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Au Pairs

October 11, 2010

I found a translation course at Brest University, and having been to see the prof in charge was quite excited about it – until I saw the price of rail travel – between 550 and 600 Euros per month from our town near St. Brieuc – plus, I’d have to drive to St. Brieuc in order to catch a train that leaves at 8am, rather than 6.45!

So the next thing was to look into childcare and how much that would cost, as well as any other considerations. Because there’s a good hour and a half of work to do every day in this house (and that’s with just the one baby, the next and final one’s due in the spring), I thought of an Au Pair.

Sadly, it looks like it’s not to be, as they have to, by law, work less than 30 hours per week, and be enrolled in a college course (usually to learn French). There’s no way that we could achieve this unless the children also went to nursery, ergo even more expense. In addition, they’re not allowed to look after children younger than 3.

Of course, I don’t know whether I’d have been happy to leave a young person in charge of 2 babies anyway, and even more importantly I had already been scratching my head wondering who on earth would want the job!

Any ideas on any of this gratefully received!!!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Mike permalink
    October 18, 2010 9:04 am

    Perhaps you can find a similar course to study at home, using the web and remote collaboration tools.
    Then you can look after babies too and study one or two hours per day. Or get some help too but that still makes it easier and cheaper.

    • October 18, 2010 9:17 am

      Hi Mike

      There’s a distance learning course at Portsmouth and I’ve asked about the fees (it might be very expensive as I’m no longer UK based) – I will chase that by phone as no-one’s replied. However, Pierre (my husband) says that a non-french qualification wouldn’t be worth the paper it’s written on, to the French.

      In my view it can’t be quite as bad as all that, and anyway at least the course would teach me anything I need to know for translation…. I don’t know much about it as it stands – though there are people who start translating with no specific qualifications at all! Pierre wants me to be a bona fide member of the professional set in France, I think. But he’s a man who accepts no limits. My saying that I’ll crack up if I have to spend 3 hrs daily on the train doesn’t count, as he wouldn’t crack himself (and if he can do it, so could I, according to his logic).

      I need to find out how much nursery would be for 2 babies, then add that to the 5-600 euros per month for the train. That’ll be over 2,000 euros, I expect. Multiplied by the 6 months I’d have to go to university for, and then there’s the 5 months’ work experience afterwards, that would be closer to home, but still involve nursery day care.

      I’m going to get a quote for home help (baby care plus housework) for comparison, but that’ll be over 3,000 euros per month.

      Maybe money will talk to Pierre, but I don’t think so. Though ultimately it’s my decision.


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