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Y7 and 8- How do you manage with after-school care?

(10 Posts)
Erebus Tue 06-Sep-11 09:36:56

Not- thankfully- my problem right now but it could be!

What do families do with their 11-12 year olds for the sometimes 2 1/2 hours between secondary finishing and a parent getting home at 5.30pm?

Whilst there may be a wave of posters who think it's preposterous that an 11 year old shouldn't be left alone day in, day out for that length of time, I am sure there are many more whose 11 year olds are quite 'young' and vulnerable- and who wouldn't relish the 'independence' of sitting alone in a silent, darkening house in winter for 2+ hours!

So what arrangements do people have in the absence of 'after-school club' for this age range?

Erebus Tue 06-Sep-11 10:50:10

Anyone? Surely there must be parents out there with this ishoo!

Lucycat Tue 06-Sep-11 10:53:00

I'm lucky in that dd2 goes to a child minder after school who has a daughter in year 8 at the same school that dd1 has just go to (this morning - eek!) so she can walk back there and watch TV until I pick them up. I'm a teacher though so I can pick up a bit earlier if needed.

Are there any after school clubs? or homework clubs - a lot of schools do them.

Well with mine, and had I needed to, I would absolutely have left them to get on with it, but there are three of them, so maybe that's different. Mine were all perfectly capable of making themselves a sandwich and settling down to watch television do their homework.

I should imagine, though, that it would largely depend on the child.

Cromwell44 Tue 06-Sep-11 11:10:09

This age is problematic for 'child care' ,my year 7 daughter clearly felt and expressed that she wasn't a child and didn't need to be cared for! I don't think being alone after school, particularly at the start of year 7 was good for her and I always wonder whether this contributed to her taking a long time to settle at her new school. She spent some after school time at the child minders with her two younger brothers, she wasn't happy about it but I think it was better for her and I think the Cm enjoyed having her as a change from her 3 boys and my two! Once the boys got into year 5 & 6 she picked them up from primary school and they muddled along together. The boys came home from year 7 onwards but they had the advantage of an older sibling in year 10 being around.

I think it's companionship rather than safety that's the issue at this age.

CeliaFate Tue 06-Sep-11 13:22:57

I think a child minder is the usual option, unless there are friends/family/neighbours who they could call if they needed someone to help them out once in a while.
I'd be happy to leave dd alone for a few hours, not happy to leave ds alone at the same age as he is much less responsible.

happygardening Tue 06-Sep-11 13:29:34

I agree with Cromwell44 I work shifts and left both my DS's at home on their own they are 14 and 13 but I would be more reluctant to leave a child under 12 on his own for more than a couple of hours. When they were younger 11 and 12 I would leave them for a couple of hours on their own but knowing there was neighbour who they could turn to if they had a problem which of course they never did. I'm not sure who needed this back up probably me.
I also think a lot depends on your situation years ago we lived in a really rural area no houses for over a mile so if they do accidentally lock themselves out its a bit of a way to get help

Erebus Tue 06-Sep-11 14:13:50

The DSs also go to Holiday Club and I'm always surprised there isn't a bigger demand for 11+. DS1 is 12 and attends an 11-14 group whilst his brother (10) is on the same site but in the 6-10 group. The latter is always full but numbers can be quite low in the older group. I know my 12 year old wouldn't be at all happy at being at home from 9am to 5.30pm, but even 3.15pm to 5.30pm on a school day can be looong on a winter's evening!

I am wondering because you seldom see CMs mention that age range (guess they make more ££ from all-day toddlers!). My mother currently, bless her, waits at the house for them, til DH gets in at 5.30 on the 2 days I work late but it strikes me she won't be able to do this for a lot longer, or even the maybe 2 years I'd like someone to be here for the boys... I'd definitely leave them to it at 12 and 14!

cat64 Tue 06-Sep-11 19:47:22

Message withdrawn

losingtrust Thu 08-Sep-11 19:13:53

Most kids round here at home alone when they get to secondary school. It is considered normal here. My DS year 7 is alone for about half an hour but would not leave him longer than that. Tonight I was fifteen minutes late back and he also had DD with him (7). He went to a holiday club in the summer and will probably go next year but that is it. Mainly because I also have a DD and she will only go if he goes. He would rather be at home but I would not leave him alone all day as very lonely although he is sensible enough to.

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