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Teacher DH and after school childcare

(113 Posts)
goteam Sat 18-Jan-20 20:29:18

Currently in a frustrating situation. I got a promotion before Christmas for a rare 3 day a week senior manager job at work. I was ready for it as have been there 5 years but the new role involves more meetings and less home based flexible work. This is fine, there is after school provision for DC (5 and 7) but since I started the kids have had one illness after another, hand foot and mouth, cold virus, D&V bug, ankle fracture requiring hospital visits and while some of this was over Christmas where DH could help, there have been GP and hospital visits, most of which I have been able to arrange on my days off but not always.

But here's the thing. DH runs an after school sports club one day a week after school which means he isn't home until 6.30. DC with the broken ankle has had two non changeable hospital visits on this day with more to come and DH isn't even considering stopping this afterschool club. He isn't paid extra and admirably doesn't want to let the kids down or the parents who use it for free childcare (fair enough, you would wouldn't you?!) AIBU to expect that since he is often home late anyway ther evenings due to parents evening etc, he stops running this club as valuable as it is for kids in a deprived borough and focus on support at home? I have been doing a job below my ability and qualification level for 5 years so I could be with the kids more and support him doing a job he lives but I feel the extra curricular stuff takes the proverbial a bit.

I do have 2 week days off so not sure if aibu but term time drop offs and pick ups are completely down to me.

Last week on the day DH runs the club I was rushing back from hospital via 2 buses with a child on crutches to get the other one from after school club in time after our hospital appointment ran an hour over and I just think ffs, there are 2 parents here, why isn't DH prioritising us, especially after my promotion and this run of illness and injuries....

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:35:10

Is there anyone else in the school who can run the club on some occasions?

Where I work - primary - we all run after school clubs and will try our best to cover for one another if the normal 'main person' is away/has an alternative commitment. The larger clubs - some have 40+ children - have 2-3 adults anyway, and if 1 person is absent then a perhaps less expert person steps in to assist.

So in the case you describe, i might expect your DH (working with with SLT if required) to find someone to cover his club duties on the evenings he has to take your DS to hospital. In return, I would expect him to cover someone else's absence for their club on a different night, either the same week (so a direct swap) or at a future point of absence.

cabbageking Sat 18-Jan-20 20:42:03

He just needs to send a letter out to cancel the club for the next hospital appointment.

Hanab Sat 18-Jan-20 20:44:16

Why is he not pulling his weight with childcare? Have a chat with him and ask him why are other kids more important as his own? If he was being paid to run the club fair enough .. but surely there are others who can step in to volunteer their services.. Is he not part of the family? Or is his share of parenting less important than running the club?

His priorities ( lack of a better term) are £&@:!

goteam Sat 18-Jan-20 20:44:36

Thanks for the reply. I guess this is part of the problem. It is part and parcel of teaching but it is frustrating. The after school clubs at our own children's school are provided externally and we pay, while DH is doing it with no cost to parents which takes him away from our own kids. It was his choice to start this club, it wasn't expected or asked of him. I know this is why people go into teaching, to go above and beyond for children but it just puts a lot of pressure on me in term time!

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:45:57

Cabbage, yes, where I work that would be our 'choice of last resort' if either weather or staffing meant that the club could not run safely. Swapping / covering extracurricular clubs for one another would be the first step, though - but then we ALL run clubs (the OP doesn't say whether her OH is the only person who has such a commitment) so it all averages out over time for us.

goteam Sat 18-Jan-20 20:46:41

cabbage thanks, I just want him to stop doing it altogether. I think part of it is he is sporty himself and it's kind of the only proper exercise he gets. I agree Hanab he should be prioritising us.

LisaSimpsonsbff Sat 18-Jan-20 20:47:43

If you only work three days a week I don't understand why one of these is the day with the after-school club - assuming you didn't get to pick your days and they're not open to negotiation could he not keep running the club but swap the day?

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:48:20

Sorry, cross-posted: Hanab, in the schools i have worked on it has been normal for every teacher to run a free club, either at lunchtime or after school. Part timers do so for a number of terms proportional to their number of days, or assist at another teacher's club.

Those with childcare commitments sometimes choose to run lunchtime clubs, but many arrange childcare around the longer hours once a week.

BernadetteRostankowskiWolowitz Sat 18-Jan-20 20:49:40

He needs to swap his after school club to one of your days off.

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:49:49

goteam Is it acceptable, where he works, not to run a club? While it would theoretically be possible where I work, it wouldn't be normal, which is why we cover each other flexibly.

modgepodge Sat 18-Jan-20 20:50:07

It’s tricky - In many schools there’s an unwritten rule that every teacher is expected to run a club, and while state schools can’t enforce this, to refuse any be ‘marking his card’ with SLT and may lead to more problems down the line. Sad but true I’m afraid.

