Hort no longer accepts new children

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Of: Elena Siegl

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Many parents rely on third-party care for their children. © Example photo: Uwe Anspach/DPA

Parents who actually wanted their children looked after in after-school from September have been refused by the Clara Fey day care. The manager of the facility regrets it, but it is difficult to find staff, especially in the after-school area. Nothing was left undone.

Schongau – “I would have liked to say something different to the families,” emphasizes Caroline Albrecht, head of the Clara Fey daycare centers in Schongau. But she had no choice but to turn down the parents who wanted their children looked after at the integrative after-school from September. Due to the severe shortage of skilled labour, particularly in the after-school sector, “unfortunately we are currently unable to accept any new children,” the message said. Ten children have been affected, an eleventh has now been accommodated in the full-day school. If you have two children, it may be that they can move up to post-secondary school if another family is fired, says Albrecht when asked.

Many parents rely on third-party care

A family had contacted the local newspaper to draw attention to the difficult childcare situation in Schongau. The family’s child was due to start school in September. After the after-school daycare was cancelled, a solution was found with the kindergarten so that it could go to the kindergarten group for another year. Because the mother works at the Marie Eberth care home in Schongau and the father is an apprentice, they are dependent on childcare from outside, explains a refugee worker from Schongau, who does not want to read his name in the newspaper, on behalf of the family. For financial reasons, it is not possible for one parent to stay at home, she says. This is how it is for many young families. Although they also considered lunch care instead of after school, the care times are too short.

The family expressly does not see the blame for the current situation on day care centers Clara Fey, which is the only place in Schongau that offers after-school places at all – “there they themselves are very desperate”. But it is hoped that the situation will improve by drawing attention to it.

The personnel situation has been tense for many years

After all, many parents would react with understanding, says Albrecht. “The staffing situation has been tense at many facilities for years.” But especially in the after-school area. It’s hard to say why that is. Partly, the job description is not particularly attractive for financial reasons. Therefore, there are hardly any men – “although it would be very desirable, especially in post-secondary school”.

On the other hand, the working hours would act as a deterrent. The employees are usually women, often with small children of their own. Of course, they would prefer to work in the daycare in the morning – where there is also a great need – instead of working in the after-school until the evening.

In fact, everything was tried to find staff: “Advertisements in print media, calls on the Internet, postings on social media – from Facebook to Instagram to WhatsApp status,” Albrecht lists, among other things. Two colleagues designed a banner which they hung on the daycare fence. As a result, they even found a new colleague for the nursery. As for Hort, all efforts have so far been in vain.

You don’t want to simply accept all applicants

The day care center also does not like to employ all applicants under duress. The applicant must be qualified, dealing with the children and the team must be right, Albrecht makes sure of that after all.

The sponsor – the Catholic youth welfare service in the Diocese of Augsburg – is involved in all decisions. Although the day care center is not a municipal facility, they are also in close contact with the town hall. There, too, it is regretted that families were turned away from post-secondary school. The parents’ council has already asked if there is anything they can do, says Albrecht. But all options are exhausted. Unfortunately, you can’t conjure up skilled workers out of a hat. However, she has not given up hope of finding good employees.

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