You know what’s depressing? Twelve-year-olds in day care. Twelve!
As in, they’re in middle school, and parents need to arrange for some kind of after school care for them until they get off work.
Did I mention… twelve!
I mean, in many places, the parents don’t have much choice, as twelve or thirteen is about the minimum age a kid can be left alone at home.
Ugh. Rules like this are not only a huge insult to these kids, but they’re a boon for the care providers. I mean, if parents are required by law to use their services, they’re raking in the cash. I wonder if they’re behind the age of being left alone at home being so high, since they sure do profit from it.
And this just makes things harder on lower income families. Child care is expensive, and it doesn’t help to make parents and kids have to wait longer before the kids can just go straight home after school and take care of themselves for a few hours. They either have to shell out the money or quit their jobs. Or break the law.
And, obviously, of course kids twelve and under can go straight home and take care of themselves for a few hours before their parents get home. It’s what my sister and I did. I was home alone as young as eight. Last time I was in day care, I was the oldest kid there… at age seven.
In fact, when I was thirteen, I was the one looking after a four-year-old neighbor every week or so while his parents were out. I was the one doing the sitting at an age that kids now are the ones being sat.
Nothing biological has changed. Just fears of lawsuits and -gasp!- unattended children! Children who aren’t busy with some activity, who, if without an activity, will get into -gasp!- trouble!