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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>2 Week's Notice Because I'm taking a Vacation
Shell'skidfarm 10:31 AM 08-03-2017
So just venting here a bit. I have been in the childcare business since 2003 and have not had a vacation in 9 years even though it is in my contract which all parents signed.
The last time I took my vacation was back in 2009. Have been working without another one. Why?
Traumatized due to the fact that last time I mentioned my vacation, I had families threaten to leave if I left. So I took my vacation and sure enough, two families with siblings did indeed give me a two week's notice upon my arrival. This left a bad taste in my mouth and have not wanted to repeat history, hence my not taking a vacation in nine years. Feeling burnt out and finally thinking of myself for once, I gave a 30 day notice last month stating that I would be taking my much needed vacation this month, and sure enough, I already received a two week's notice letter to terminate family of 2 children. It is a heartbreak for me to see that if I'm not here 365 days a year for the families, then I'm no longer good to them. So sad. I also raised my rates a measly $1.00 a day since 2004. All hell breaks
loose. Has anyone else in this business gone though this experience?? Thanks for letting me vent.
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Ariana 10:34 AM 08-03-2017
It seems that this is a common experience for home care providers. I guess parents just see us as baby warehouses and not human beings. I personally have never had this happen in the 7 years I have been doing this but I don't charge for my vacation so that might be why. I also give 6 weeks notice at minimum. This year families got 3 months notice.
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Blackcat31 10:36 AM 08-03-2017
Originally Posted by Shell'skidfarm:
So just venting here a bit. I have been in the childcare business since 2003 and have not had a vacation in 9 years even though it is in my contract which all parents signed.
The last time I took my vacation was back in 2009. Have been working without another one. Why?
Traumatized due to the fact that last time I mentioned my vacation, I had families threaten to leave if I left. So I took my vacation and sure enough, two families with siblings did indeed give me a two week's notice upon my arrival. This left a bad taste in my mouth and have not wanted to repeat history, hence my not taking a vacation in nine years. Feeling burnt out and finally thinking of myself for once, I gave a 30 day notice last month stating that I would be taking my much needed vacation this month, and sure enough, I already received a two week's notice letter to terminate family of 2 children. It is a heartbreak for me to see that if I'm not here 365 days a year for the families, then I'm no longer good to them. So sad. I also raised my rates a measly $1.00 a day since 2004. All hell breaks
loose. Has anyone else in this business gone though this experience?? Thanks for letting me vent.
I'm sorry you are having issues with this.

I have never had that type of reaction to any time off and consider myself blessed because of it.

I take two week long vacations a year, as well as most federal holidays and several personal days through the year off and never has any parent or family had issues with it.

My only advice is to never put yourself AFTER your clients.
You can't pour from an empty cup so make sure you take care of you first. always.
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Shell'skidfarm 10:57 AM 08-03-2017
Thank you for the encouragement. I feel that I gave enough time and I do not charge during my vacation time. I just don't get it.
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Ariana 11:00 AM 08-03-2017
Originally Posted by Shell'skidfarm:
Thank you for the encouragement. I feel that I gave enough time and I do not charge during my vacation time. I just don't get it.
That is just ridiculous! I cannot believe parents would just switch their kids out over something so dumb
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Blackcat31 11:01 AM 08-03-2017
Originally Posted by Shell'skidfarm:
Thank you for the encouragement. I feel that I gave enough time and I do not charge during my vacation time. I just don't get it.
Yeah, it's a tough to absorb but the reality is parents love you when it's working for them and hate you when it doesn't.

That is the # 1 reason providers struggle so it's always a good idea to make sure you are looking out for you and yours first and foremost. Others will adapt and accept or leave and if they leave, you didn't really need or want them as clients anyways.
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laundrymom 11:03 AM 08-03-2017
I agree with the others.
Take it.
Raise your rates to reflect the income loss from being closed and take it unpaid.
If you don't feel comfortable raising them then raise for new clients and cycle the raises through as you replace. I've never had anyone balk at my vacations.
I take two, one week vacations each year.
If anyone acts offended or put off at the interview about my policies they aren't offered a spot.
I have had several who were shocked about some policies and when they call to set up a second tour or a deposit acceptance appointment I tell them. "Your reaction to my x,y,z policy gave me the impression that you would not be a good fit for my program as x,y,z policy is an important one and I won't argue about it at a later date. "

