Daycare vs Homeschooling

Okay bloggie friends, your advice is needed! I am NOT happy right now, but I’m trying to stay calm and not overreact. I’m curious what y’all think.

  • We currently send Stella to a licensed in-home daycare 3 days / week (+ Nana watches her one day and I’m home on Fridays). This is the only licensed daycare in the county.
    • Licensed is good because it means (1) they’ve jumped through the education & safety stuff necessary to get licensed, and (2) I can claim up to $3k for one kid and $6k for two kids on my taxes under the “Child & Dependent Care Credit.” This is huge since we currently pay around $6,500 for one kid and will be paying about $9,500 for two.
    • She is licensed for 6 daycare kids + her two kids (ages 8 & 11) who have thus far been there after school & on summer break. Of the six daycare kids, 2 can be under the age of 2, the rest are generally toddler aged. She currently has 3-4 daycare kids there each day (1 is full time and the rest are like Stella and come 2-3 days each).
    • Starting in March or so, my infant will start there. Starting in May, another infant will be starting there. She says it will be rare that she has 6 daycare kids there at the same time because of most kids’ part time status.
    • There are no other options for licensed daycare available. Even un-licensed, I don’t know of any good options in town! I have one friend (WOHM) who is considering quitting her job & staying home who has offered to watch my kids (for a fee) if that happens, but that’s a very up in the air maybe-someday sort of thing right now. I’d also have to run the numbers on how losing that tax credit would affect our bottom line if I sent the kids somewhere like that.
  • My daycare provider has two elementary aged kids. About a month ago she mentioned in passing about being unhappy with the public school system and that she was considering homeschooling her kids. I told her at that time that the idea was concerning to me because of the dual time commitments involved with homeschooling & daycare. Nothing else has ever been said. Today I found out via a Facebook post on her wall that she is switching to homeschooling them, effective immediately.
    • I immediately wrote her and expressed my concerns about this. Here was her response: “It is mostly online, with a teacher helper. Most of the work they do does not require hands on by me. The subjects that do require help we will do at nap time or after daycare hours. We have had the kids do sample work and it is perfect for doing daycare and homeschool too. The curriculum is time4learning if you want to look it up. I will also be doing more with the 2 and 3 year olds (colors shapes, body parts, animals and sounds etc. and letters and #’s as they progress.) don’t worry, my job comes first from 7:30-5:30 and I would not take this on if it meant that I could not be there for my daycare kiddos. There might be a question here or there that I have to answer for [my son] but it is geared towards their level and helps them along on the internet. The program is more of a “work at your own pace” with certain goals everyday. They focus on the children navigating and answering questions on their own. With a lesson from a “teacher” at the beginning of each new lesson.”
    • She also indicated that her husband was probably being laid off in December, so he would be around to help the boys with homeschooling. Honestly, from what I’ve seen of her husband, I highly doubt he would be of any help. He’s a nice guy, but he has spent the vast majority of the time Stella has been going there being laid off, in-between jobs, and sitting on the couch, basically just being another mouth to feed and kid to clean up after.

I’m beyond frustrated this wasn’t cleared with me beforehand. As a paying daycare parent, I feel I was owed the courtesy since this does affect the number of children in the house at all times, and no matter what she thinks, this has got to involve more of her time and attention being directed towards her own children & the homeschooling program.

She doesn’t seem to think this will affect her daycare in a negative way at all.

What I’m wondering is this:

  1. Would you be upset about your daycare provider doing this without running it by you? Or do you think it’s none of my business?
  2. Do you think it’s possible for her to have time to properly take care of both of these commitments? She seems to think the hands on stuff can be done during nap times & weekends – I just don’t think that’s realistic. How often will all the kids nap at the same time (especially once there are newborns in the house)? How likely is it that both of her kids will be incredibly self-motivated and not need help from her? However, I’ve never been homeschooled, so maybe I’m way off base with my concerns?

I’m honestly not looking for a bunch of people to back me up in being upset about this. The reality is that I don’t really have any other options for daycare, so this is kind of it. I’m not too stressed about how this will affect Stella (and yes, it could be a good thing with the additional learning in the house), but I am definitely concerned about how this will affect the time, care, and attention my newborn receives.

Thoughts? Opinions?

