Having two working parents is most definitely becoming the norm and with it comes a demand for excellent professional childcare.
It certainly is one of the most important and emotional decisions you will ever make.
But which childcare choice is right for your family?
Should you choose a day nursery for your child to attend or would they and you benefit more from having a Nanny who takes care of your child in your own home?
There really are pros and cons to both sides:
Day nurseries provide a great place for your child to socialise and play with other children, which is especially beneficial for only children
Nurseries are filled to the brim with materials you won’t find in every home, from art supplies, toys, outside equipment all the way through to educational games and dress-up outfits
Many nurseries provide additional activities such as day trips, specialised visitors and language classes
Nurseries are regulated by Ofsted and their staff are expected to have certain certificates and must adhere to certain standards
Day to day care isn’t provided by one individual so there is less likelihood that you child will become too attached
Nurseries have set hours which can be inflexible and often involves paying late fines if you need to be late
Nurseries don’t generally provide an evening meal, so you have to get you and your little one fed and watered when you arrive home after a long day
Some children do not have the temperament for nurseries and find them overwhelming, noisy and too stimulating
Your child may pick up certain behaviours from children they wouldn’t normally spend time with
There is not a one to one staff ratio and staff will be caring for a few children at once
If your child is sick, they are not allowed to attend nursery which leaves you with a childcare dilemma
Last but not least nurseries are expensive, especially for the good ones and if you have more than one child you can be looking at a cost of hundreds a day and that’s if you can get a place at the one you want
With a Nanny you get to call the shots and agree hours and rules that work best for everyone, especially your child
You are able to personalise your child's day, from nap times to what they have for a snack and you have more control over what your child does, when and where he/she does it and who they do it with
A Nanny can give your child more one to one attention and is able to focus their attention on what is best for the child as there is no competition
Many children, especially younger ones, prefer a single childcare figure and familiar surroundings and a Nanny can offer this
You don’t have to get the children ready and up and out in the morning, which is especially beneficially if your child is under the weather. It also means a child-free commute to work
It is always handy to have someone in your home during the day to answer the door for deliveries or to the plumber and they can even put a casserole in the oven. Plus, many Nannies may even help with light housework, children’s meals and laundry
It can be devastating when a Nanny leaves especially if it is out of the blue and of course Nannies get sick too.
Emergency Nannies are available and able to step in at the last minute to cover any sickness or holiday
Hiring a Nanny through a reputable agency will ensure that all the appropriate qualifications, references and background checks have been done thoroughly for you
When you hire a Nanny you become an employer and with that comes many responsibilities such as paying taxes and sick and holiday time. Again, a good Nanny agency will help negotiate the candidate’s salary and package for you and will often offer a payroll service
There are many options for Childcare at home, from full time or part time Nannies to After school Nannies who work approx. 3pm - 7pm and will collect your child from school and prepare dinner for them before you come home from work. It is also possible to hire a Nanny who will provide wrap around care by working a couple of hours in the morning to take your child to school, then they start work again in the afternoon ready to collect again. This option roughly costs approx. £15-£16 gross per hour so it won’t break the bank
Hiring a Nanny is a very flexible and affordable option as there are even Nanny Shares where 2 families might share 1 Nanny. It is especially cost effective if you have more than one child at Nursery age, as one Nanny could be more economical than paying Nursery fees for multiple children
Let's face it, this is one of the hardest decisions out there and is often heavily influenced by your schedule and your finances. The key is to take your time to consider what is best for your family and make the arrangement that works best for you.
To find out more about Greycoat Lumleys childcare at home options, click here.