Perspective needed on after school care.....(7 Posts)
Opinions please. I'm about to start a new job teaching 3 days a week. My dcs are 14 and 11 and I've always used a nanny after school up to now. But is it time to let them 'go it alone' until myself or my dh get home? My main concern is they are at different schools and come home on the bus at different times. So my youngest ds (11) would have to let himself in at 3.40pm with my dd(14) getting back at 4.15pm on 2 nights and 6pm on the other. So my ds could potentially be home alone for almost 3 hours. My dh and I get home at differing times depending on where he is for work and if I have staff meetings, extra planning, parents evenings etc. Some nights we could be home at 5 and others it could be 7pm or later. I could batch cook lasagne etc so they could feed themselves or they could cook pizzas, pastas etc. what would you do?
Or could you let me know how long you leave your dcs alone for after school. I need to sort something out as my new job starts soon. Any opinions would be welcome.
I thought that when they reached senior school they made their way home on their own and had their own key. Mine did this. Made food, a mess and slobbed in front of the TV until I came home. It helped them become independant and self sufficient. They would have been mortified to have gone to a child minder.
I have a 14 and 12 year old. They both walk home - not together! Usually the youngest is home first and can be there for up to 2 hours on his own before I get home. I do ring/text him to make sure he's ok. He know to lock doors, not open them and help himself to food - not cook. It was scary (for me) at first but I think he enjoys the peace before the others come back with me!
Gosh, they should be ( if no Sen etc) ok home alone for a few hours and able to let themselves in / lock up etc surely?
If they haven't done it yet then you need to go out over the holidays and let them " practice ".
My only minor concern to your set up is the " what if" re public transport. Do you have a back up plan re failed bus routes? We've had both " the 27 isn't running as there is an accident up the road" ( easy there are 2 other possibles though a change is needed, or walk and get the train but the kids know this) and also " there is no public transport due to snow" - that was hard, as even if I'd been able to drop everything and drive I couldn't get their either. DS walked through various parks with his friends who lived en route and it took him ages to cover the 4 miles but it was fine. Dd2 was walking the road route and got picked up by her ex childminders daughter who happened to pass.
Both your kids either need to know a safe walking route, or a reliable friend near school incase of total transport failure. Oh and in winter clothing that is appropriate in case. Mine will wear coats etc fortunately.
My 11 year old and 13 year old are fine for a few hours on their own. 11 year old walks himself home and lets himself in more or less everyday. I do still always check that he has his keys in his school bag though!
However, I have two sets of close neighbours who are also good friends and lots of other people that ds knows by name and to speak to on this street. I probably would feel a bit twitchy if there weren't those other reassuring adults nearby tbh.
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