In this business it's hard to be assertive for our needs sometimes. Especially since we are supposed to "do it for our love of children"
I love kids. I do. But I also have to get a break. So do you!!!
Be assertive. Be business minded. Be matter of fact.
"We will be closed from this date to this date as outlined in our childcare contract.
And call it good.
If they leave it's for the best. Maybe you will enroll someone who respects you.
You deserve that!!
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Shell'skidfarm 12:17 PM 08-03-2017
My day started kind of glum, but after reading positive comments, I am feeling much better.
I will go on my vacation, and I shall ENJOY myself.
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amberrose3dg 12:33 PM 08-03-2017
You need to do what's best for you. At the end of the day it is safe to say parents Will screw you over if it benefits them. I have had families give me notice right before vacation time. Only one or two but you replace those families immediately. I will not enroll if they have issues with paid time off or paying for a spot no matter what .
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NeedaVaca 12:38 PM 08-03-2017
I always feel so bad when I hear about these kinds of situations I have been fortunate that I have never had this happen to me but I think I am very very clear about my time off during the interviews. I take 3 weeks off paid every year and all major Holidays. I use every single day! You definitely don't want clients like that! I can't even imagine going 9 years without a vacation, you have to take care of YOU!
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littleflitter 12:45 PM 08-03-2017
I'm so sorry that happened! I'm always worried families will decide it's "too much" time closed when I take my days off, but I would have such a hard time without those days! I've been giving families a rough estimate of my calendar when the re-enroll each year. It's never set in stone, but hopefully it's helpful for them plan things out with the expectation that I AM going to take time off. I'm not sure how you managed for so long! Enjoy your time and hopefully the right family will fit into that spot!
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EntropyControlSpecialist 01:00 PM 08-03-2017
If they leave you will replace them with families that don't make you feel guilty for closing unpaid for 1 tiny week.
That's terrible of them. I pray you get better clients.
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Snowmom 01:54 PM 08-03-2017
Sorry you're going through this.

Yes, it's happened (and still happens) to me too.
I always have families who give notice before vacation time or time their final notice to not pay for holidays.

It stings.

I started to ask more questions at interviews and asked people: "how do you feel about your current provider taking time off"? When they say things that give me the feeling they're annoyed, I tell them "I need you to realize that I need time off from my job just as you do from yours. If I feel this will be an issue, then we can end the interview now".
That has helped!

Honestly though, you need to start with the mindset that YOU come first. Not their family needs, not their finances, not their health. YOURS.
ALWAYS.

Good luck!
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LovetheSun 02:39 PM 08-03-2017
You deserve it!

I can't even believe these families would leave you because of that, shame on them! All childcare givers should and need time off so that we have enough rest to give the best to the children.

And after 9 years, you are going to feel so much better after this time off. Truly.

I am wondering if you would consider raising your prices to attract different kinds of families, because these ones do not seems to appreciate you.
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LovetheSun 02:43 PM 08-03-2017
Originally Posted by Snowmom:
Sorry you're going through this.

Yes, it's happened (and still happens) to me too.
I always have families who give notice before vacation time or time their final notice to not pay for holidays.

Good luck!
It happened to me for the first time last year, I am consider changing my contract in 2018 so that if a family leave before the end of school year I keep their deposit (school year being from September to June).
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happymom 04:02 PM 08-03-2017
My daycare has it in their contract that rates increase by $2/week per child every September.

It's not much, but if you have 8 kids, it comes out to $768/year -- which is probably only about a $.40 hourly raise each year come to think of it. BUT the cost of living is always raising, the parents have probably gotten a raise, don't short change yourself!
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Josiegirl 04:14 PM 08-03-2017
Go. Have fun. Enjoy your time off. And find some other family who will appreciate you and respect you and want you at your best for their child/ren.
I spent many years worried about losing dcfs if I didn't cater to their needs and wants. One of the quickest ways to destroy yourself in this business.
I'm extremely lucky that I don't have those kind of families at the moment but have had them before.
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Shell'skidfarm 06:18 PM 08-03-2017
Yes I did indeed raise my rate to attract a different clientele. It's funny though this morning DCG was dropped off at the start of my driveway and she walked up to my front door with the envelope in her hand. Dad who dropped off couldn't look me in the eye and hand me the notice himself. She was the last one to be pick up and Mom wants a farewell party on the child's last day. REALLY?????
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Leigh 06:41 PM 08-03-2017
Originally Posted by Shell'skidfarm:
Yes I did indeed raise my rate to attract a different clientele. It's funny though this morning DCG was dropped off at the start of my driveway and she walked up to my front door with the envelope in her hand. Dad who dropped off couldn't look me in the eye and hand me the notice himself. She was the last one to be pick up and Mom wants a farewell party on the child's last day. REALLY?????
Please tell me that you said NO WAY to having a party! I'd just tell Mom that I don't feel much like celebrating getting fired.
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e.j. 09:29 PM 08-03-2017
Originally Posted by Shell'skidfarm:
She was the last one to be pick up and Mom wants a farewell party on the child's last day. REALLY?????
Wow! As my dc kids sing to one another....
You can't always get what you want.
You can't always get what you wa-a-ant
You can't always get what you want...

