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Before-school childcare, 7-9am?

(83 Posts)
gourd Mon 08-Dec-14 11:39:17

How/where do you find before-school childcare?
DD (4 yrs) starts school in Sept 2015. After school club fine, but it’s not Ofsted registered so each child is only allowed 2 hours in total a day (i.e. DD cant use before school as well and the before school club is not open till an hour after we'd need care to start anyway). We need childcare 7-9am (2 hours, 4 days a week as I don't work Fridays) with drop-off at school. There is only one registered childminder in area who drops at the local school, who I’ve never met and couldn't contact in the summer when I tried to find replacement care as our wonderful CM ceased child-minding. DD went to daycare nursery rather than local school nursery in Sept 2014 due to CM stopping and no replacement CM in area.

Do private nurseries usually do a breakfast & school-drop service? Our daycare nursery does, but only to a school near the nursery (which is over 2 miles away from our home & our local school). The two daycare nurseries near our house/school did not have place & neither were open long enough hours so never explored whether or not they do school-drop-offs for Seopt 2015. We couldn’t afford a full-time nanny/babysitter as they are double the price of day-care nursery which we already struggle with but my main concern was that the ones I saw on-line didn’t seem to have many qualifications or much experience. They were mostly young, often teenage students wanting part time work to fund studying for childcare qualifications. Probably less of an issue if only wanting 2 hours a day before-school, but do any nannies actually do 2-hours a day, mornings only? Would this be an option and how much roughly does it cost for 2 hours a day and a 4-day-week? We use childcare vouchers but I dont think nannies take them, and the after-school club also doesn't either, so it is going to be expensive despite DD starting school.

I couldn’t actually find any nannies in our area on-line, so they would have to travel to us. I haven’t been able to contact the only other local CM on the number the council gave me and there isn’t another one registered in the area at the moment. I have tried a few internet sites including a local one our old CM recommended, plus the local council list of CMs and nurseries, but no luck so far. Where should I be looking?

Lagoonablue Mon 08-Dec-14 11:40:40

Ask the school? They must know of other places their children use,

CharlesRyder Mon 08-Dec-14 19:53:59

7am- 5pm 4 days a week with two different care settings and a full school day on the other day is going to be tough going for a Reception child.

I think your best bet would really be a CM who could do all the before/ after school care so your DD only has one extra setting. Have you tried looking a bit further afield on to see if, perhaps, there is somebody newly setting up as a CM who would drive a little way to drop/ collect your DD because they need the business?

BikeRunSki Mon 08-Dec-14 19:57:57

Our nursery does breakfast club and school drop off to two local schools, but they don't open til 7.45 am.

nonicknameseemsavailable Mon 08-Dec-14 20:20:13

we don't need to use ours but I don't think it starts until 8.

LittleMissSparklyGreenTinsel Mon 08-Dec-14 20:34:22

Could you find a friendly mum? I look after a friend's little boy most mornings from about 7:15 until I drop them all off to breakfast club at just after 8am. Because it is less than 2hours and I don't charger her I don't need to be ofsted registered.
It makes no real difference to me if he is there - ie I have to be up and dressed and getting my boys ready anyway one more child in the mix is neither here nor there!

YonicScrewdriver Mon 08-Dec-14 20:42:03

7am is very early for this. I am surprised the clubs don't register if that's the barrier to children going to both - surely many go to both? And does the morning one really start at 7am?

YonicScrewdriver Mon 08-Dec-14 20:43:15

But afaik few nurseries will do this drop off as it's quite disruptive to their day and requires staff to be out for, say, half an hour to walk to and from school.

