Saturday, February 10, 2007


More daycare angst

So. Daycare.

Last you heard from our intrepid heroine, she had committed to finding new care for her boys. Down but not out, she put up ads, sent out feelers and tried to connect with potential new caregivers.

And promptly skittered back into her shell, yelping like a kicked poodle.

I need a perspective check. I think maybe that despite the way-too-many-kids thing, we might have been spoiled with the flexibility of our current caregiver. Can I please ask what you think of these kinds of 'rules' in a daycare contract for a home daycare?

  • 3 weeks paid holidays for her, PLUS regular pay when we're on holidays or any time kids aren't in care as regularly scheduled.
  • paid stat holidays (daycare is closed on those days) PLUS paid lieu day if the stat falls on a weekend.
  • if we want to continue our current routine of dropping down to one day a week care in the summer, we still have to pay for 2.5 days, her weekly minimum. Or, we have to quit in June and find a new provider in September.
  • If your child has a runny nose, please keep your child home. If your child has vomited within 48 hours, keep your child home. A medical certificate required to re-enter care after pink-eye.
  • If your child becomes sick, pick-up is expected within one hour.
  • Full time is 5 hours a day or more, and costs $35/day. Part time costs $30/day. After school care for full-time students is $20/day.

I keep waffling. I get that a daycare provider is running a business and has to protect herself, but I also feel like I'm being gouged when I read some of this stuff. The idea of paying for the whole summer just to keep continuity for the boys when they'll be home with Beloved most of the time (who, incidentally, is not getting paid, therefore we're paying for care we aren't using with reduced income) is painful. The idea of paying for her vacation PLUS paying someone else to cover off the time is also painful.

And you wonder why I ranted when Stephen Harper dismantled the Liberals' plans for daycare reform.

What do you think? Was I just spoiled before? Can you tell me if this is the norm, or will I find more flexibility if I keep looking?