Home I'm Back At Work What childcare is best for you?
What childcare is best for you?

What childcare is best for you?

There is no ‘one size fits all’ when attempting to find the right childcare to suit your needs and busy schedule as working parents.

Whether you decide to go with a more formal childcare option such as daycare or an informal option, be it a nanny or live-in au pair, there are certain factors that must be considered and are paramount to either childcare option.

For many parents going back to work choosing a childcare option can be one of the most difficult decisions you’ll have to make. We know leaving your most treasured possessions in another person’s hands can be a little unnerving. However, weighing up the pros and cons of each option can help to ensure that you make the right decision based on your individual needs.

Long Daycare

Pros

  • Often include an early education component to their programs.
  • Staff have childcare qualifications.
  • Children are not impacted if one carer is ill as there are many carers.
  • Often open 7am-6pm (suitable for parents working 9 to 5).
  • Children get to interact with lots of other children (socialising is important to development).

Cons

  • Children don’t receive as much individual one-on-one attention.
  • It’s expensive, especially in cosmopolitan areas.
  • There are late fees on when you’re not on time to pick up your child.
  • Children are exposed to more illness. Because it is out of home care, drop-offs and pick-ups can be stressful (especially in peak traffic or with tired kiddos).

Family Daycare

Pros

  • More affordable than other options Most children are more comfortable in a home environment.
  • Carers usually have their own children at home with them.
  • Smaller groups can mean tighter bonds and less chance of illness spreading. Flexible hours mean you can arrange care to fit around your schedule.
  • Kids interact with other kids of varying ages (but this can be a negative for some kids).

Cons

  • Childcare qualifications are not required in all states of Australia.
  • If the carer is ill, your family will be impacted and you will require a plan B. Education programs may not be as sophisticated as those offered in other centres.
  • The range of toys, equipment and activities on offer may be limited.
  • You often need to provide your child’s own nappies and food.

Nanny

Pros

  • A flexible arrangement that caters to your family’s specific needs.
  • Your child receives one-on-one, consistent care.
  • Less contact with other kids means less exposure to common childhood illnesses. Routines do not change as your child remains in their home environment.
  • No travelling for drop-offs and pick-ups. Nannies usually have relevant childcare qualifications and some help with light household tasks.

Cons

  • Your child misses out on a structured education program.
  • Less opportunity for your child to interact socially with other children.
  • If your nanny is sick, you need a plan B; there’s a risk your nanny may leave without notice.
  • If you employ a nanny directly you’re also responsible for paying her tax, superannuation, insurance and workers compensation payments.
  • Can be an expensive option.

Au Pair

Pros

  • A flexible arrangement that usually caters to family needs.
  • Your child receives one-on-one, consistent care.
  • Less contact with other kids means less exposure to common childhood illnesses. Routines do not change as your child remains in their home environment.
  • No travelling for drop-offs and pick-ups.
  • Au pairs are usually very affordable.

Cons

  • Your child misses out on a structured education program.
  • Less opportunity for your child to interact socially with other children.
  • If your au pair is sick, you need a plan B Au pairs usually do not have qualifications and may leave without notice.
  • Au pairs are live-in, so there is room for more problems to occur outside just childcare (privacy, living/lifestyle arrangements, varying values etc.).

linksClick here to download a chart outlining all childcare options

Click here for your free copy of Mynder’s – Working Parents Holy Grail eBook

 

Written by Mynder.  

Check out Mynder and follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

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