Good news, bad news for daycare parents

Danish families with children in daycare have a few more kroner jingling in their pockets at the end of the month, but have to rush to get the kids at the end of the day by Ray Weaver A recent...

By comparison, a family in London pays 27,000 kroner per month to have two children in daycare. In the US and Ireland, one out of every four kroner earned goes to child care.

“We sometimes forget how well Danish society is structured when it comes to families," Jørgen Goul Andersen, a professor at Aalborg University, told Politiken newspaper. “It is incredibly expensive to run a daycare facility, but parents in Denmark don’t feel it because of the large public subsidies the centres receive.”

Figures from the Education Ministry revealed that the annual cost of caring for one child in a daycare facility until the age of two was just over 121,000 kroner. The child’s parents paid only 24,000 kroner of the total amount. The other 97,000 kroner comes from the state.

Mads Lundy Hansen, an economist at Cepos, was not overly impressed by those numbers.

“Families in Denmark may pay some of the lowest rates for child care, but they still pay some of the world’s highest taxes,” Hansen told Politiken.

And although the rates may be low, many parents are finding that the opening hours of their children’s daycare institution are getting shorter and shorter. A report from Projekt Børnepasning shows that since 2008, the average opening hours in daycare facilities in Copenhagen have shrunk by approximately thirty minutes per day. That trend has been repeated throughout the rest of the country.

Parents are complaining that they don’t finish work until 5pm, while some kindergartens and nurseries are closing as early as 4 pm, especially on Fridays.

The national employer's association Dansk Arbejdsgiverforening (DA) called this development "unacceptable."

"When you cut opening hours of childcare facilities, it cuts the number of hours that parents can work," Lise Bardenfleth, DA's representative for Projekt Børnepasning, told Berlingske newspaper. “It is unacceptable that councils shave opening hours to make up for budget shortfalls.”

Projekt Børnepasning is a co-operative effort between DA and several unions that is designed to encourage councils to keep their daycares open longer and reduce the increasing number of days that they are completely closed.

The Copenhagen parent's organisation KFO said that parents need more flexible opening hours.

"It is problematic that the opening hours are not more closely matched to the job market," KFO spokesperson Nina Reffstrup told Berlingske. "From 7am until 5pm each day is the absolute minimum, otherwise parents are put in a bind.”

The national chamber of commerce, Dansk Erhverv, is concerned that childcare issues will become even more complex for some parents when the shop laws loosen up in October, allowing for Sunday openings and longer weekday hours.

The Copenhagen Post

Andre læser

Mest læste

Mest læste Finans

Del artiklen

Giv adgang til en ven

Hver måned kan du give adgang til 5 låste artikler.
Du har givet 0 ud af 0 låste artikler.

Giv artiklen via:

Modtageren kan frit læse artiklen uden at logge ind.

Du kan ikke give flere artikler

Næste kalendermåned kan du give adgang til 5 nye artikler.

Teknisk fejl

Artiklen kunne ikke gives videre grundet en teknisk fejl.

Ingen internetforbindelse

Artiklen kunne ikke gives videre grundet manglende internetforbindelse.

Denne funktion kræver Digital+

Med et Digital+ abonnement kan du give adgang til 5 låste artikler om måneden.

ALLEREDE ABONNENT?  LOG IND

Denne funktion kræver Digital+

Med et Digital+ abonnement kan du lave din egen læseliste og læse artiklerne, når det passer dig.

Teknisk fejl

Artiklen kunne ikke tilføjes til læstelisten, grundet en teknisk fejl.

Forsøg igen senere.