That said, most SLTs would be sympathetic to a child’s hospital appointment. Cancelling a club is a pain for the parents (as you say, they use it as childcare) but as a one off I’d have thought someone else could have covered, and perhaps he can cover their club back in payment.

LisaSimpsonsbff Sat 18-Jan-20 20:50:16

Cross posted with your update - I do think demanding he stops it altogether is pretty unreasonable. It's one evening a week and getting home at 6.30 isn't that late. If he's being very martyrish about doing it for the good of the children then I see how that's annoying in its own right but to ban him from volunteering because it's a bit inconvenient is controlling and very selfish in its own way.

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:51:19

And again, where i work, if one of us had a hospital appointment with a child, we would of course be expected to prioritise it BUT in return we would be expected to find someone to cover the club in our absence, including then covering another club ourselves on another night in return.

mineofuselessinformation Sat 18-Jan-20 20:51:38

I wasn't going to comment, but thought I ought to add this:
If he wants to advance up the pay spine, it's likely that he will need to make some contribution towards 'whole school'.
This might be his way of doing it.
You need to talk to him to find a resolution that suits both of you.

goteam Sat 18-Jan-20 20:51:56

lisasimpson it is on one of my days of but the rin of hospital visits make it tricky at the moment and he has to be late at least 2 other evenings for various evenings. This is why I work part time but I turn down evening work things when offered because childcare logistics is always at the forefront of my mind whereas I feel with DH, the assumption is I just pick it all up in term time.

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:55:22

I turn down evening work things when offered because childcare logistics is always at the forefront of my mind

That is your problem. If you are resentful because he does evening things and you don't, then you need to stop turning down evening work commitments 'just in case', but insteasd work together each week / month to work out who does what.

If you NEVER communicate your unspoken assumption, and feel martyred by 'Oh I always give things up', then stop - take evening things that you feel are essential, and work together to cover them fairly.

LisaSimpsonsbff Sat 18-Jan-20 20:55:55

If it's your day off then asking him to stop doing it forever for a few hospital appointments now is a crazy overreaction. I'm sorry but insisting that he not do anything 'in the evening' (and again, getting home at 6.30 really isn't extraordinarily late!) so that he can do childcare/pick ups while you work is one thing, but insisting so that there are not one but two parents at home in case of an appointment is very, very unreasonable.

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 20:58:21

When I first started work after being a SAHM, DH did for a short while 'carry on as normal' - but we very quickly realised that we had to come to a different arrangement that was fairer. This was boosted by a short period when he was unemployed, so he understood exactly what happened when for who. For the ensuing 10+ tears, we have negotiated each week / month as it comes - sometimes inconvenient to me, sometimes inconvenient to him, but essentially fair. He gets to work without interruption in school holidays, as you will too, so over the rest of the year you just have to work out how to make things 'average out over time'.

AJPTaylor Sat 18-Jan-20 20:59:29

I think your dh needs to realise that hospital appt is more important than asc.
But you do have a 3 day a week job and the entire school hols where you have no pressure of drop off/pick up.

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 21:00:07

[DH has never, in all our married life, got home from work before 7.30 pm unless for a specific and arranged commitment - 6.30 isn't late, but you do have to organise things more fairly both in your mind and in practice, though without over-reacting]

goteam Sat 18-Jan-20 21:00:07

lisasimpson he is generally late on the evenings of days I do work too. Just after 6 but late enough to not be able to collect the kids so I'm rushing back from work and stressing about meetings running over. I manage a team now. I think I was just hoping he would offer to stop the club after my promotion. And on top of that we have had the kids being ill. I havent asked him to stop the club. I have asked him to cancel for the hospital visits from now on but he is being grumpy about it. It will only be twice. Like all teachers, he leaves the house at 7 which is fine but that already means I can never do meetings before 10 as he can't ever do morning drop offs but I adapt and I just feel he could too.

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 21:01:20

I can never do meetings before 10

You can do meetings before 10 every day during every school holiday, remember - that's 13 weeks a year, so 1/4 of the working year....

cantkeepawayforever Sat 18-Jan-20 21:02:57

Is there a before-school care club you could drop off to? Or a childminder prepared to do an early morning (that's the solution we used - with me out of the house from 7 and DH from 6.45, doing school drop offs was never going to be possible for either of us)?

goteam Sat 18-Jan-20 21:03:35

I know AJP I'm really lucky to have 2 days off (though I help in our kids school one of those days!) and the school hols but it's still stressful and DH can focus fully on work in term time.

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