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Josiegirl 03:47 AM 08-04-2017
I always feel badly for the child in these situations. When a few bucks and parents' pride takes priority over what's best for the child. They need a center where there is always staff.
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laundrymom 08:42 AM 08-04-2017
I would absolutely have a party!!! I would have a huge "to do" and have mini muffins at afternoon snack. Except for the party girl. She would get a double sized espresso cupcake w some apple juice non diluted!
And the real party would start As soon as the parents left.
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NeedaVaca 08:49 AM 08-04-2017
Sorry, we will be too busy planning the party we are having after my rude families leave, the families that respected me enough to understand I am taking a well deserved vacation will be shown my appreciation
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daycare 09:52 AM 08-04-2017
Ouch, hugs to you. I have not had that happen, but I have had families start to complain.

I had it out with one mom who I termed because of her disrespect to me. This was many moons ago. I have since raised my rates, do a much better job on making sure that families understand that I am not a robot and I will need to unplug. I have also learned through many of the fine people here how to pick better families and to not put up with anyone's baloney.

I always try to see the positive side of things. At least you now no longer have to deal with that kind of person in your life.

I would ask the parent what day they were wanting the party. Then tell them As much as I would love to have a party for your child, just so happens we are having a kick off to our school year party next week and I won't have time to do more than one party. Wishing you all best of luck.

or you could be professional and just say that you are not interested in having a party at that time.

OOoohhh what we want to say and have to say....lol
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Shell'skidfarm 11:49 AM 08-04-2017
I like the double espresso cupcake idea!!! lol......will have to definitely think about that. Just heard through the grapevine that one more may be leaving, hey I take it with a grain of salt. It just so happen to be the more troublesome that are leaving. Heaven sent??? I'd like to think so.
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renodeb 10:11 PM 08-05-2017
Unbelievable,
I say screw them! I have never had a family leave because of me taking vacation. Those clients do not appreciate you, go on vacation and enjoy. You will be a better provider for it and i hope you replace those families with ones that will appreciate you.
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Pestle 03:19 PM 08-06-2017
How much advance warning did they have?

I gave my families over a month's warning. Nobody had a problem with it, but they all have nontraditional schedules, so I don't think anybody ended up having to pay for a sitter.

Yeah, they've gotten spoiled if they think they can have care every week of the year. Even schools close for a week several times a year.
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ColorfulSunburst 06:06 AM 08-08-2017
they show no respect. You can answer in the same language: terminate the contracts with them immediately . I would do it.
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LVG 01:01 PM 08-08-2017
Just curious, how long are you taking a vacation for?
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play 06:14 AM 08-09-2017
I havent gone through anything like this yet , I just had one kid since may and now I have three. I am new being a home provider and it is a different world from working in a center for many year I believe we work harder at home day care than we do at a child care center, i did get one week vacation after a year, are due for at least a month off. I appreciate your post and hope you take a break each year.
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coloradoprovider 07:14 AM 08-09-2017
You need to rest and relax. All work and no play makes for a grumpy caregiver.

I try to let my daycare families know at least a few months ahead for vacations; it's a great time for them to schedule theirs so they don't have to pay for their child's spot. I don't have the parents pay for my vacation time (some providers do) but I also expect them to pay during their vacation (to retain their child's spot). It's a great incentive for them to schedule either a grandma visit to take care of the child, or for them to take their vacation at the same time.

At the first interview and many times thereafter, I remind them that I take a total of about 6 weeks off per year - in various configurations and time frames. A key to making this work is very advanced notice. As soon as I plan time off, they are informed (as much as 6 months ahead!).

You deserve time off!
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badger411 07:33 AM 08-09-2017
I wish I could be as blase as you all seem to be about getting rid of parents. But I have no wait list, and I am just barely getting by already. I already have 3 spots open and no interest. We are living off of our tax refund right now. When school starts and the kindergarten kids leave, I will have 7 spots open and nobody to fill them. If I didn't have kids on assistance, I would just give up my license and get a full-time job. I take the abuse because otherwise I would be losing my house and my car.
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Snowmom 08:44 AM 08-09-2017
Originally Posted by badger411:
I wish I could be as blase as you all seem to be about getting rid of parents. But I have no wait list, and I am just barely getting by already. I already have 3 spots open and no interest. We are living off of our tax refund right now. When school starts and the kindergarten kids leave, I will have 7 spots open and nobody to fill them. If I didn't have kids on assistance, I would just give up my license and get a full-time job. I take the abuse because otherwise I would be losing my house and my car.
I don't think any of us think that "getting rid of parents" is a desirable business trait or something that we want to do. It is just a necessary evil sometimes.

