Nanny vs. daycare

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-08-2003
Nanny vs. daycare
23
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 4:45pm
Hi! I've been visiting the board for a few weeks (as one of you commented, I WOH but spend way too much time at work on this message board) but first time writing...

Wanted to know your thoughts on nanny vs. daycare. (I have a 10 month old)

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-22-2000
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 4:54pm
Personally, I prefer center care for all ages. One pair of eyes just isn't enough. I also don't particularly care to have someone in my home when I'm not here.

Avatar for biancamami
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 4:59pm
I think it really depends on the family. For us, a Nanny was our best choice for may reasons:

1. She's cheaper than daycare in our area.

2. She's a family friend that we knew and trusted before we hired her.

3. She comes to our home so we don't have to juggle drop-off and pick-up schedules.

4. She cooks home-made meals for my DD and she does light housekeeping which gives me more time to spend with my DD when I get home.

5. She speaks Spanish which we want our DD to speak primarily for her first 3 years.

6. My DD *still* gets exposed to other children because my Nanny takes her to the community playground every day and to the neighbor's apartment (they have small children)...also, she sits for my cousin's baby a few days a week in my home so DD has a playmate on those days.

But I think for some parents a good daycare center is a better option. Either because they can't find a nanny that is reasonably priced or that they trust. Also, for some, the structure of daycare and the fact that their kids are exposed to other children is very important. Each family has to weigh the pros and cons.

Ana
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 5:06pm
I agree. *I* feel much more secure with my kids in a center. With that many teacher, kids, parents, directors, etc wandering around ... its very hard for soemthing to go seriously amiss, purposefully or not.

And as messy of a house I keep? I don't want anyone in it! lol

Not to mention the cost of a nanny is MUCH more prohibitive than the cost of a center. And the research involved to find a suitable one would be more as well. And what if she quits? At my center, if a teacher quits, it doesn't affect the clients.

Hollie

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 5:10pm
she does light housework and cooling and she's CHEAPER than a center? Wowsers! For me to do that, I'd have to find one that would work for only $5000 a year! lol

But I agree with the premise of your post. That you weight the pros and cons for *your* family and make the decision.

Hollie

Avatar for mjdphd
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 5:40pm
Given all of the pros, that is a great choice for you. However, typically, a nanny does not become cost effective until you have more than 2 kids. You either have very expensive centers, or you have a nanny that works dirt cheap.
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-08-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 6:25pm
Yes, where I live, nannies cost about 2x that of daycare. re: Daycare, how do you deal with...

-who stays with her at home when she's sick and can't be taken to daycare

-who stays with her at home when she's sick (often, i hear) because of daycare

-is it crazy trying to get your baby ready for day care in the morning, especially if the center isn't too close by

-how do you find a good daycare...

it seems like the "good" daycares have a looong waiting list....

maybe it's just a "firtime mom" nervousness...

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 6:45pm
Well, for *us*

-who stays with her at home when she's sick and can't be taken to daycare

We alternate. I have a very flexible, employee-friendly work environment and can often stay home. Dh, on the other hand, is less flexible but has LOADS of sick leave he can use for this purpose. I sometimes take one or both of the kids to the office with me (those have a rash and can't go to sschool but aren't contagious days) for a few hours and can also do some work from home.

-who stays with her at home when she's sick (often, i hear) because of daycare

Daycare can contribute to a child getting sick, but its not as substantial as you might think. They can be exposed to more germs that way, but they're exposed to germs at the park, at the museum, at church etc as well.

-is it crazy trying to get your baby ready for day care in the morning, especially if the center isn't too close by

Not really. Its worse with an infant, but once they're a toddler its not bad at all. I get the kids (2.5yo in dc and 6.5yo in school) up at 6:30, feed them, dress them, and we're out the door by 7:30 if not earlier. WE often even have time to play outside for a few min before we leave. It might require *you* getting up a bit earlier so you can get yourself ready.

-how do you find a good daycare...

