The latest child care related news, views and reviews February 13, 2013
child care news for
How many germs are too many? We ask is the new Stay Healthy Guide going too far? And if you're finding it difficult to juggle work around school hours we give you some options for before and after school care that you may not have thought of. Meet our Mum in Profile - Melinda Zanello from Happy Reading.
The new Staying Healthy guide means well
…but may be a little 'detergent happy'.
by Sophie Cross

Do you wash your doorknobs every day? Limit candle blowing on birthday cakes or get your children to wash their hands with alcohol sanitiser before and after playing in the garden or a sand pit?

I am a mum and I definitely do not do those things, but my daughter is very happy and healthy and sick very infrequently. I don't know about you, but I can definitely remember mucking around in, well, muck as a child. Playing in dirt and most likely eating it, as children tend to do. I remember my old Nana, a very Victorian lady who believed that washing was unhealthy, having kerniptions at my brother and I playing about SHOELESS in the rain, terrified we would "catch a chill".

Sure we had the usual amount of snot, infections, childhood diseases etc. No more than every other child. We were taught to cough into our hands, wash our hands before eating and clean our hands, faces and teeth before bed. And that's about it…

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Before and After School Care
Are you covered?

It's the beginning of a new school year and some parents with little ones starting this year have been surprised to discover that there is no one available to monitor children before and after school.

Generally most schools will have a playground teacher on duty from around 8.30 in the morning as the majority of pupils arrive. But parents must be aware that if they drop their children off before this time, there is no one to supervise them unless the school has an official before school service(for which you need to register your child) or if there is no Out of School Hours Care service on or near the school premises you will need to make alternative care arrangements.

This is a very tricky area for working parents, for whom the school hours are simply unmanageable for their working day, no matter how flexible their employer is.

For most parents with kindergarten age children, the first term is even more of a nightmare while kindy kids are generally released half an hour before the rest of the kids, so 2.30 in most cases. This puts even more pressure on a working day.

The best option is to get your children into Out of School Hours Care (OOSH) if available at your school. These centres are generally on the premises or nearby to the school. However, they are not part of the school and are independently run, although they do work closely with the school in terms of providing seamless care particularly for the youngest children, such as picking up kids from their classes.

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