View Full Version : Childminder vs Afterschool Club

07-05-2014, 02:03 PM
Our school have a popular afterschool Club. After loosing out on an enquiry this morning, to them, it has got me thinking.

I have the odd enquiry for afterschool care and have done it in the past but most parents end up going to afterschool club. It is cheaper than me and now they are open a bit later and advertise a more substantial tea, Parents seem to do the maths and send them there. A Childminder in the village is nearly always full and you see her walking home some days with up to 12 children. Her fees and what she includes are the same as me but also I live out of the Village so maybe not convenient for a lot of parents. However this shows there are some parents who would prefer a CM.

I was just wondering how you other Childminders who cover schools with afterschool clubs fair. Are you a popular choice and why is that? If parents choose the club again why do you think that is? Also how do your fees compare.

I am between £4 and £5 more expensive than afterschool club (depending if you choose to stay on until 5:30pm or 6pm.) If you stay to 5.30pm ASC is £8.50, or £10 if you stay until 6pm
They now advertise a more substantial tea, although it all appears to be processed food. I don't do a cooked meal at tea time but I too offer a substantial tea with the processed stuff being an exception rather than a rule. (Although DD says on the odd occasion I have put her in all they get is toast and fruit). When parents have used me it's for younger children who they don't want in the school environment all day or are worried about the big kids being too full on.

07-05-2014, 05:02 PM
Our After School Club charges the same, and the tea tends to be pizzas, burgers etc.
I charge £4 per hour which is my across the board rate, but I don't provide cooked meals.
Most of my after schoolies tend to have always been with me - almost from the womb - so if it ain't broke don't fix it seems to be the norm. A lot of them stay with me until 6th Form!
The ASC is at the Primary school and won't take High School age. Not all High School parents are happy for their children to go home to an empty house, particularly as we're a rural area, and especially in Winter when they go home to a dark house. For this age group, a Childminder is sometimes the only option.

07-05-2014, 05:08 PM
My after school children have been with me for years and just seem to stay around until they leave for high school :laughing:

There is a club so I advertise pushing the 'home from home' and 'chilling' option when I have a space to fill which some children seem to prefer.

There are cons to taking on older children though ... so you need to weigh it up carefully - they eat a lot, can be big and noisy and go through resources like water :laughing:

07-05-2014, 05:14 PM
Our osc charges £3 pr session, morning and afternoon, and runs from a classroom in the school. They advertise a snack but when my children went it always seemed to consist of smart price toast or smart price biscuits. By contrast I charge 10.50 for morning and afternoon and give a better snack (usually two choices of fruit, yogurt and crumpets or similar) and have more for children to do. The osc don't actually seem to have many resources, it tends to be Lego, colouring in and kids tv. They are very busy, I don't tend to get many enquiries. I suspect that's largely down to price, but also about advertising in some respects as Although my FIS listing states which schools I collect from, I don't actively advertise. I currently have a two day schoolie vacancy with another opening up from next Monday due to a birthday.

07-05-2014, 05:18 PM
There are cons to taking on older children though ... so you need to weigh it up carefully - they eat a lot, can be big and noisy and go through resources like water :laughing:

I agree with this, and I think this is probably why I've not really advertised my spaces. I have on some days three children who are out of ratio as eight or older, so although I could take on more children legally, I don't have the fridge space and my hair is grey enough already

08-05-2014, 06:28 AM
We have a problem in this area not enough childminders for people wanting them.There is an after school club until 5/5.30 i think but people tend not to use them as they need holiday care also. I have 4 children at school two 10 year old and 6 year old. Not the easiest of children and won't be taking any more schoolies. ( also have a 15 yr old who is very pleasant and had since she was two)

08-05-2014, 06:50 AM
It is an eye opener to see the many likes and dislikes cms have regarding after school care...and how we value those children

I could not imagine being a cm without the older children around...others may differ in likes.

are older children noisy? yes but so are the under 5's...they are also extremely lovely to look after and very co-operative with the young children

Do they eat a lot? ...yes but so do the under 5s
they certainly go through resources but possibly with less waste than the under 5s

They take a lot of space...plenty of parks to get them running around and getting rid of energy...so their care maybe for those cms with a bigger setting

Some cms only want under 5s because of the income it generates...other value the continuity we can provide for older children and the fantastic relationships we can build with them...imagine the pride when they still knock on their CMs door when they are grown up and return to visit with their good memories!

Unfortunately we are now experiencing the 'childcare market' that has been introduced under More Great Childcare...we are also independent CMs who can decide what is best for us and the children

In some areas there are plenty of children to share and room for all providers to take care of them...in others the choice is limited and economics will drive parents in their choice of care ...and their pockets too!

It will be another eye opener to see how...all of a sudden...schools and nurseries work together with cms to fill the gap in after school care and holiday care that has prompted many of the reforms

08-05-2014, 07:09 AM
My daughters school has a after school club and runs till 6 but ive never been turned down because of it, I think parents who want childminders want that home from home chill time after school for their children. Ive had 2 parents say they have looked at the after club but decided they didnt want their child in school environment for that long and wanted them to be able to rest on sofa if wanted or just chill and play. Plus they dont have that worry if ever late because of traffic.

08-05-2014, 08:01 AM
I love sitting and taking to the after schoolies... After a day of baby talk it's a refreshing change :)

08-05-2014, 08:21 AM
The afterschool club here allows parents to only pay for sessions used , and this is the reason that many parents use it - whereas I cant and wont be that flexible. If you take a place , you pay for it!

