- Hans Weber
- December 1, 2023
Czech Parents Granted Opportunity to Establish Home-based Childcare Services
In a move aimed at providing more childcare options for Czech parents, the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs announced a new initiative allowing parents to establish home-based childcare services through neighborhood groups. However, both the service providers and families utilizing these services will have to meet specific requirements outlined by the government. Under this scheme, parents will be required to pay a fee of over 6,000 Kč per child per month.
One significant benefit of this initiative is that those operating neighborhood childcare groups will be eligible to receive government subsidies to assist in covering expenses, including payments to parents. Starting from January 2024, the maximum monthly payment for each child attending a childcare group on weekdays will be set at 6,098 Kč.
It is worth noting that while public kindergartens offer a more affordable option, with monthly costs ranging from 1,000 to 2,000 Czech koruna, private kindergartens in Prague can cost upwards of 20,000 Czech koruna per month.
To comply with the new law, operators or caregivers of neighborhood childcare groups will need to undergo training. Additionally, if other family members are present in the household where childcare services are provided, parents must be informed in advance. Furthermore, all household members must pass a background check and not have convictions related to certain crimes, such as drug possession or hate speech.
The law stipulates that operators can care for up to four children, including their own. However, government subsidies will not apply to the operator’s own children. Consent from all parties involved is essential, and operators must inform parents if someone in the household displays symptoms of illness, limiting or suspending services as necessary.
The legislation also introduces the role of “family assistants” who provide support and care to families in crisis or with special needs. These services encompass assistance with childcare, support for household management, and the provision of expert social advice. Family assistants will be required to undergo training in parenting skills, crisis intervention, and working with children with special needs. Local authorities will oversee the provision of these services, which will be funded by the government.
It is important to note that the new legislation is currently in a public comment period and may undergo changes. It must receive approval from the government and lawmakers and be signed by the president before it can take effect, which is anticipated to be next year. This initiative reflects the government’s commitment to expanding childcare options and supporting families across the Czech Republic.
Article by Prague Forum