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What do you do about school holiday childcare?

(18 Posts)
matana Sun 02-Feb-14 09:38:01

Ds is just 3 but we're starting to worry about his childcare through all the school holidays. We both work ft and get 29 days leave each. What do others do?

CMOTDibbler Sun 02-Feb-14 09:39:38

Split most of our leave so only one person is off with ds. And then pay for holiday club

ShadowOfTheDay Sun 02-Feb-14 09:40:30

1. pay for childcare (as I presume you do now?)
2. share the burden but don't get to holiday together.

AuntieStella Sun 02-Feb-14 09:42:05

Holiday club, CM, year-round nursery (ours would take its 'graduates' back in the hols, but not unknown older children), temporary nanny, au pair, university student as babysitter, or child swaps with others trying to bridge the gap.

littleblackno Sun 02-Feb-14 09:44:02

My exh and I work out who's going to take which days (when possible), swap with friends and the school do a holiday club. I have no family nearby but my mum does sometimes travel down to stay for a week.
I was worried before my kids went to school but honestly it just works out. (although can get expensive with holiday club but the kids love it.)
I work part time and can sometimes build up flexi during term time to take in the holidays.

BingoWingsBeGone Sun 02-Feb-14 09:46:51

Leisure centre holiday club. They do a brilliant range of activities and pretty reasonable price wise (use vouchers etc). Only from age 5 though. Before that we used CM.

IsabellaRockerfeller Sun 02-Feb-14 10:04:01

Parental leave whilst child is still 4.

Then holiday club at nearby primary school (not DS's own primary, they don't run one). He has a great time! You can use c/c vouchers too.

tallulah Sun 02-Feb-14 10:30:40

We split the half terms between us. I take 2 weeks off at Xmas, DH takes 2 weeks in the summer. Then we pay for 4 weeks of Holiday Club.

We are lucky here in that both of the big summer camp companies operate in our area, and accept childcare vouchers. Also the local leisure centre does their own version.

Before she was 5 our DD went back to her own nursery for holiday club. As a PP said, they take their own back at most nurseries.

mervynmouse Sun 02-Feb-14 10:36:17

I take a bit of leave, ex p takes a bit of leave, gps have him for a bit (only in summer hols, they live abroad so takes more planning/logistics).

I am lucky to have use of subsidised holiday club through work paid for with vouchers although ds doesn't love that option. Also have brilliant holiday club at local leisure centre but they don't take vouchers and the timings are tight so that's interspersed with the 'boring' club.

Inset days I usually rotate leave with other mums at school and we take turns to have the group of friends for the day as holiday clubs aren't open.

I've also used local authority clubs in the past but found them a bit hit and miss. Occasionally group together with other parents and one of the (brilliant) play workers from our after school care will have them for the day.

matana Sun 02-Feb-14 10:49:23

I've just looked up holiday clubs and it looks like DS's excellent nursery runs one. That might have the bonus that he could know some of the children anyway. I hadn't realised that in most cases they tend to be less expensive than what we're currently paying for childcare anyway. I do also have family nearby but wouldn't want to rely so heavily on them, though they might do the odd day here and there. I think I'd prefer to pay childcare than take hols separately. Thanks for advice.

Starballbunny Sun 02-Feb-14 10:52:24

DDs nursery runs an after school club and a holiday club for them and others who want to join in.

Trouble is it gets out grown by 8-9

mousmous Sun 02-Feb-14 10:55:25

pay for childcare.
our dc's school offers extended hour all year round (for a fee of course) so they can if needed be there every day.
but we try to take at least a few days off to do stuff or to invite relatives.

BikeRunSki Sun 02-Feb-14 10:56:23

Annual leave
Holiday club at school (not available all the time)
Ds is 5 as can go back to nursery until he is 8, but finds this boring
Too rural for much else.
Nearest grandparent 200 miles away and they are all in their 70s anyway.

givemeaclue Sun 02-Feb-14 15:01:36

Holiday club, pay with childcare vouchers.

PortofinoRevisited Sun 02-Feb-14 15:10:36

We usually take a week's holiday at Xmas, a week at Easter and 3 weeks in the summer. The 2 half terms and the other holiday weeks, dd either goes to the LA run holiday club (40 euros a week including lunch), or does various "camps" - my employer highly subsidises these - so roughly 125 euros for a week full board - she is doing a computer one at Easter, or various acitivities weeks run by a local organisation, cost about the same. I am in Belgium and we are spoilt for choice really - and it is all tax deductable for the under 12s..

Supermum222 Sun 02-Feb-14 17:18:46


We have to use a childminder. I only work 3 days but we have a school holiday rota so people who don't have kids end up being off instead of those with kids. So unfair! Hubby also has fixed hols and rarely off on school hols (probably gets a week every 3-4 years). No family either to help.
We have a fantastic childminder though who helps us a lot. My eldest sometimes goes to holiday clubs/football clubs.
We can't have a family holiday now either thanks to above and the new rules about term time hols :-(

Eletheomel Sun 02-Feb-14 19:55:51

DS1 starts school in August and we'll be relying on a childminder for much of the holidays (whilst taking some annual leave where we can).

He's been at the childminder since he turned one, and he'll be going there from 8am to 9am during the school week too (we start work early) so it's someone he's really comfortable with. I suppose there is the inlaws but I'd be uncomfortable with them looking after him for days on end so in all honesty, I'd rather pay for the childminder.

In addition, DS2 (currently 8 months) will also be looked after by the childminder when I go back to work, so this will keep them together too (which will be nice).

We also use childcare vouchers.

Mojito100 Tue 04-Feb-14 14:47:49

I think you have some great answers here but just in case here is what I do - I am a single parent working full time with sole custody so this was a big one for me. I split them between going to out of school care which is a good program but way too expensive for me to afford all the time so I found a group of mums from school who have sone flexibility in their jobs and organise a holiday camp amongst us all. There is no commitment to always participate, however, we all do. The kids rotate between 3-4 days each week amongst us so on my day I have anywhere from 3 kids to 10. I only have high numbers if I invite others along on my day otherwise the standard number is 5. I actually find time to get loads of work done as the kids occupy themselves. The only rule is the kids come with their lunch and you can drop off from 7 in the morning with pickup no later than 6. None if us do early or late drop offs or pick ups but you can if you need. Lunch being brought was to cover my arse in case I didn't gave enough bread in the house for sandwiches but it does make it easy. I leave a big fruit platter out and they wat as the go. My kids aren't quite as young as yours and the mins that participate are like minded so we don't have any issues. We parent all the kids as if they are our own and all accept that from each other. All you need is one highly organised and bossy individual like me to do the coordination. It really isn't hard and the kids love being together and look forward to the holiday camp as we refer to it. Hope this gives you another idea.

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