How to Balance University with Childcare

As a mum, it can seem like you don’t have time for anything. Often the main carer in the family, you may find your time occupied by washing and feeding the child, taking them to kindergarten or school, making sure they do their own tasks and cleaning up after them.. After all that, we don’t blame you if all you want to do afterwards is pour yourself a large glass of wine and watch TV. We are more than just mums, however, with plenty of personal and professional aims of our own.

It is well-known that mums often exit the workplace after taking on child-caring responsibilities. In the USA for example, 43% of women with children leave the workplace. There are ways to get back on that horse, however, including re-training, returning to old jobs and branching out with new experiences and opportunities. One key way could be learning a new degree, but the question you may be asking yourself is: can I balance both university education with childcare?

The simple answer is: yes. The longer and more difficult answer is: yes, but with a lot of planning and working around your own schedule.

Consider a Part-Time Course

There’s no need to dive straight into an intensive one year or three year course. Universities offer the opportunity to take part in longer part-time courses that work around your busy schedule. If you have a young child that you can send to bed early, then there’s no reason why you can’t then use that free evening to get on some courses. The added benefit of a part-time course is it spreads costs out over a longer time, allowing you to find a budget that works for you and doesn’t interfere with providing for your child.

Consider Online Learning

Online learning has grown in popularity in recent years, and is seeing a higher uptake in enrolment year on year than traditional learning. At an institution such as, you can take courses fully online, meaning that you can work it around your schedule as opposed to having to spend time and money commuting and attending in-person lectures. The little one may have an emergency that needs to be attended to mid-studies, but at least with an online course you will be able to attend to that quickly and swiftly before getting back into your work.

Lean on The Help of Others

Never be afraid to ask for help. Whether it’s contacting friends or family to look after your child, or looking into government programs in your area that assist with mothers returning to education, fully survey your options to make your university education a success.

This is also the time when your partner should be stepping up and taking on more parental responsibilities. Perhaps they have some time-off that they haven’t taken this year, or they have the flexibility to work from home. Have a long discussion with them in order to see what they can do to make your university education a much less stressful experience.

Image by freestocks-photos from Pixabay

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