Pros And Cons Of After-School Care

By Danielle Wirsansky on October 17, 2021

Parents have to work. It is a fact of life. Without work, there is no money, and without money, there is no life. It is a vicious cycle. Oftentimes, parents need more care for their children than just what a school provides. Most often, a parent’s work hours are not conducive to their child’s school schedule.

A parent might likely have to work longer into the day than when their child’s school day ends. So what is a parent to do? They have to have the job to pay for their life and meet their children’s needs and they can’t leave work to get their child or bring their child to work. The solution most parents turn to in these situations is after-school care.

What is after-school care? It started in the early 1900s mainly just like supervision of students after the regular school day ended and it still exists at most schools, though the programs have expanded and are often forms of enrichment. After-school care helps many parents juggle their work lives with their responsibilities as parents.

Does after-school care sound like it might be something that would help you? Read on for a list of the pros and cons of after-school care so that you can make an informed decision!

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch from Pexels

Pros

There can be many benefits to enrolling your child in after-school care, whether that be a program with their school, an outside organization, or even an individual (like a nanny).

Enrichment for Children

One of the pros of enrolling your child in after-school care is the option for your child to participate in enrichment activities. Socializing and spending more time with other children and teachers is one form of enrichment—they might be exposed to more children than just those in your class, which allows them to make more friends than they might have had the opportunity to otherwise.

Enrichment can also come academically, artistically, or even physically. Some after-school care programs offer homework help so that you child can get their work done before they even come home from school. That way, once they are home they get to spend time with you instead of on schoolwork. They also have the added benefit of being helped by a teacher on their homework should they need any assistance. You can even get your child tutoring if your child needs that level of assistance with their work.

Many schools or organizations also offer extracurricular-based after-school care so your child can be artistically or physically enriched as well. They could take art classes or dance classes, take music lessons or play football. It all depends on what the school offers and what your child is interested in doing!

Work More

Another pro to enrolling your child in after-school care is that you get to work more. If your work would not accommodate your child’s school schedule, you would have to leave your job. You might even have to shift into a part-time job rather than a full-time job, which could be difficult for your family’s finances. That is where after-school care comes in! It allows you to work the hours that you need to without worrying about your child or your job security.

Avoid Long Pick Ups

This might be a bit of a selfish pro, but having your child in after-school care means that you can avoid waiting for your child and sitting through a hugely long pick-up line in order to pick them up. It is a huge hassle and can be really stressful. When you pick them up from after-school care, there is usually no wait or line to do so!

Cons

As great as after-school care can be, there are also some cons you should consider before making your final decision.

The Costs

How much does your after-school care cost? You need to weigh it against how much money you make during the time that you would be working while they are in the program. If you lose money rather than gain it by having your child in after-school care while you are at work, is it worth you working those extra hours?

Loss of Quality Time

You also need to consider the loss of quality time that you will have with your children. Picking your children up from school is when they tell you about their day. The drive home is often a great bonding time. You will also have less time to spend with the kids at home afterward, especially if they did not already complete their homework. You do not want to spend your life working and end up missing out on your child growing up!

Photo by Budgeron Bach from Pexels

There are pros and cons to after-school care, so just weigh them together and do what is best for you and your children first.

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