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Education Guide Can my child be home alone?

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If the babysitter suddenly has no time, you need to work longer spontaneously or parents want to get used to their child basically to be alone, so ask some questions. When can my child be without supervision - when do I violate the duty of supervision? What does the youth protection law say and what do I have to consider if I leave my child alone? All answers can be found here.

Supervisory duty and youth protection law

In fact, there is no clear legal requirement as to when and how long parents are allowed to leave their child alone. Why? The law seeks to ensure that education moves in a balanced and healthy manner between control and care as well as personal and independent development of the child.

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According to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, such persons always have the right to parental care. The Civil Code (BGB) defines in Paragraph 1631 that parents have a duty to "care for, educate and supervise the child (…)".

In addition, the Federal Court of Justice (BGH) has stated: "The younger and more unreasonable a child is, the more should and must supervise parents."

On the other hand, the law states that children and adolescents have the right to develop independently. Parents should "in nursing and education, the growing ability and the growing need of the child to autonomous responsible behavior, " according to paragraph 1626 of the Civil Code.

Educational guidelines for the supervision of children

In spite of the unclear legislation on children alone, there are pedagogical principles and judicial decisions that you should adhere to:

Helpful guide articles on the topic "family" can be found here >>

Families should not take their eyes off babies or toddlers - just a few minutes at the very least to get to the door quickly, or similar. Regulated security measures are the condition for this. No sockets, fall opportunities or hot stove / hobs in the immediate vicinity.

From the age of 3 years, parents are allowed to leave their child alone in the room for about 10 minutes, and security measures must be taken.

A five-year-old child may be alone in the house, in the garden or on the playground for about half an hour, but stay close by. Not only for the protection of the child, but also because a separation and lack of opportunity for the child to have the parents in mind can cause great fears and insecurities.

If children from 6 years of age come to school, they may be alone at home for one to two hours. In the meantime, consciously initiate this in the way. Being alone for a while promotes the independence and self-confidence of the child.

There are no restrictions for adolescents over 14 years of age. Parents can easily be home even overnight.

Leave a child alone with older siblings?

This is possible as long as the sibling is much older and can take responsibility. If the children are close to each other in terms of age, you should be careful, as in these cases it can often lead to scuffles or common "nonsense".

Measures and rules when children are alone

Especially in the absence of parents, children need the feeling of security and care. Let them know by telling them exactly how long you have been away, where you are going, and when you are coming back. Important: stick to it. Only then will the child's trust be strengthened and not broken. In addition, you have your mobile within reach and are accessible to the child. This also gives a sense of security. In order to protect your child from things on TV and the Internet that are not yet suitable for minors, there are special parental controls, as well as protection from sockets, stoves, hotplates, etc.

So that your child does not open the door to strangers, it helps to switch off the bell temporarily. So that there is a plausible escape route in case of emergency (eg fire), do not close the door from the outside.

Helpful to know

The seventh birthday is legally important. Because: From now on children are liable for themselves. This does not (yet) apply to road traffic, here they are liable only from 10 years.

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