Working parents know that childcare gets pricey. Between all-day preschool and afterschool babysitting for my older daughter, I could easily spend $500 or more per week on childcare. And that doesn’t even include money spent on dance classes, swim lessons, and other activities. My yearly childcare expenses far exceed what I paid in annual tuition when I attended law school in-state at UConn. My four-year old won’t be able to write a legal brief when she graduates, though, trust me, her negotiation and oral argument skills are top notch.
To save money on afterschool care, we and another family in our district jointly hired a babysitter. Both of our kids get off the bus at one of the two families’ houses, where our babysitter is waiting. Our sitter is happy because she earns a few more dollars per hour than she would have earned to care for one family’s child, and each family pays far less than we would have if we had each hired our own sitters.