Monday, 4 February 2013

A difference



Last September Grandson started primary school after a number of years at a private nursery.

The big difference I noticed out here on the periphery, was that within normal opening hours of 8am to 6pm and no doubt in spite of reams of regulations, the nursery place was flexible and open 51 weeks a year.

However, it was obvious from day one that the primary school is not there to serve the needs of parents in the same, flexible way. In fact things don’t seem to have moved on much since the fifties when most mothers stayed at home to look after the kids.

Yes I know about breakfast clubs and so forth and the gaps can be filled by various means, but the nursery provided a one stop shop. In a sense, it took whatever childcare business was available.

Schools don’t work that way and in a sense it’s an amazing achievement if you think about it – this lack of response to changing social needs.

I’m not saying this difference is right or wrong, I’m noticing it simply because it’s so obvious.

4 comments:

Mark Wadsworth said...

Yup, agreed. Which is all an argument for education vouchers - by and large, half of child care costs are covered by vouchers, subsidies, tax breaks etc, but the point is that they are competing private providers. It works up to age 5, so why not from age 5?

The big problem with nurseries is the barriers to entry, that's what makes them expensive.

James Higham said...

the nursery provided a one stop shop. In a sense, it took whatever childcare business was available

Yes but the whole purpose is to make things difficult these days and further depress the population.

Roger said...

A friend is a head at a big primary and tells me if you give an inch they will take a yard - especially if they are not paying for it. Schools have to be pretty hard nosed or the yummy mummies and the chavvy mummies will all be taking the piss in their various ways. A study in (USA or Israel) found that where schools fined parents for late pickup the parents arbitraged their overtime/childcare costs and exploited the low charges schools made. Inflexible - you betya!.

A(nother) friend paid for his grandchildren to go private on the understanding there would be no inheritance and no house - a good investment and tax friendly.

A K Haart said...

Mark - it works very well up to age 5, so as you say, why change?

James - seems like it sometimes - ie every day.

Roger - that investment decision sounds interesting, although if the house goes into the pot it needs sound planning.