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Preschool Or Nanny?

Updated: Jan 25

Child thinking about preschool or nanny.

The Great Question?!?!?!

Hundreds and thousands of parents are asking themselves this question lately. Whether to put their kids through preschool or hire a nanny.

Why? What is the answer? Why is it so hard? What is best for MY child(ren)?

Let’s discuss it because we want to help you! No matter what decision you make, it is your decision and you know what is ultimately best for your child(ren).


1. The Struggle to get in! Why?

The struggle is REAL! Lately, preschool and school systems have become difficult in regards to enrolling your child(ren) in. Parents have been discussing how stressful it has become because either the cost is too high or the wait list is extremely long. There has been an influx of children coming back into the schools because of vaccines causing the diminishing fear of getting sick with COVID. Another reason is because there has become a mass exodus of teachers leaving their profession.


According to Chalkbeat, there has been a decline of new educators to replace the teacher shortage by one-fifth (last reported on February 15, 2022). In Nashville, TN there are over 80 (eighty) full-time teacher vacancies. In Memphis, TN it’s an even astronomical number. Reaching over 200 (two-hundred) teaching positions open. Nationwide, there are roughly over half-million fewer teachers.

The shortage has become a “full-blown crisis”, says the leader of the Professional Educators of Tennessee.

JC Bowman, Executive Director & CEO of Professional Educators of Tennessee, said, “We’re driving people out of the profession faster than we can replace them.”

According to the NEA (National Education Association) of the year 2022, there is a mass amount of teachers thinking of leaving their profession earlier than what they thought. That percentage is an astounding 55% (fifty-five percent).

Teachers are leaving their profession because they are drowning. Here are some of the reasons why teachers are becoming burnt out:

  • They don’t feel supported or appreciated.

  • Modest pay. They are not getting paid enough for the amount of work they do.

  • Student discipline challenges.

  • An inflicting culture of student testing and teacher evaluations.

  • Shortage of planning time.

Schools are struggling to find teachers. Which affects the entry numbers of students. In some cases, schools have shut down temporarily because they did not have enough teachers to maintain the student to teacher ratio.

Below is a table of the student to teacher ratios in accordance with Tennessee State Board of Education (numbers can fluctuate upon state requirements):

Age Range

Adult:Child Ratio



1 (one) year old


2 (two) years old


3 (three) years old


4 (four) years old




K-3 (grade level)


4-6 (grade level)


7-12 (grade level)


To go over these numbers not only puts stress and pressure on the teachers. It can also get the school facility in trouble. In some cases, shut down if it continues to be a problem.

Even though the numbers say 1 teacher per number of children. Teachers still feel stressed, exhausted, and overworked. The reason teachers choose this profession is to teach, educate, and grow the minds of children. That is their passion. But like before, they are struggling to do so and sadly have lost the love to teach.

From personal experience, a teacher of 5+ years. I was losing that love of teaching. I was overwhelmed and under so much pressure. I wanted to do right by my students because that is what they deserved. I was struggling to watch 15 3-4 year old students by myself with little to no help on most days. I cared for each student that entered my class. I wanted each to have an equal amount of opportunity for me to teach. That was difficult because even though one child was excelling in a topic, others needed one-on-one teaching assistance. I couldn’t sit down with all of them to help them learn. To be honest, I felt terrible because I wish I could have more one-on-one teaching time with my students. I knew there had to be something out there in which I could do that. That is how I became a Private Educational Teacher/Nanny. My love for teaching came back. Now I am able to teach more in-depth and focus on the areas that child(ren) may be having. I can not tell you the words of how rewarding it is to see them excel and grow not only at-home but in school.

2. Sickness and Germs

After COVID we all have come to the grim realization on how germs and sickness can be easily spread. Even before COVID schools have always been hotbeds for germs and sickness that would (and still do) run rampid in the classrooms. No matter how much teachers disinfect their rooms. There will always be sickness and germs present.

Children are coming from home (bringing any germs and sickness from their family) and meeting up in a small confined classroom where they are in close contact with other children. Sickness and passing germs along is inevitable in this type of environment.

Some of the germiest places in schools are:

  • The restroom doors

  • Cafeteria trays and lunchboxes

  • Desks

  • Classroom supplies and toys

  • The drinking fountain

Even when children do come home from school they are bringing those germs from school to their own family. Which, if they have a younger sibling, can even spread sickness to them.

Children reading in the library.

3. Socialization

Yes, socialization plays a huge role when parents are weighing their options to hire a nanny or enroll their child into preschool. School helps children gain socialization skills, to find new friends and learn behaviors.

4. Consistency/Schedule

Schools run on consistency and schedules. There is a time and place for everything. Below is an example.

  • Morning:


Bathroom Break

Circle Time (calendar, weather, and possible songs)

Curriculum Time

Playtime (depending on time)

  • Noon

Bathroom Break


Bathroom Break

Story Time

Nap Time (if that grade still takes naps)

  • Afternoon

Bathroom Break

Snack Time

Playtime/Free Time

Parent Pick-Up

Very few times do teachers stray from their schedule. If they do then that disrupts not only the classroom, but as well as the other classrooms and staff.

Don’t get me wrong, consistency and schedules are vital in regards to the upbringing of children. It gives the children familiarity and a predictable day. It helps children stay in control of their environment causing less breakdowns or stress to occur.

5. Inflexibility

Schools do not give any flexibility when it comes to bringing your child(ren) a little early or staying a bit later. They run on specific hours and can even charge parents a minute rate fee for being late in picking up their child(ren).

They also are not flexible when it comes to sickness. Each school has their own policy. Some schools require your child to be free of a fever for a whole 24 hours before having that child return back to school. What do you do then? Who can watch your child while you are at work?

