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Too busy to volunteer at kids' schools? Send the nanny

Published: Friday, June 7 2013 1:38 p.m. MDT

Ashley Robinson, 18, a student at the English Nanny & Governess School, reads to Eliza Mays, 2, of her practicum family at their home in Shaker Heights, Ohio, on Friday, December 11, 2009.

Mike Cardew, MCT

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NEW YORK — Finding time to volunteer at children’s schools is no problem for wealthy New Yorkers. Many Gotham uptowners simply send their nannies to bakes sales, safety patrol assignments and even entrance interviews at their children’s schools, says a New York Post story.

“Nannies are working fundraisers, designing sets for school plays and taking seats at graduations and public performances,” the story said.

Prestigious schools like Marymount and Buckley have informed parents that they may not send caregivers for semiannual turns on safety patrol, the story said. However, nannies are allowed to bring kids to admissions interviews at Horace Mann School, “because the parents are so high-maintenance, you’d almost rather see a nanny,” said a former admissions director at the school.

The idea of delegating parental duties to nannies gets support from a website that answers questions about hiring the caregivers.

“Some families want the nanny to be available during school hours if a child becomes sick, has a field trip, or has a vacation day from school,” according to ehow.com. “Nannies can also volunteer in the school if they wish. Paying a nanny the same rate whether the kids are in school or not is typical if she has been with a family for several years.”

But if nannies are the de facto moms in uptown New York City, chauffeurs are the new dads, said a column by Richard Kirshenbaum in The New York Observer.

“To a growing degree, drivers are the eyes and ears of uptown parents: protecting, chaperoning, disciplining and dragging teens out of clubs when they are wasted,” the column said.

“Some may argue that there is a moral lapse in letting the driver take on parenting duties,” wrote Kirshenbaum. “My kids are still too young, so I leave it to others to judge. But would a little help with algebra be out of the question?”

EMAIL: cbaker@deseretnews.com, Twitter: @celiarbaker

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