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Outside school hours care and maternal employment Jennifer Baxter and Kelly Hand 12 th Australian Institute of Family Studies Conference Melbourne, 25-27.

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Presentation on theme: "Outside school hours care and maternal employment Jennifer Baxter and Kelly Hand 12 th Australian Institute of Family Studies Conference Melbourne, 25-27."— Presentation transcript:

1 Outside school hours care and maternal employment Jennifer Baxter and Kelly Hand 12 th Australian Institute of Family Studies Conference Melbourne, July 2012

2 Outline of presentation Contextual information Maternal employment and school-aged children OSHC and maternal employment Paid work and childcare: key themes from qualitative studies Employment arrangements and attitudes Child care issues & childrens perspectives

3 Data source – quantitative analyses Longitudinal Study of Australian Children Analyses of maternal employment B and K cohorts, Waves 1 to 4 (2004 to 2010) Spans childrens ages 0-1 years through to years, although data are shown by age of youngest child Analyses of childcare B cohorts wave 4 (age 6-7 years) K cohort waves 2 to 4 (age 6-7, 8-9, years) After school and before school - regular childcare arrangements School holidays – care used in the last year

4 MATERNAL EMPLOYMENT

5 Maternal employment Hours of paid work by age of youngest child Source: LSAC B cohort (waves 1- 4), K cohort (waves 1-4)

6 Maternal employment Type of employment by age of youngest child Source: LSAC B cohort (waves 1- 4), K cohort (waves 1-4)

7 OUTSIDE SCHOOL HOURS CARE AND MATERNAL EMPLOYMENT

8 Source: LSAC B cohort (wave 4), K cohort (waves 3,4) OSHC = Outside school hours care Care arrangements by mothers working hours, children aged 6-11 years

9 Before school care by age of children and mothers usual weekly working hours Source: LSAC B cohort (wave 4), K cohort (waves 3,4) OSHC = Outside school hours care

10 After school care by age of children and mothers usual weekly working hours Source: LSAC B cohort (wave 4), K cohort (waves 3,4) OSHC = Outside school hours care

11 School holiday care by age of children and mothers usual weekly work hours Source: LSAC B cohort (wave 4), K cohort (waves 3,4) OSHC = Outside school hours care

12 Multivariate analyses Logistic regression, child using formal outside school care Before school; After school; School holiday Only includes families with employed mothers

13 Results – mothers employment Mothers working hours More work hours was associated with a greater likelihood of using of before or after school care although there was some decline with longest working hours School holiday care most likely when mothers work between 25 and 54 hours per week Job type OSHC most likely when mothers in permanent employment, followed by casual employment then self-employment

14 Results – other family characteristics Age of child After school OSHC was highest for children aged 8-9 years and lowest for children aged years, with children aged 6-7 years in between. Before school OSHC was lowest for children aged years, with do difference between children aged 6-7 and 8-9 years. Participation in school holiday OSHC declined across the ages of children. For each of before school, after school and school holiday care: OSHC was more likely for children of single mothers, and less likely in couples with not-employed father, when compared to couples with employed fathers OSHC was less likely when the child has older siblings OSHC was less likely in ex-metropolitan, rather than metropolitan regions

15 Not-working mothers Reasons for not working, by age of youngest child Source: LSAC B cohort (waves 1- 4), K cohort (waves 1-4) Family includes : prefer to look after children, too busy with family Jobs includes: no jobs available, cant find a job with enough flexibility Childcare is cant get suitable child care Money/benefits includes : its not worthwhile with child care costs, would lose government benefits if worked Other is likely to include ill health, disability, caring

16 QUALITATIVE FINDINGS

17 Qualitative data Work and Family: the Familys Perspective (W&F), 2001 The Family and Work Decisions Study (qualitative component) (FAWD), 2005 The Life Around Here Study (LAH), 2010

18 MATERNAL EMPLOYMENT

19 Employment arrangements and attitudes Most mothers reported that once their youngest child was at school they either returned to work or study or increased their work hours Some mothers returned to work due to external pressures such as financial reasons, pressure from partners Activity requirements associated with their income support payments (newer theme in later research reflecting welfare reform) Most work part time