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41 comments

  1. I am a teacher for an online school here in Colorado. My experience is that parent, especially at the elementary level, HAVE to be actively involved. I think that she is either misinformed or is misleading about how much of a commitment this will be for her.
    I’m happy to talk more about my experience if you want! Just send me an email 🙂

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  2. Oh Josey…. I was sick reading this.

    There is no way that this will NOT affect the amount of time she has for her daycare kids. No way. No school aged child can direct all of their own learning, and shouldn’t be expected to do so.

    I also question her commitment to learning when she takes her kids out of public school (and for the record, I hope to send our boys to private or magnate schools, so I’m not all rah rah rah public schools!) to have them learn at home almost entirely on their own. I would think she’d pull them out so that they can get more direction and more one-on-one time from her as their teacher. Not to direct their own learning! It just doesn’t make sense, and I’d question how her choice with her own kids translates to choices she makes for your kids.

    And most importantly, I think she dismissed you and your concerns in her email to you. “Don’t worry about it” (which is how I read it) is not the proper attitude when it comes to concerns about the care of your own children.

    In summary… I would be pissed. But I don’t know what you can do. This is a pisser of a situation.

    Any ideas how the other daycare families feel about this?

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    1. Yeah, first off, the public school here is rated TOP on the Western Slope (western half of Colorado). It’s a great school, and I have no idea why she thinks homeschooling by sticking them in front a computer is a better option. That also concerns me, but it’s not my problem, you know? I’m just worried that she’s going to realize how much more time she needs to put into this program to properly educate her kids — and THAT is going to leave the care lacking for my kids. GAH!

      I’ve talked to one other daycare Mom today, and she didn’t know a damn thing about it (so yes, she’s also pissed).

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      1. Public schools in small towns are wonderful! I am against them here because of their size – they are just too big. I went to a very small high school and don’t want my kids in huge schools. But time will tell.

        I do think you’re right, that she has no idea how much time home schooling requires of parents.

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    2. I was going to say something really similar to what Courtney said about how this reflects on her overall parenting/care-giving outlook. You’re right, J, that how she teaches her own kids is none of your business, but the fact that she thinks a computer-based educational experience is the way to go (especially when you say that the public schools are great) would concern me. That being said, of course, it sounds like you didn’t/don’t have any other choice, really, because she is both the best and the worst licensed provider in the area.

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  3. I have a friend that homeschooled her two kids and she ended up putting them back in public school before the year was even half over, it’s a big commitment and you can’t just put a kid in front of the computer to homeschool, nice theory, but not going to work :/ so where does that leave you? I hope she will stick to their class work AFTER the daycare day is over, that’s a shame that you are so limited by the options in your town 😦 I really needed that tax credit this past year since i got like next to no sub jobs. I hope she reconsiders once she figures out how difficult it can be!

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  4. Elizabeth · · Reply

    Oh my goodness! I honestly don’t think that your provider understands the commitment that homeschooling is. She can’t expect to plop her children in front of a computer to be properly educated. It doesn’t work that way. If I were you I would start looking into a new daycare provider. I know you don’t have many options due to your small town but this sounds like it could turn into a major issue. This woman can’t possibly care for 2 newborns, a few toddlers & homeschool her 2 children. If she is set on homeschooling she needs to close her daycare business (maybe keep 1 or 2 kids but that’s it) and give her children the education they deserve. So sorry this has now been added to your plate. Keep us posted!

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    1. I don’t think she understands it either. The problem is that there is LITERALLY no other daycare provider in town. None. I live in a town of 1,000 people, and this is a problem for a lot of working parents I know. It’s just not feasible that I’d drive 30 miles to the next town to bring my kids somewhere for daycare.

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  5. I would most definitely be frustrated by the situation. Knowing a newborn or 2 will be joining the crowd soon would concern me a lot, even if one of the newborns wasn’t mine. I’d be calling up the other parents and wondering what their thoughts are. Homeschooling is no joke and takes a lot to do. Plopping kids in front of a computer for internet learning just doesn’t seem like enough. Your provider may have not thought this through all the way. I can’t imagine her kids doing all their work after 5:30 when their friends are all outside playing or whatever. I know your options suck, but I would think about sending my kids to her knowing she’s not going to have the time to give your kids what they need while they’re in her care. GOOD LUCK! I wish there was more I could do or say to help!

