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Old 06-26-2012, 06:22 PM
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Default Contracted Hours or Business Hours?

Who all does contracted hours and who does business hours/hours of operation?

I currently do contracted hours with a maximum of 10 hours in a day, not all families reach that maximum. I have contracts that start with drop off times at 7, 7:30, 8, 8:30, 9, and 10:30. I have contracted pick up times at 3, 5, 5:30, 5:45, and 6. This makes it really confusing for me to ever enforce a late fee because 1.it's hard to remember who's what pick up time. and 2. it's hard to say you're late you owe me money when I'm clearly working and have other kids still there anyway.

But if I were to change and just say my hours of operation are 7a-6p plain and simple, will I end up with kids coming earlier and staying later just because they can????

Thoughts? Experience?
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Old 06-26-2012, 06:24 PM
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I do contracted and wouldn't do any other way.
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Old 06-26-2012, 06:34 PM
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So Crazy8 what do your contracts look like? All different drop off and pick up times like mine? Do you enforce a late fee even if it seems a little ridiculous since you've got other kids and are still working anyway?
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Old 06-26-2012, 07:20 PM
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I have business hours but I do not take families that cannot drop off within my drop off window 7:30 to 9:00 or pickup withing my pickup window 4:30 to 5:30. This way I have families that all have similar needs and I dont have people coming and going all day.

I know a lot of people make contracted hours work them though. Having sign in and sign out sheets with one visible clock that is the authority on the time can help you keep track of everyone's coming and going. As for people thinking they can do whatever they want because you are open anyway.....this is why you have a contract and have them commit to certain hours. You charge fees if they go outside their agreement OR they can renew their contract and pay for the extra time needed if they are continually late and need more contracted time.

If you have business hours, yes, you will get some parents that want to get the most for their money and their child will be there all day every day no matter what. BUT I find that in many cases, I would rather their child be here more than me now know when they will be coming and going from day to day.

Maybe something that would help is sticking with contracted hours but having an earlier time when drop offs and pickups must be done....for example, all children must be in care by 9:00 or they will be considered absent for the day. Something that narrows down the coming and going a bit?
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Old 06-26-2012, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glenechogirl View Post
So Crazy8 what do your contracts look like? All different drop off and pick up times like mine? Do you enforce a late fee even if it seems a little ridiculous since you've got other kids and are still working anyway?
they do have different drop off/pick up times but I can only take up to 5 kids so it isn't too crazy. And now that I think about it almost all always end up contracting till 5pm (my latest) even when they know they will be picking up earlier just so they have that "extra" time. I am going to start changing things where they contracting till 4:30 is a little less than 5pm and see how that goes - in that case late fees will start at 4:30, even if other kids are contracted till 5.
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:13 PM
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I do contracted hours because I don't live in my daycare home. I want to know exactly when I need to be there and when I don't need to be there.

I also feel like I can plan better knowing exactly who will be here and when. Sometimes even 15 minutes makes a big difference.

I sometimes wait til 3:00 when my "monkey" of a toddler DCG gets picked up so I can plan certain activities/crafts.

I have another DCG who is not good with being interupted during activities and she gets kinda wonky... I dont know, its hard to explain but if her mom shows up when she is in the middle of a game or coloring she has a tough time so I just make sure we are wrapping something up when it is time for her to get picked up.

I just think having contracted hours gives me more control over my day.
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Old 06-27-2012, 01:50 PM
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I changed my contract to contracted hrs. only about 5 yrs. ago. What a change it has been. When I had closing hrs. they would abuse it to no end!!!
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:42 AM
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I would only do contractual. People will take advantage if they think they can.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:56 AM
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I do business hours. I consider myself like a store. 6AM to 6PM. I have 20 kids on my books (no more than 16 at any one time) and having them all on different time contracts would drive me up a wall. Trying to keep track of who was "late" and who wasn't is much more work than I am willing to do. If it's after 6PM...you're late.....that's it.

The only thing I insist on is parents letting me know if they are going to be absent. My son doesn't has to be here if I am OK ratio wise with lower numbers.

But I would do contractual in a heartbeat if I had less kids.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meeko View Post
I do business hours. I consider myself like a store. 6AM to 6PM. I have 20 kids on my books (no more than 16 at any one time) and having them all on different time contracts would drive me up a wall. Trying to keep track of who was "late" and who wasn't is much more work than I am willing to do. If it's after 6PM...you're late.....that's it.

The only thing I insist on is parents letting me know if they are going to be absent. My son doesn't has to be here if I am OK ratio wise with lower numbers.