This IS a tough job. There is always going to be that uncertainty of income or the fear of losing all income at once and it can/does happen. That comes with any self employment though. It's a risk.

With time, comes experience. With experience, comes establishment. The more established you are, the greater the demand for your services.

If you keep working at it, you'll get there. Many of us have or have had second jobs too.
It's been 10 years in daycare for me, and I still work a few weekends here and there for extra income when I'm low.
I get creative in my advertising and I AM CONSTANTLY working at it, even when I'm full.

However, even if I'm super low in enrollment, I still make sure they know I'm the boss. I will never let them call the shots here. Ever. If you let them do it once, it will never stop.
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Cat Herder 08:46 AM 08-09-2017
Originally Posted by badger411:
I wish I could be as blase as you all seem to be about getting rid of parents. But I have no wait list, and I am just barely getting by already. I already have 3 spots open and no interest. We are living off of our tax refund right now. When school starts and the kindergarten kids leave, I will have 7 spots open and nobody to fill them. If I didn't have kids on assistance, I would just give up my license and get a full-time job. I take the abuse because otherwise I would be losing my house and my car.
Have you done a recent self check?

How far are you from employers/businesses and schools? Is your yard fenced? Does your home appear warm, tidy and inviting from street view? Are you personally known locally (church, volunteer work, PTA)? Are your rates too low and arousing suspicion? Are your rates too high for the local economy?

Those are typically the death knell for home providers. I hope it improves for you soon.
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Leigh 10:17 AM 08-09-2017
Originally Posted by badger411:
I wish I could be as blase as you all seem to be about getting rid of parents. But I have no wait list, and I am just barely getting by already. I already have 3 spots open and no interest. We are living off of our tax refund right now. When school starts and the kindergarten kids leave, I will have 7 spots open and nobody to fill them. If I didn't have kids on assistance, I would just give up my license and get a full-time job. I take the abuse because otherwise I would be losing my house and my car.
Early this spring, I was at 33% capacity. I was bummed out and starting to feel desperate. I went from a waiting list and calls several times a week to kids moving away, parents losing jobs, and I actually termed 2 kids during this period because their mother was a monster. It went on for months, and now I am back to turning people down. The business is up and down all the time. This is the season that we have new daycares opening all over the place and it's going to be more difficult to fill spots. I know, though, that at least half of them will close in less than 6 months, and I'll be picking up their kids.

I'm not blase about terming, but I am adamant about not taking abuse from parents and not dealing with severe behavior problems from kids and their parents anymore.
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Justjoy 02:01 PM 08-15-2017
Wow! Sounds like those parent's are nut jobs!!

I take a one week vacation every year and sometimes more. I also take at least one 3 day weekend a year. 2 years ago I broke my ankle and had to have surgery. I was out of commission for 8 weeks! All of my kids came back. Most even came with their parent's to visit me while I was recouperating.
I am pretty picky about the parents & children I will take on. (Except in the case of one. Which I've already posted about).

I really don't have any advice, but I totally feel for you.
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MOM OF 4 LOGGED OUT 08:59 PM 08-16-2017
That's messed up! Unfortunately, I know how you feel. When I gave birth, I didn't even GET a notice. This, after all parents assured me they weren't going anywhere. I took TWO weeks off, and that was all the time I had EVER taken in 8 years. I realized these parents always expect something for nothing, and don't care about anyone but themselves.
After leaving the daycare over 5 years ago, I realized that things are actually not better, and in some cases, worse than they were when I left.

As a DCM, I pay my provider ON TIME EVERY TIME, and she gives me a schedule of her time off, and that's that. There is no back and forth, no threatening to quit, no actual quitting, no BS.

Briefly, I was re-considering becoming re-licensed. Between the insane requirements of my state, the inability to let kids be kids anymore, crazy parents and their "new" requirements (like elimination training? Say WHAT?) and the liability just for having a child in my mere presence, makes me say HAIL NO.
There is no way I would ever go back into child care again, after seeing all the stuff I continue to see here, what parents are now expecting, and how disrespectful people are toward their providers.
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LysesKids 09:10 PM 08-16-2017
Originally Posted by MOM OF 4 LOGGED OUT:
That's messed up! Unfortunately, I know how you feel. When I gave birth, I didn't even GET a notice. This, after all parents assured me they weren't going anywhere. I took TWO weeks off, and that was all the time I had EVER taken in 8 years. I realized these parents always expect something for nothing, and don't care about anyone but themselves.
After leaving the daycare over 5 years ago, I realized that things are actually not better, and in some cases, worse than they were when I left.

