Coworker spaces are on the rise, offering everything from a temporary office for travelers to women-only spaces that blur the line between office and social club. But with all the growing options, Kids & Company stands alone as the only coworking space in the U.S. that is attached to a daycare. This is slightly different from coworker spaces that offer childcare, as it is the child’s enrollment, not the parent’s, that grants access. But perhaps most importantly, Kids & Company provides a space for parents who may not need a co-working space regularly but could occasionally need the flexibility to work near their kids.
A Boston Globe profile on the new Kids & Co daycare center in Boston’s seaport district provides an example that may sound familiar to many working parents: A mom who has to pick up her child at 5:30 p.m. is forced to take a conference call while running for a commuter rail. The mother in question, Nikki Miller, recently moved her children to the Kids & Co center because of the flexibility the co-working space would offer. Rather than taking calls on the fly, she can leave her office a little early and finish up at the co-working space, taking calls in private. While parents can work full-time from the co-working space, they also have the option to work a few hours in the morning or a few hours in the evening before pick-up.
This is on top of Kids & Co’s existing services for kids and families, including organic meals and a French program. But even with the current high costs of childcare nationwide, Kids & Co’s rates are high: $2,890 a month, according to the Globe.
But could it be setting a trend that less pricey daycare providers could offer, too? After all, as Kids & Co cofounder Victoria Sopik told the newspaper, it’s not that expensive to add a simple room for adults to work in. “The childcare is the harder piece to operate,” Sopik explained. “The desks in the room are easy to deliver.”
A daycare center where kids can learn — and parents can work https://t.co/n1dI9R94IT
— The Boston Globe (@BostonGlobe) August 27, 2019
The Seaport co-working space is the second that Kids & Co has added to one of its centers. The first, in Toronto, was opened in the spring. In addition to offering desks, there is a nursing room (the space itself is separate and out of sight of the kids).
While it’s still early days and no one can predict how often parents will take advantage of the daycare center’s co-working feature, the Globe profile looks at this as an extension of the services many nurseries already provide: Daycares in corporate offices, for example, have long offered this type of convenience for working parents. Now that a growing number of people are contractors and self-employed, it might make sense to flip that model and attach offices to the daycares instead.