Las Vegas preschool teachers quitting for nanny positions amid skyrocketing demand for quality childcare

Las Vegas preschool teachers are quitting for private childcare positions during an increasing demand for quality childcare
Published: Jun. 8, 2022 at 6:10 PM PDT
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) - On Tuesday FOX5 introduced you to a Henderson woman who left her daycare job to become a nanny in a private home, and for much higher wages.

A coworker in the same daycare reportedly saw three out of four daycare workers quit in a very short timespan.

Las Vegans that are becoming nannies aren’t just ditching daycare jobs — they’re also leaving school buildings.

“I have used everything I learned from being a preschool teacher and applied it to being an at-home nanny,” said Bixby French, a Las Vegan and former preschool teacher. “Being an at-home nanny has truly benefited my life, my happiness, my income.”

She’s not the only one making the switch.

Las Vegan Jessica Martinez’s background in early education put her a cut above every other applicant, in a time when the need for nannies is already skyrocketing. Now, she said she is finally being compensated fairly.

“So when I interview with families... I show my preschool background,” said Martinez.

Martinez used to be a preschool teacher, and amid demand for at-home tutoring “pods” and homeschooling, she said this skill is putting her in a salary bracket that is far beyond what she could make in a preschool or daycare.

“A daycare out here, when I started, they wanted to pay me about $13-$15 an hour. Now, when I started interviewing with families, they wanted to pay me $18-$25 an hour, and that included benefits,” said Martinez.

With family, she said she was suddenly presented with the option of health insurance, paid vacations, a grocery stipend, and more.

While Martinez said she sometimes misses the classroom environment, she said the situation she is currently working in as a nanny is much too comfortable and engaging to leave behind.

“I am able to also be flexible with these families, so that’s something that teachers in a daycare can’t do,” said Martinez.

Another preschool teacher-turned-nanny with whom we spoke over the phone said she is being offered perks like these, too.

“I work for affluent families that take two-week vacations to Hawaii in the summer, and they pay me if they’re taking time off,” said Rachael Cummings of Las Vegas.

She said many parents are offering these benefits out of necessity to stay competitive and hire a quality candidate.

“I don’t know if there’s just more people that want nannies than there are educated nannies available,” said Cummings.

She said the demand for at-home pod instructors and nannies has skyrocketed, but supply of them is seemingly limited.

Martinez said that in light of recent events, safety concerns with traditional schooling are also playing a factor with the demand for at-home nannies or educators.

“I have a couple parents right now that I work with, that are pushing me more... to do something in-home, because the school shooting is something on their mind and they’re just not comfortable,” said Martinez. “It has hit home for a lot of people, and that is also a big change: I feel like, along with COVID, just finding what is the best fit for my child.”

So is the shift we’re seeing now disproportionately affecting those who cannot afford a nanny?

It’s a topic FOX5 plans to continue dissecting, so follow along for what we find.