Supervision of Children Guidelines
- Children eight or younger should NEVER be left home alone.
- Children between the ages of nine and twelve, based on the level of maturity, may be left home alone for less than two hours. (Never as babysitters!)
- Children thirteen and older, based on the level of maturity, may be left home alone and may perform the role of babysitter as authorized by a parent/care giver for up to twelve hours during the day.
When leaving children home alone, these are suggested questions to ask:
- Does the child know the emergency plan for the family?
- Does the child know the parent's phone numbers (work, home, and cell)?
- Can the child demonstrate the plan and recite the phone numbers?
- What is the availability of the parent during the day time?
- Are there environmental factors that further add risk to the situation?
- Are there factors that reduce risk, for example, supportive/available neighbors?
(The policy stated below is taken from the Child Protective Services Social Services Manual, 2104.3)