latchkey

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latchkey child

A school-age child who is unsupervised after school or in general, due to his or her parents being away for work. I know it makes me sound horrible, but I just don't want Tommy hanging out with those latchkey children from down the road. Being a latchkey child was tough at times, but it taught me the value of self-reliance at an earlier age than most.
See also: child, latchkey

latchkey kid

A school-age child who is unsupervised after school or in general due to his or her parents being away for work. I know it makes me sound horrible, but I just don't want Tommy hanging out with those latchkey kids from down the road. Being a latchkey kid was tough at times, but it taught me the value of self-reliance at an earlier age than most.
See also: kid, latchkey

a latchkey child/kid

  (mainly American)
a child who is often in the house alone because both parents are at work My dad came home at seven in the evening and my mom only an hour earlier so I was a latchkey kid.
See also: child, latchkey