The topic of nannies driving the children for outings is one that can easily be overlooked during the interview process but is such an important issue to discuss and cover when hiring a nanny. Take heart, if you have already hired a nanny and overlooked this topic keep reading so that you will be able to make a plan that works for both you and your nanny.
If your children are school aged it is highly likely that you will need your nanny to assist in school drop offs or pick-ups as well as taking them to and from extracurricular activities. If this is the case, you probably have given some thought to your nanny driving. If, however, you have babies or small children that do not have these types of routines, you will still want to give your nanny the ability to take them on daily outings. It is healthy for the little ones and your nanny to spend some time each day out of the house engaging in play dates, story times, trips to the science center, the park, and other types of educational and enjoyable activities. A nanny who is cooped up all day without the ability to plan activities can easily become burnt out as well as feeling isolated. It is important for her to be around other nannies and moms as well as being important for your children’s social development to interact with other little ones on a regular basis.
Some things to consider when discussing such trips are the following: Will the nanny have use of your car or will she be using her car? Be sure that you have separate car seats for her car if she will be using her own vehicle. Have knowledge on the current mileage rate to reimburse you nanny and a schedule in which you will do so. Consider offering her a gas stipend. If the nanny is using a vehicle provided by you, be sure to keep up with the maintenance and keeping gas in the vehicle for her. Let her know where the registration and insurance information is kept, and who she should call first in the event of an accident, flat tire, or break down.
During the interview process be sure to discuss outings. Things to consider are: When can the outings begin? How far is the nanny permitted to drive the children? Does she need to check in with you at specific times or simply keep a daily log for you to know what activities the children have been doing each day. Make sure that your nanny has either a credit card in her name provided by you with a weekly budget or give her petty cash each week. Make sure that you are including the cost of the nanny at all events as well as her food on outings that involve eating. You will want to add her onto your Science Center pass, and any other places that she will be taking the children that require a membership. Allow your nanny freedom to plan play dates and activities, and keep your nanny informed of any classes or events that you have signed the children up for.
If you have already hired a nanny and have not covered the topic of outings, simply take the time to sit down and have a discussion on what works for both of you. Include this in your contract with the details of which vehicle will be used and so forth. If you are in the process of hiring a nanny discuss it during the interview. Let your nanny know when these outings may begin. Nannies fully understand that with a newborn there will naturally be a short period of time before regular outings begin but take the time to secure a date on the calendar. An active professional nanny will be ready to take a baby out after just a few months. You may ask your nanny to be sure to be home for regular nap times so as to keep the baby on a consistent schedule. Make sure that she has a fully stocked diaper bag to take along every day.
The ability to take your children out and about on a regular basis will enrich their lives, promote a healthy bond with their nanny and children their age, and ultimately keep your nanny and family happy in their weekly routines. This gives them the opportunity to interact with others, learn, play, create, and explore the world around them. One of the biggest benefits of a private professional nanny versus other forms of childcare is the freedom and opportunity for your children to be involved in activities, socializing, and growing in the unique way that this provides.
By: Anne-Marie Ferraro