Fine for late parents not the only solution

Under normal circumstances, most children look forward to going home at the end of the day, just like any working adult.

The few hours in the evening at home with their parents and siblings, if well spent, are critical for children to replenish their emotional batteries.

Most parents are late to pick their child up for many reasons, commonly due to work or traffic delays (More childcare centres impose fine on parents late to fetch kids; Feb 23).

However, being a parent of young children, the well-being of children ought to be our first priority.

No child likes to be picked up last from the centre.

The child, knowing that all his friends have gone home, may feel forlorn despite the company of a reassuring teacher.

But other than imposing a monetary fine on parents to deter lateness in picking their child up, there could perhaps be an alternative.

Parents could be allowed to accumulate the minutes and hours that they were late to pick up their child and convert it into some form of parent involvement time at the centre, like excursion hours or assisting in the classroom, for example.

Parents could be allowed to accumulate the minutes and hours that they were late to pick their child up and convert it into some form of parent involvement time at the centre, like excursion hours or assisting in the classroom, for example.

That way, parents get to build relationships with the staff and children, and gain some insights into a day at a pre-school.

Alternatively, parents could form their own parent-support group to coordinate with trusted parents to pick their child up.

At least their child would be waiting and spending time with his classmate in a home setting.

It really takes a village to raise a child. Let's raise them well by being a good role model of care and respect for each other's need.

Rebecca Chan (Dr)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 27, 2018, with the headline 'Fine for late parents not the only solution'. Print Edition | Subscribe