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  6. You might check the laws in your state. I know in some states, including the one I plan to move to next year require that the parent that is listed as the teacher in homeschooling cannot have a job on top of that that is over a set number of hours each week. So therefore in some states a person would not be able to be running a daycare and still homeschool kids. She could avoid that by listing the husband as the teacher, but most states actually keep pretty up to date on homeschooling.

    The program she listed also doesn’t appear to be the free online public school that most states offer, so that already would require far more hands on work with the parents than if it were through the state. I know parents that do homeschool kids and have for years and on average for each elementary age kid they have to spend at least 2-3 hours a day just with that child, and then for each additional one it takes more time on top of that. High school kids aren’t as bad, but for young kids they at least need the parents there at all times to make sure they stay focused. And for her planning to do the hands on work during naptime, after school, and on weekends, that is a joke to me. Like you said not all kids nap at the same time, and then what kid wants to spend evenings and weekends doing school work, of course they would want to spend time with their friends instead!

    I think that is something that she should have addressed to all the parents prior to deciding to just up and do it. It is her responsibility as an employer to do that. Since you have no other real options in your area, I’d say you just have to really keep an eye on her over the next month and see how it affects the daycare to see if you could actually trust her to keep tabs on your upcoming infant. I know options are limited in your area for jobs, but is it possible to attempt to find another job in the neighboring town 30 miles away that has more daycare options after your newest addition arrives? I know driving 30 miles twice a day isn’t ideal, but where I live its the common distance to drive everyday, my husband drives that daily as did I when I worked for a while earlier this year. Sucks in the winter, but could be a possibility. Or maybe try to get a part time job bartending a couple nights a week so you could stay at home during the day. Would be a blow to your monthly income, but you’d at least know your kids are being cared for by you during the day. Hopefully something works out for you.

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  7. On a completely different note, if you were still needing newborn diapers or more diapers in general, I noticed cottonbabies still has them listed in their clearance section in colors they are discontinuing. The ribbit color would be an awesome color for a boy, its one of my fave colors and am sad they are getting rid of it 😦

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  8. mcmissis · · Reply

    That is crazy. Crazy that you heard about it on fb before hearing it directly from you and crazy that she thinks she’ll be successful doing all of that. Her response to you did seem responsible to me and clearly thought out… something she obviously should have shared with her clients BEFORE fb. I had the same thoughts about the legality of all this, but I didn’t think about it from the school perspective, but from the lisensed daycare perspective. That would put the ratio of provider to child way higher than our state’s requirements for newborns. Not sure about yours. But you also don’t want to threaten something like that, have her choose homeschooling over the daycare and then lose your place altogether. Sucky sucky sucky all around.

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    1. mcmissis · · Reply

      Also, I know nothing about homeschooling at all, but it sounds ludicrous that she’d be able to have kids that young self-sufficiently schooling themselves for such long periods through out the day.

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  9. I would imagine that she would have to be pretty hands on to ensure the children are appropriately educated therefore she would not be able to interact with Stella on a good enough level.

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  10. This may be totally off base, but would you consider providing daycare for a few years at your place? Sounds like there is a real need in your community, so you wouldn’t be lacking clientele!

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    1. mcmissis · · Reply

      Oooh yes! Great idea. Would that be something you’d be up for?

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      1. Ugh, I just don’t know if I’m cut out for that! Something to think about though…

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  11. Everyone else has really said the same thing I am thinking.. I just don’t think it is okay and I don’t think this lady is going to be successful with her new plan. Last year we had one of our students come most of the time as a regular student, but then a bit of extra time to do his homeschool work while we were just supposed to be around to supervise… it was awful and we had to stop it very soon after. He needed so much attention and help just for him (was not the plan with the parent). I do not know how this lady thinks she can take care of all those kids PLUS homeschool. And she says she will try doing a lot after 5:30pm?! What? Nooo. Her kids will need to eat their dinner and get ready for bed. Kids’ brains are not working in the same way by 5:30pm so it is absolutely not ideal for them to be doing most of their work then. Same with weekends.. that would get old very quickly. I am all for homeschooling in some situations but usually because it means the parents will be doing MORE teaching and MORE hands-on activities than the school offers… but plunking them in front of a computer to teach for them. But like you said, that part is her issue, but I do think she has no idea what she is in for. If she goes through with it, I personally would not want my newborn going there.. or really my toddler either. I think her hands are going to be way too full to give any of the kids the attention they need and deserve. I know these responses aren’t very helpful because I know you don’t really have another option 😦 I wish there was one. I wish this lady would realize that this isn’t going to work!!

