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Old 09-25-2010, 08:37 AM
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I'm a daycare asst in a toddler room and also a mom of 3. None of my children ever bit or were the victims of a biter. But none of my children went to daycare which I now know is a whole different situation.

To say that daycare workers aren't paying enough attention is simply untrue. The daycare I work at was fortunate for almost an entire year. Not one of our children were biters, but as our enrollment grew, it was bound to happen. A 2 yr old boy enrolled from another school and mom failed to tell us that her child tended to bite. And the first chance he got he bit. It happened right in front of my eyes and for no reason. I've read some posters blame dcworkers as being too underpayed & overworked to properly supervise in these situations. And I have to protest that this is false. As a dcw who has cared for these toddlers - you become quite attached to these children and are in fact their surrogate parent. You sometimes spend more time with them than their own parents do & sometimes these children will slip & call you mommy. When they are bit while in your care - it hurts them and hurts you. I was absolutely horrified and even more so because this bite looked bad. It broke skin, bled and swelled immediately. And I have to admit, that I couldn't help but feel some anger towards the offender. But we have been instructed that this is nothing new - and some children bite out of anxiety or stress. And this child was new.

We did everything we were supposed to do. We separated the biter - spoke sternly to the offender. He cried & truly looked upset over his actions. We coddled the victim & administered first aid, called both parents and wrote up a boo-boo report. Our policy (though never needed before) is 3 strikes & you're out. We have also been told that we should never give out names of the offender for legal reasons. To the parent who wonders if this is valid - you better get used to this. It's the same reason why minor-aged lawbreakers are never identified and this will happen time & time again as your child progresses through school. The law is not of our making - but we are forced to follow it. And sometimes it might be your own child who benefits from this rule.

And then it happened again - even though I tailed the biter like a shadow. He managed to bite the same child and without warning. We were all looking out the window at some large birds on our school lawn and like a cobra, this kid struck. This time not only was the child hurt, but I (being responsible for tailing this biter) felt horribly. I had been speaking to the intended victim at that precise moment - I watched her eyes get large & could see her pain. It was my job to protect her and believe me, I'd have taken that bite in her place if possible. I speak to her mother all the time - and we've become friends, so that just added to the stress. We followed the same procedures as before - and this time I made sure this biter was nowhere near the victim... ever. It was tiring & I couldn't let my guard down for a second. I always stood between them. But it happened again. But this time with another child & it happened when I had gone home. Unfortunately, being the 3rd strike, the biter was expelled. We are business after all and our administrator did this to protect the other children. I had gotten attached to this child too (the biter) and feel badly for everyone involved. I wish we could have bent the rules to let him stay, because I'm sure we could have stopped him eventually - but we couldn't do it at the expense of the other children. Dcworkers do care - we care for all involved - the parents, the biter, the victim. It has nothing to do with being underpayed.
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