The new school year is just around the corner and both kids and parents have to prepare for a new year. And for lots of working parents that includes after school care for their kids. So when do you let your child stay home alone?

A recent article on ABC News' website told the tale of one mom's plan to introduce what she called the "Summer of Independence." Her seven-year-old son is a responsible, bookish kind of kid that she felt was ready to be left on his own for a few hours at a time. So she started to prep him this summer for that alone time in their apartment.

It sounded to me like she was covering all her bases, teaching him the rules for being

how young is too young to stay home alone?

home alone, like not answering the door, no watching TV and no playing video games, showing him how to call for help and who to call for help if needed plus a rundown on getting the mail when he got home from school.

She also researched laws on how old a child has to be to stay home alone, which for Massachusetts there is no specific age, issues get decided on a case-by-case basis.

So after all that prep the question remains the same...how young is too young to stay home alone?

I'm sure there are tons of different answers and I'm definitely sure it depends on the kid. I can remember being about nine or ten when my sister and I started staying home alone after school, but we had each other (that may have been worse...we fought...ALOT!)

So parents, what do you think? Is there a "best age" for starting to let your child stay home by them self? And what do you think that age is?