As we head towards summer, the time is fast approaching when children will be out of school and home all day, every day. For working parents, whether you work in an office or out of your house, the kids being out of school presents a host of logistical challenges that parents happily avoid the rest of the year. But there are ways to plan and maintain a sense of balance during what can be the most fun, but perhaps the most stressful, time of the year.
If you're used to thinking of summer as the scariest time of the year, consider these tips to change your perspective. Here's how to balance work and childcare this summer.
Plan ahead with child care.
You may be able to send the kids to summer camp for a week or two, or find a day camp that allows you a bit of breathing room, but chances are you'll need several forms of child care over the summer. Try seeking out the help of high schoolers in your neighborhood who are looking for a summer job. Or ask around for friends and family who might be able to help you out a few days each week. You don't need to rely on one form of child care-you can cobble together several options that will work best for your family.
Take advantage of your company's flexible work policies.
Spend some time reviewing the human resources information at your company to see what is offered in terms of flexible work. A lot of companies offer special flexible scheduling, the ability to work from home occasionally, or even summer hours to help working parents and everyone better balance this time of year. Especially because this is a temporary situation, your employer may be more willing to work with you to find an arrangement that works best. If there isn't something formal in place, consider requesting a flexible work arrangement.
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