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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 10:46 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:47 am
Posts: 3310
Location: Warwickshire.
This is something I struggle with every time my children are ill...

What systems do you have in place when you have a sick child?

Schools are not keen to have poorly children stay at school - especially if it's a stomach thing - as it quickly spreads to others. So if you and your other half both work, what do you do? We try to share the responsibility in my house, but it does tend to be me who takes the nost time off.

As I work in a school, and we are fortunate to have a bed in the medical room, I do sometimes take my child in with me. However, it does not look good if I take in MY sick child if we are asking others to keep theirs at home!!

Do you get paid if you stay at home?
Do you tell the truth about why you cannot work?
Do you have extended family who offer to help? (Both grannies won't help if it's a stomach bug!)
At what age would you consider leaving them home alone?

I would love to know how you cope with this issue

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 11:30 am 

Joined: Mon Jul 31, 2006 2:49 pm
Posts: 55
Location: S.W. London
Sorry to hear your DD is poorly.

This is what usually happens with DS (yr 5). We both work, but have different work patterns, if we're both here and deciding who's to stay home, I usually have to take time off work. It can result in a row as to who has the more important meeting/appointment! Mostly DS is ill on the day I don't work. :?

We do not have family who can help, so it is down to us.
I work annualised hours, and can claim pro-rata equivalent to 5 days per year for dependent care. [I think my husband may have something similar but he doesn't claim it - probably thinks its just for women ]
I can be honest with my employers as there are a lot of us with the same age children. There are also colleagues who take dependent care leave to cover emergencies with their aged parents. There are enough of us that we can cover for each other, so people are generally sympathetic, as they have been there too.
I also work in a job, which to a great extent can be done from home, so we're not completely out of the loop.
I hasten to add that it was not like this at all when I worked in the commercial sector. I really fell on my feet with this job.
Colleagues who have children now at secondary school will leave them for say, a morning, and go back at lunch time, but they do worry about it whilst they are at work.
I imagine parental decisions are often influenced by the prevailing culture at work, employers attitudes, whether people have to cover your work, whether you lose pay.
Hope DD's feeling better soon and that Ed does well in his exams.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 11:40 am 

Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 9:27 am
Posts: 2086
Location: Barnet, Herts
I am lucky not to be working at the moment but when I was (as a nurse) it was always me that stayed home even though it didn't make me very popular at work.
As my job was part time and DH has his own accountancy company obviously he's the main breadwinner so it made sense for me to stay at home.And to be honest with you DH wouldn't be very good at caring for a sick child - both my DC always want me when they aren't feeling well.
I would never ever leave a child at home alone when they are ill not until they were 16+ anyway and even then I would worry in case they took a turn for the worse.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 12:22 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2007 4:20 pm
Posts: 4662
My children have a big age gap between them.

When the two older ones were at school I worked - they were never ill (I think I scared them too much to be ill :lol: ).

My youngest one who is now aged 11 has had 5 major operations, I have not worked since she started school (with the idea being I would always be there for her). She has never been off school through either the operations (always arranged to be done during school holidays - benefit of private health insurance) or the recovery period and she's never been off ill (colds, sickness etc) either.

I do however get lumbered with my next door neighbour's children who are very often ill - the joys of being a good neighbour :wink:


 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 3:33 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8762
Location: Buckinghamshire
I tend to agree with Zorro - 15/16 years old is the youngest I would leave a sick child home alone, except for a short period or maybe "just a heavy cold".

A very long time ago, when latch-key kids walked the earth and I was about 12, my Mum - a Headteacher - left me at home in bed with a "non-specific illness" one day. She probably thought I was skiving, to be honest.

In the middle of the morning I got out of bed and walked as far as the kitchen where I promptly fainted. Unfortunately as I went down I took a Pyrex dish with me, which shattered all over me.

Mum tore home after I called her and, once she had changed into sackcloth and ashes, spent the rest of the day picking bits of Pyrex out of me with tweezers.

I try not to mention it more than once a year. :lol:

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 3:52 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 2:31 pm
Posts: 66
Secondary age child with impetigo, being persona non grata with school but not really ill, is the only time I've left someone home alone whilst "ill". And even then I popped back to do her lunch.

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:51 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 19, 2008 3:45 pm
Posts: 314
I am pleased that we are not the only ones who struggle with this. We both work and it does tend to be me who takes time off, ditto with rows re who has the most important meetings. :x

My children our too young to be left so not a thought I would entertain and we have no family nearby.

I am in the lucky / unlucky position of having toil hours which i tend to save for just these days. If my children needed to be off for more than a couple of days I would really struggle.

Lots of lurgi's around school at the moment and am praying that mine avoid them until xmas period when either myself or husband will be home. :)

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 6:43 pm 

Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:05 am
Posts: 349
My children would have to be really ill (or sick) to have the day off school and even then, its no TV or computer etc, they have to stay in bed.

That way they aren't tempted to have "duvet" days so are sincerely poorly when they take time off school. We do not have family locally that can help so its down to me or OH (mainly me though :roll: ).

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 6:58 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
Posts: 8598
Ill? Ill?

What is this condition????

DS and DD reckon I couldn't spot an ill child if I tripped over it!!!! :wink:

mmmm how old would they have to be before I left them at home .... oooo whenever they can read the medical textbook and work out which of the pills in the easily reachable drawer they can take....

We've been lucky and able to juggle with understanding child minders / healthy children (who daren't be very ill) and working in places where they are quite used to ill people.... oooops grab that bowl.........

Seriously though it is a real dilemma and emplyment "policies" in most places don';t make it easy for working parents.

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 10:21 am 

Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2008 12:59 pm
Posts: 1287
It’s always a tricky one. It tends to be my wife who stays at home for the simple reason that I don’t get paid holiday whereas she does.

That said, she’s sometimes examining students and that’s something which can’t be changed so in those circumstances I will try to ‘work from home’ for the day :wink:

We have no local family to help so in an emergency would have to rely on friends.

We wouldn’t leave them at home alone because they both have chronic medical conditions and a simple bug or sore throat can quickly turn into something more serious.

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