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Old 09-18-2018, 01:46 PM
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Default Changing "No Charge" Days Policy

So, I have one family who I offer 10 no charge days per year to use. Unfortunately I found out the hard way this was not a good business move. I only offer it to this family because they are my only full timers and have been with me since before I was licensed. And if I'm being honest, she's a complainer and I would rather not deal with it. I will either completely take the days away beginning January 1, or I will cut them in half. I should also point out that she has 2 kids enrolled, so 10 days each, and I lose alot of money when she uses them. Especially when she gives me no notice, which is usually what happens. I also don't charge when I'm closed and my rates are very reasonable. More reasons why I would like to change this policy for this family. Any advice on what to do here? I know if I cut it down to 5 days per child, she will be mad about it which is why I'm tempted to just get rid of them completely. What would you do? How would you tell her? I should add that I have a hard time using my backbone and do not like to confront families. So awkward. I usually do a text if I have to say something!
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Old 09-18-2018, 01:58 PM
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Do you update your policy every year? I have parents sign a new handbook & contract the first of the year and have it in my policy that my policys are subject to change. If parents dont agree with any new rules or changes, then they dont sign it and can find new care. This way I dont have to verbally say the changes, because I dont have a backbone either. I used to offer half off for parent vacations. I got rid of that and a parent didnt realize it and asked why they were being charged the full price. I explained that in the new handbook she signed, i got rid of the discount. She just said Oh ok. Lol
Get rid of the days! "Tuition is to hold your childs spot in the daycare, not based on attendence"
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by MomBoss View Post
Do you update your policy every year? I have parents sign a new handbook & contract the first of the year and have it in my policy that my policys are subject to change. If parents dont agree with any new rules or changes, then they dont sign it and can find new care. This way I dont have to verbally say the changes, because I dont have a backbone either. I used to offer half off for parent vacations. I got rid of that and a parent didnt realize it and asked why they were being charged the full price. I explained that in the new handbook she signed, i got rid of the discount. She just said Oh ok. Lol
Get rid of the days! "Tuition is to hold your childs spot in the daycare, not based on attendence"
This is what is so dumb about it!
I changed my policies in May and I make it very clear that "because I have reserved a spot for you child in my daycare, payment is due regardless of attendance." This is something I offered (verbally) extra only for this family. I have a separate sheet where she initials when she uses her no-charge days. I guess at least she won't have to sign a new contract and I won't have to give out a new handbook!
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:11 PM
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I would suggest you just eliminate it and be prepared for her to pull her kids out. Whenever I make a change that equates to a “no” for the parents I prepare myself for them to get mad and pull their kids out. It has happened a couple times but for me the changes I have made were important enough to risk it. If you can afford to lose the kids or fill their spots quickly I would just eliminate all unpaid days so that she doesn’t try to push back more if you offer 5 etc etc. Good luck!
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:13 PM
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I would simply change your policies and if she doesn't like it, she can find alternate care.

Text; "Beginning Monday, October 1st ALL families will pay a flat weekly rate based on enrollment NOT attendance or time used. The only days that will not be charged tuition will be days in which the child care is closed."

If she balks, ask her if she is giving her notice of withdrawal? If not, then ALL families means her too.

A good rule of thumb is to remember that just because you did, doesn't mean you have to continue.

There are lots of ways in which I was flexible and/or accommodating for a family but couldn't do the same the following month etc.

Daycare is an ever evolving business and as smart business owners you change what doesn't work when it no longer works.
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by daisymay View Post
I would suggest you just eliminate it and be prepared for her to pull her kids out. Whenever I make a change that equates to a “no” for the parents I prepare myself for them to get mad and pull their kids out. It has happened a couple times but for me the changes I have made were important enough to risk it. If you can afford to lose the kids or fill their spots quickly I would just eliminate all unpaid days so that she doesn’t try to push back more if you offer 5 etc etc. Good luck!
Yup I've had 3 families up and leave over being told no or that they have to pay me like they thought care was free or something.
Start interviewing for replacements and then tell them no more free days. They leave or complain fill the spots.
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:56 PM
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MarinaVanessa MarinaVanessa is online now
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Be ready to have her unenroll her kids out if you take away her non-pay days .... BUT look at it on the bright side and take it as a good thing. Sounds like she gives you a hard time.

If I were you here's what I would do. I would start now and change/add/remove any policies in your contract and handbook that aren't working for you. On Monday December 3rd give her the new contact and policies and a notice of changes saying that the new contract must be back to you no later than the 14th (2 weeks before January) and that any clients that don't turn in the new contracts by that day will receive their 2-week termination notice the same day.

If she balks or gives you a hard time just tell her "I understand that this may not work for you and that my daycare may no longer be a good fit for you. You need to do what is in your family's best interest, just like I am doing what's in the best interest of mine. I hope you stay but understand if you don't"

Just follow through. If you replace them it might be the best thing you do and you and either way you start the new year fresh with either new policies that work better for you or new clients that work better for you.
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