virtual learning

Dear DNB,

We thought we could deal with working remotely while helping our kids do virtual school. Turns out, it’s a lot more involved than we thought. We’re curious about hiring a nanny who can take on our kids’ school schedules, too. Is that a thing?



Dear Surrendered,

Hiring a nanny to facilitate virtual school is absolutely a thing.

Globally, millions of students are moving from on-campus to online. Working parents for whom school doubles as childcare face a challenge: staying employed while helping their kids manage virtual school.

It’s not easy. 

The 43% of workers fortunate enough to even have the option to work from home find it hard to keep up with schoolwork on top of their own responsibilities. 

With many daycares closed to new families or unsafe for at-risk families, it often comes down to one parent quitting their job or hiring outside help. As Chicagoland’s top nanny placement agency, we can help you navigate the latter — whether you use our services or not!

Here are some tips.

Make sure your entire family has the same expectations of this person’s role and responsibilities before posting a job or asking an agency to screen caregivers on your behalf.

It’s important to make sure that all expectations of your new hire are mentioned up front to avoid any surprises later on. I can’t tell you the number of times this happens:

  • A parent asks us to find a nanny/teacher hybrid for a certain hourly rate
  • We find a qualified, passionate caregiver interested in the outlined responsibilities 
  • The family and nanny/teacher are an excellent fit and both parties want to move forward
  • When the family submits the Family/Caregiver contract, they include a previously unmentioned expectation that the nanny/teacher will also need to function as a housekeeper
  • The family agrees to pay a higher hourly rate or the caregiver respectfully declines

As with any industry, it’s absolutely acceptable to hold high expectations of someone you hire — as long as they’re compensated fairly for the role. 

Understand that responsibilities tend to look different for private educators vs. nannies who facilitate online learning. 

In our experience, it’s a private educator’s job to:

  • Provide a curriculum 
  • Teach the children 
  • Grade all assignments
  • Monitor and communicate progress to parents

A private educator works best for children close in age. Private educators are usually not responsible for taking care of babies/young toddlers as part of their role.

Typically, it’s a nanny/e-learning supervisor’s job to:

  • Make sure the children are able to log onto Zoom/the appropriate apps on time
  • Help the children mute/unmute themselves if necessary/depending on age
  • Keep track of assignments to be completed
  • Write down any materials needed to be picked up from the school or purchased 
  • Encourage the children and provide emotional support
  • Help children complete assignments without being responsible for correctness
  • Take care of babies/younger siblings while providing e-learning support for the older children

Hiring a caregiver during a pandemic is insanely competitive. Be prepared to act quickly.

Pre-pandemic, we’d introduce our client families to several candidates and give them as much time as they needed to make an offer. These days, however, many families are losing their top candidate to another family who didn’t wait as long to decide. While we would never encourage a client to make an offer they weren’t 100% sure about, the reality is that families are making offers faster and more competitively than ever before. So if you happen to meet a caregiver that’s an excellent fit for your family, our advice is to act on it before someone else does. 

Ready to stop doing it all and hire a private educator or nanny/e-learning facilitator?

Fill out our family application to help us find your dream caregiver today.