Like many parents, I chose to stay home with our kids when they were younger in part because the costs of daycare would outweigh my income. We put a lot of thought into how it would work and which of us should stay home. In the end, the hubby’s job was more marketable and financially sound at the time, so the answer was clear. He went into the work force full-time when our daughter was born, and I stayed home to care for her.
Now that my kids are all in school, I have a few hours every day that can be used to supplement my family’s income. We have researched several options and considered going back to work many times, but I still want to be home to hear about their day and help with homework. The job I most frequently consider is a substitute teacher; I think it would be fun to be a part of the school day in a similar way as our kids.
We now run a web development business together from home, so we are both here when the kids get off the bus. But, there are several industries that offer part-time jobs to squeeze hours in between school bus stops, giving parents a lot of options should they choose to go back to work. If you are looking for a part-time job or could use a little extra money while the kids are in school, here are 8 part-time jobs you should consider and why they’re valuable for parents:
There are a variety of school jobs that do not require an education degree. School bus drivers, custodians, and cafeteria employees all help the school day run smoothly on a part-time basis. A school job provides steady hours and frequently comes with benefits. Check with your school system’s website for job listings and details on how to apply.
Pay Rate: $7.25+/hour
Advantage to parents: You will have the same schedule as your kids, which means you not only get home at the same time, but you will share vacation days and still be home with them throughout the summer.
Unlike the college degree and hours of planning outside of school required of teachers, substituting often only requires a high school diploma and no time outside of class. There will be an application process and training, then you can choose jobs as they become available. Again, check with your school system for details on the hiring process; some may have specific calendar windows to apply.
Pay Rate: $50-$100 per school day
Advantage to parents: In addition to having the same vacation schedule as your kids, you can decide to work day-to-day, which leaves you free to attend school programs, chaperon field trips, and stay home if your kids are sick.
From grocery to clothing to specialty boutiques, retail stores often have daytime shifts that will have you home before the kids. If you have a partner at home, you can also consider a late-night shift while the kids are asleep. Pick up an application the next time you’re in the store or check the store’s website as many retailers now have job applications online.
Pay Rate: $7.25+/hour
Advantage to parents: Choose a store you personally love that offers discounts to employees. Too often, parents neglect themselves in favor of spending money on the kids. With a little extra money, and a decent employee discount, you can have the opportunity to treat yourself now and then.
Many airlines and hotels have part-time jobs such as desk clerks, phone operators, and concierge. The job would be local, and there are daytime shifts available that keep you home with your kids at night. You will find job listings and applications for this type of job online through the company website.
Pay Rate: $7.25+/per hour
Advantage to parents: Family travel can get expensive, but most employers in the travel industry offer free perks even to their part-time employees. Free hotel rooms and flights for you and your family could add up to more than your hourly pay ever would.
Banker hours would fall outside of the school day, but a part-time job would provide less hours and have you home before the kids. Plus, with strict bank regulations, there is never a risk of bringing work home with you. Apply online with your bank’s website.
Pay Rate: $10/hour
Advantage to parents: Take advantage of free financial planning to get your family on a better budget with your new income. You will also have easy access and inspiration to add to your savings or start accounts for your kids.
Bartending, hosting, and waiting tables during the lunch shift could be a good option for daytime-only work. You will be more limited in hours and tips tend to be lower over lunch, but a quick 10-2 shift at restaurants is a great way to earn a little extra while the kids are in school.
Pay Rate: $2.13/hour plus tips
Advantage to parents: You will receive an employee discount on meals, which could make dining out with your family more affordable. Plus, you take your cash tips home each night for instant access to your earnings.
If you’re a coffee-lover, consider getting a job at your favorite coffee shop. It could be a fun way to meet people like you while you learn to make some of your favorite drinks. Plus, some even offer health benefits even to part-time employees. Career and job opportunities are primarily online now, so check out the website where you would like to work.
Pay Rate: $7.25+/hour
Advantage to parents: Support your coffee addition with free drinks on your break and often free take-home bags for your busy school-day mornings.
I spent several years in direct sales when my kids were younger. Once they got into school, I didn’t want to give up my evenings with them to do the home parties. Now, though, most direct sales opportunities include a social media/online sales component so you can do the majority of your work during the day. Plus, you have the opportunity to earn free samples of your favorite products and purchase the rest at a deep discount.
Pay Rate: 15-50% of sales
Advantage to parents: With the ability to set your own hours and determine how much (or little) you work each month, you can attend school programs, pick up sick kids, and chaperon field trips as needed.