Phew! I feel like a demented hamster just jumped off the spinning wheel. My head is also about to explode – if I was a computer my CPU usage would be maxed out. Feel in need of some primal scream therapy, but, I saved my neighbours’ ears by glancing out the window and noticing the crescent moon looking perfect. It’s either a crescent shape or the bottom of a ball that’s lit up – depending on which way you look at it. I prefer the ball as it makes you think that there is light somewhere that it is making it shine a bit like when the bedroom door is ajar and the light shines through from the landing.
Anyway I am getting a bit carried away with that analogy. On another topic…… I was struck dumb when the manager of my baby son’s nursery said that she took no salary from the nursery’s income to keep the fees affordable for parents and to keep investing in the nursery. She works full-time so this is taking self-sacrifice to the limit. I asked “But how do you survive?” and she was embarrassed to ask the question so changed the subject to my son. She is not the only kind-hearted person who works in childcare for next to nothing. The manager of my daughter’s pre-school also worked all the hours possible to keep the nursery running and never took sick days. Her pay was negligible and she hadn’t had a pay rise in years. She put the children and the nursery before herself. I mentioned to my son’s nursery that I thought she was similar to the manager of my daughter’s pre-school. I mentioned that she used to do fostering as well as pre-school and the nursery manager said she would like to do that too. These people are few and far between and they are amazing. However, society abuses this generosity and makes it harder for people who do nothing but give.
I could have suggested she put the fees up so that she gets a fairer deal – I think I will tomorrow. The Government is making it harder for women to work with cuts to child benefit and the childcare element of working tax credit and I rely on that to make money after I have paid the nursery fees. But why should the Government and people like the nursery manager bust their guts to subsidise low wages? It’s a vicious cycle that is difficult to find a solution – maybe start looking at the salaries of fat cats and a fairer distribution of wealth and then you might be getting somewhere.
The nursery though gets no support from the company that it provides a childcare service too and that is shocking. So we have to do all we can to fund-raise for new facilities. For example we need equipment for a new outdoor area that we have finally been granted only through much protest from fellow teachers (the culprits are the senior management of a private school).
The nursery and pre-school managers are the ones who ultimately come out on top though. They have sought solace in their work through the positive effect they have on the young lives of those they care for. That’s better than any pay cheque. But it’s wrong that those working in childcare work for low wages – they are looking after the most precious people in our world and deserve respect and reward even though they will never ask for it.
I am blogging every day for Unicef and aim to riase a £1 a day through this blog. If you can support this campaign please visit my page on the Unicef site.
Thanks for reading.