08-05-2014, 09:24 AM
I started out (possibly a little naively) thinking I'd be able to offer some continuity and develop lasting relationships as my EY lo's moved onto school and kept coming here before and after. Sadly, most the parents I've had in that situation see the transition to school as the time to switch to the local after school workhouse to which many children are bussed in the next town. :(

Parents have actually told me they'd rather keep using my service, but the Value-beans-and-crayoning-workhouse is cheaper. That seems to be the one and only consideration. I find it a bit difficult to figure out. ASC is cheaper, no doubt. But schoolie care with me is cheaper than what they were paying for EY care with me previously, IYSWIM. I can only put it down to the fact that the combination of a cheap ASC and school attendance (which is,after all, primarily a free childcare system which allows parents to go to work whilst suppressing wages and boosting the profits of big companies) opens up a whole new world of consumer possibilities in which parents can start thinking about saving the £££s and getting all aspirational about spending the money on something more important than their child: a better holiday, bigger car, new kitchen, extension to the house, wine cellar, you know the sort of thing.

The idea seems to be that schoolies are now big enough to begin dealing with the harsh reality of parents offering them 2nd best in order to save money for the really important things in life. It's in the same logical league as all the Nutmums whose babies absolutely have to have 'organic' this that and the s0dding other, but move on rapidly to low-cost ding-meals as soon as they're out of the baby stage. :p

08-05-2014, 12:49 PM
There are a lot of schools close to me and I mean a lot and I only know one with an afterschool club. I only know one childminder who does a pick up there. Strangely tho it is the one school you always hear of people looking for childminders for tho so were obviously still desired

08-05-2014, 12:53 PM
the school i collect from runs an afterschool provision but I am always receiving enquiries. Apparently the receptionist gives out my details.

08-05-2014, 01:11 PM
I have a good mixture of young and old. I have 6 EY children and 7 school children 5-11ys. I will admit that the older ones are hard work but we have a good park on the way back from school. :D
I do struggle with the school holidays and the older boys have started to attend a sports club 9-3 which I take them and pick them up from.

All the older ones have been here between 7-3yrs so they are all part of the furniture. I did have an enquiry the other week for an 11yr old who is starting secondary school in Sept and said No which was my choice. Not because I don't like older children but I worry a lot about them being bored and I would just be stressing all the time he was here if he was ok. I could have taken a gamble and hoped children his age would be here but there was a chance of him being here on his own.

There are 3 afterschool clubs that pick up from the school and I'm always having phonecalls for older children because they don't like going. Its on a par to my prices and I think I am slightly cheaper but only by £1 or so.

I have had a lot of feedback from parents and children about the clubs:

Too loud/boisterous/rough play especially children who are 5yrs old and 11yr olds.
Too many children running around/No where to rest
A dark huge room with no character
Children made to eat the food even if they don't like it

I have 3 mindees who are 11yrs old moving to the local secondary school and they are all making their way back here to start with until parents are happy to give them a key for house.
On my busiest day I have 9 mindees and they are all friends and like a big extended family. The older ones play nicely with the younger ones and they have a place to come which is safe and fun, where they can relax as if they were at home :thumbsup:

08-05-2014, 07:20 PM
I think the advantage we have is continuity as our after school does run a holiday club but only for under 8s. I'm now finding that once they turn 8 and they can no longer stay at the holiday club parents are then asking us for places but because I have other children who did come to me before and after school when they were younger then they are my priority during holidays and we go out in the car which limits me with numbers.

08-05-2014, 07:51 PM
My business is dominated with before and after school children at the moment, the local school has an after school club and I have heard good and bad reviews I'm only 50p more expensive open half an hr later and offer a cooked meal whereas they get a drink and biscuit there so I'm actually good value and full! The twist in the tale is this facility is closing in Sep so there's not actually enough childcare to go round then!

blue bear
08-05-2014, 08:54 PM
Our school has a breakfast club£2, 8-8.45. after school club picks up from all three schools pay as you book £3.50 per hour at the moment but prices often go down together in new business then back up when they are full.

The demand for childminders is high we cannot accommodate all the children and end up having to say no, parents ask to be put on waiting lists. We cost more per hour than both the breakfast club and after school club

Talking to one of my dads tonight whose child originally went to breakfast club, he said he values the home from home care much more than. In group care, he knows his child definitely gets individual attention every day where as in the club she would often spend a whole session just playing and not having had one to one attention from an adult. He prefers the fresh food and the fact she has a choice. He prefers the resources I offer and the activities set up each day not just the same Lego, colouring and puzzles. He said she is so much happier here.

The after school club looses children fast and people don't speak very highly of it, I've never used it so don't know much about it but the trips it offers in the holidays are amazing.

Pixie dust
10-05-2014, 10:03 PM
Our local after school club charges £2.50 for the 3.15 -5pm. I don't very often get enquiries for after school care as parents go for the cheap option, normally it is only if parents need care later than 5.

11-05-2014, 06:17 AM
I am very lucky, our before and after charge a fortune as it's run by a private company in the next village and they use a bus to transport the children, the cost of 7.30-6 wraparound is £26 each child a day in obviously undercut them at £19 and I'm always full, the only way they are cheaper is if you just have an hour before and after but most people need more than that and it's still cheaper to book me and not use it on odd occasions , the only thing is you can dip in and out of the club if you don't need it with only a few hours notice which has its benefits to some parents