‘I’m saving money by not sending my child to day care’

Sinikiwe Ngcobo, has a one-year-old son and a 4-year-old daughter. Her daughter’s school closed in June because the owner couldn’t keep up with rent and salary payments because parents weren’t paying school fees.

Her nanny, who was looking after her one-year-old at the time, is now also having to look after her daughter while Sinikiwe works during the day.

Sinikiwe says she now homeschools her daughter and they’re not really considering looking for another day care for their daughter. “I have the privilege of working from home so I am able to homeschool her even though it’s not in a structured environment. But we’ve been fairly happy with the progress we’ve been making.”

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She says because of talks of a possible second wave of COVID, they’re not sure if it’s really worth finding a new ECD for next year. “With the COVID disruptions we’re not sure if there’s really a need to find another day care. She’ll probably only go for one year and then start Gr R.”

And since both her and her husband are working from home, she says no one is driving so it doesn’t really make sense to just drive her daughter to day care, plus they’re also saving money by not sending her.

ECD centres on the brink of shutting down permanently

Sinikiwe with her husband, Andile, their daughter Kwande and their son Nkanyezi

Sinikiwe says it looks like her company is leaning towards the business model of only going to the office 2 or 3 times a week, which makes homeschooling a viable option for her. “I find that I don’t make as much time for homeschooling as I would like to because I have to work. But I’m okay with the progress we are making. She is still a preschooler, so I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself.”

Day care owner shares why she shut her doors

An East Rand day care owner says she shut her doors in March when lockdown was implemented. She has a small day care and says she just couldn’t afford to reopen. “The regulations and protocols they wanted us to implement were too costly – it would’ve costed between R4 000 and R5 000 to implement all of this and then you still need to sanitize everything every day.”

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