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  #1  
Old 06-08-2014, 06:06 PM
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Default Offering Free Week of Vacation to Families?

We have always offered one week of vacation each year, to each family, where they do not have to pay for our services. We just ask that we are notified about a month in advance so we can plan for the cut in payment. Recently we have had to make many changes to our policies, one of those being that we can no longer afford to offer this free week. Two of our longest standing clients, who have never asked for vacation weeks in the 2 years they have been here, have both asked for their vacation week. One is this coming week and the other needs theirs in July. My question is, since they have never taken vacations, even though our policies have had to change, should we still give it to them with the understanding that this will be their only free week as we will not be offering that anymore? What would you do?
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Old 06-08-2014, 06:31 PM
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Hi tickle!
When did you notify the parents of the change? Did they know about it and still requested vacation time?
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Old 06-08-2014, 06:44 PM
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They were notified verbally about 2 months ago but we should have done it in writing so that no one could claim that they forgot. I'm sure each family would oblige if we told them no freebies but they have both been great clients even when we had to raise our rates so we don't want to disturb the waters so to speak.
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Old 06-08-2014, 06:48 PM
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Since they are good clients (and there's nothing in writing, which to my mind would change everything), would you consider reminding them of the new policy, and as a goodwill gesture, split the difference for this year only?

If you offer this verbally, write it up afterwards and give it to them so that next year, you do have it in writing
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Old 06-08-2014, 06:52 PM
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I would remind them of the policy changes, but let them have their 1 week only because they haven't used it in the two years, but tell them that unfortunately because of the changes, this will be a one time deal. Put it all in writing and have them initial a copy for your files. I think that is fair.
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Old 06-08-2014, 09:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SignMeUp View Post
Since they are good clients (and there's nothing in writing, which to my mind would change everything), would you consider reminding them of the new policy, and as a goodwill gesture, split the difference for this year only?

If you offer this verbally, write it up afterwards and give it to them so that next year, you do have it in writing
This!
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Old 06-08-2014, 09:22 PM
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I would honor the free week and then put it in writing so you don't have to give any more.

I would honor the free week because as providers we would never accept a verbal change from a parent and require things in writing or to be signed, I think it's only fair we do the same and put our changes in writing.

The families may have thought the verbal conversation was a "warning" that you will be changing your policy and no longer offering the free vacation, they better hurry and take theirs now before it changes...especially since they have never taken the free offer before.

Part of me wants to say you kind of owe it to them since other families used their free week in previous years and you said they've never used one to date.
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackcat31 View Post
I would honor the free week and then put it in writing so you don't have to give any more.

I would honor the free week because as providers we would never accept a verbal change from a parent and require things in writing or to be signed, I think it's only fair we do the same and put our changes in writing.

The families may have thought the verbal conversation was a "warning" that you will be changing your policy and no longer offering the free vacation, they better hurry and take theirs now before it changes...especially since they have never taken the free offer before.

Part of me wants to say you kind of owe it to them since other families used their free week in previous years and you said they've never used one to date.
Exactly this.

I would make sure I get out the new policy *in writing* ASAP though.
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Old 06-09-2014, 05:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KellyinCalgary View Post
I would remind them of the policy changes, but let them have their 1 week only because they haven't used it in the two years, but tell them that unfortunately because of the changes, this will be a one time deal. Put it all in writing and have them initial a copy for your files. I think that is fair.
I agree.
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Old 06-09-2014, 06:12 AM
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I would give it to them. If you notified them 2 months ago that was still March/April maybe? I would make something like that a change that goes in effect with the calendar year (or school year if that is how you run), not just midyear like that. They could argue that the person who may have taken their free week in March still got it but they want theirs for June and can't.

I would let them know that the policy has changed and going forward they would no longer receive that free week each year.
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Old 06-09-2014, 10:08 AM
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I agree with everyone. I also think that you "reminded" them that they had a free vaca coming so now they are hurrying.

Did they specifically ask to use their free week? Or did they just give notice that they would be on vacation? Maybe they aren't assuming it will be free since they were told 2 months ago, maybe they're just letting you know dck won't be there
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Old 06-09-2014, 02:56 PM
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One family asked for the free week outright and the other hinted. We are taking the advice on here and have let both families know that they can take their free week but that will be the last one. We are drawing up papers for everyone to sign on the matter. Thanks everyone!
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