Childcare in NZ

Old Oct 31st 2011, 8:45 pm
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Default Childcare in NZ

Hi, still waiting to sell the house! When we arrive, I would dearly love to get back to work. I have loved staying at home with the kids but now need some grown up company! At the moment we have no childcare, we are too remote for a childminder to pick up from the school....I have come to the conclusion that working within school hours is the only answer and jobs like these don't grow on trees. Any advice welcome, what options for childcare are available and does anyone mind sharing what has worked for them, please? (Children 14 & 6) Thank you
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Old Oct 31st 2011, 8:53 pm
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Default Re: Childcare in NZ

Originally Posted by florabundi View Post
Hi, still waiting to sell the house! When we arrive, I would dearly love to get back to work. I have loved staying at home with the kids but now need some grown up company! At the moment we have no childcare, we are too remote for a childminder to pick up from the school....I have come to the conclusion that working within school hours is the only answer and jobs like these don't grow on trees. Any advice welcome, what options for childcare are available and does anyone mind sharing what has worked for them, please? (Children 14 & 6) Thank you
From the age of 14 children are legally old enough to be left home alone in NZ and also to babysit. Obviously you know your children better than the legal system and indeed CYF's so only you would be able to decide if that works for you.

Most schools have after school clubs which are very reasonable and also run holiday clubs. In addition the local library and also some activity centres offer holiday activity programmes too.

I'm currently looking for work too, ideally, like you, within school hours. It's not easy! My son will be 13 in December and starting college in February. He's not old enough to be left home alone or look after my 9 year old, but he'll turn his nose up in disgust at the thought of an after school club or holiday programme?! He can however be put outside with his skateboard and scooter at 8am if I left for work, and then allowed back inside when I returned! It's not easy.
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Old Oct 31st 2011, 9:19 pm
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Default Re: Childcare in NZ

We had the same problem AL. I spoke to a policeman friend and he advised that they are sensible in how they deal with kids being left on their own and it is dependent on the circumstances. For example if you have a reasonably responsible 11yr old arriving home from school on their own for an hour or two this is not a problem. However if you have an immature 11yr old left at 7pm in the evening so you can go to the pub then they may take a different view.

It is not an easy one and as you say you know your kids the best. I happily let my 11 year old arrive home on his own, it has made him more responsible. He has all of the phone numbers that he needs to get hold of us if required and as you say, it is perfectly legal for them to be wandering the streets instead of being home alone.......which can't be right
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Old Oct 31st 2011, 11:10 pm
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Default Re: Childcare in NZ

Originally Posted by MightyBlade View Post
We had the same problem AL. I spoke to a policeman friend and he advised that they are sensible in how they deal with kids being left on their own and it is dependent on the circumstances. For example if you have a reasonably responsible 11yr old arriving home from school on their own for an hour or two this is not a problem. However if you have an immature 11yr old left at 7pm in the evening so you can go to the pub then they may take a different view.

It is not an easy one and as you say you know your kids the best. I happily let my 11 year old arrive home on his own, it has made him more responsible. He has all of the phone numbers that he needs to get hold of us if required and as you say, it is perfectly legal for them to be wandering the streets instead of being home alone.......which can't be right
I am sure they are and have better things to do than chase a working parent who is delayed home by an hour. But unfortunately, when you are going through the divorce from Hell it's a risk I can't take!
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Old Nov 1st 2011, 9:39 am
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Default Re: Childcare in NZ

It's not an easy one, my older child would be quite fine on her own for a little while but if she had to left with her brother there would be arguing and sulks. Not what I want to come home to! Great to know about the after school clubs etc ~ the holiday activities here are usually just for 2 hours in the middle of the day, not much use for working mums!
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Old Nov 1st 2011, 10:10 am
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Default Re: Childcare in NZ

They can be left alone prior to 14. The law is woolly it says that
In New Zealand it is against the law to leave children under 14 on their own without taking reasonable steps for their care and supervision.

What is 'reasonable' may vary depending on their age, the situation and how long they are alone. Parents must make sure that any child left alone is safe and in no danger.


This has been stated clearly at schools through the Keeping our kids safe programme that kids can be left prior to 14
But a six year old is more tricky
However a fourteen year old and 6 year old could work if they are both happy with it.
It still might be difficult to get the 6 year old home though if they schools aren't close.
We used to pay one of the other mums to have our daughter after school (Now that she is older she goes to after school care). So once your little one is enrolled, ask around and see if anyone can help maybe
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