TheReluctantCountess Mon 08-Dec-14 20:44:11

We use a private child care centre, which happens to be in the school grounds. We drop ds off at 7.30am and pick him up at 6pm.

gourd Tue 09-Dec-14 13:05:07

Will ask the school. I dont know why i didn't think of that - although I have a feeling they will just say they don’t know or that parents take turns with working hours so that they dont need childcare (i.e. no family meal times in the week, commuting home at 7pm etc). Have considered giving up work but not an option financially and have to think about future and how I will get a job (and would lose most of my good works pension) having not worked if I take years off so DD can get to/from school. Don’t know any other parents except my sister who lives 2 hours drive away (near my parents) and doesn't work, and DD's friends from daycare nursery who live near the daycare nursery and not near us/our local school, so wont be going to same school anyway. Actually I don’t know any child who has both parents working almost full time either.
Her best friend from CMs has now moved away - partly because the family had no reason to stay in town once CM had to stop, as Mum's a hospital doctor and her work moved out of town and Dad then gave up his work to look after their two children so that DDs friend could keep her place at local nursery school as they didn't like the daycare places on offer (neither do we but we didn’t have the same options) - the irony is that now they have moved outside town/Local authority boundary DD’s friend wont be going to that school anyway, despite attending the school nursery this year. That wasn’t an option for us financially, so DD had to go to daycare rather than local school nursery.
There is a slim chance that old CM may take DD for breakfast/before school time, (not ofsted registered) as she currently has her own grandchildren before/after school anyway and drops/collects at the school, fitting her several other jobs around that, working late evenings and weekends. However she is not sure about taking on other children for similar arrangement, in case it impacts on any future Ofsted registration – if she is able to and wants to do CM work again. We just don't know at the moment. Has anyone any experience of using a nanny or baby sitter for a few hours a day?

gourd Tue 09-Dec-14 13:12:34

i did register for a couple of different websites so that I could contact CMs in our town but none of them go more than 1 mile to drop/colect so they dont go to our school. The nearest CM was actually 2.5 miles away! We are on edge of LA/town boundary and there are no houses past our for 2 miles in one dircetion and none at all but fields for 3-4 miles in one direction so we are limited in radius (only two dorections) and on all searches they bring up out of town CMs in a different LA/town and CMs in our town are all further than 2 miles away as crow flies, so just dont drive out that far - they also seem to only go to one school for drop off/collections anyway - or they'd be late every day for the kids at the 2nd location.

YonicScrewdriver Tue 09-Dec-14 13:23:27

Can you petition the school to get the club Ofsted registered?

Can you and DH adjust your working days so that you each go in late and stay late on two out of the four days?

LooseAtTheSeams Tue 09-Dec-14 13:37:55

You've got some time before next school year, so I would pursue the private nurseries - quite a lot offer drop off and collection services and school holiday schemes. If you don't need more than 2 hours in the morning they may be able to fit you in and they take childcare vouchers. If there's a waiting list, get on the list now, though!

I feel for you though, I had a similar headache when DS1 started school and in the end opted for childminder route since the nursery he was at didn't have a service for school-age children and school didn't have breakfast club (although many of the others did). If at all possible see if you can get the school to get their club registered.

gourd Tue 09-Dec-14 13:48:46

Thanks for this. I will call a few nurseries. When I did that in the summer there were only two in town open early enough but there was one close to our house and school - it's just it did not have a place available, but it might do in Sept if we only need 2 hours before school AND if they can drop DD off..
Yonic -they WERE ofted registered once, but decided it was too much hassle for a few hours a day (only juts over 3 hours a day in total including before school) so restricted usage to 2 hours a day per child instead. The before school club is not open till almost 8am so no use to us anyway but even if it were open at 7 she then wouldn’t be able to use the after school club. If child uses both they must be collected by 4:30 which again would be no use to us as we just can't get back into town before 5pm (usually around 5:15) having left work at 4pm..

gourd Tue 09-Dec-14 13:54:25

Just rang. They dont do school drop-offs. It looks like I need a CM or nanny. Hope someone registers near us before Sept. I will keep calling the number of the one who lives/lived near us and did go to our school (old CM told us about her), but I think she has either moved or changed phone numbers and stopped CM-ing. Her house looked empty in the Summer but she could have been on holiday so will walk past again and see if it looks occupied!

insancerre Tue 09-Dec-14 14:01:52

You are going to struggle to find breakfast clubs or nurseries that open at 7 am. The only nursery that I know that opens that early is at a hospital and its just for NHS staff and they pay a premium to start that early.
Have you considered either you or dh changing your working hours so one of you can drop at school?
A 7 o'clock start is very early for a reception aged child and its a very long day
Your best bet us to try and get someone to come to your house and take them to school from there

donkir Tue 09-Dec-14 14:07:35

Gourd I am a nanny and I am ofsted registered. To be ofsted registered it means I have to be qualified and first aid trained. I also needn't own insurance. My bosses pay me partly with childcare vouchers. Because I'm registered it does mean my hourly rate is £9 rather than £6.50/7.

