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A specialised child worker employed to teach and train children in a private household.

A governess (or governor) concentrates on teaching school-age children, in contrast to a nanny, who cares for babies and the physical needs of children.

​A governess usually works with children from about five years of age; however, some parents do choose to hire a governess for children from the age of three. They can often work alone with the children, or alongside an existing nanny, depending on the parent’s preference.

​A governess' focus will be the child’s education and etiquette, making sure children are reaching the required educational levels.


Native English-speaking governesses

Within large and wealthy households abroad in Russia, Saudi Arabia, Geneva Moscow, Paris and the UAE, native English-speaking governesses are in high demand as parents prefer to educate their children privately rather than boarding school.


Duties and responsibilities

  • To ensure that children follow a routine that allows for homework and educational activities

  • To teach manners, etiquette, and correct codes of conduct

  • To ensure the child’s timetable is adequate and their day is organised to run smoothly

  • To liaise with school and /or educating the child at home (if required)

  • To prepare children for exams and school assessments

  • To encourage appropriate behaviour and ensuring children complete their studies

  • To teach the ‘Three Rs' (reading, writing and arithmetic) to the youngest



Desirable specialised subjects:

  • Languages

  • A bilingual Governess is often asked to teach children a second language (French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, etc)

  • A musical instrument, the Arts (literature and poetry)

  • Coaching older children in history and geography




Governesses will have a diploma or certificate in childcare, with experience as a nanny. Ideally a teaching qualification and background.



Hours of work on average 10 hours a day, 50 -70 hours per week but with two days off.

Qualified governesses can expect a salary starting from £800 to £1500 net per week depending on experience and qualifications.


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