think people moan too much.We are fortunate to have education provided for our children when there are countries in which children get nothing.Sometimes maybe people should think how fortunate we are in this respect.Suck it up,get some childcare.Did we not consider this before conception or did we all expect something else?

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 14:30:16

When my children have used the after school club at their school (not run by the school, just using its premises) they have enjoyed it, but have made it crystal clear they wouldn't want to do it every day - they have things they enjoy doing at home/outside school clubs which they enjoy far more and they also enjoy just being at home more. It is nice to have it available, though, so long as it's not another of those things that gradually becomes the "norm" until it gets to the point that instead of being an option, it is more or less compulsory regardless of parental need, with school days being extended for everyone to 6pm, holidays made shorter, etc, etc. Some children genuinely have better things to do if actually given the option than carrying on at school for another few hours, even if they do make the best of it when they are there.

Sorry which schools are open till 6pm? not my experience at all!

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 14:40:15

I really still do not get this argument.

I'd like everyone who is against the suggested after school clubs to sign on paper that they provide their DCs with an enriching environment at home, incl. their own playground in the garden, tons of books and loads of other children to play with. If it turns out they don't, then I am allowed to sue them - and be a millionaire by tomorrow.

I know a lot of mums in RL who proclaim to be heavenly mums online. But really, all they do is pick up kid from school and let them watch TV or play PS at home. No taking them to music lessons, etc.

Parents are often guilty of transferring their own desires on their children, e.g. "I have the money, but I don't think my kid will fit into private school" often actually means "I have the money, but I don't think I'd fit in with the other mums". I think this is one such case - most people against the afternoon clubs seem to never have tried it out. They just "know" their kids won't like it.

My mum used to think I'd hate going to summer camp (as in weeks away), but she was equally upset when she figured out I did not want to go home! You might realise that your kid would not want you to pick them up when they are playing with their friends at school...

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 14:42:08


Portofino lives in Belgium where schools are already open till 6pm. It seems foreign children are more independent and their parents more willing to "let go".

further down exoticfruits said "all schools" are open till 6. Unless I misunderstood - is a little confusing

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 15:09:36

My dss' school is not open until 6pm, but the after school kids' club is open 'til 6pm and runs from the school's premises. Kids from other schools also get brought to the kids' club at dss' school. There is also a breakfast club in the morning for kids that need to be dropped off early. And the same kids' club runs all-day activities throughout the holidays, as does the local sports' centre and various other organisations, along with the usual adverts for football academies etc, etc. But it is an area of high employment, so lots of demand I guess creates the supply. None of it is particularly cheap. And you still get complaints that 6pm isn't late enough - parents still have trouble getting back from work in time...

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 15:24:01

Tasmania - there you go, you see. You'd like to see parents having to sign waivers to be allowed to take their kids out of school at 3pm and be fined if they aren't getting their kids to do musical instrument lessons and sports practice until 6pm... Just the kind of remark that makes people averse to the slippery slope government seems to be heading down... It's amazingly interventionist for a supposedly democratic, non-communist country - makes one feel like ones child is the property of the State...

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 15:35:01

Tasmania - so as to avoid your own accusation that some people are guilty of transferring their own desires on their children, I presume you will acknowledge that actually not all children do like the summer camps they are sent on?

tiggytape Thu 18-Jul-13 16:20:56

Children can and do enjoy week long summer camps (Brownies, cubs etc) and many other enrichment opportunities without having to be signed up fulltime to state childcare. It doesn't follow that all parents who object to 24hour school days are feckless or over protective. It is about striking a balance between a home life (which yes, can include some TV and some general lazing around as well as playing in the garden and reading books) with opportunities to do fun things outside the home.

Children don't need music lessons around the clock to be fulfilled and they certainly wouldn’t benefit from a legal waiver that excludes any kind of ‘non worthwhile’ relaxation!

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 16:32:28

I was just generalising- a lot of schools have an after school club for child care until 6pm.

