This summer I have been struggling to find some sort of balance between my workload and childcare coverage. As I wrote last month, I have less daycare than I do work at the moment. I have been getting up early, staying up late, trying to somehow fit it all in. My kids are always catching me at my desk, tapping away on the keyboard. “Just let mommy finish this one email” is the mantra of my summer. Some mornings, my typing wakes them up. Some nights I sit blurry eyed, trying to cross things off my endless to do list. The trade off is that I am spending more “quality” time with my children. But while the dynamic has clearly shifted, the workload hasn’t.
But the purpose of this post is not really to lament my summer schedule. It’s to ask how other working parents deal with the crazy school schedule?
With all the juggling I’ve been doing this summer, I haven’t given a single thought to the fall. But when the boys’ day care provider alerted me to the school schedule and the number of days off and half days coming up in September and October, I nearly burst a blood vessel in my brain! Since I am working out of the house again (blame it on the price of gas), I can be here in the afternoon to get my son off the bus after school. I don’t need wrap around care every day. But I do need it on half days. Last year, I was able to use neighborhood day care so I didn’t really think about this at all. This year, the day care is full and it’s not a realistic option.
School starts on September 3rd. There are three full weeks of school and then there is not another full week (meaning five full days of school) again until December 10th!
Days off: September 30th, October 1st, 9th, 13th, November 4th, 11th, 28th
Half days (early release): October 15th, 22nd, 29th November 19th, 26th, December 3rd
Is every school district like this? If you don’t use regular wrap around care, what do you do? Hire a high school kid? Get your mother-in-law or friend? Take time off from work?