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  12. Oh Josey- I would be so upset. Regardless of what her children are doing during daycare hours, they are still there, and will need to be cared for on some level. No way are they going to sit in front of the computer all day and not need attention from mom. What a mess- I’m so sorry. Would your friend who is quitting her job be willing to get liscensed? Or is that a big expensive ordeal?

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  13. I’m sending my virtual hug to you. I am stressed out for you! I am beyond frustrated that she didn’t tell you BEFORE announcing on fb. Mentioning she’s thinking about it is not the same as giving you ample notification she’s made a decision.

    I totally agree with what Fiona said about doing work after 5:30. Kids’ brains do work differently. I’ve heard home schooling doesn’t take up as much time, but evening is not the time for children to go to school. It was hard for me to do homework after dinner as a kid. I’m sure they’ll want to do other things on the weekends. If the kids are being pulled out of school then I’m sure they’ll want to play with their friends they won’t see during the week. PLUS, she really doesn’t think she’ll be burnt out by the time her daycare kids leave? I’m burnt out by 5pm and I just have one to look after!

    Unless the kids are in high school (and even then that’s iffy), there’s NO way a child is going to willingly sit in front of a computer for several hours to learn while mom and dad are busy doing other things. I don’t have experience with home schooling, but I feel that the most sucessful home schooled kids are out DOING things to enforce what they are learning at home/online. This means they may be close to the 6/7 hours (or however long it is) they would be in school on a given day anyway.

    Like I said on twitter, I worry something is going to get done half-assed. Unfortunately neither thing is something that should be done that way and its the kids that will get the bad end of the deal.

    Maybe she will be successful, but if not I’d want to pull my kids out as soon as I could. I’d definitely talk to the other parents to see what their thoughts/opinions are. Maybe they’d have leads or know of other options you could look into? In the mean time, I would probably stick it out for now but research and (try to) look into some kind of back-up option. You have a little time before your little guy arrives.

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    1. mcmissis · · Reply

      That’s another thing I was thinking. The kids doing work at nights and on weekends is not gonna happen, but that’s her/unfortunately their problem. What makes it your business is the whole energy/effort thing on her part. She is going to be EXHAUSTED running a daycare by day and a school by night/weekend. The only person who should be caring for kids under that much exhaustion is their own parent, who will obv put in 100% no matter what their level of exhaustion. HER kids will naturally, and rightfully, come before yours. Not something you want to be thinking about every day.

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  14. I don’t feel like its your (or any daycare parents) right to ok her decision. Sorry. If I wasn’t happy with the way things are going, I would need to make other arrangements. Have you thought about looking into getting licensed for in home daycare? It’s sounds like there is a market there possibly! Good luck.

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  15. Here are my thoughts. I do think she owed her daycare parents much more notice about this! And serious notice…not on FB not just mentioning it once in passing…she should have typed something up and given you guys time to decide if that is still the place you want your child to be. Yes this is her home, yes she runs her own business and can make whatever decisions she wants really. But she should have been more professional about. Being a home daycare provider myself I find it hard to believe that she is going to be able to give the same level and care to the daycare kids while she is homeschooling her own two! I pretty much lose my mind everyday and I just have three kids here…and no homeschooling! From friend of mine who home school..I hear it’s pretty tough!!! So I dont know. I mean I guess you have to just give it a try and see how goes? Maybe she can handle it all! I have a feeling she will find it is much tougher to do it all than she thinks!

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  16. Well, first of all, the good news is that you aren’t too concerned about how this will affect Stella (and maybe it WILL even be a good thing to be around more structured learning),so at least this isn’t a must-figure-out immediately problem (not to downplay the stress you surely feel but it would be harder if you felt like Stella was going to be getting sub-par care starting TOMORROW). You do have a few months to figure things out before baby boy comes along. Maybe we can all hope that in that time she realizes how completely off-base she was about home-schooling and calls it quits on that front?!?!

    I, for one, would be really upset about the way you found out, of course. Simply not professional or responsible. Honestly, I just don’t know what to suggest. It’s sort of a beggars can’t be choosers situation since there are literally no other simple answers… Gah! What a fucked-up situation!!

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  17. I can’t answer the first question, but to the second, absolutely yes. On what basis? Well, my mom homeschooled my sister and I K-12, and during my 2nd-5th grade years, did full time home day-care. She usually had one infant and 2-4 older children, 5 days a week.

