After the birth of her baby, a woman in Hungary receives a 20-week maternity leave at full pay. After this, if she wishes to temporarily stop working, in order to bring up her child, she can prolong her maternity leave until her child is three years old. In this case, she then receives 3J4 of her salary up to the time her child is 18 months old, and a very modest amount during the remaining 18 months. During the whole of this three-year period she is guaranteed her job security. In spite of these social benefits, 17 % of the children from birth up to 3 years old attend a day care center, but the great majority of them do not enter before they are 18 months. The centers are organized in such a way as to value the children's freedom of activity. This is encouraged by the high quality of care they receive and by the continuity of the relationships they have with the adults there. A child enters a center in steps. At first a parent is present. This makes it easier for the child to gradually become familiar with the new environment.