33 answers

Home Daycare and Paid Vacations

Hi all,

I'm putting our son in an in-home daycare (I live in California by the way), which is run by my best friend's mom, and it's a great place for him. I only need him to go 2 days per week, and she only has Mondays and Fridays available. I got all the paperwork and read through it, and I was surprised to learn that that provider takes paid vacations and that we have to pay for all the national holidays when she is not open. If she gets sick or takes a vacation, we have to pay for those days and then we also have to find other daycare and pay for that, which means I'll be paying like $100 sometimes for 1 day of daycare. If I take a vacation and he doesn't go for 1 week, I still have to give her $50 a day for the days he's not coming. I understand the policy because she doesn't want people to sign up and then not bring their kids and then she doesn't get paid. I understand it's her full time job and she should get paid time off. I know that she's very established and if I don't like the policy I'll just have to go somewhere else! :) Just wondering if anyone knows if this is common practice for in home daycares? It's just annoying because since he's only going Mondays and Fridays, that's a lot of the days that holidays fall on. Let me know what you think. Thanks!

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So What Happened?™

Thanks for your advice everyone. I like how some people mentioned it is like paying for my spot at the daycare - that totally makes sense! I didn't mean to offend anyone - I obviously understand that it is her career and she deserves paid time off. I just wondered if that was very common. Since she only has Mondays and Fridays, I might just need to find a place where he can go different days so we are not paying for so many Monday holidays. Or call it a good investment in quality daycare. :)

Featured Answers

I agree with the other providers who have answered - sometimes clients don't understand that each spot is a commodity: something that "is for sale" and has a certain value. If you want to "buy the spot" then you pay for it - with whatever conditions the providers has put into the policy. It IS unfortunate for you that many holidays fall on Mondays and Fridays, but that's not the provider's fault. From the answers everyone else has posted, you can tell that there's no "common practice," child care REALLY varies across the US. You have to find what woks for YOU, wherever you are. As a provider, I really appreciate the people who understand that providers are early childhood teachers - it's an valuable job and an important profession.

3 moms found this helpful

Yes, it is pretty common. I have to deal with that as well, but my child goes 5 days per week. You just have to read the contract and decide if the terms are such that you can live with it. If you cannot (and with only 2 days a week, I could understand why), then you really should find a different daycare arrangement.

2 moms found this helpful

Hello, I'm not her and I haven't done daycare in a few years, but, I never charged for when children weren't there. When I took my vacation, I tried to help parents find good childcare and they paid those people. If they took a vacation, I did not charge. I even had parents who lost their jobs and while they were looking for work, I didn't charge them. It's all about respecting them and setting a good environment for the children as well as the parents. I'm not saying she should to free daycare, but it was how I ran mine.
Good luck.
K. K.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Why do you think she should not get paid holidays and vacations? This is her career. Do you get paid holidays and vacations and sick days? As a self employed person, she gets to set those rules. Unless shes asking for things like Dr. Suess's birthay off as her paid holiday??

Sorry, but as a home daycare provider (in MN) This irritates me. I had PTO (paid time off) days for years (started at 10 days and worked up to 20), PLUS holidays (I had 7 and now 9). But I bumped my rates up a bit to cover it and eliminated the 20 PTO days (I never did like the double daycare for parents so I found my solution to it..higher rates!!)

Many providers, especially, as you stated, an established one in what is obviously a succesfully paid area (my rates are close to that, especialy for PT rates), will usually have you pay for the spot on their license Enrollment, not attendance.

Many responders said to ask about switching days those weeks but it sounds to me like she has no room for you the other days, so thats not likely possible? I have had PT families before and IF I have the room, I offer them that chance, but usually its not an option.

You spound like you actually DO understand all the WHY reasons she is asking this all of you....you just don't want to pay it. LOL. I get that, but where I live...very very normal and the provider sets those rules, as you said!

Best of luck!

4 moms found this helpful

My sitter gets all of the major paid holidays, black friday, the day after christmas, and a week in august. all paid. its in the contract.
for the holidays, it's not a big problem since I get the same holidays. For the week in August, I just make sure that I take that week off also.

It has never occurred to me to not pay her for holidays and vacation. I expect to get paid time off, and so does she.

3 moms found this helpful

I agree with the other providers who have answered - sometimes clients don't understand that each spot is a commodity: something that "is for sale" and has a certain value. If you want to "buy the spot" then you pay for it - with whatever conditions the providers has put into the policy. It IS unfortunate for you that many holidays fall on Mondays and Fridays, but that's not the provider's fault. From the answers everyone else has posted, you can tell that there's no "common practice," child care REALLY varies across the US. You have to find what woks for YOU, wherever you are. As a provider, I really appreciate the people who understand that providers are early childhood teachers - it's an valuable job and an important profession.

3 moms found this helpful

Well that was the policy when our son was in home daycare. She took two 1 week vacations a year and two weeks off between christmas and new years and then the usual holidays (memorial day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving) Also if we went on vacation when she was not on vacation we still paid, we went on a long week end we still paid.

I did not mind paying her for this time off one bit. She gave our son excellent care....probably did a better job than I would have done if I was a SAHM. Loved him to pieces! And for the importance of the job she did, she was way underpaid....we paid $250 a week...so in the end we usually ended up paying for her 4 weeks of vacation ($1000) and then another 2 weeks ($500) when our vacations did not sync up with hers....so an extra $1500 a year for extraordinary care...I did not mind. She more than earned it!!!!

3 moms found this helpful

Yes, it is pretty common. I have to deal with that as well, but my child goes 5 days per week. You just have to read the contract and decide if the terms are such that you can live with it. If you cannot (and with only 2 days a week, I could understand why), then you really should find a different daycare arrangement.

2 moms found this helpful

Wow! I'm glad I live in the Mid-West. I pay $34/day for two kids. I don't have to pay when my provider takes off for any reason (holidays, vacation, sick days). I get 5 'free' days a years where if I don't take the boys I don't have to pay. It wouldn't hurt to at least ask around and see what the policies are for other providers.

2 moms found this helpful

Yes..this is standard and expected practice for a "quality, intentional" family child care facility. A "professional" child care provider will get paid holidays/vacation and sick time..like most other business provide.

You are purchasing a block of time..be it 5 days a week or two days a week. That is "your" time whether your little one is in care or not. Unfortuneatly our overhead does not go down when Johnny is out sick, or little Mary is visiting Grandma for the day. The same with vacations. You will be notified in plenty of time to make necessary arrangements. Some parents just take their vacation when the provider does, or perhaps they are fortuneate to have other family members step in. I recommend to all parents I speak with to NEVER put their child in a program where the provider does not take paid vacations. That is not a healthy or safe environment. You want your provider to have the opportunity to recharge her battery's and spend some quality family time with her family. It also gives us the time to think about our curiculum and do some deep cleaning and sprucing up. So, to answer your question this is absolutely standard and acceptable practices. You can give me a call if you like, my number is ###-###-####. I have been a successful provider for 25 years, served on the board of directors for Orange County Child Care Association and do consulting for providers and parents on how to find and identify quality, intentional child care. I am in Orange County Ca.
Good luck to you and sounds like you have found a great provider!

2 moms found this helpful

Hello, I'm not her and I haven't done daycare in a few years, but, I never charged for when children weren't there. When I took my vacation, I tried to help parents find good childcare and they paid those people. If they took a vacation, I did not charge. I even had parents who lost their jobs and while they were looking for work, I didn't charge them. It's all about respecting them and setting a good environment for the children as well as the parents. I'm not saying she should to free daycare, but it was how I ran mine.
Good luck.
K. K.

1 mom found this helpful

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