MOM BLOG: When is a kid old enough to be home alone after school?

When is a kid old enough to be home alone after school?


It’s the time of year for us to let our after school program know if our kids will be back. Our oldest is turning 11 next week and is one of the last kids in his age range still going to after school.

We live on the outskirts of town so if he doesn’t go to after school it’s either bus home and be there alone from 3-5/6p post days or go to at in home after school sitter.

Is two plus hours/day too long to be home alone at his age? He has friends who manage it.

Admittedly; my kid’s not the most responsible but he’s trying and we have some days planned this summer where we’ll test him a bit to see if he can follow direction when we’re not there (ie. A half day alone here and there where we leave him some things to do). These days will also gauge his comfort level. He says he really wants to come home after school but he’s not alone very much so I think some trial days will help him realize whether he’s truly ready.

When did you start to leave your kids home alone?
What are some of their after school, home alone responsibilities?
Any tips, tricks or hints to help us with this transition?

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