    By the time a child can read, it is quite possible to efficiently and well home-school children with minimal input from the parent. During the younger grades, my mom would sit down with us every morning and let us know what she wanted us to complete by the end of the day (we had workbooks for most subjects, and for other subjects there were library books or encyclopedia articles to read), and then it was our responsibility to complete the work. Of course, we could always go to her if we had questions, but she wasn’t hovering around our shoulders or anything. By 4th or 5th grade, the morning meetings were more often weekly, so we’d have a week’s goal of material to complete. Middle school had even less involvement, and by the time I hit high school, both of my parents were working full time outside the house.

    It’s been 4 years already (geez) since I obtained my Ph.D. from one of the premier places in the world in my field, and since then I’ve worked continuously in academia. So I don’t feel like the hands-off approach of my home-schooling was detrimental academically. 🙂

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    1. Thanks for your input, Sara! My gut reaction is NOT happy about this, but I’m trying to stay open minded and give her a chance at least. It’s good to hear from someone who was raised in that situation that it worked out for.

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  18. I’m basically thinking the same things others wrote about. Yes I would be upset that she didn’t tell me personally and that I found out on FB instead. If you hadn’t read it on FB, when would you have found out?? If you have some of the best schools around, I wonder why she thinks sticking her kids in front of a computer to self-learn is going to be any better for them? But, that’s her call to make.

    I can’t imagine that she would be able to stay as focused on the kids as she is now. Especially in the beginning. Maybe they will have all the kinks out by the time the new babies are in her care and she’ll have a better routine down. Sorry…sucks that you don’t have any other options. 😦

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  19. I guess I have a different point of view than most people here. Yes, I think it makes sense to be concerned because we should always hope for our kids to receive the best care possible. On the other hand, while homeschooling is a huge time commitment (I know from experience), I do think it is quite possible for her to run a daycare and homeschool successfully. Many homeschoolers come from *very* large families and the mothers are at home teaching all the older kids while taking care of the little ones. Her children will probably be able to help her quite a bit in terms of fetching things for her, helping to prepare meals, and playing with the kids. Homeschooling is a huge commitment, but I don’t think people realize that it does not require even close to the same amount of time as public schools. So much of the time at school is spent waiting in lines, moving between classes, getting settled in at class, getting packed up, waiting for other students to finish work, etc. They might be able to do a good chunk of work while the daycare kids are eating or resting. I also do believe that it will inevitably cause her day to be more structured and she probably will take a more educational approach with the daycare kids as well. Hopefully her kids can be positive role models and little mentors for the daycare kids. I would take a “wait-and-see” approach. Hopefully the situation will work itself out in a positive way.

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    1. Yeah, I’m hoping this is something that ends up being beneficial. She’s just not the most…organized…person the way it is, so I have serious doubts about her ability to manage both commitments. I also think it’s different than a Mom raising all of her kids this way – b/c the daycare is her JOB that I’m paying her to do, you know? *sigh* We shall see. I do hope it works itself out in a positive way.

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  20. It’s so crazy to me that she is the only provider in your area. Where I live there are dozens of home providers and centers, you basically have your pick! Up until last December I ran a home daycare in my area for over 4 years, I had to close down when I got pregnant with my son. I think you are completely right in being upset over this. And I can tell you as a former day care provider that you are right in being concerned over how much attention your children are going to get. I used to watch between 6 and 8 children, 2 of them were infants, so I know what a challenge it is to properly care for each child. Basically from 6am-6pm I was running around non-stop doing activities, playing, and making sure each child’s needs were met. Some providers can do that, others can’t handle it. Definitely use your mommy intuition, if you don’t think your kids are being paid attention to, I’d pull them immediately.

    I definitely agree with everyone saying that your provider must not have thought all this through. Being a home daycare provider takes so much commitment and so does homeschooling. My sister-in-law also has a home daycare, and she decided last year to try and homeschool her 5 children, they also used a computer program. They all failed! She has 4 of the younger kids in our church’s private Christian school this year, but my oldest niece is back in public school because they are working like crazy with her to make sure she can graduate this year.

    I will be praying for you! This is such a tough situation! But hopefully everything will work out and be fine.

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    1. Keep in mind I live in a town of 1,000 people and a county of 4,000 people, and a lot of the ppl here are trustfunders who don’t need to have both parents working to survive. It’s not like living in a larger city!

