Sunday, August 09, 2009

Babysitting Co-op

A few of you asked about the babysitting co-op we have going here, so I thought I'd post the rules and such. Kathryn, our brilliant timekeeper, has compiled a set of rules that we follow, and so far it's been a great system. We use Google documents so everyone can see the master timesheet that Kathryn keeps for us.

How it works:

1. Each member starts with 10 hours.

2. You may call anyone on the co-op members list and anyone may call you to arrange babysitting. You are ALWAYS free to say "no" to watching someone's children—no explanation is required.

2. The co-op may be used for daytime or evening hours. It is up to you to arrange when/where babysitting will take place. It can be at the sitter’s house or your house.

3. Hours are recorded in 15 minute increments and the moderator (Kathryn) keeps track of everyone's hours. Each member should keep a record of her own hours on a timesheet as well.

4. Hours are credited/debited at the rate of real minutes for the first child and half minutes for each additional child.

Example: If Cathi babysits Asher and Silas for 2 hours, Sarah will give 3 hours to Cathi. The full 2 hours for Asher, and ½ of the two hours for Silas, which is 1 hour.

Some Rules:

1. Every time you arrange for someone in our group to babysit your children, report your hours to the moderator. Email works best.

Example email: “please credit Sarah with 3 hours of time”

The moderator will then subtract 3 hours from your total, and add 3 hours to Sarah’s.

It is courteous to copy the person who babysat for you on the email so that they know they've been credited. Every month or so the moderator will send out an update of how many hours each person has, and you can always ask for your personal total if you need to know.

2. You cannot go below 0 hours or accumulate more than 24 hours. Accumulated hours in excess of the original 10 hours that are not used for 6 months will be redistributed to the group.

3. If you choose to leave the group and you have less than 10 hours, please babysit until you have 10 hours accumulated. You owe it to the group. Conversely, if you decide to leave the group and you have more than 10 hours accumulated, you are welcome to use the extra hours. If you choose not to, they will be re-distributed to the group.

Other Stuff:

A. We will compile a contact list consisting of name, address, home and mobile phone numbers, and emergency contacts.

B. It is always okay to say no. Just because you are in the group and free for a particular time does not mean you need to feel obligated to say yes to someone or to give an excuse.

D. If someone is babysitting for you and you are running late please call and ask the person if they have anywhere they need to be, or if it's okay for them to watch your kids longer than you first talked about. The babysitter has the right to say no and ask you to send someone else to pick up your kids. This does not happen very often but needs to be said.

1 comment:

Sara said...

I've been really wanting to start a co-op for about a year now. I appreciate you posting your rules. How many people are in your co-op? My mom did one when we were toddlers and really liked it. Is there anything you'd like to change about it or add to the rules? I think I'm going to start one in the next few weeks. Thanks again!