As schools plan to go online or begin with a hybrid in-person and online approach next month, plenty of parents are searching for child care options as they wonder how they'll pair work and school for another many months.
, a Wake County-based business that first began offering private duty nursing services for families has recently branched out to connect families with child care providers as well.
I checked in with owner Christy McGlothlin, a mother of seven and founder and CEO of Home Rule, to learn more about the business and what she offers.
Go Ask Mom: What are the origins of Home Rule? How did it get its start?
Christy McGlothlin: We developed Home Rule because of our personal experience as parents of a medically fragile daughter with a trach tube who has required nursing services since birth. We found that working with agencies is challenging for most families, and that being told that you don’t have a nurse equals being told you can’t work, sleep, go to your other children’s activities, or even take a shower. Families need support on many levels, not added stress from agencies, so we decided to open an honest nursing agency with a different model than other agencies.
GAM: What services do you offer?
CM: We offer both private duty nursing and child care services in homes. We began with skilled nursing in 2018, and launched in-home child care in June 2020. Believe it or not, the child care division has been in development since January, prior to COVID-19. I personally needed a nanny and although I tried to find a good nanny a year earlier, I didn’t succeed. The second time around, when I really needed to hire someone to care for my children while I work, I realized finding excellent child care is challenging on many levels and is a prominent issue for many working parents.
GAM: What's been the response? Are you getting more queries from interested parents? What kinds of questions are you fielding?
CM: The dilemma has been that parents still need to work, and children have been home for months so parents are looking for the safest solution. They are pulling their children out of preschool and school for precautionary purposes, so their number one question is “What do you do to protect my child and my family?” Parents also frequently ask if our caregivers protect themselves. This is very important to our clients in protecting their own families. Our nurses and child caregivers have been very understanding and appreciate when the families they work with also protect themselves.
GAM: How is your service different from just hiring your own nanny?
CM: When families look for a child caregiver, they typically go on one of those large websites and search for a good match. What every parent needs to know is that most of those websites are databases with people who have not been vetted in any way. Finding a great child caregiver can be a real challenge, sifting through the candidates who frequently have unprofessional profiles and commonly do not reply when you reach out.
In addition, one other large caveat that many parents are unaware of is that the IRS deems a babysitter, nanny or in home caregiver a household employee and families are legally bound to become household employers and pay taxes and workers comp if they have a babysitter. Talk about complicated!
So as a mom, I designed a system where we do all of that hard stuff so families can reap the benefits of a great child caregiver without the headaches. We also believe that parents should have the opportunity to direct the caregivers through a personalized plan, so their children are working towards their goals even while the parents are away.
Home Rule child caregivers are W-2 employees with paid payroll taxes, background checks and other screening, child caregiver training, and professional liability and workers comp insurance. They follow a customized plan for daily schedule and goals, and parents receive detailed notes of their child’s day.
GAM: As a parent of seven, how are you surviving these really challenging times?
CM: Wow! Well, like many, we are wearing masks and using a lot of hand sanitizer. Because we have a daughter with a trach and chronic lung disease, as well as many clients who are medically fragile, we are very sensitive to taking precautions. All of our staff do a COVID-19 assessment before entering their place of work each day, wear masks, and of course, wash often. With that said, we all still want to live productive lives, so we are here to offer amazing child care, a positive place of employment and keep our clients and staff as safe as possible during this time.
Go Ask Mom features local moms every Monday.