Good websites are and also your local gumtree. Try putting an advert on there yourself.

Do you know anyone who already has a nanny? I take an extra little one to school twice a week as mum can't get him in breakfast club. She pays me cash in hand.

I think you will struggle to find a nanny for just morning and might be better combining before and after school with one provider.

gourd Tue 09-Dec-14 14:28:30

Thanks for this. Have no experience of nannys at all. Don't know anyone who uses one. I am registered with already but not gold membership as it's a lot of money so I can't contact people through the site but hope to find them via Council/Ofsted instead now I know names/postcode areas. Very few nannies in my area but I guess some may travel - most seem to want specific hours/towns though and many are not ofsted registered or very experienced. Have found 3 childminders though - one is the same one who I can’t seem to contact but will try to find the other two. Regarding the long day - DD has always had a 10 hour day since she was 9 months old when I had to return to work. I know starting school will be more tiring than daycare, but she will have to cope with it as she has had to with the rather sudden transition from CM (where she was able to nap) to daycare nursery (where she can't). She does tend to nap for 2-3 hours in the daytime Friday-Sunday to make up for it though, as we are all up at 6am every day and she's never in bed much before 8pm - except weekends when we can eat earlier so we can also all get to bed earlier at weekends. She still has us up at 6 even at weekends though!

Iggly Tue 09-Dec-14 17:26:08

Why don't you flex your hours between you? Seriously, I would reconsider whether it is fair on your child to have such a long day.
My ds started school in September, I work 4 days and my DH full time. We now split the day so he does a later start and I do an earlier finish.

Ds is very tired and he was 5 in October.

SoonToBeSix Tue 09-Dec-14 17:30:11

I think you should rethink your hours not your childcare. What time would you dd need to get up 6 am or even earlier plus after school care. It just doesn't seem fair. Some things are more important than pensions.

Umbrelladilemma Tue 09-Dec-14 17:38:50

A 10hr day at nursery is far less tiring than a 10hr day with a school day in the middle of it! DD was doing 3 10hr nursery days no problem, but when she started school she was absolutely exhausted, physically and emotionally. And that was with me minimising the hours she was in childcare as much as possible.

You made a comment about not bring able to flex your hours as you wouldn't then be able to have a family mealtime - did I interpret that right?? If so that's crazy.

Pooka Tue 09-Dec-14 18:08:08

Ds2 is 5 and in reception. He's pretty shattered by 5pm. I work from home freelance during school hours.

Even with the shorter day and dh getting home at 6pm we tend not to have family meals in the week, and certainly not towards the end of the week because the children start to get tired earlier as the week goes on. I eat with the dcs and dh eats later. We all eat together at weekends and occasionally at the start of the week.

While freelance may not fit into your particular profession, you haven't said that it would be impossible for you and your dh to split the week in terms of early mornings/late stays. It is a pain in the neck, but it may overcome the child care issue to an extent while buying your dd some time in the afternoon/evenings to chill out, as well as a later start.

YonicScrewdriver Tue 09-Dec-14 18:10:11

Can you provide a packed tea for the after school club so she doesn't have to eat when she gets home?

Our school has separated the two clubs, but I assume the ASC is Ofsted registered as it is 3-6.

YonicScrewdriver Tue 09-Dec-14 18:14:30

Could you use your free Friday to make up hours ie do five short days equalling four normal days?

Iggly Tue 09-Dec-14 20:20:59

but when she started school she was absolutely exhausted, physically and emotionally

^this. So so true.

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