      I’m definitely worried she’s underestimated how much time she’ll need to commit to this. We shall see…

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  21. I didn’t read all of the comments posted here, but I did ask my two homeschooling mom friends at my bible study this morning. So here goes.

    – I would be upset to find out on Facebook because it is going to be a change in what’s going on at the daycare. At the same time, she has the right to homeschool if she wants to. So handled badly, but as you said, she is seeing this as a non-issue.

    – Since her kids are home during the summer, she has taken care of the whole group before and her kids know what goes on at the daycare and how to act around /play with babies and toddlers.

    – She’s been doing the daycare thing for awhile, so presumably she’s had toddlers multiple newborns before (guessing here).

    – She knows her kids and their capabilities.

    From my home school mom’s – they both thought the daycare sounded like way more work than the schooling 🙂 But if she chose an online curriculum it really could be pretty hands off once she gets them set up. The kids are older so they are going to be better able to handle working alone that say a kinder or 1st grader. Example here, Son was upstairs doing his online writing homework during the 2 hours of fellowship study all alone – I had no idea, I assumed he was playing with the littles. Expect a learning curve and an adjustment period, but it may be ok.
    Also, home school doesn’t last all day, 2-3 hours and then they are often done. Things like making lunch and helping at the daycare are things that can count as “school” so it could be nice having extra hands around all the time.

    So it could be that other than a couple of hours a day things are not so different than any other time her kids are home. Talk to her, and maybe give it a month or so to see how it’s working out.

    Good luck.

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  22. First off I think it was really wrong of her to not tell all the parents in person prior to doing this. I mean you and other parents are paying her to watch your kids and that is her business and job so if she is planning to add homeschooling her own kids on top of it, I think its her responsibility to inform parents ahead of time. She has the right to do what she wants, but really I think it was stupid on her part to not talk to the parents ahead of time to see what they wanted to do. Some parents might not approve of her doing both and may want to pull their kids out. Seems like she would have given parents a couple weeks notice or start homeschooling at the start of next semester. I don’t know how she requires payment but if people pay by the month, its not fair for those parents that might disagree with this to be forced to be out money if they want to pull their kids out.

    I read through the comments and seen some people saying that people with large families homeschool with kids of all ages in the house and don’t have a problem, but like you replied, the kids all belong to the parents, while you are paying this person to watch your child. I too know people with large families that homeschool and have kids ranging from high school to infants and they have somewhat of a schedule they stick to, but usually all the kids are somewhat involved in the schooling process and it often involves the younger kids staying in a certain area playing with each other for an hour at a time or several hours while the parent helps the other kids with schooling. Which it works great for them, but if you are paying someone to watch your kids you probably expect them to have more interaction with your children. On a different note I must say it does concern me seeing some people say it only takes 2-3 hours a day to get the schooling done, it makes me question what type of schooling they are using because most people I know who homeschool spend at least 4-6 hours minimum a day on schoolwork, occasionally less depending on the topic, and sometimes they do more days of work on one day so they can have longer weekends, etc. I am not anti-homeschooling but if kids can finish all work in that short of time, I do wonder on the quality of the schoolwork. I also don’t think that her planning to have the kids doing the schoolwork during naps or on weekends is feasible either. The kids will want to be playing with their friends on weekends or in the evenings and it is harder for kids to focus on schooling in the evening, maybe not for all kids, but for most.

    I think your best bet though is to just see how the situation goes over the next few weeks to see if it is working or not. If she is struggling with the current number of kids, I’d be concerned on how it would go with 1-2 infants there, since infants take up a lot more time than others. Does your school district offer a preschool type program at all? I know a lot of places offer headstart or preschool for kids starting at age 3 for a fairly reasonable price, that could be an option for Stella once she gets that age. I know you are in a small town, but are their any private religious based schools in your area, sometimes they also offer programs for kids 3+ that are fairly reasonably priced.

    Good luck, its a crappy situation to be in.

