Anybody had experience in changing school? This system doesn't make work pay, struggling to find decent child care.(20 Posts)
My son started to go to a school where there is no breakfast club or after school club. The head said there wasn't enough interest. I don't understand what other parents do. None of the children's parents have to go to work? My DH and I am both working paying the taxes and jumping through hoops to get to work and pick our son up after school to take him to the other side of the town to an after school club. This school wasn't our first choice, we sent the school admission form with detailed explanation about that our DS really struggles to settle new places. He still hasn't fully settled in the reception class, hasn't made any friends yet, holding the dinner lady's hand after dinner instead of going outside to play.
Anybody had any experience in changing school? I am so sick and tired of this. Do I need to give up my job and live on benefit to be able to drop my son off to school and pick him up after school?
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Childminder, and don't restrict your search to the village the school is in.
Very harsh reply there MumTryingHerBest. Let's have some respect for other mums who might be trying their best too?
OP is not looking for someone to "raise" her children outside of school. She doesn't need to send her children away. She just has a job. You know a lot of us have jobs these days and jobs sometimes get in the way of school drop offs and pick ups.
OP I will be in your shoes at some point. I think a childminder is worth looking into.
It's very normal for parents to need after school childcare and I agree it must be frustrating that there's not enough demand for a club.
I do agree that a childminder is your best bet, your council should have a register of them IIRC.
Is there another school with before and after school clubs you could try to get him in?
If not then I agree a childminder would be the next best thing. Not in terms of care, that is, but for convenience.
Thanks for all the replies. I am only working between 9 and 5, normal working hours. I am not expecting anybody else to raise my child, and I wish I could afford to work only part time and pick him up from school, but I cannot. I decided to do things the hard way: try to work, have a mortgage etc. We contacted a fair few child minders but none of them picks up from my son's school.
It will have to be another school then. I would draw a circle on a map of how far you and your Dh are willing to commute with a school run at either end of the day and see if they are suitable, both in terms of education and before/after school provision.
The school he is at is very behind the times in refusing to provide that provision btw.
Has the head actually canvassed for whether there would be enough interest, or just assumed there isn't because not many people have asked? The problem is with setting one up is that you kind of need to do it on a trial basis to see if there is enough demand, but if it is on a trial basis only you will find that parents who would be likely to use it will already have arrangements in place (usually childminder) and won't want to give those up on the basis of a club that might fold after a term or two. So it's a bit chicken and egg and you need a critical mass of users to get it going. My school went through this process when my DS was in Year 1 and they did eventually get it going, they manage to do it on a fairly low cost basis with a couple of the TAs and office staff running it in a spare classroom.
If you wanted to be a bit more pro-active about this you could maybe make enquiries as to what other schools in your town do, find out how the make their clubs run in a cost effective manner, are they outsourced or in-house, canvas opinion amongst your school's parents (do you have class contact lists or a FB page?).
You can't be the only working parent, although it may feel as if you are. Speak to other parents and find out what they do. Some may be lucky to have family who can help but mostly people will be like you, using childminders, a nanny, an au pair or an after-school club in a different setting.
I'm not sure how changing schools is going to help? If your DS hasn't settled yet in school, surely it will be more disruptive to move him after less than two terms? You will also have to find not only a school with space available but presumably also one which has an after-school club also with a space available? Otherwise you haven't solved the childcare problem either.
What is your plan for the holidays? Do you have space for someone to live in? An au pair would usually do 25 hours per week, but it sounds like you might not need that much in the term so could negotiate less in term time and holiday are. Au pair plus does, I think, 35 hours.
Otherwise, if there are no CMs it would be an after school nanny (difficult to find) or reciprocal arrangement with another parent or one or both of you go part time. I have huge sympathy, I am on a decent professional salary and have drastically cut my work days as after childcare I was taking home less than the NMW.
Ask the head which childminders pick up from that school, or the other parents. Get a list of childminders from council contact all the ones in the area. See if there is a fb group for the school you could ask on. Etc
As well as the above suggestions, are there colleges nearby who might have teacher training or childcare students who might welcome an after school hours/school hols job?
Its really difficult, I sympathise. The whole school system is reliant on a 1950s model of mum at home and you're right, it doesn't encourage families to be financially resilient.
(MTHB sounds like a disgruntled teacher forced to staff an after school club
You are not unreasonable expecting wrap round care these days - every single school in a 5 mile radius of us has breakfast and after school clubs. Every parent I know has children in schools with wrap round provision - and I know people in lots of different locations in the UK. Most is 8am-6pm and some longer. Loads of parents rely on them and others use CM or family.
The council list should include a filter by school pick up, so you can find ones that pick up from your school.
All my friends need to work, as do a huge percentage of parents - don't despair
Maybe the other parents use grandparents/other family/child minders etc. My DDs' school does have a breakfast club and an after school club. The breakfast club is doing very well, it is sometimes full up. The after school club often has just one or two children in it. It is currently only bale to stay open as breakfast club subsidises it, but as the head says, there really isn't enough interest in it for it to keep going much longer. Schools can't afford to run these things at a loss...
have you got plans for holidays, as they are a major problem if you are rural.
My children attend an off-site after-school club, but the club picks them up from school. There are 2 or 3 providers that do this. Does you club not operate a pick-up system at all or just not from your school? Is it possible there are other clubs in your area that do this?
I think schools have a duty to 'signpost' parents to wraparound care (although not offer it). Have you asked the school office about childcare?
Our school has a breakfast club (but no wraparound after-school club). We had exactly the 'chicken-and-egg' issues that Whoknows describes in setting it up. What helped in our school is that we have a big cohort of pupil premium children, and breakfast club is offered free to all of them, so that got the critical mass going, and it is now oversubscribed.
As happy as I am with our little school the pre/after/holiday care is difficult as it is hardly any! I assume that they have never needed to provide it due to non interest. It wasn't something I was thinking about when choosing school. I used a nanny and then went part time so my husband can drop off and I can pick up. The school has become better and now there is a breakfast club and also holiday club.
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