20 Employment arrangements and attitudes Some mothers did not engage in paid work once their youngest child had started school. Reasons included: Access to appropriate child care Concerns about use of non-parental care Desire to be available to participate in childs school life Difficulties managing sick days, school holidays etc Lack of informal care alternatives Difficulties in being able to re-enter the labour market/access training

21 OUTSIDE SCHOOL HOURS CARE AND MATERNAL EMPLOYMENT

22 Managing paid work and child care Most employed mothers work part time Many try and limit work hours to school times Some take unpaid leave during school holidays Formal before and after school care and school holiday care - try and limit this Mix of formal and informal Informal care from family members used by many - but can be stressful and often unstable Small number use self care or sibling care

23 Managing paid work and child care - barriers Cost of child care Quality of care available Working outside of normal business hours (lone mothers) Children refusing to attend child care Impacts on wellbeing of children - using OSHC can make for a long day

24 OSHC: impacts on children Some of the children get dropped off at seven oclock in the morning and dont get picked up until six oclock. And thats an awful long time at school. (FAWD, Couple mother, 3 children aged 6 to 9, neither parent employed) He dislikes the staff. He thinks they are too strict. I think he feels like…to him it feels too much like a continuation of school…I think really his preference would be that he would rather be at home doing his own thing. (W&F, lone mother)

25 OSHC: childrens perspective I dont really like it because hardly any of my friends go and there is hardly anything to do. (F & W, boy, aged 11) It didnt really worry me when I was younger because I had friends there as well. But as you get older, theres fewer friends that you can get along with – theyre all little or whatever (F & W, boy, aged 13) Well its good and cool, but some of the teachers, one of the teachers yells too much. (F & W, girl, aged 8)

26 OSHC: childrens perspective Ive got the whole house to myself, I can do whatever I want. I suppose, just being myself. (F & W, boy, aged 11) Um, well its like anything, once youve had it for a while, its not like special or anything. Its not like good. Its good, like I can talk to my friends and stuff privately after school, or go out sometimes without Mum knowing. Um its not like really wow, its just gives me a bit more freedom. (F & W, girl, aged 14).

27 Conclusion - key themes Mothers views about combining parenting and paid work when their children are of primary school age are diverse Most mothers prefer to work part time when their children attend primary school Being available to care for sick children and accommodate school activities and school holidays are important concerns for mothers

28 Conclusion - key themes Barriers to employment and/or child care use include: perceived impacts on children; quality; cost; child refusals and lack of availability of care for non-standard work hours

29 Acknowledgements The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC) is conducted in a partnership between the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA), the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS) and the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). The following researchers have also made significant contributions to the qualitative studies referred to in this presentation: Virginia Lewis and Jacqueline Tudball (F&W) Jody Hughes (FAWD) Matthew Gray, Daryl Higgins, Shaun Lohoar and Julie Deblaquiere (LAH) The findings are those of the authors and should not be attributed to FaHCSIA, AIFS or the ABS.

30 Multivariate analyses of child using formal outside school care, families with employed mothers Source: LSAC B cohort (wave 4), K cohort (waves 3,4) OSHC = Outside school hours care Uses before school care Uses after school care Uses school holiday care Odds ratios Mothers working hours (per week), reference=<16 hours **2.22***2.30*** ***3.65***3.78*** ***5.17***3.37*** ***6.59***3.23*** *4.95***2.18*** Type of job (mothers), reference=self-employed Permanent6.12***2.77***1.73*** Casual4.61***1.66**1.21 Father not employed0.36*0.37***0.64* Single mother1.59**1.35**1.69*** Age of child, reference=6-7 years 8-9 years **0.80** years0.31***0.36***0.46*** Region, reference=metropolitan Ex-metropolitan0.30***0.50***0.63*** Family is poor or very poor Child has older siblings0.36***0.41***0.51*** Child has younger siblings


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