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Childcare disaster!!

(44 Posts)
snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:08:33

Desperate for advice please. Myself and wife have 4 lovely kids 5-9. She returned to work last year and loves her job. It meant her occasionally working until 19:30 getting home 20:00, I work fixed hours until 21:30. Until now she had a friend of hers to look after the kids until she got home at 8pm 2 sometimes 3times a week, she's on a rota so times n days can vary. Got home yesterday to find friend is no longer available from end of next week. Now need to find a childminder to look after 4 kids on random days of week form pickup from school finish until 8pm. Seems no one can take all 4 and I'm damned if I'll split my kiddies up and up to presence haven't found one that will work into random evenings. Do we have any options??? Other than her leaving a job she's happy in? I'm main wage earner otherwise I'd be stay at home daddy ilke a shot

madwomanbackintheattic Tue 04-Aug-15 00:17:27

Three of mine were in different after school care. It's just what you do. Unless they are quads I think it is just one of those things.

madwomanbackintheattic Tue 04-Aug-15 00:18:52

Contact sitters.co.uk until you find a permanent solution. Advertise on local board. Secondary school evening job or local childcare course provided?

madwomanbackintheattic Tue 04-Aug-15 00:19:25

Provider. Stick an ad in local paper.

madwomanbackintheattic Tue 04-Aug-15 00:20:05

<no, I'm not going to sleepwalk into suggesting you tell your wife that she has to give up work.>

HirplesWithHaggis Tue 04-Aug-15 00:24:57

Any chance you could accommodate an au pair?

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:27:38

After school is not a problem. It's after 6pm that we are struggling. And because she on a rota its not fixed days one week it's a mon\tues next week it could be tues\friday so its completely as hoc. And that's not even thinking bout school holidays. BTW no family close so that's not an option

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:30:13

I thought about au pair but just not the room. I've extended up , out, and sideways to make room for kids. No life saving left after that!!

Lj8893 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:30:15

Contact local colleges maybe? There may be a skint student willing and able, especially if they are studying something childcare or social care related?

Iggi999 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:34:14

Are you near a college or uni where students might want an extra job? It is hard to think who would want such a "flexible" arrangement other than a student.
Can you not look into changing your own hours as long-term being at work till half nine at night must mean you see very little of the dcs, not to mention the extra work that falls to your dw.

Lj8893 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:37:14

Or a nanny? Would that work? My aunty is a retired nanny and she does babysitting for a family on a regular basis. Could you find somebody similar?

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 00:57:12

Will mention college to her in morning. Can't change hours myself I've tried but that doesn't fit with my company's work requirements. Yes after 9 years of dropping them off to nursey\school in a morning I haven't seen a lot of them only reason I've stuck with current job is that's its very secure and to meet our outgoings we need to have that regular income.

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:02:04

I'm thinking of a flat fee for a minder? Pay x amount per week whether minding is required or not, would that be a option? I know at some point I'll begrudge that though if we end up not using all the hours. We on a month to month budget as is and I don't want to waste money

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:03:03

Also, are students reliable??

Lj8893 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:04:37

If you can find a childminder who is up for a flat fee and evening minding then that could be an option. I don't know how likely it is to find a minder who can take all 4 dc 2/3 evenings a week though.

If you find the right student then yes, of course they can be reliable!!

Iggi999 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:07:09

Depends on the student! But a lot would be glad of flexible, extra money. You'd need to interview them, get references. And then call sitters.co.uk if they don't arrive!
Doing drop offs probably means more than you know to the dcs btw - and you "know" the school life in a way that I don't even though I'm home by 5.

sleeponeday Tue 04-Aug-15 01:10:34

A student training for a childcare qualification might really like the opportunity. Good practice and a bit of extra cash. Might also be worth asking if a PGCE student training to teach primary might be interested, too.

Try popping your postcode in here for a babysitter, maybe? (Goes without saying you should scrupulously check out references, qualifications, OFSTED reg. if applicable.) Sure there will be people glad of a bit of extra money, as long as there is advance notice of the week ahead.

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:14:50

Drop offs won't last much longer. Twins want to go by themselves in September because its embarrassing me taking them , that or I embarrass them!! If they do then guarantee madam will want the same and then youngest will and that's OK he's only five but his brothers will look after him so that's OK. Am swimming against the tide!

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:19:03

I'll be paying taxis as well then. Dw wouldn't let me have them walking home alone, more pennies to find....

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:21:45

Think prefer children in own home so better to find nanny?

sleeponeday Tue 04-Aug-15 01:25:07

Why would they be walking home alone? You pay someone to care for them from pickup to your wife getting home, and collection at the school gates is part of what you are paying for, no? And if the oldest are 9, and responsible and you live nearby, then walking themselves in sounds a nice idea. smile

sleeponeday Tue 04-Aug-15 01:31:22

A nanny is a professional who cares for your children in a loco parentis capacity, in your home.

A childminder is as above, but cares for them in her own home.

A babysitter is someone who looks after the kids on an ad hoc basis in their own home, but in a cover way, not as a primary part of their care arrangements. It doesn't necessarily mean she will be a 16 year old. I think you'll be surprised at the calibre who might be interested in regular work of that nature, even if the hours aren't completely set. As I said, trainee primary teachers, and nannies looking for a jobshare situation, advertise on these sites.

You do seem very set on this all being incredibly difficult. I'm not sure why - it's not that uncommon a situation in this day and age.

snoopy196897 Tue 04-Aug-15 01:48:24

Am sorry if comes across as that way. Guess I'm stuck on thinking about pitfalls and downsides. Me and dw always said wherever possible one of us would be there for kids. Since she returned working her hours have been erratic so figure I've got issues with that..sad

HirplesWithHaggis Tue 04-Aug-15 03:40:25

It is vanishingly unlikely that you will, within the next fortnight, find a childminder (who looks after dc in her/his own home) until 8pm. Most start about 7-8am, asking them to take on 4 dc to create random 12-13 hour days and not many actually paid hours is, well, looking in the wrong place. A nanny isn't going to be interested either; you're not offering enough hours/consistency (she couldn't work with other families)

You need to look at home based solutions. You can't accommodate an au pair, so you're looking for a regular babysitter. As others have said, a student, pref childcare is your best choice - it's your responsibility to check their references when it comes to reliability.

MiscellaneousAssortment Tue 04-Aug-15 10:02:25

You can get nannys to do whatever hours you advertise for, so if you need odd hours, put it in the job description up front and only people who can do those hours will be attracted to the ad (ignoring the slew of random cvs you always get).

You should have a contract for a min number of hrs per week so the nanny can budget, but then give x hrs overtime by agreeing a fortnight in advance or somethjng like that.

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