Wednesday, January 21, 2015


The giant US financial organisation Forbes report that a "Stay-at-home Mom" would earn $115,000 a year if you paid 'her' the hourly rate. They split the role of 'Mom' into 10 duties. They get to the big final salary thanks to the fact they estimate 'Mom' works 97 hours a week, rather than that she's on a highflyer salary for each 'job'.

Yawn. A tired old PR exercise this one. Gets trotted out every so often, the media usually pick it up. It's hokum. For a start, these 'Moms' are amateurs, no training or qualifications. Ordinary parents need no professional requirements. No way would they earn a single penny as, say, a psychologist (7.6 hours a week). Forbes are charging laundry at the going rate by calling mom a "Laundry machine operator". Mom also earns as an "IT Operator "(yeah, watch out Bill Gates, here comes someone who knows which batteries go in the Xbox handset). If this sort of 'pay' is valid you'd knock a hundred dollars off 'Mom's' salary every time their child brushed their own teeth by charging 'Mom' the call-out rate for a 'dental hygienist'.

We foster carers would be billing at way more than that sum, because we are applying a higher range of skills than the average mum, and we are available with all those skills all the time the child is in our care (about 130 hours per school week, 186 hours during the holidays). We have qualifications, albeit only a wee certificate proving we attended a 3 hour session on IT safety, Play, De-escalation and the rest. But we got them, files of them. Bet none of them 'Stay-at-home Moms' got one. Betcha.

Think of the skills we deploy on a professional basis; we've been approved, are trained, and have qualifications. We're paid to do these things, therefore we're professional.

But if you did the same silly 'proper salary' thing for a typical foster carer (I got the salaries from a couple of salary comparison websites, one UK one USA);

Consultant Child Psychologist - £47,679 pa (43 hr week)  @  70hrs pw                       

Playleader/Occupational Therapist -£38,562   @  70 hrs pw

IT Consultant-  £38,567   Constant invigilation. 35hrs pw

Dietician/Nutritionalist (every day per week, half a day) - $52,000 pa  20hrs pw

Educationalist - £35,699 20 hrs pw

Personal Life Coach - (every day half a day)   $29.00 per hr 35hrs pw

Children's Entertainer - (every day per week, half a day) $450 per day

Chauffer - (average every day half a day) £24,860 15 hrs pw

Then there's the things we're not trained in, but have to do, so we'll charge the trainee/appentice rate:

Sports/Fitness Trainer £11,259 10hrs pw

Lawyer (Family) £17,693 10 hrs pw

Personal Secretary £13,371 10 hrs pw 

Let's not forget: First Aid Nurse, Relationship Councillor, Homemaker, Art Critic, Literary Critic, Personal Hygienist,
Dental Consultant Hair Stylist. 

The salary for a foster carer, charging a part-time fee of 135% of the salaried per hour rate on an hourly/half day rate is;

£1.21 million per annum.

If you used the same hokum Forbes did.

Mind, as someone in the Blue Sky office just emailed me, we're worth a lot more than £1.2m a year.


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