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Nursery choice - WWYD?

(23 Posts)
MiniMaxi Thu 23-Feb-17 10:14:59

Hello nursery experts! Hoping you can share some advice / experiences.

Our son will be going to nursery in August aged 12 months (10.5 corrected for prem). We have a choice of two and are struggling to decide which is the better option. WWYD?*

Option 1: very close to my work*
- Easy drop off and pick up (for me)
- Open all year
- Open 8-6 and I can flex my hours around his timings
- Baby room staff seem lovely
- Take children from 3 months so his prematurity won't be a problem
- They provide all meals
- I'm right there to pick up if he's not well
- He can start a couple of weeks before I go back to work so he can settle

- Hassle (45 min drive out of town) for DH or my parents to drop off or collect if I can't for any reason
- DS will probably fall asleep on journey home
- Baby room is small and was stuffy on the day I visited (nicer areas for older kids)
- Tiny outside space, no grass, feel like they prob stay in one room for most of the day.
- thinking of the future, what if e.g. we have another child and I'm on mat leave but still have to drive him 45min to & fro? Or if I change jobs? (Though I'm unlikely to want to unless they make that decision for me!)

Option 2: very near home
- Much more spacious - bigger baby room and also have soft play room and separate room for additional activities
- Large and nice outside space with AstroTurf
- DH or my parents can easily do drop off / pick up.
- 5 minute walk home

- Open 8.30-5.30 so DH would have to drop off so I can pick up (harder for him to flex his hours than for me)
- Closed 5 weeks a year including a 3 week chunk in the summer. We normally wouldn't take holiday in August until DS is at school
- Accept kids from 12 months so he'd be a bit behind as he was prem
- He can almost certainly only start in September so I would have to take an extra week or so's holiday and go back to work later
- They only provide snacks so packed lunch required (not a deal breaker obviously)

All thoughts, tips and experiences welcome! Thank you smile

welshweasel Thu 23-Feb-17 10:17:12

Without a doubt the one near your home!

I'd say near home is better - but can you cover the 3 week closure either through leave, working different hours and family help?

Wishiwasmoiradingle2017 Thu 23-Feb-17 10:18:48

The one closer to home. . My dc went to school 40 mins from home and it was awful journeys every day. . And if you changed jobs or have another dc you will still be travelling. .

Oogle Thu 23-Feb-17 10:18:50

Option 1. Ok the journey is a bit of a long one but you'll have no hassle sorting lunch, they're not closed for 5 weeks a year (wtf?!) and they'll probably be more adaptable with your sons needs.

I used child minders rather than nursery and mine was just across the road... meant we had to compromise on holidays etc a bit but worked well otherwise

In terms of near work, you've already identified some issues - what about if you changed job? If you did, How likely would it be to be in the same location?

Hellmouth Thu 23-Feb-17 10:24:28

Option 1, because it's open all year. Trying to find childcare for the closed period is just another hassle you don't need, plus they provide all meals.

Unless you're planning on having another kid in the next year or so, I wouldn't think too much about it smile

Heirhelp Thu 23-Feb-17 15:45:21

Which one felt best?

MiniMaxi Thu 23-Feb-17 16:58:08

Thanks everyone!

The atmosphere is good in both. I much preferred the space at the one near home as the other felt claustrophobic to me - but then I'm bigger than a baby so he probably wouldn't mind so much!!

InTheDessert Thu 23-Feb-17 17:08:35

Option 3. Keep looking.
Option one would be out due to location.
Option two would be out for restrictive hours week to week and the closures.

BackforGood Thu 23-Feb-17 17:11:14

Nearer to home, as long as you can realistically cover the break - that will depend on how much holiday you get and / or if your parents are fit and well enough to help out ~(unless still at work themselves).

crawlingonallfours Thu 23-Feb-17 17:12:29

Based on that info I think near your home. Especially if it's the nicer environment. Doing the commute with your child isn't great and by the sound of it you have more back up people at that end.

JoJoSM2 Thu 23-Feb-17 17:12:58

I'd go for the one near home or look for option 3 where both parents can be involved.

EggsEleven Thu 23-Feb-17 17:16:29

Are there any others near to your home? I'd recommend near to home rather than near to work but the shutdown periods seem quite restrictive in option 2

Lugeeta Thu 23-Feb-17 17:20:09

I would do option one for at least a year-it seems easier for you when you are getting back into the swing of work and the outside space is not so important at that age. You can always move him when he is 2 or 3.

BowiesJumper Thu 23-Feb-17 17:41:16

Is there not another one near to home that is open year round, takes younger babies and provides food?
I'm sure not or you'd have mentioned it! I wouldn't be happy with either of the ones you describe to be honest.

MiniMaxi Thu 23-Feb-17 17:41:58

Interesting perspectives - thank you.

DH is coming to see option 1 with me next week so will be good to see if he has a strong feeling either way. He liked option 2 but is miffed we'd have to take August holiday while our son is still little.

He can help with drop off for the one near home, just needs to be firm with work about it (he's freelance so a lot of the time it wouldn't be a problem I'm sure).

I will look at option 3 too!! grin

MiniMaxi Thu 23-Feb-17 17:42:43

PS Bowles - perhaps, we've only looked at the one nearest our house so far but will keep looking

MiniMaxi Thu 23-Feb-17 17:43:04

That should say Bowies, obviously smile

Heirhelp Thu 23-Feb-17 18:01:43

I have chosen a nursery which is smaller but they have a much lower number of children so ask about the max number of children at each place.

Grainfail Thu 23-Feb-17 19:31:30

I would say one near home, although not necessarily the one you're talking about. When it comes to building your social circle of nursery parents, your DC's friends parties will all likely be in and around that location so may be difficult to maintain friendships easily if they are a drive away. I'm thinking of my own experiences of getting friendly with fellow nursery mums now I'm on maternity leave - it's been a lifesaver since we moved house in the last year.

Having said that, my DD moved nursery after a year and settled well so you can go for the one that suits best now and can always move later if needed.

EyeStye Thu 23-Feb-17 19:35:59

I think option 3 too. Closer to home is best so can share drop offs and occasionally have a day to sort stuff out at home etc if you're off. Also if you have another child and want to keep in nursery
But option 2 with closures over school hols and very short hours for working parents doesn't sound right either

HSMMaCM Fri 24-Feb-17 09:18:28

I would normally say nearer home and agree you might want to look for option 3.

Re the summer holidays - you could take 1.5 weeks each to have some fun 1:1 time in the sun here and then take your family holiday during term time.

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