As a DCM, I pay my provider ON TIME EVERY TIME, and she gives me a schedule of her time off, and that's that. There is no back and forth, no threatening to quit, no actual quitting, no BS.

Briefly, I was re-considering becoming re-licensed. Between the insane requirements of my state, the inability to let kids be kids anymore, crazy parents and their "new" requirements (like elimination training? Say WHAT?) and the liability just for having a child in my mere presence, makes me say HAIL NO.
There is no way I would ever go back into child care again, after seeing all the stuff I continue to see here, what parents are now expecting, and how disrespectful people are toward their providers.
Hell No to the elimination training... it's a freaking health/sanitation nightmare... I even have a sentence in my potty training policy that I refuse to do elimination training & I'm an infant only home lol
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Denali 09:17 PM 08-16-2017
Originally Posted by LysesKids:
Hell No to the elimination training... it's a freaking health/sanitation nightmare... I even have a sentence in my potty training policy that I refuse to do elimination training & I'm an infant only home lol
elimination training? I haven't heard of this...? Can someone enlighten me please...?
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Leigh 07:47 AM 08-17-2017
Originally Posted by Denali:
elimination training? I haven't heard of this...? Can someone enlighten me please...?
It's diaper-free potty training-doesn't THAT sound fun in a large group of children?

Elimination communication (EC) is a practice in which a caregiver uses timing, signals, cues, and intuition to address an infant's need to eliminate waste. Caregivers try to recognize and respond to babies' bodily needs and enable them to urinate and defecate in an appropriate place (e.g. a toilet).

http://godiaperfree.com/elimination-communication/
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LysesKids 09:00 AM 08-17-2017
Originally Posted by Leigh:
It's diaper-free potty training-doesn't THAT sound fun in a large group of children?

Elimination communication (EC) is a practice in which a caregiver uses timing, signals, cues, and intuition to address an infant's need to eliminate waste. Caregivers try to recognize and respond to babies' bodily needs and enable them to urinate and defecate in an appropriate place (e.g. a toilet).

http://godiaperfree.com/elimination-communication/
Could you see me trying that with 4 babies under 15 months... so not happening; I'm glad I can be legally licensed exempt once again (QRIS is the other big reason). I run like I'm licensed just without all the government intrusion
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Pestle 12:25 PM 08-17-2017
Oh, I think a house full of undiapered children without bowel control is a swell idea. Just wait a few months for the manure to build up, and then plant an organic garden right in your play room! You might lose a few kids and family members to cholera, but you'll be so busy harvesting chard you'll hardly miss 'em!
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MOM OF 4 LOGGED OUT 12:42 PM 08-17-2017
Basically the children are training thr parents! Haha! Yeah, so much bull that exists now isn't worth the headache
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Luke25 09:50 PM 08-21-2017
Originally Posted by Shell'skidfarm:
So just venting here a bit. I have been in the childcare business since 2003 and have not had a vacation in 9 years even though it is in my contract which all parents signed.
The last time I took my vacation was back in 2009. Have been working without another one. Why?
Traumatized due to the fact that last time I mentioned my vacation, I had families threaten to leave if I left. So I took my vacation and sure enough, two families with siblings did indeed give me a two week's notice upon my arrival. This left a bad taste in my mouth and have not wanted to repeat history, hence my not taking a vacation in nine years. Feeling burnt out and finally thinking of myself for once, I gave a 30 day notice last month stating that I would be taking my much needed vacation this month, and sure enough, I already received a two week's notice letter to terminate family of 2 children. It is a heartbreak for me to see that if I'm not here 365 days a year for the families, then I'm no longer good to them. So sad. I also raised my rates a measly $1.00 a day since 2004. All hell breaks
loose. Has anyone else in this business gone though this experience?? Thanks for letting me vent.
I'm sorry! That is terrible!! You definitely need to take a vacation. I tell my parents in the interview that I will possibly need days off since I'm by myself and will always take 2.5 weeks of vacation every year. I let them know that if they don't have back up care that this may not be a good fit. I don't ever want to feel guilty for taking a much needed vacation or for taking care of personal needs (doctor, child events, etc..)
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Tags:2 week notice, paid vacations
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