Sharon's Giving Tree Family Dayhome

ABC's and Apple Trees -- Loving and thoughtful care for your child

Fees and Hours

My day home is open from 6:45 am to 4:45 pm.  Additional time outside these hours can sometimes be negotiated for an extra fee.

My current fee schedule is as follows:

     Full-time (5 days a week) --  $825 for under-age-2/ $775 for over-2

                                  4 days a week $766 for under-2/ $716 for over-2

        3 days a week --  $621 for under-2/ $567 for over-2

                              2 days a week -- $439 for under-2/ $394 for over-2

                               1 day a week --  $222 for under-2/ $197 for over-2

  

I welcome families who require part-time care as long as their need is regular and for a particular day or days each week. A monthly fee for part-time care can be negotiated based on the following rates:

 $10 per hour

 75% of full day fee per half day including lunch ( morning dropoff with pickup after lunch or dropoff just before lunch for the afternoon)

 $52.50 per full day for an infant or toddler under age 2

 $50 per full day for a child over 2

I prefer not to do before and after school care, but it can occasionally be arranged for a fee that is in line with other local programs (currently $350/month), subject to space availability.

 All of the fees listed on this website are subject to change (with plenty of notice for current dayhome families) in order to keep them in line with what other experienced dayhome providers are charging for similar services.  The reality is that child care fees, like so many other parts of the cost of living, have increased rapidly over the past couple of years in the Edmonton area and will likely continue to rise. Fees are still much lower here than the $995 a month fees I paid for child care in Toronto in 1999!

Through my agency, I am able to accommodate families that require provincial child-care subsidies.  Families pay me their share of fees, I pay a monthly administration fee to my agency, and the agency processes the subsidy fee, if any.

If parents take other time off while my dayhome is open, they will continue to pay fees as usual.   If I close my dayhome due to illness or for other reason, I will either use one of my 10 vacation days or refund a pro-rated amount of the monthly fees per day .  This refund will be paid either to the parent or directly to the backup provider, if the provider is with my own agency. 

 My contracts currently require a minimum a month's notice for either the provider or parent to terminate care. 

Vacations

I am closed on all Alberta Statutory holidays, I typically take 10 paid vacation days throughout the year that include Xmas Eve, Easter Monday, Heritage Day, and the non-stats in the week between Xmas and New Year's, as well as January 2, the day after New Year's Day.  I also take 2 weeks unpaid for family vacation, typically during the summer months.

Here is what that looks like in 2019: 

My dayhome will be closed on New Year's Day, Family Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Victoria Day, Canada Day, Heritage Day, Labour Day, Thanksgiving Day, Remembrance Day, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, and New Year's Day 2020.

My agency counts Boxing Day as a statutory holiday for providers, but we do not get a paid day off in lieu if Boxing Day falls on a weekend. Otherwise, if a stat falls 

 

As part of my 10 contracted paid vacation days, I will be closed without fee reduction on the following 6 days in 2019:

January 2 
Monday April 22 (Easter Monday)
Monday August 5 (Heritage Day)
December 24
December 27
December 30
December 31

(I also expect to take January 2, 2020, which would count towards 2020 vacation days.)

I will hold the remaining four 2019 vacation days in reserve to be taken as needed for personal reasons or medical appointments, with as much notice as possible given to families.

I will also take 2 weeks of family vacation in the summer without fee reduction. This year, we are planning to take a week in June (Thurs June 20 through Wed June 26) and the week of August 19-23. We will confirm these dates as soon as my husband's work also approves his vacation for those times.

If needed, the agency can help to arrange backup care for any of these dates - let me know if you will require this!

Late Fees

I fully understand that child care fees can take a huge chunk out of a working parent's budget. When I had my daughter in day care in Toronto in 1999-2001, I paid $995 per month for a regular-quality daycare for one toddler (not Montessori or other specialty childcare program).  This was without subsidy -- I was told that my student loans counted as income and I was not eligible for any subsidy.  My husband and I paid more for child care than we did for housing, and some months it was a real struggle. Still, that was the first bill we paid every month and we never paid late, even if we had to borrow to do it.

I expect child care fees to be paid on time, just as parents using my dayhome expect their own salaries to be paid on time. The best way to ensure this is for a parent to provide me with a year's worth of post-dated cheques when the contract is signed.  If a cheque bounces, I will charge an NSF fee equivalent to any extra bank charges or late-payment fees that I occur because of the delayed income. Repeated late payments may result in cash payments being required, or in termination of care, according to the terms of my contract.

Parents requiring subsidy are responsible for keeping up with the paperwork necessary to maintain their subsidy and are responsible for making up the difference if subsidy payments lapse or come in for an amount less than expected.

 

What Dayhome Fees Include

 "All childcare is expensive, so you may as well pay the price for the best quality and enjoy the peace of mind.  Your child is the one who is ultimately going to pay the price for poor quality childcare."  A friend told me this when I was looking for childcare for my daughter and I have never forgotten it. 

Here is a friendly message to parents (I did not write what follows and am seeking permission to credit the author.) :

What you pay to the childcare provider will guarantee the highest quality childcare, nutritious meals & snacks, and a safe, nurturing environment for your child. Your childcare fees provide my income including the taxes and CPP, which I pay into. Your fees pay for food, paper products, soap, and cleaning supplies, toys, play equipment, baby equipment, art & craft supplies, water, gas, electric, sewer and more, nap mats, playpens, special chairs & furniture, strollers, wagons, lots of repairs and wear and tear, entertainment expenses, paperwork & supplies, parties and special events, and all of the other things that your child will use.

Like other self-employed workers, family childcare providers do not receive the benefits many employees take for granted. These include health/dental insurance, life insurance, retirement/pension, paid personal days, personal vacation time, maternity leave, workers comp, flexible time off and unemployment insurance. These benefits often amount to as much as 35% of a person’s wages.

Family child care is a blessing to your family in that your children will have much more individual attention and opportunities for learning, and much less illness than center care.  There is also much less staff turnover, as your child will have one person caring for him or her only, and will not be transferred from one room in the centre to another.  This kind of ongoing relationship between child and caregiver has been shown to be the very healthiest situation possible for young children.

Unlike other forms of self-employment, family childcare is very restrictive in that there is no room for growth. The province dictates the size of my business. I cannot take time off for appointments or obligations without careful planning and covering of my responsibilities. To protect my rights and income, you will find that a guaranteed wage is part of my contract. Most people have a 40 hour work week. Mine is 55 hours and up and that does not include all my preparation, bookkeeping, paperwork, shopping or cleaning time.

I hope this gives you a better understanding about all the ways in which your childcare fees are applied.