Our daughter started Kindergarten this year and we enrolled her in a great public school in our area (high API scores, small class sizes, one school district, K-8, farm community, etc.). It was a difficult decision for us as my husband and I both work full time and the public school has no before school or after school care. We also have a preschooler that we have to take and pick up at a private school that we had considered putting our Kinder in. We are contemplating taking our Kinder out of the public school and putting her at the private school her sister is at since they have before and after school care. The problem is that I really hate to leave such a great school to pay $5k just for an after school program (although, the private school is amazing too and we love lots of things about it). My work schedule is flexible sometimes which allows me to take her and pick her up most days but it's really wearing on me trying to arrange someone else to take care of her if I can't. Help!!
I am sure many parents can relate. You have to weigh the choices. The way I see it, you can have them in the private school for a few years, or you can try to find an after school day care near the elementary school.
The private school is great, but once you start, it will be hard to stop. While you're paying for it, there are fewer financial problems than public schools experience. The plus side is that the girls will be in one school and you know you like it.
If you opt for keeping her in the public school, you can always find a parent nearby who will be willing to pick up your daughter and take her home to do homework until you get off. This might be a regular parent, or an actual daycare. The school can let you know of any parents that might be willing to do this for you. It might cost a little money, but not $5k a year, and in a couple years your daughters can be reunited at one school.
What will you do next year? Can you afford to have both your children in the private school for all of their elementary school years? Or will you have to face the after school care issue next year anyway?
Why not put the $5k into paying someone to take care of your daughter after school? With that, you won't have to move her.
Just a thought. Good luck with your decision.80599
Is there a local YMCA or something similar nearby the Elementary school? I'm sure you're not the only family that has a student that needs afterschool care. If you call the front office they may have some recommendations for after care. The reason I asked about the YMCA is that in our area the YMCA will pickup kids from local schools and transport them back to the YMCA. The parents then pick them up from there. Maybe there's something similar where you are for the Elementary school? I have found that afterschool care if asked around can be found for a lot cheaper than private school. Plus the base of private school costs are usually for during the regular hours only. Before and/ or after care would be on top of the tuition costs and everything else that Private would add.80604
Thanks for all of your replies. To answer some of your questions....Yes, we would be able to afford to have both girls in private elementary through 8th grade. But, we are not the type of people to do it just because we can afford it. We want it to be for the right reasons. As far as the cost of after school care I did call the school (who informed me that only 10 families in their entire school have a need for after school care and the rest are all families with stay at home moms, must be nice!!!!) who gave me the names of a couple of families that do after school care. Problem is that they are $15/hour and I figured that even with private school tuition AND the cost of after school care it will still be cheaper for the private school. We don't have a lot of options for after school care because we live in the country. Plus, in all honesty I'm not really impressed with our after school care choices and don't want to leave my kids with just anyone. It's one thing I insist on being picky about :)80636
Oh wow, only about 10 families need after school care in your school? That's a huge difference than my son's old school. The after school care had such a high demand that the YMCA was on-site. The kids would go from the end of class and then sign in the cafeteria for the after care. But then of course I should realize that different areas have very different needs. Of course you would be picky where to leave your children. I would hope so. :-)80646
Trust me....it doesn't help the situation any when I already feel guilty about not staying home with my kids. I was TOTALLY shocked to hear we are in the minority. It makes me wonder how all of the families out here survive!!!80657
Aw, don't feel bad about needing after care. Its kind of a huge necessity where I am. Which is why there is even more than one option for after care where we live. There is just that much demand and need for it. We loved his after care because it was on-site. So he had his same friends from school that would transistion over. They would also have homework time everyday. It was a huge plus because a lot of the times I would pick him up and either all of his homework was done or he had just a little bit left over. So I would just double check his work and be quickly finished. If your private school has after care while the Elementary school does not have any options, I can see why you would choose private.80665
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