Child Care Options

With parents comparing Open Enrollment, Magnet, SAS, and other options, a frequent topic that comes up is whether the school has child care options, or not.  Post your question as a comment here or share what you know about your school, and we’ll see what options exist at your school.  Some schools have multiple levels of care, including a fee-based childcare, a free drop-in program such as Beyond the Bell, and individual enrichment courses that last about an hour afterschool.


30 thoughts on “Child Care Options

  1. My children will be attending Vintage Elementary (one is in 1st grade and one is in 4th grade). I’m looking for afterschool care options. My first grader is too young for the beyond the bell YS program. The school has another program called 21st century, but they require the students to stay until 5:45, which I feel is too long of a day. I’m concidering talking to the principal about changing this requirement, any suggestions or are there any other parents who know of another program they like?

  2. Definitely talk to your principal, Suzanne. My daughter’s school allows first graders to attend Beyond the Bell with a waiver–perhaps Vintage does as well, or could. It is of course a permissive program, but depending on how long need coverage, it might be enough.

    Also ask to talk to parents in the 21st Century program, because it involves one hour of homework, one hour of enrichment, and one hour of organized games. While they expect to keep kids on campus until 5:45, you pick them up and their homework is done, which will save you time.

    In addition, it appears that Vintage has library hours until 4 pm, so if the other program is too long, having your son supervised in the school library has some significant benefits.

    • Angel,

      Thanks for the quick response. Unfortunately the library will no longer be open until 4:00 due to budget cuts. I will talk with the principal. At this time I would feel more comfortable with a more supervised scenario, that’s why I’m not planning on the Beyond the Bell program.

      Thanks again,

  3. Check with City of Los Angeles Recreation Centers. Some of them have state-licensed onsite child care programs. The Northridge Rec Center, for example, would do after school pickups of children in their vans at specific local school sites (Balboa, Nobel, etc.). They would take the children back to the child care center and watch them until 6 p.m.

    Some churches also have afterschool programs with transportation.

    These programs are not well known or advertised so I wanted to pass the word. It is worth asking your local recreation center or church if they offer any child care or afterschool programs.

  4. I have a child at Vintage Magnet and he did not make it into 21 Century. I do not want him on the playground because they only have one coach for all the kids, all grades. Plus, he doesn’t do his homework. There is no supervision to do that. I need an after school program that will pick him up from Vintage.

    Do you have any suggestions? The school gave a list, but only 1 was available and I checked it out and wasn’t really trilled with their facility or philosophy.

    I wok downtown so I need someplace that will pick up. Any suggestions

    • Carol:
      Another option is to have your child take the bus to a school with an onsite YMCA aftercare program. You would then pick up your child at that school. If Vintage isn’t your local school and your local school (or one close to home) has YMCA program onsite, you can go that route.

      Good luck! I also struggle with aftercare issues and still am amazed at the lack of options in this day and age!

    • FYI Carol — I just found out that Petit Park Recreation Center with the City of Los Angeles (located in Granada Hills) picks up Vintage students after school, takes them to the rec center and provides care and homework supervision until 6 p.m. Give them a call!

  5. Carol ,

    I’m not sure which program you already looked at, but I just spoke with the after school program at Petit Park (aka Granada Hills Park) and they are receiving quite a few calls from Vintage parents that they are considering a pick-up from there.

    I hope you find a program, I know how stressful it is.

  6. My family will be moving to Los Angeles this June and are looking for a kindergarten for our daughter. We are investigating public and private school options between downtown LA and Culver City and anything between (Koreatown, etc) north of the 10 fwy. Our main issue is that my husband and I will need help with transportation to and from school (such as from a YMCA program) as we need to drop her off around 7-7:30am and pick her up around 5:30-6pm.

    Does anyone know of and recommend a daycare/transportation service that serves that area and could meet our needs?

    I’ve seen posts about YMCA in other regions serving other schools, but don’t know of anything between Culver City and downtown.

    • Mina and Stacy:

      Before/after childcare is TOUGH with LAUSD and each school has its own programs. So you really need to ask at each school. (Yes, it is MUCHO frustrating!) Sometimes schools note on their websites which programs are available; sometimes they don’t.

      A few places to check into include:

      – Onsite programs at the school (Beyond the Bell, 21st Century Kids, Kidscare, Creative Kids etc. Call the District PTA Office – they run some of these.)
      – The YMCA in the area
      – City recreation centers (at some LA centers they even provide transportation after school to their rec centers for programs)
      – Boys and Girls Clubs
      – Local daycares and churches (some offer after-care programs)
      – Other parents, who will do childcare for friends or money or both!

      Talk to other parents and ask what they do! GOOD LUCK!

  7. I need to find a school that has morning care and after school care some where in the van nuys or north hollywood area any suggestions.