Research. Research. Research. Start by getting a list of *licensed* child care centers in you area. Weed out some through general information such as location, price, ages served, hours, etc. Then call the rest. Talk to the director. fidn out what they're about. You can weed out some of these too. Then visit the remaining ones. Adn don't make an appointment. Just drop by, with your child. Then, if you get good vibes, do an in-depth visit (sometimes you can combine the two, but sometimes its nice to schedule the in-depth one) to see meal plans, curriculum, schedules, licenses, meet the teachers, etc. Ask abot turnover. Fire procedures. Medicine procedures. Sick kid procedures. etc, etc, etc. Many daycares will also let you bring your child for a half day or so to see how they *fit*. And go with your *gut*, if it feels wrong, it is. If it *feels* right, and its clean, safe, meets licensing regulations, etc .. then go with it.

And don't wait until you're ready to go back to work to start looking. Start MONTHS ahead. With dd, I started while I was pregnant. With ds, I started looking in June, and I was planning on going back to work when dd started school in August.

Hollie

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
In reply to: jane198
Thu, 05-08-2003 - 6:46pm
I think there are pros and cons to both.

Nanny-

Pros: They come to your home, so you don't have to rush your kids in the morning, and similarly don't have to rush home at night to meet a pickup deadline; they become "in tune" with the child/children as a family unit and not one of 10 babies, etc; kids are not in a germ camp with other kids (although once they go to school they will be, and at least the dc kids will have immunities, lol); they are your employee and you can dictate what you want rather than have to 'bend' to what a dc offers; they can do extra little chores around the house when baby is napping to help out (load d/w, fold laundry, sweep, defrost dinner, etc); if you have a pet, they are there to let pet out and in to pee; your child may feel more confident/secure in their own home.

Cons: Cost; if they aren't honest, they may steal or neglect kids....... but that's what nanny cams are for; if nanny calls in sick, you're stuck

Daycare-

Pros: When a child is a little older (not infant) there are structured activities and they interact w/ other kiddies their own age; most are state licensed, whereas a 'nanny' may not be as regulated; not in your home if you are a private person; cost less; more than one pair of eyes so abuse/neglect would have to collaborative and thus is less likely; there are back ups if someone calls in sick.

Cons: Infant ratio in most centers is like 3 or 4 to 1, so child may not get as much attention as with nanny; you have to get the kid dressed and take them there every morning; kids in dc are sicker since germs spread...... but then when they go to school they will have immunities (so it's a pro or a con I guess)

If I had to work ft for financial reasons and needed child care, my choice would be nanny all the way. We have a nanny cam (we had a live in housekeeper........ and we fired her) and I'd use it. They are really inexpensive these days.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-08-2003
In reply to: jane198
Fri, 05-09-2003 - 2:03pm
I currently have a nanny -- the main reason being that when my dd was 2 weeks old we moved cross country, didn't really know the area that well, and my new job was going to start 4 weeks later. I was "all set" to start her at the daycare at my dh's work but found out that she was STILL on the waiting list and probably won't get a spot for a while. And it was easier to interview even a dozen nanny applicants (through an agency that already "pre-screened" them for you) than to visit a ton of daycares.

Now that she's a little older, I've been thinking about daycare more --

Also, the other day, I took her to one of those play gyms for babies and my dd seemed a little "freaked" to see all these other babies. I thought it may be good for her to have more interactions with other babies.

That brings me to another question. I read this article in one of the parenting magazines on "SAH vs WOH" where one WOH mom was saying that it's been hard for her to find playdates and such because she's at work all day and can't make those "contacts." Also, the WOH moms said that these playdates happen during daytime. I've asked my nanny whether she sees other babies with mommies in the neighborhood and she told me that yes, but she kind of hinted that the mommies and nannies don't generally hang out together. That seems unfortunate.

Any thoughts?

By the way , what does "dh," "dd," "ds," etc stand for? I get the general idea, but am not sure exactly what they are.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: jane198
Fri, 05-09-2003 - 2:09pm
d = dear.. so dear son, dear daughter, etc ... although its often *damn* husband! lol

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