The 15 top issues that got parents excited in 2017
A quick catch-up guide to our most-talked-about stories of the year.
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We dived into the stats, tallied up the scores, and came out with the top stories on Parent24 in 2017. Not only did they get the most views, but they also invited the biggest response from our readers. Here they are!

1. How much you pay your nanny and domestic worker

We updated the minimum wage tables for 2018 and wonder how anyone can make a living off R1 700 a month! See the minimums here:

UPDATED: What is the minimum wage for domestic workers and nannies in 2018?

While many readers responded with the great wages and benefits they offer their domestic workers, we still get those trying to justify paying less. Here we listed some additional benefits and, in some cases, just decent considerations: We should be giving our nannies more than just the minimum. 

And lastly, in 2017 we published The Nanny Series to help you foster a great relationship with the woman you entrust your children to, covering everything from contracts and her safety to nanny cams and HIV. 

2. The other Spur playground incident

Parents watched, horrified, how a dad nearly upturned a mom’s table in anger, caught on CCTV, after a small incident in the family restaurant’s kiddie area.

But then another mom shared photos of her small daughter in the playground of a different Spur restaurant. 

The reaction was overwhelming, with one mom commenting: “Ahhh so precious. Thank you for lifting our spirits after all the negative posts this week.” If you haven't seen it, this will get you right in the Christmas spirit of peace and joy.  

3. Smacking your child can now land you in court

Children’s rights activists applauded this ruling, while some parents insisted no-one can tell them how to raise their children. Here's the story.

The point of the ruling was that those who abuse their children can no longer hide behind the “reasonable chastisement” exception and that all parents should instead investigate gentler ways of disciplining their children instead of immediately lashing out. 

You know what will benefit every single parent? If we used 2018 to look at our own anger levels and work through our own personal issues.

4. Sexy store window displays in malls

A big fashion retailer was told to tone down its window displays after a pressure group complained about life-sized photos of bare bottoms.

Most readers whole-heartedly agreed, while others felt you can’t protect kids from everything everywhere. What do you think?

5. Bullying: what we learned in 2017

We won't stop talking about bullying until it goes away. Which it probably won't soon, so bear with us. We asked what more can be done to stop the violence in our schools, how to recognise and combat cyber bullying, and looked back over the worst bullying incidents of the year but also some great inspirational posts and videos which gave us hope for 2018. Was your child bullied this year? Send us your stories to chatback@parent24.com and we may publish them, anonymously.

6. The time a great white photobombed a 10-year-old surfer

Whaaat? A dad was filming his son having fun in the waves and it was only later when they were looking through the photos that they realised he wasn't alone! The story went viral very quickly and we still get the heebie-jeebies every time we look at it.

7. SA dads are getting paid parental leave!

Yes, it’s happening. After many years of fathers picketing, it seems South Africa is finally catching up and granting parental leave to dads, and parents of adoptive and surrogate babies. Read all about it here.

8. The mom who leopard-crawled to save her husband's BBC interview

In March, two toddlers took the internet by storm when they photo-bombed their dad, Professor Robert Kelly, while he was doing a live Skype interview with BBC News. What viewers thought was an office quickly revealed itself to be a room in the family home, after the two energy bunnies bounced in. Their mom, bless her soul, crawled in and grabbed the kids to save her hubby’s interview. The very real Kelly family became famous overnight. Watch it here.

9. UPDATED: Unmarried parent? Know your rights

This is consistently one of our top stories and in 2017 we updated the content to clarify certain points. If you’re wondering about who has parental rights, what the parental responsibilities are, and what happens if a spouse doesn’t pay maintenance, read here. 

10. Mom caught daycare worker breastfeeding her baby!

Here’s another story that set parents abuzz: this US mom saw on surveillance footage how a daycare worker breastfed her 3-month-old son. After she explicitly made it clear that she did NOT want anyone else feeding her baby. I mean, apart from a gross violation of privacy, what about HIV or possible meds the woman was on? I would not be happy.

11. A mom's story: "I regret keeping my baby"

This story by YOU magazine just broke our hearts. 

While no-one dares say this out loud, and many moms wrote in to say how grateful they are that they did keep their babies, this mom’s confession struck a chord with many.

We do want to urge any parents feeling particularly overwhelmed and depressed to urgently seek help. It’s tough being parent to a child with disabilities and you need support yourself in order to be fully there for your children. Read When motherhood means misery and if you feel you can't cope, call SADAG on 0800 70 80 90.

12. Birth photographer shames mom for having a C-section

This one bowled us over for a strike. A mom hires a birth photographer (it’s a thing) but when the person arrives at the scene, freaks out that the mom isn’t going to give birth naturally. The person has the gumption to Whatsapp her and say, “A surgery isn’t birth, my dear.” Parents exploded.

13. Controversial changes to school system underway

The Department of Basic Education suggested that all decision-making responsibilities should be taken over from school governing bodies. This means that everything from admissions and language policy to staff appointments may soon be determined by the Department, even if the school receives the minimum state subsidy. 

Parent and educators were up in arms about this one and sent tons of letters to the Department. We’ll have to wait and see what happens in 2018.

14. My granddaughter is a spoilt brat

YOU magazine received a letter from a grandma who had all her days when her spoilt granddaughter came to visit for a week. She’s only 3 but her demands and tantrums turned the visit into a week-long nightmare. Readers sent us letters and debate ensued: whose fault is it?

15. Holidays!

Never have we seen parents as excited as when we published our printable holiday calendars for 2017 and 2018. You're welcome!

What was your favourite story of the year? Comment below or send to chatback@parent24.com.

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