Teo, Youyenn. 2022. “Education as care labor: Expanding our lens on the work-life balance problem.” Current Sociology 0(0):00113921211072577.
Scholars have documented the challenges of combining wage work and care responsibilities in various societal contexts. National variations reveal that public policy and care infrastructure have major effects in shaping gendered patterns, class inequalities, as well as overall wellbeing of parents. Childcare centers and schools can enable people with children to pursue jobs and careers. Yet, as I show in this article, education systems’ demands can become a major component of parental care labor. Drawing on interviews with 92 parents in Singapore, I illustrate the ways in which education care labor impedes work-life reconciliation as well as deepens the significance of gender and class.