I keep mentioning beds because the thread was about schools providing sleepovers to help with childcare costs.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 17:21:56

rabbitstew - I am just saying that there are many parents who claim online that they do a myriad stuff with their kids after school when the reality looks very different, and what they write is often wishful thinking... in fact so many that if each would sign a declaration that they do all that stuff subject to fines by me (not the government) if they don't do as they say, I'd be a millionaire tomorrow.

Not too different from the superhuman profiles you get on online dating sites - when the reality looks very different.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 17:26:09

And rabbitstew - re. summer camps... yes, not all kids may like it, but you can't say they don't like it unless you send them to one!!!!

Most kids cry and complain as a youngster when they are sent away - even I did. And you will also get home sick. But while I hated the thought of going to summer camp, once you are there, you adjust after a few days and enjoy it.

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 17:40:43

Yamsarsyammy above said that after school clubs are maybe acceptable to onlies, or those with unhappy home lives. This statement gives me the rage.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 17:44:37

I agree, you can't know until you've tried something. Whether the summer camp you are doing is enjoyable or not depends quite a lot on the quality of what is on offer, whether it is taking up the whole of your holiday or just part of it, and the company you are expected to keep, though. Some holiday camps turn out to be more enjoyable than others!...

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 17:45:22

Hmm. Yes, Portofino, that is a bit of a provocative statement.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 17:49:51

rabbitstew - I wouldn't say 'no' to the American 7-week long summer camps even at this age... or should I say 'especially' at this age as the thought of having 7 weeks of no work, but only fun seems very appealing to me (activities are endless - from art to waterskiing). DH actually once asked whether we could go instead, and leave DC with grandparents, lol.

They do cost a lot though these days - sth. like $10k+ for a 7-week period.

LimitedEditionLady Thu 18-Jul-13 17:52:20

I will send my son to afterschool club until i finish work.why not?for two days a week i want him to.he will be with other children doing activities and playing until i pick him up.its just a club for kids.

Iwaswatchingthat Thu 18-Jul-13 17:54:58

Lots of teachers are working parents too!

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 17:55:05

The reality is that the govt is making a huge effort to get women into the work place - whether they want to or not in some cases. Lack of affordable wrap round childcare is a huge barrier to working for some families. We should be thinking what can be done, looking at positives, learning from other countries. This seems to be what they are doing. Using school buildings and LA sports facilities that would other wise be empty at those time is just SENSIBLE. Of course it needs to be thought about and executed properly. But it is a start.

But instead of seeing this as a positive step to help hard pushed families we get hysteria about baby farming, the view that the plan is really to get our kids left at school 24/7. The headline in the op was goady toss. The reality is someone is thinking about how to make childcare more affordable. Maybe you don't like the option. It is not obligatory after all, but it is a START.

Iwaswatchingthat Thu 18-Jul-13 17:56:59

Sorry posted too soon! Teachers are professional people, not babysitters.
Not sure many would want to do this? Who would bath/brush teeth/change wet beds? These are all parent jobs!

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 17:58:08

Iwaswatching no one is proposing this is staffed by teachers. Just that they use the school buildings.

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 17:58:46

The fecking beds again. Grrr.

Iwaswatchingthat Thu 18-Jul-13 18:00:22

Just lots of comments on thread saying things like - teachers claim they are already overworked so will oppose this etc.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 18:02:43

It's not teachers providing the after school care!!! How many times does that have to be said?

Basically, teachers go HOME after the normal school day once the teaching is done. The after school care is often outsourced to organisations that focus on providing childcare. Often, these are organisations that also run private nurseries.

Portofino Thu 18-Jul-13 18:03:19

the school , the one school mentioned in the article as offering "occasional" sleepovers doesn't even mention this on their website.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 18:05:10

P.S.: My local private nursery runs from 7.00am - 6.00pm. They work on shifts (just in case people think they get worked like mad... though the above is more similar to my working hours!).

aroomofherown Thu 18-Jul-13 18:13:45

I think that there is an argument for using school sports/drama/ict etc facilities for clubs after school. Not connected to school/teachers, but run by external groups.

