Escaping The Parent Trap

Escaping The Parent Trap: or How Do I Find A Job That Fits In With School?

You know how the story goes: I’ve been a stay-at-home-parent ever since the kids were babies.

Then, finally, they are were in full-time education.

Great! I thought, now I can find a job that fits in with the school schedule.


You know the dream job: 10am until 2pm, Monday to Friday, term-time only. Local, without a long commute.

The job that would allow me to take the kids to school, go to work, and then and pick them up afterwards.

The job that would let me take time off during the school holidays.

The job that would allow me to develop some kind of career, yet still be the main caregiver at home.

The kind of job that parents everywhere are crying out for.

The kind of job that doesn’t exist.

Time and time again, when I type in the job search boxes “term-time only” and “part-time”, what jobs come up?

Well, things like this: part-time, term-time only, working 8-4.

Why is it that businesses haven’t noticed that parents are pretty much only available to work during the actual school hours? 8-4 is useless, because I have to drop my kids off at school at 8:45, and pick them up at 3:15.

Yes, there are breakfast clubs and after-school clubs, but it would be unfair (and expensive) to expect my kids to attend those everyday.

Sometimes jobs do pop up at schools. Yet those, too, are not compatible unless I worked at my own kids’ school; I cannot start work at 8:30 at one school, and be expected to take my kids to their school at 8:45.

Besides, I don’t want to work in a school.

To all the parents out there who successfully work part-time and balance this with taking care of their children full-time, I have to ask: how do you do it? What job do you do? How did you find it?

I know some people are lucky in that both parents work flexible hours. However, my wife works full-time, Monday to Friday, and can’t do any of the school runs unless she takes time off work.

I currently work two days a week at a university; my parents have to do the school runs and take care of my children while I’m at work. On the plus side, I do currently work semester-time only (which is not the same as term-time only; I get nearly four months off in the summer and a month at Christmas, but I can’t take Easter off or any of the half-term holidays.)

Don’t get me wrong; I know I am very lucky to be in this position. But, I am still chasing the dream of finding a job that better matches up with school hours and school terms.

I am looking to escape the parent trap, and find a job that is more or less 10am until 2pm, Monday to Friday, during school term-time only.

Has anyone out there fulfilled this elusive dream?

Have you found a way to work part-time while remaining chained to the school gates?

Please enlighten me…

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