A surprisingly large number of parents think the TV set is an acceptable alternative to a living, breathing childcare provider.
It's not so shocking when you think about it in terms of dollar signs. The boob tube is captivating for young kids, and floating a cable bill is much cheaper than paying for a babysitter to watch your little one after school during the work week.
No matter how tight your budget may be, there are other options. Regardless of where you live, there are after-school programs that are both safe and affordable. If you're unsure about where to start looking, ask your child's teacher for advice, or contact your local YMCA.