But personally I think it's a bit of a red herring - the government should make childcare cheaper and not what can be the entire income of someone who is working, so that families can have more choice over the quality of their after school care.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 18:15:59

The offering at that school is actually OK.

Knowing the exaggeration of the media though, that sleepover may have been an organised sleepover! Some schools have that not as a 'helping parents' thing - but rather like a fun residential-but-at-school activity.

I can see how the media would then spin it into something else...

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 18:16:37

I think the problem with the article is that it does refer to schools being good places to host these things because parents trust schools. Well, it isn't the school building they trust, is it? Therefore the article is implying parents would be OK about leaving their kids at school doing extra activities and even sleepovers because they trust the school staff to have made sure it's all kosher... That's loads more work for schools if people really expect them to be doing all that checking up. Poor old headteachers, unpaid governors et al... parents will be relying on them to provide safe, quality care 24/7, even when they aren't, and will be blaming them when things go wrong.

Tasmania Thu 18-Jul-13 18:18:20

As in... "Hey, kids. Let's do sth. fun and have a sleepover at school! Don't forget your sleeping bags!"

The Natural History Museum offers sleepovers, too - doesn't mean it will take in kids willy nilly every day!

Tanith Thu 18-Jul-13 18:39:21

Some childminders do overnight care and nannies often do this, too, so not sure why schools would need to host sleepovers for childcare. I wouldn't think there would be enough take-up to make it financially viable.

Trigglesx Thu 18-Jul-13 19:08:25

When DD was young, DP and I used a childcare center that was open until midnight 6 days a week because we both worked evening shift. It was brilliant. Hot meals in the evening, activities for the children. And cots for them to sleep on with a mostly regular bedtime (bit later on Fridays and Saturday). They just had a couple shifts of childcare workers instead of just the dayshift workers. It was slightly more expensive than dayshift hours, but not hugely so, still affordable. And we were happy to have it available to us. They are few and far between.

Trigglesx Thu 18-Jul-13 19:09:02

Ooops. It was OPEN 6 days a week, we only used it 3 days a week, due to our shiftwork/days off. blush

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 19:12:49

The fecking beds again. Grrr

The title of the thread is Schools should 'provide sleepovers' to help parents with cost of childcare

Knowing the exaggeration of the media though, that sleepover may have been an organised sleepover! Some schools have that not as a 'helping parents' thing - but rather like a fun residential-but-at-school activity

I can see that happening-I'm sure it has- because you just need a mattress and sleeping bag. It is however for the benefit of the child and no good at all to the parent-unless by pure chance it fits in with being away for work.

I expect school staff would do it as a one off for the DCs. It is no help to parents and it doesn't help with the cost of childcare. To be of help to parents you need a regular service, beds and separate staff. No one has said where the beds will go and no one has explained how it would be affordable.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 19:17:21

That's journalists for you - never let facts or common sense get in the way of a good fiction.

Tanith Thu 18-Jul-13 19:24:30

I did know of a nursery that tried to do the 24 hour thing and they were stopped by OFSTED. I think they would have been classed as a residential home and the legislation and standards they would have had to comply with made it not worth their while.

rabbitstew Thu 18-Jul-13 19:33:52

Ah, but we know the government response to that one - cut all this ridiculous red tape and make it easier for nurseries to provide 24-hour care. It worked with the banks, so now introduce cutting red tape to the childcare sector. Hurrah! It will save loads of money to let them get on with it without so much supervision and fuss. Anyway, schools can provide the supervision by hosting such places - you know, those schools which no-one is supervising any more because they were outstanding last time they were inspected, many moons ago.

exoticfruits Thu 18-Jul-13 19:35:19

I was going to make a comment on the nursery 24hour idea, but I don't think I am tough enough even with a hard hat!!

merrymouse Fri 19-Jul-13 13:44:14

The Natural History Museum offers sleepovers, too - doesn't mean it will take in kids willy nilly every day!

And why not? Surely the only thing standing between the Natural History Museum and PGL is red tape???

morethanpotatoprints Fri 19-Jul-13 13:52:39

Er, could you imagine dc in this weather not having a shower. Poooey!

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