6. Child Personality

Preschool and school in general has many stimuli and transitions for children. Some children can be overwhelmed and overstimulated by this type of environment. You will need to ask that question on how your child will react when it comes to school.

As well as the school structure and curriculum. Will your child’s personality thrive with the curriculum, teacher methods and structure? Each child is different in how they learn and grow. None fit in the same mold. They are all unique and thrive differently than the child sitting next to them in class. Some may need more one-on -one time with the teacher. Sometimes that is impossible for the teacher because of the number of students in his/her class. How do you feel in regards to a teacher watching more than one infant or child at a time?

Also under consideration is other children’s behavior, upbringing and development that will impact your child throughout the days in school. Will your child have a positive or negative influence with other children?

7. Cost

The cost to put one child into preschool and school can be slight cheaper than hiring a personal nanny. The cost can range from many factors. Here are just some factors:

  • Location

  • Private or Public

  • Food

  • Continued Education for Teachers and Recruitment

  • Insurance

  • The Market


1. The Search, Hiring Process and Consistency

Nannies are in high demand. Especially one that works and molds well with your family dynamic. Searching for a nanny can be exhausting, challenging and sometimes frustrating. We completely understand. There are numerous, interesting stories in regards to parents searching, finding and hiring a nanny. They had no clue or very little information on how to go about the search and hiring process. As well as proper work forms. This frustration not only applies to families but also to nannies.

Nanny outside with two children.

You already have so much on your plate from being a parent to working a full-time job (sometimes more than one)!

We want to take that negative connotation and make it a relaxed, non-stressful process. We focus on you (family and nanny) and your needs. You and your family are what matters in this process.

The Gold Standard takes care of the logistics for you and supports you along the way. You are never alone. Not only in finding the perfect nanny for your family, but as well as at-home education/curriculum, tutors, specific child related services and activities. We are your resource center for all child related concerns and activities.

You wouldn’t have to worry about scheduling dates and times for interviews or working interviews, vetting each candidate or the paperwork (creating or searching for a work form). We take care of all of that for you and supply you with your own personalized family profile and work form (once you have found the perfect nanny).

Most nannies stay with their families for a long period of time. Turnovers at daycare centers are quite high. Leaving children to get confused and emotional because of the lack of consistency. With having your own nanny or nanny share, that nanny becomes part of the family in a way, but still maintaining that professional business relationship.

2. Sickness and Germs

Children who have a nanny or nanny share are likely to get less sick than children who go to school. The reason being is because there are not a mass amount of children in a small enclosed space. The only germs and sickness come from either play dates, other children in a nanny share, nanny or parents.

3. Socialization

As discussed before, socialization is one of the key factors in deciding whether or not to hire a nanny or put a child in school. Many parents are worried that having their cold at-home with a nanny affects their socialization skills in a negative way.

That concern is real, but there have become ways in which nannies expand your child’s socialization skills. Here are just some ways in which we encourage our nannies to socialize children (all approved by parents):

  • Play dates - either at the playground, home or another approved site with other local nannies and their nanny kids.

  • Field Trips - zoo, messy art at a local business, story time at a local library, playgrounds, child play areas (trampoline park, gym, etc.)

  • Child related events - some events are for home school children.

Another way to socialize your child is also considering doing a Nanny Share with another family or families. Nanny Shares are a fantastic way to not only socialize your child but also:

  • Cost effective than hiring your own personal nanny

  • Individual attention compared to a teacher who has 6-12 more kids in one room.

A Nanny Share is great for both worlds. Please read the blog on Nanny Shares to learn more.

4. Consistency/Schedule

A nannies schedule compared to a school schedule is a bit more relaxed and slightly different. Parents have more control and weigh in their ideas in regards to their own child’s schedules. When and what they will like for them to eat, take naps, play, etc… Of course the nanny can set their schedule as well that aligns with the parents requirements.

It is important to have consistency and routine in a child’s life as discussed before. That's why we stress to our nannies the importance of having consistency and routine in their nanny kid(s) life. We help your family and our nannies set an appropriate schedule for each child. One that helps them thrive and grow.

5. Flexibility

You, as a parent, are busy. With family life and your work schedule, you are going non-stop. You need flexibility when it comes to child care. Having your own nanny or nanny share can give you that personalized flexibility.

You get to set your own schedule and hours when you need a nanny. Instead of working around a school's schedule and hours. Of course do highly recommend paying your nanny overtime hours if he/she does have to work past her expected hours.

Having a nanny also gives you flexibility when your child is sick. You wouldn’t need to stress to find care for your child so that you can work.

6. Child Personality/Attachment

Each child is unique and different. Depending on the personality of your child, only you know that works best for them. With a nanny, your child has the opportunity to connect with that person who is there to care, teach and nurture your child.

A nanny provides a benefit to be a primary attachment figure. Your child can develop a special relationship with one person who they can rely on for comfort and safety. With a school system you can not get that benefit because the teacher has numerous other children to care for. Meaning less one-on-one time.

Some children learn differently than others. With a nanny, they can personalize their teaching that better suits your child’s learning behavior.

7. Cost

Having your own private nanny can be costly in comparison to enrolling your child into school. This is also a deciding factor amongst families and their budget range.

There is a way to overcome that concern. Nanny Shares. With Nanny Shares you split the cost of a nanny between 1 or more families, but still getting the amazing benefits of a nanny.

In conclusion, you, as the amazing parent you are, know what is best for your family! Hopefully this article has helped you gain confidence and assurance in whichever decision you decide.

If you have any other questions or concerns, we, at The Gold Standard, are here to help in any way!


Girl with a red bow waiting for a nanny.

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