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  23. A lot of variables here and some great thoughts/advice from bloggers. I want to throw in some thoughts from one other perspective… do you know her children or have any more details about the switch? It will take a lot of self motivation and discipline on the part of the kids to do an extended amount of work with little guidance from their mom, who essentially becomes the teacher. An 11 and 8 year old who have been in public schools up until now… it’s going to be a huge change and will require a lot of structure. On one hand, the structure may create a better learning environment for everyone, but on the other it could totally take away from the daycare kids. Will she ensure that those toddlers are receiving plenty of academic/social support? Through some of your previous blog posts, I remember that this provider has been very open to things you have asked- cloth diapering, baby led weaning, discipline- so I’m assuming she will probably be willing to work through any issues that could arise from this transition. Do you get any kind of “picture” of Stella’s day? I don’t think it’s too much to ask for a brief monthly calendar of topics or a book/song they will cover… or a weekly note to parents… ways to show that there will be minimal disruption to the attention the daycare kids receive. Just some more thoughts on the topic, keep us posted… hope it turns out for the best:]

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  24. Could you possibly suggest that she hire an assistant? I think that would be a reasonable compromise. Even if it was a teen assistant after the typical school day or a retired grandmother that only comes until 12, at least the daycare kiddos would have another adult to tend to them. Sucky situation overall. I agree with the previous posters though – you could make bank running your own daycare!

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  25. Have you otherwise been happy with this care provider? Do you trust her judgement overall? Questions to consider in this situation, I think. And, as far as answering your other questions, my two cents (for what it’s worth). 1) she clearly had some concerns (do you know what they were? Why did she need to abruptly pull her kids out of school? Did something happen?) that she feels are valid enough for such a quick change of direction. She doesn’t owe it to you or the other parents (although it would be nice) to discuss the logistics of this choice, or the implications. It is certainly a bad judgement that you found out on facebook though – that’s just poor taste. I’d be more upset about finding out via fb than the fact that she made the decision in the first place. 2) Whether or not she can homeschool while providing quality daycare is not something I can speak to. Clearly the jury is out – some commenters seem to think that she can, some say she can’t. My question is what happens with her children during the time during the day when they are not working on their school? If she’s thinking she can give nights/weekends to them for hands-on work, how much work will they actually be doing during the day? 8 hours is a lot to occupy – I assume she’d be needing to take care of them as well as the daycare kids? Whether or not she’s providing them with lessonwork, it sounds like a big additional responsibility. Tough situation – sorry!!

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  26. I dislike the lack of notice very much. I would switch providers if I had a choice just for something like that. Adding two big kids to the little kid mix suddenly is hard. That said, I think it’s possible that homeschooling wouldn’t detract from her ability to provide quality daycare. Given that there are no other options, I’d wait and see what happens (unless you want to do daycare, then jump on that as there seems to be a market). Maybe whatever caused her to yank the kids from school will resolve itself somehow and they would go back or maybe the kids are good at working independently and it’s all good.

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  27. So I know this comment is a little late, but I wanted to give you my opinion anyway 🙂 In January, I homeschooled a 5th grader at my home. He was doing an online program and I also had Aiden and another little girl at my house full time. I have to say, it was challenging at times, but manageable. It took B about 5-6 hours a day to finish his school work and most of the time, I was supervising him. There were a few things he could do independently, but I had to check his work and teach the material to him at first. I think that although your daycare provider has the best of intentions in trying to do everything, I don’t agree with her having that many kids plus homeschooling. I think honestly, as a teacher, it’s going to be impossible for her to dedicate the amount of time needed for her children to succeed/excell at homeschooling when she has toddlers/daycare to worry about. Even if she claims she will use evenings/weekends to homeschool, I guarantee that won’t work out the way she wants. Plus, her kids will be used to “help” with the daycare kids instead of doing their school work. I totally think you should take in one or two of her daycare kids (if the parents decide to switch) and stay home with your kiddos if you can swing it financially/with insurance. I’m not sure what daycare costs a month there, but you might be able to do pretty well! So sorry you had to find out on FB. Very unprofessional. I think you and the concerned parents need to sit down and discuss this. She needs to see how difficult this will be for her and what a terrible position shes put you all in too!!!

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  28. Her job is her priority? Of everything you said, that is the most concerning. I question most people who wouldn’t say that their children (and their education) is not #1. Just saying. I would definitely be livid though.

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  29. […] – This month I was mostly focused on work / maternity leave issues and what to do about our daycare situation. Sometimes it sucks to have to buckle down and think about adult stuff, eh? I did chime in at the […]

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  30. […] 6 months ago I wrote a bit about my frustrations with the way our licensed home daycare provider had drastically changed the environment in her home […]

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