View Full Version : What would you do, maternity leave??

08-10-2008, 08:19 AM
One of my mindees mums is due in january and has just told me she will probably only want me for 2 mornings a week (i currently have him 5 mornings) from january to september and then she wants me to have the new baby 5 mornings a week and my current mindee before school and drop off to school.

My problem being that thats the second family to reduce their hours and i am slightly worried that unless i find another child soon i am not going to be earning enough to carry on.

She obviously wants me to guarantee a space for both children in september so what should i do??

08-10-2008, 08:23 AM
I would be honest with her and say that you can not afford that much of a drop in earnings.

It might mean that you have to let the mindee go for now and see where you are up to next September when she wants you more often again.

Its hard now Mums are given so much maternity leave!

08-10-2008, 08:25 AM
I think I'd say she can either leave older child w you as is and you will be happy to keep a place for baby (if you are happy to wait) or take lo down to 2 mornings but then she pays a retainer for new baby's place so either way, she's still paying you for more than 2 mornings a week. 8 months is a long time to hold a space open especially when you never know if she'll then decide to stay home after all.

08-10-2008, 08:26 AM
Personally I have been caught out twice with this. Kept place open for both with reduced hours for older one with promise of both after maternity leave and after mum went back to work for a month gave me a months notice as one got a relative to do it and the other only went back so did not have to repay extra maternity pay.
Put your financial needs first and base your decision on that, maybe advertise for another mindee and tell mum this and if another child comes along offer her the chance of the place but only on the payment of a retainer, if she is really serious about the place she will come to some sort of agreement with you.
It is a hard one especially if you get on really well with the family but put your head before your heart unlike me!:)

08-10-2008, 09:26 AM
I do believe she will go back to work as she is a deputy head teacher at my dds school.

What kind of retainer would you charge and how would you explain it to the parents?? Never done one before?

08-10-2008, 12:08 PM
Explain that you cannot afford to hold a place for 8 months with no pay so the retainer fee is payable to hold the place for the baby. Now it is really up to you what you charge but as term time only retainer places are generally charged at half fee I would say base your charge on this (have no experience of this all parents I have had on maternity have left and either not gone back to work or just come back to me when ready to see if I have any spaces available). If you feel it is too much to expect her to pay come to an amount per week but remember it is you losing money all this time when you possibly could have filled the vacancy. Good luck with whatever you decide:thumbsup:

08-10-2008, 05:58 PM
Ive been stung twice too - once when I held a place open on retainer and once when I let someone reduce their hours to keep a space open. Wont make that mistake again!


08-10-2008, 06:41 PM
No advice as such but ....

Had one child 2 days a week, when her Mum went on maternity leave in April she decided to still leave child with me for 1 day a week but fully understood that should someone else come in & ask for the other day then she may lose that option later on. Baby was born & in January 09 baby & child will both be coming back to me for 2 days a week.

Of course that was pure luck that no-one took those particular days (a newbie started for Mon, Tues, Wed only which helped!) but at all times the Mum was fully aware that by not paying for the 2nd day it could easily go.

Dont know what to advise you but, do look out for yourself as a lot could change in 8 months,

Liz x

08-10-2008, 07:47 PM
Had real problems with maternity leave. Held place open,turned others away and now mum only wants 3 mornings/wk. I am furious especially when I found out from someone that this was her plan all along. I am NEVER holding a place open again and could kick myself for being such a mug! I explained to her this morning that had I known this was her plan I would not have kept the full time place open for her. My own fault I know but I have learned a valuable lesson from this! "Oooh do I sound a bitter twisted old Childminder?"