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To think people should pay for their childcare?

(89 Posts)
MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 19:45:27

Okay, so perhaps a bit of a clickbait-esque title but all the same...

Picked DD up from nursery today to be handed a letter and told that they would be closing for good on Friday. I am absolutely gutted.

DD has been attending the nursery since she was 9 months old, she's 3 now. We've always been very pleased with her progress and all of the staff are so lovely.

The reason for the closure is that there is about 20k of unpaid nursery fees. Financially they couldn't keep up. I am gobsmacked at just how much they were owed!

I suspect there are other factors at play, such as the free childcare places, etc. But I can't believe that people would/could continue sending their children to nursery without paying?!

I'm now faced with having to sort out a new nursery for DD ready for when we get back off holiday in 2 weeks. I feel sick to my stomach that we might not be able to find a place for her and what a mess we'll be in.

I know that lots of people are facing financial hardship. We are not hugely well off ourselves, but we've always managed to keep up to date with nursery fees because it's a service we rely on. If we couldn't we would have no choice but to find an alternative. AIBU to feel this way?

AllFourOfThem Wed 17-Jul-19 19:48:44

Of course people should pay for childcare but the nursery should be asking for fees upfront and not allowing debt to build up, so it seems odd to be the only reason behind closure.

CatherineOfAragonsPrayerBook Wed 17-Jul-19 19:50:07

Whilst you're not being entirely unreasonable, spare a thought for the families where both parents work and still cannot afford a holiday. You are not well off but still better than others.

Still, I understand why you are gutted. Yes people who can pay should.

herculepoirot2 Wed 17-Jul-19 19:51:17

People should of course pay for services. It’s not okay not to. But people also struggle.

Kenny33 Wed 17-Jul-19 19:51:54

It’s terrible but a lot of small businesses go under because people don’t pay.

MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 19:54:00


I don't think it's the only reason. There's probably more at work here, I know. But I'm guessing 20+ grand in the hole doesn't help.


I understand where you're coming from and I get it. We are only going on holiday this year thanks to my generous parents, otherwise we wouldn't be able to afford it at all.

I know what it's like and there have been months where we have had to really scrabble around to make ends meet. We have, however, always prioritised the childcare funds above other things because we couldn't do without it.

Sadie789 Wed 17-Jul-19 19:54:19

If you can’t afford nursery you should find a cheaper alternative. Not close a business and put people out of work because you’re “struggling”... I can’t understand the logic of PPs here. Don’t see what it’s got to do with affording a holiday?!

MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 19:56:21


Of course, that is true. I just feel so sad that all of those wonderful staff members are now out of a job, and DD will be ending her time there much earlier than we anticipated.

MrsMiggins37 Wed 17-Jul-19 19:56:48

YANBU, it’s appalling. OK I get people struggle but these places aren’t charities.

MrsMiggins37 Wed 17-Jul-19 19:59:24

The nursery also shouldn’t have been continuing to take kids where fees weren’t paid. They surely must have had terms and conditions of business so they could terminate these contracts and take on other people who would pay. Doesn’t sound like it’s been managed the best either

NCforthis2019 Wed 17-Jul-19 19:59:25

no idea what people who can't afford holidays have to do with with this - i think its appalling that the nursery's had to close and many are out of a job now. They should have taken the fees upfront. If you cant afford to send you child to nursery, you have to look at other arrangements.

Bambamber Wed 17-Jul-19 20:00:51

YANBU although of course the nursery is partially to blame. They shouldn't allow children to attend if they have outstanding fees, some may see that as harsh but otherwise how can you avoid situations such as this?

I would be gutted if my daughter's nursery shut, especially at such short notice

Poloshot Wed 17-Jul-19 20:02:22

Yes same principle with life. If you can't afford it don't have it, particularly with kids.

MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 20:02:30


Absolutely. Both DP and I have wondered why they carried on allowing it to happen. We did wonder if stopping certain children from going would have impact how much they got from free child places so just decided to ride it out? I'm not really sure...but definitely not managed in the best of ways.

MyOpinionIsValid Wed 17-Jul-19 20:03:12

The workers will be out of work - can you hire one privately as a childminder, to come to your house in the interim?

MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 20:04:03


I am really quite upset about it. I'm so worried now that we will struggle to get her a place anywhere decent and we absolutely need childcare as both me and DP need to work.

Crunchymum Wed 17-Jul-19 20:04:27

So they've given you 2 days notice?

That is absolutely shocking!!

MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 20:04:46


I hadn't even considered this, but that's a fantastic idea. Thanks for the suggestion!

Lindy2 Wed 17-Jul-19 20:05:49

It's happening to nurseries all over the country.
Underfunding for the "free" places for 3 and 4 year olds is also part of the issue. However, more than once on here I've seen people outraged that their nurseries have asked for payment for extras such as lunchtime cover, snacks etc.

OddBoots Wed 17-Jul-19 20:07:12

I understand what people say about not letting the children attend with outstanding fees but you would be amazed how many people get a little behind with fees but then sort it out. If you stop the child attending the parents can't work and the debt can't be serviced. More nurseries are charging their fees upfront or hold 1 month of fees as a deposit though to try to avoid it happening.

Ponoka7 Wed 17-Jul-19 20:08:47

What do you mean by:

"We did wonder if stopping certain children from going would have impact how much they got from free child places so just decided to ride it out?"

You seem very judgemental about the funding for free childcare, when it's the free places that are keeping a lot of nurseries going.

IamWaggingBrenda Wed 17-Jul-19 20:13:25

I ran a home childminding service for years. Sometimes parents don’t pay, that’s a fact. Cheque’s bounce and cutting people off usually guarantees they daycare will never see the money owed. Some people drop their children and run, so again, money is owed. The nursery also shouldn’t have been continuing to take kids where fees weren’t paid. Yes, but again, cut the clients off and kiss any owed money goodbye.

merlotqueen Wed 17-Jul-19 20:14:56

You seem very judgemental about the funding for free childcare, when it's the free places that are keeping a lot of nurseries going

On what evidence?

The opposite is true

MacInTheBox Wed 17-Jul-19 20:15:06


I'm afraid you have taken offence where there is none to be taken.

We use the 30 free hours ourselves, because that we are entitled to. But DD goes full time so we pay the difference. We also consistently paid for her to go 3 days per week at full whack.

What I meant is, if the nursery got X amount from the free child place, they may be reluctant to tell parents their child cannot attend until the debt is paid. As they would not get that funding if the child was not going.

No judgement here.

Theemojimovie Wed 17-Jul-19 20:16:07

Myopinionisvalid, I'm not sure that idea would work atall.
Do you really think the nursery staff will come to her house and work for the same fee that you pay the nursery?
What's that, £4.50 an hour?£5.00 perhaps. I know I would not work for that, and OP would have to pay tax and national insurance and pension contribution too.

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