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Need very occasional days..(34 Posts)
Until recently we have had comprehensive CM/ pre-school cover but DH and I have changed arrangements so we now mostly manage to do all our childcare between us. However, there are very occasional days we can't cover (maybe 8 days a year).
We have no family close enough to help out and I don't want to impose on friends this often or to our 'schedule'.
Is there any sort of childcare that would be this flexible? It would be full days so I guess a babysitter is out? The days will almost all be INSET days directly before terms start or just before the end of state school terms so holiday clubs are unlikely to be in action.
DS is 4 and in Reception.
Any ideas gratefully received!
You can pay through the nose for a nanny from an agency or emergency childcare.co.uk.
It will be a fortune so you might want to see if you could do some reciprocal childcare for friends but always a back up.
You can use a temp /emergency nanny. Area depending you are looking at 8/13gross an hour and then pay the agency fees £25/30 a day on top - can be exspensive but means you have childcare if you need it
One of the childminders who looks after other children at my DD's school has been happy have DD2 (3 years) very occasionally. £4.50 an hour (south East). Have you asked around in the playground?
For 8 days a year could you not take holiday? Or is that including the days where holiday covers?
No, right. Sorry. Stupid question, of course it is.
Many childminders don't work to their full legal capacity and would be able to take an additional child occasionally if you explain and give sufficient notice.
If he's in full time school then you could probably find a cm to do it. I take school children for adhoc days as standard.
Bertie we are both teachers so taking additional days in term time is not really on. Missing INSET days would also not be popular. DH and DS are Independent and I am in State so the problems tend to occur during periods where DS is off school, I am at work and DH is outside his term time but has meetings, INSET etc. He is the Deputy Head and leads these things so can't really sack them off!
I will enquire locally about CMs. We moved to a completely new part of the country in July so don't have an established hold on the 'grapevine'.
Thanks for the emergency nanny tip. It may come to that.
How about a childcare student at a local college?
Some nurseries may take them for the odd day or they may have staff willing to look after them in your home on their day off. Plenty of staff are part time
I would suggest you make friends with some local school mums who don't work or are free those days. Or there is an agency called sitters who would be able to get you a nanny in. But that would mean more then likely would be a different person each time.
I don't really want to ask friends Yerazig, especially as all the friends we have locally we have only known for a few months!
I do have a local friend who I could and would ask to help in an emergency but I would feel terrible planning to use her as Plan A.
I'd be tempted by the nanny agency. You're saving on childcare for most of the year so in effect, although expensive, it's provably worth it for guaranteed qualified cover!
The cm around here coupdnt guarantee you a space (I looked at a similar situation as a teacher) so although cheaper they may or may not have space when you need it. With teaching you absolutely have to be there don't you!
our school holiday club is always open on inset days and all school holidays. If you book way ahead it's £17.50 for a full day including breakfast and a snack tea but need to take packed lunch, if booked less than a fortnight in advance it's £25 (I think maybe £22) they usually have spaces on the day.
The breakfast club is open daily, no need to book, £2.50 a day and afterschool club bookable on the day by text (including texting at 320 when stuck in traffic and meant to be there at 330) costs £5 til 530 or "7.50 for a 6pm pick up
Wow sleep! Thats fantastic. our school doesnt have any such thing!!
You may find a nanny who works like I do tues to thurs so would be free for the occ mon/fri cover when I would think most of the inset days would be. Try advertising on your local netmums site or gumtree/nannyjob. Or childcare.co.uk
I think we are going to go with a nanny agency. As NewMe points out, the cost will be a drop in the ocean compared to what we were paying this time last year.
DS's school is not bad for wrap-around. 8-5 available everyday ad hoc no need to book and tonnes of brilliant activities available. No holiday care though. They have 'gappies' you can book for babysitting but I don't think they would do full days and I imagine they attend INSET too.
I'd just register with sitters.co.uk.
They do daytime care in most areas and although you're unlikely to get the same sitter all the time, they are all checked and we've generally always had good carers (only time we didn't I wasn't happy with the standard of their English).
Perfect for ad hoc care.
You'll probably find that as you get to know people more in the area you get more offers for childcare.
I'm a childminder & have a child on my books who solely comes on inset days and the very occasional day at the start or end of term (mum a teacher but in a different LA so her days often don't match). I charge my standard hourly rate of £6ph in SE so definitely worth checking with local CM's if any can offer this - 2 children on my books don't come holidays or inset days hence having space and this is quite common IME
I don't do regular school runs, so I take school children for holidays and inset days on a first come first served basis. You could just book all inset days as soon as you get them.
If you DH and ds are in a prep/ pre prep set up is there not a holiday club he could attend? We don't need it but DH prep has pretty much every non school day bar xmas covered by some for of childcare for the kids if parents want to pay for it. If we had a small boy they could attend too.
It's run by mainly pe staff / ta staff who earn a bit obviously from this ( mostly it's sporty things the boys do).
If your school hasn't got a holiday club it's misding a trick!
I do PT childcare and do the occasional drop in. I've just had my hair stylist's little boy for a week I'm exchange for a few free hair sessions. Ask around.
Theas DH works in the Senior bit of the school, DS is at the prep which is virtually on the same site, shares some Governors but is not the same school (so he has no influence over holiday club policy!!)
It's an odd school (the prep). We didn't really 'choose' it- it kind of came with DH's job. It is LOVELY though so we got very lucky. It is surprising in that although it is small and pretty much unheard of it is frequented by very wealthy families. There are lots of daddies who work in London during the week (it's in the South West) and yummy ex-London mummies who stay at home with the chickens and dogs and also 'old' County families. As a result it is not at all set up for working families. The reason the pre-prep has care and activities until 5 is because that's the finish time at the Prep so they are set up for children to wait for their older siblings. The school has a small number of boarders in the upper years but runs itself very like the full boarding senior school next door. There are frequent 'exeats' when Friday after school club doesn't happen as the Prep bails out early and on the first day of the holidays it's 'trunks in Landrovers' and the place is deserted until term starts again. It is NOT like the independent preps and day schools in the South East, which is where we have come from, where full wrap-around is now pretty standard. They are not catering for the same market. (Sorry, you didn't need to know all that! We are finding it fascinating though. We have never lived away from the commuter belt before and it is like a different world!!)
Luckily I've managed to score 9-2.30 at my (very normal, city) school so generally we are OK.
Thank you so much for all the thoughts everybody. I'm feeling less like the problem is insurmountable!
I'm impressed at the hours you got!
I nearly went for a job at a senior school that would probably have come with reduced rates for my children. We couldn't really make it work unfortunately as it looked a lovely school and looked fantastic. (I like their state one, so all good, but the site and opportunities looked amazing!)
Maybe a similar job will come up in a few years...
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