  8. HELP! My daughter is entering the Nobel SAS program this week as a 6th grader and I am a single mother who has been offered a new position at work. The new position includes hours that extend beyond my daughter’s school hours. Does any one know about child care options afterschool for Nobel students? The boys and girls club doesn’t pick up at Nobel. The YMCA doesn’t have a program for middle school kids at Nobel or anywhere that I can tell. My job is in Woodland Hills and we live in Granada Hills. The rec center at Petit Park doesn’t seem to have a program for middle school children and all Nobel seems to offer children is the option to study at the library after school. This is unsupervised study time and I am concerned about that. We are low income and the new job promises more pay but not enough to cover private child care costs. Any ideas about affordable quality afterschool care for middle school kids (with transportation would be ideal) anywhere in the vicinity of Nobel?

    thank you!

    • They don’t offer the afterschool sports programs that other middle schools offer through youth services? I know Lawrence did. I’ll check with a teacher at Nobel, and see what they might offer.

    • One option, check at Northridge Rec Center (located on Reseda between Lassen and Devonshire). I believe they pick up kids after school at Nobel and drive them back to the Center as part of their after school program. We’ve used it before (from other schools) and it was fine. Good luck… and congrats on the job!

    • Hello Cricket Jupiter,

      I am looking into sending my son to Nobel or Frost next year but our concern is after care and pick up too. Where did your daughter end up going to after school this year?
      Thank you for the info.

      • We ended up using the NorthValley YMCA. They have an afterschool program that picks kids up from Nobel, Patrick Henry, and Frost and transports the kids to Porter Middle School where they have their afterschool program. It is a very small program. Space is limited. I am very pleased with the program and my daughter enjoys it. She gets her homework done and does projects and activities through the program. We recommend it! Good Luck!

  9. First congratulations on both your promotion and having your daughter at Noble. Studying in the library may be un- stretchered but there should be adults nearby to insure no harm comes to the students. Most 6th graders are able to work on their own or in small groups. I am sure your daughter will be fine and maybe even thrive, in that kind of afterschool setting.

  10. I live in the North Hollywood area between lankershim and victory. I am looking for a afterschool program that would be able to.pick up my child from her school. Help!!!

  11. its seems as though there is really no LAUSD options for after school care for kinder kids most of them Beyond the Bell, 21st Century Kids, Kidscare, Creative Kids you have to be low income or your kid has to be older. Any afterschool programs for the younger kids?

  12. Any new options for afterschool in west valley – West Hills, Woodland hills etc ? Thanks. Our school (Haynes) has YMCA – and it is pretty bad and crowded.

  13. I am looking for a free after school program that my daughter can go to and that will provide transportation. I’m desperate.

    • Hi Kate,

      Have you talked to the school directly? There are many afterschool programs that are offered on site, but some do have an age limit (say, 2nd grade and up).

      It may be a tall order to find an offsite program that will actually pick up kids for free.

  14. FYI, as of August 2017 Northridge Rec Center had openings:

    Hello Families of Northridge Rec Center!

    We still have spaces available in our Preschool and Afterschool programs!

    Northridge Afterschool program is for children enrolled in kindergarten- 5th grade. We provide transportation from DARBY and TOPEKA Elementary school. Each day children will receive homework assistance, a daily snack, structured activities as well as playground fun and much more. Please see attached flyer for more information.

    Our Preschool program is for children 3-5 yrs of age. The Preschool Program will begin on Tuesday September 5 and will end in May 2018. Child must be toilet trained to attend. See attached flyer for more information

    REGISTER NOW!! Before we fill up!!
    Call our office if you have any further questions on either program

    (818) 349-0535

  15. This isn’t quite a childcare option, but it fits better here than anywhere else: does anyone have a phone number to get a real live person who know anything at all about late busses for high schools? My daughter just started at Van Nuys Medical Magnet, and is also playing sports after school. To drive to school and retrieve her and bring her home means nearly 2 hours of evening commute for me, and more than that for my husband, so we would really like her to be able to take a bus. So far we have been bounced to the athletic director, the magnet coordinator (each keeps referring us to the other), and a bus general number that never gets us a live human. We will keep being squeaky wheels, but if anyone knows some to call that might actually be able to tell us some useful information, I’d greatly appreciate it.

    I will also be looking into the public bus, though I’d prefer her to take the school bus.

    • My understanding is that the late busses start a few weeks in. Late bus pick up will be 6 pm and can take a bit to get home because there are only a few of them taking all kids in after school programs to the various points in each direction. If she already is on a sport and has told the coach she needs the late bus, her name will be forwarded to the magnet coordinator/sports person and to the bus people. There is also a sign up in the magnet office. But I’m not sure they have started running yet.

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