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Childcare while on maternity leave

(15 Posts)
CheerfulMuddler Fri 06-Jan-17 11:45:34

Just being nosy really. What did you do with older children while you were on maternity leave, if they were already in childcare when you got pregnant?

Did you take them out of childcare on the basis that they didn't need to be there while you were at home with the new baby?

Or did you leave them in on the basis that it's not much fun being stuck at home with a mum who can't play because she's looking after a newborn?

If your decision was based on factors outside of your control, like money or not wanting to lose a nursery place, what would you have chosen if those things hadn't been an issue?

Elllicam Fri 06-Jan-17 11:53:18

My oldest is 4 so will continue 5 mornings in his nursery, my youngest is 2 so will stay at home with me and the baby until he turns 3 in the summer (baby is due any time smile )

BikeRunSki Fri 06-Jan-17 11:54:47

We kept DS at nursery for the 3 days a week he'd already been doing. Gave him some time having fun with his friends and gave me time with baby DD. We still had plenty of time at home together. It also gave me the opportunity to do things with "assistance" from a 3 year old!

Initially, I was paid full salary for a number of weeks, so this plus childcare vouchers paid for nursery as usual. Around the time this stopped, DS got his 15 hrs funding. This, combined with childcare vouchers paid for nursery for the rest of my maternity leave. At the time (4 years ago) employers had to continue to pay Ccv whilst someone was on maternity leave, although I have a feeling that this loophole may have been closed now.

Elllicam Fri 06-Jan-17 11:56:39

Sorry hit post too soon. I want my oldest to keep learning at nursery and get used to the school environment. I think my 2 year old will benefit more from doing his normal classes and groups with me and the baby until he is a little older.

BringBackBagpuss Fri 06-Jan-17 11:58:09

Kept older child (2 years gap) in nursery one day a week (previously 3 days a week), partly as I benefited from the childcare vouchers loophole meaning it didn't cost me anything (and saved up some for when I did go back to work), partly to keep the nursery place (can be like gold dust around here) and partly time to have new baby quality time. If finances weren't an issue, I might have done 1.5 or 2 days, but no more.

ElspethFlashman Fri 06-Jan-17 12:01:31

Left him in full time. We had (have) zero family support and he was going through a very active bouncing off the walls stage.

I honestly couldn't have managed him otherwise as #2 was a non sleeper. (Actually he was a non sleeper too!)

Nursery was fantastic for him and I was able to concentrate on #2 and also do chores and go to the supermarket in peace.

It was by far the biggest spend we had at the time but we decided it was a financial sacrifice that would help our family more than anything else that year.

mistermagpie Fri 06-Jan-17 12:01:44

My DS is 17mo and in nursery three days a week (MIL has him the other day as I work 4 days). His baby sibling is due in April. My dream scenario would be to leave him in nursery for the three days and ditch the MIL day (that's not been working out well, but we have all persevered because I'll be off again soon).

In reality we can't afford that but I don't want to pull him out of nursery entirely becase a) he loves it b) we want to keep his place, and siblings get priority places for when I go back to work and c) I was some 'alone' time with the new baby. So he will be staying in for 2 or 3 mornings a week depending on what we can afford.

Jenijena Fri 06-Jan-17 12:02:07

I was paid full time during my six months maternity leave, and kept my son in three days a week. I had thought that towards the end (which is also close to when he was going to school) I might reduce it to mornings only, but he enjoyed nursery so much at that point (and not having to be ruled by the baby) it didn't seem the right thing to do. Without the money it would have been different though!

ElspethFlashman Fri 06-Jan-17 12:03:22

Btw, we paid for it by the place not by the day - so less days wouldn't have mattered cost wise. If it had been per day no way would it have been full time.

mistermagpie Fri 06-Jan-17 12:03:40

BringbackBagpuss - what is the childcare vouchers loophole please?

CheerfulMuddler Fri 06-Jan-17 12:07:31

Quite a range, thank you! I'm not pregnant with a second one, but we're thinking about it. I'm trying to get my head around how it might look, so was interested to see what had worked or hadn't worked for other people.

babyblabber Fri 06-Jan-17 12:08:56

DS was in crèche 4 days week when DD was born. Left it line that for the first 6 weeks and then reduced him to 2 days a week. I think the ideal would be 3-4 mornings a week, to give older child some fun & activity most days but also plenty of time with you.

FourToTheFloor Fri 06-Jan-17 12:13:43

Dd1 started school the month Dd2 was born. I asked dd1 CM to take and collect her for 3 months during the worst of winter so Dd2 and I didn't have to go out.

Although some days I did collect dd1 it was great knowing I didn't have to.

Digestive28 Fri 06-Jan-17 12:26:24

Initially kept the older one in nursery which helped but after around three months reduced to one day then changed to same hours but two mornings. I liked having them both at home and it is unusual as have/will be spending rest of their lives with me working full or nearly full time so felt precious. It was a very personal decision and most friends kept older one in much more childcare then me.

BikeRunSki Fri 06-Jan-17 12:32:42

@mistermagpie - childcare loophole (I have a feeling this may have been closed now though)- if you are in a salary sacrifice childcare voucher scheme for an older child, when you go on maternity pay for another child, your employer must continue to pay your childcare Care Voucher contributions. It's because CCV are a benefit, and benefits can not be removed from someone on mat leave; but also when you go lnto SMP if you paid your own Ccv contributions, you'd have almost no money.

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