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Childminder Holidays(25 Posts)
Hello, I'm just wondering what is normal for childminder holidays.
I am a single parent with no family living who can help take my son to school when his childminder is on holiday. So when she is off I have to be off as well.
Which isn't a problem in itself, but she takes 6 weeks most years and 4-5 of those are during school term. As I only get 21 days holiday myself I am forced into taking unpaid leave from work and it is becoming quite a problem. Is it usual for childmimders to take so many days out during school terms? My son and I won't be going on holiday together this year or next because if this situation and I'm wondering if it's worth looking for a new childminder.
I would definitely look for a new childminder. And when you are looking ask about their usual holidays. Perhaps try to choose one with school aged children so they are less likely to take lots of term time holidays? It is rubbish having to use up all your days off on days your child has to go to school. I've never had a childminder take more than a few days during term time.
I guess if she’s taking her own DCs away too then it’s cheaper for her to go in term time. And her most lucrative times are school holidays when she can have the DCs all day instead of just before and after school.
As a CM myself I have found parents prefer it if I take term time holiday as it’s easier for them to arrange after school care with friends or GPS for a couple of hours than it is to get all day cover.
However 6 weeks is a lot and as you don’t get anywhere near that much you need to find somewhere else. Otherwise if she’s a good fit in other respects you just need to use and after school club for the days she’s away. The danger for her is that your DC prefer the School club and choose that all year instead!
I'm a childminder and always take my holidays during term time. The last thing I want after working 50 hour weeks with children is to then share my holidays with them.
I’ve had two childminders and neither of them have ever taken term time holidays. It would be a nightmare for me as I’m a teacher and can’t take time off in school terms! I think you just need to find another one who doesn’t do this.
I know lots of cms who take term time holidays and lots who take school holiday time holidays. I guess it depends on their family circumstances when they want their leave. I try to give all holidays out before Christmas for the following year and have helped to organised holiday cover if parents need help. Is your minder able to put you in contact with another minder who can cover for her holidays to help you out? If it’s not working for you though you can find someone else to have your dc as I can see why this is a problem for you.
You need a Nursery and then this won’t be a problem.
It's been years since I used a child minder, but mine had holiday and energy cover. She would tell you at the beginning of the year when she would take her holiday (25 days) and we could arrange a mix of cover and own holiday.
Look for someone else with less time off or ask work for reduced / flexible hours if your DS is at school.
Get a list of other CMs in your area and phone round as soon as you get her holiday dates.
I'm taking 3 weeks this year, but I normally only take 2.
You need to use a nursery
They won't be closed for so many weeks
Most close just fior bank holidays
Every childminder is different. Some never take time off some have several weeks some have 2 weeks, Some work with another registered childminder and can arrange cover and holidays to fit with parental needs. Some will ask your dates and book theirs to match. Shop around and find one that matches your needs you definitely do not need a nursery just because one cm has 5 weeks holiday as someone out their will suit you and if you prefer the close relationship and special partnership having a childminder can give you as opposed to just picking care due to convenience you will find one that is a good fit.
Childminders do work differently my oldest sons was a nightmare she stated she took 6 weeks on her contract i assumed she meant 6 working weeks but she actually meant 9 weeks in terms of mon to fri. She increased her holidays to 10 weeks the 2nd year and was a pain the bum and constantly whined (apparently being a childminder wasn’t the same as being a SAHM 🙄).
My youngest sons childminder is fabulous and takes around 6.5 weeks over year all unpaid leave and during school holidays. I can take more if I want but need to give 4 weeks notice or it’s full charge which is fair enough. Your childminders holidays sound pretty normal to me however you only getting 21 days doesn’t seem right unless your part time?
My child minder takes 2 weeks term time hols and some time over Xmas. Now ds is at school I just go in work late for those 2 weeks. It uses up about 12 hours altogether of my leave so it's not too bad for me.
I'm a childminder and take 5 week's holiday per year, usually in school holidays but occasionally a week runs into term time.
I give out my holiday dates for the following year or so in July but tend to stick to the same pattern. It helps that half of my clients are term time only.
If you want to stick with your current childminder, try speak to local ones who wouldn't mind taking your child for the odd week when your CM is on her holidays.
Might not work if your dc is very young or shy, but an option if your current Cm is a good 'un
This is why I chose a nursery and then an after-school club. I had a childminder for my school age son for a year but she took a week long holiday during term time and,as a teacher, it was impossible for me to take that time off so my self employed husband had to rearrange his clients which didn’t go down well. Same goes for illness- if she or her children were sick, then the service was not be available. This doesn’t happen in a nursery!
I take 4 weeks (16 days as it's pro rata for a 4 day week) in the holidays because my own dc are school age. I give dates at the start of the year for 3 of those weeks - 1 easter, 2 summer. I use the remaining 4 days split over a few half terms or at Christmas and try and work with parents own dates where possible.
Is the 6 weeks paid? If so that sounds a lot and I'd consider looking elsewhere but if it's unpaid ask if she can recommend someone to cover her (I have 2 cm friends and we try & cover each other's holidays)
Miss Milo - as you have a self employed husband and your a teacher why was getting before and after school care such a problem? surely your husband just had to start and finish work early by half an hour as you would then have covered. Or pop out for that time and return. As hes self employed and she would have given you notice of a holiday he could surely have scheduled that in for one week out of 52 in his self employed working week.
Vylisa - could you not ask to start late and then take a short lunch early finish and make up the time or take it in half days? As your child is in school it would be a shame to take all the day off work. Or has he got a school friend who would take him in some days so you start early and then you pick both up and swap round so you do drop and she picks up some days?
My son finished at 2.55 and my school (a 35 minutes commute away) finishes at 3.45 and everyone knows that teachers struggle to leave on the bell so by the time I got back from school it would be my husband’s finishing time anyway so he would have lost several hours each day over the week (makes over £60 an hour so that’s a substantial loss!) He could have taken holidays as you point out but, as they are unpaid, he only takes 3 weeks for our own family holidays I.e two weeks in summer, and a week over Christmas/New Year plus a few odd days here and there. That’s why I would not have a childminder again, as it didn’t suit our circumstances, but that’s not to say that it wouldn’t suit other people.
Ps I namechanged the other day...was MissMilo but didn’t like it
If your husband earns £60 per hour why didn’t you employ a temp nanny to cover the week?
Because I don’t think many nannies would want to do one hour before school and then a couple of hours after plus I wouldn’t want someone he didn’t know collecting him from school. Anyway, he’s in after school club now after a long wait so we won’t ever have that issue again!
LoopyGremlin............as my partner is also self employed and has in the past put work and earning before family I would urge you to encourage him to put some perspective into his remaining 47 weeks a year if he cant take a few hours off for a week or 2 to pick up his child he may find a major health scare awaits him and a sudden realisation he's missed a lot of his child's life. Life isn't all about earning £60 an hour 47 weeks a year no matter how good the house or 3 week holiday. Also at that income he could well afford to take a mere 30 hours off to cover 10 days holiday many self employed earn that in a working day not an hour.
I'm also sure as a teacher you could manage to finish on time if he had a genuine reason not to make one or two afternoons and you could pick your child up from a friends if needed, I know many teachers who can and do manage this even head of years and departments.
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