Join Date: Oct 2003
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Pardon me while I
I thought the same thing when we first needed care for DS, around age one. I did not have good luck with finding an informal care situation for him, however. I advertised on AP lists and I did find some women who were initially interested, but none of them wanted to do anything near fulltime, like not even 30 hours a week. They only wanted to do occasional or like one day a week. Really, they didn't want to do it at all, they just needed money, and this came across quite obviously. Second, it was NOT cheaper than center care. Around where I live center care will cost you around $2-3 / hour, based on fulltime, whereas the moms I contacted who were willing to watch my child in their home wanted more like nanny rates (which I thought was slightly ridiculous -- if I could afford a nanny, I'd have one come to MY house...). Finally -- with the woman I did end up leaving DS with off and on for a few months -- it became obvious from some comments she made that she really looked down on me for working. I forget the exact things she said but it was along the lines of her little boy being so lucky to be with mama all day, and it was so sad for my son that he would see her son nurse and my son would have to have a bottle (of EBM, give me a break, she had no idea how freaking hard I worked at pumping that for him!). Anyway I really did not need the condescension on top of already being heartbroken about being away from DS during the workday.
myself, i would go with a private person that i felt comfortable with over a licensed daycare that i didn't know much about. for me, that would mean that either i knew them well or had done a pretty thorough background and reference check, and got good vibes from them and their home and the way they were around my kid, aaaaand whose policies were ok with me. so it's a bit complicated i guess, but i just don't think licensing covers all the things that i actually care about. a licensed daycare can be run by someone who doesn't care at all and lets the kids watch tv all day and feeds them crap, so while the knives will be secure i'm not sure that licensing it the end-all be-all..
This was also my experience before we decided to out dd in a daycare center. The AP mamas I located seemed like they were more concerned with their finances and their child's comfort then being a good care giver.
|I am often amazed when people suggest finding a Mama with a kid, even here in Maine the cost can be $12-15 an hour to get someone whose bringing their kid to work. :|
And why shouldn't they, you know? I mean I think it's a reasonable POV, that they only want to do childcare if it's convenient and there's a worthwhile pay-off and it's not short-changing their own child. But there was just a pretty bad dynamic in our situation, where the provider seemed to feel she was caring for my child as a favor, and I felt like I was paying an arm and a leg for substandard care. I got over the idea that a personal, informal relationship was somehow better than "institutional" care pretty quick.
We actually pay our back-up nanny, who brings her daughter along, $10/hour, which I think is on the high side for where we live. She is so worth it though. She has a lot of child care/nanny experience, and she has the kids active and doing stuff all day. They do a lot of art activities, ride around the neighborhood on trikes, play at the playground, etc. DS always crashes by 7 pm on days she's been at our house. It's just such a stark comparison to situations where I've dropped DS off at someone's house to more than likely watch TV or otherwise self-entertain all day, and if he's taken out, it's just running around town on errands mom needs to run. I don't begrudge SAHMs combining a little childcare with their day-to-day life, but it is so NOT nannying, and the expectation that it should be compensated as such just makes me nuts.
Well, I hope that I don't get flamed, but here it goes....you get what you pay for.
I am a in home licensed daycare provider-have been for 13 years now, and what I don't understand and I will never understand is why parents are always looking for the "cheap" daycares? Isn't it important to you to have the very best looking out for your child-but yet, the #1 question that I get-right off the bat, is HOW MUCH DO YOU CHARGE? Hmmm, if I was the one looking for care for my child there are MANY different more important questions that I would be asking
I find it so hard to believe that people don't think about daycare costs before having kids-kids are expensive plain and simple-no two ways around it.
If people are really having a hard time affording daycare there are programs out there to help parents! You don't have to be poor to qualify for them either. Please contact either your city's daycare licensing agency, or a child care resource and referral agency-they are there to help you as parents find QUALITY and AFFORDABLE childcare. When you breakdown how much a daycare provider makes it's not much, belive me!
For example, I charge $75 a week for part time care-out of that I feed the child breakfast and lunch, we do daily art projects, we have an awesome outdoor play area, I pay for annual CPR and First aid classes, 25+ hours of continuing education classes a year, the list goes on and on and for that $75 you get 5 hours of care a day, break that down and it's only $3 an hour, yet I still have people complain that it's too much money...come on people-it's expensive to raise kids!!!!!!!
And, yes, I do consider myself to be quite good at what I do-I care about the kids I have in my home everyday and while I understand a parents concerns about $, I find it hard to sympathize with a parent who would rather spend their hard earned money on a fancy car and eating out than pay a daycare provider a decent weekly rate.
Ok, sorry about that huge rant, it just gets to me when people complain about the cost of childcare and blame it on the supposedly "money hungry providers".....
Single mom to Rain (1/93) , grad student, and world traveler
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