But I would do contractual in a heartbeat if I had less kids.
I couldn't imagine trying to keep that many schedules in order!

Right now, I only have 3 children in my care outside of my own, so I'm contracted. Even when I gain my license, I think I will stay that way, I would hate to wake up at 5:00 every morning, and have everything ready to go by 6:00 to have nobody here. And with my luck, that's how every day would be. I really like knowing who is going to be here at what time, and who is leaving at what time.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:32 AM
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I have 10 children in my care and when ever a parent enrolls with me I have them fill out their daily schedule of care. I do not do contracted hours, but hourly. I never have had to get up and wait for parents. All mine arrive like clock work and leave like clock work. Right now I'm having some trouble with one family and I can't quite put my finger on it whats up.

I have done it like this though for years and this is really the first time I've had any trouble with it.
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Old 06-28-2012, 08:16 AM
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I do business hours from 7:00-5:30. I do have drop off and pickup windows from 7:00-8:30 and 3:30-5:30. That way I know all children will be dropped off and picked up Within this window of time. I know contracted hours work for some, but I would feel uncomfortable charging someone a late fee when I still had kids here and was working. Plus I only take full time Monday-Friday families so it is uncommon to have someone who picks up or drops off outside of my "windows". Plus I always have someone here till closing anyway so for me it just is easier to do business hours. Some take advantage at times, but as long as they aren't past my closing time then I just figure that is part of it.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glenechogirl View Post
Who all does contracted hours and who does business hours/hours of operation?

I currently do contracted hours with a maximum of 10 hours in a day, not all families reach that maximum. I have contracts that start with drop off times at 7, 7:30, 8, 8:30, 9, and 10:30. I have contracted pick up times at 3, 5, 5:30, 5:45, and 6. This makes it really confusing for me to ever enforce a late fee because 1.it's hard to remember who's what pick up time. and 2. it's hard to say you're late you owe me money when I'm clearly working and have other kids still there anyway.
I do contracted hours. I state clearly in my contract that their hours are determined by our contractual agreement - not my business hours. I may be open earlier or later but they have to follow the agreed upon times in the contract they signed. If they pick up late, the pay late fees unless they ask ahead of time and it's convenient for me. In that case, they pay for the extra time at my regular rate and just add it to the tuition check.

It can be a little confusing for me to remember hours for each family if I have schedule changes or several new families sign up all at once but for the most part, it doesn't take long to get used to each child's schedule.

Quote:
Originally Posted by glenechogirl View Post
But if I were to change and just say my hours of operation are 7a-6p plain and simple, will I end up with kids coming earlier and staying later just because they can????

Thoughts? Experience?
When I first started doing day care, I did charge a flat rate according to my business hours. I found that parents would initially tell me they would pick their kids up by a certain hour but as time went on, the pick up time got later and later. It wasn't unfair of the parent to expect me to watch their child if they were paying for the slot but I found that it was disappointing for me to end up with a houseful of kids at the end of the day when I had initially thought I'd only have a couple of kids at closing time. (It always seemed that the worst behaved kid was the one who was left later and later!) Once I started charging by contracted hours, I at least had a better idea of how many kids I'd have by the end of the day.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:56 AM
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I do both.

I am open from 7-5 but I ask parents to fill out the hours that they need. IT works well for me.

I get very cranky when anyone is here for a minute after 5. I tell parents during the interview, if your going to be late, call me and make sure you come with cash in hand. Cash makes me happy, late makes me cranky. They get it. I really push this at my interviews. I have a family life outside of daycare hours and I look forward to being done, just as the parents look forward to being done their job. I also make it known that I am working more hours then the parents. I am here for drop off and I am here for pick up. I also stress to my families that never rush to pick your child up if you are running late. I don't want someone getting in an accident or hurt. I am also understanding with my parents- because they don't abuse me!!! and I know life happens.
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:29 PM
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I am open 7:30-5:30 and charge a flat rate per week. I have in my contract that all children need to be here by 9:00 am. I hate my day being interrupted and them coming at all different times. Right when we sit down for story time or to do a project here comes a kid so I made it easier on me.
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:00 PM
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I guess I do a hybrid. I am licensed from 7-5, but each family's contract is for what hours they need. If they are late and it's INSIDE my licensed hours, I do not charge a late fee (although I can't say as I've ever advertised that fact to my dcp's).

If they arrive after "store hours" I might charge them (unless they called or arranged that ahead of time, which happens occasionally. In the last year, I haven't had a single late-without-notice).
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