Age Appropriate To Stay At Home Before School?

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Old 12-06-2013, 10:54 AM
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Age appropriate to stay at home before school?

My child care situation has changed and there is a chance that I may have to let my son stay home after school or before school. The before school thing concerns me because he'd get on after I leave for work. The after school thing not so much b/c it'd only be like 45 mins before I got home from work. What age did you start letting your children stay by themselves before and/or after school? Any issues you had/have?
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  #2  
Old 12-06-2013, 12:12 PM

RE: Age appropriate to stay at home before school?

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1st Do you have a neighbor who is home and close that you trust, retired, elderly or a sahm who has kids on the bus also??Just in case on your way home, your child can reach a adult if needed or scared. Does he have a cell phone for check in, with you to say hey mum I am on bus, hey mum I am home. If he misses the bus ever or it does not show, he needs to know to call you asap (these things happen & can put you in panic mode).
Does he know how to use the key easily to get in and out, and is there a back up key hidden in case he loses his key?
I used to go home after school at age 10, I was the oldest so my mom picked up my siblings and was home and hour later. My hubby and I had custody of my niece (she's 21 now) but we let her be alone for 1/2 hour at age 11 till we got home from work. It all depends on the kid, I think some kids are more mature than others. Our neighbor next door looked out for her, but of course she wasn't always home every single day. But I'd check in by phone everyday, and usually she beat me to it by calling me at work. As long as there are clear rules, for example, no cooking, no friends over unless she had permission, do not answer the door, only pick up the phone if you know who is calling, always check in to let me know your home, lock the door, nor tell anyone you are home alone on the phone etc..,.
Always make sure they have emergency numbers within reach, your number, work number, 911, neighbors number and family & friends to contact in case they can't get ahold of you. Have these on fridge in case they panic & can't remember numbers or forget their cellphone somewhere. Talk with your child and try a test run. Run to a store close by for a errand, have them stay in the house for 15 minutes. Let them see how they feel, if they are frightened (if they are they can always phone you mum come home) but if they panic or seem uncomfortable, it I'd say it's a no go. I'd also check to see in my area how many sex offenders are either in your area or in your neighborhood, just in case. They are oprtunists and look for kids alone, you have to cover all the bases.
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Old 12-06-2013, 03:37 PM

RE: Age appropriate to stay at home before school?

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I totally agree with marimae . My girls are 10 and 13 i would let dd 13 stay at home for short amounts of time when i ran to the store or do a few errands around age 11 i would make dd 10 come with me . As she got older the time alone got longer. Now i trust her at home with dd 10 since they dont fight and bicker like the did before . But my rules are like above. And if she breaks one rule she will lose that privilege . I have neighbors that she can go to for any reason along with my SIL
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Old 12-06-2013, 07:22 PM

RE: Age appropriate to stay at home before school?

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We drove my daughter to latch key in the mornings up until she got into middle school (grade 7). After that, we didn't have an issue because the bus came early enough that we were there for it before heading out to work. If we were having her get to the bus herself, we'd likely impose the three strikes and you're out rule, with an allowance for getting out to the bus on time (since I'd be saving on child care by her being responsible enough to handle that), and the deal's off when she misses the bus the third time.

The first time she was alone during the day was when we had a week of mismatched schedules in the summer. I think she was about 11. That week was a ROUGH transition! Day one, she hooked up the outside hose to a sprinkler, and when she shut the water off, the faucet broke off the house and water was gushing everywhere with no way (that she knew of) to turn it off.

Day 2, she put poptarts with frosting in the toaster and the sugar melted on the wires and caught fire, which she tried to put out with water.

Day 3, she locked herself out by accident and tried to force a sliding door open, setting off an alarm and triggering a police visit.

Good times.
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Old 12-06-2013, 07:34 PM

RE: Age appropriate to stay at home before school?

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Wow talk about Murphy's Law .
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