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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Did You Work in a DC Center?
jokalima 10:01 PM 05-23-2012
Did you ever work in a Center? What was the experience? I worked in one and it was the most terrible work experience of my life, all my co-workers felt the same way. My sister works in another center and is the same story. Why do some centers treat their employees so bad?
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Kaddidle Care 05:00 AM 05-24-2012
I work in a Center and I think it's because with low pay comes a bit of disrespect. The one I work for is Non-Profit so I really can't compare it to others. In fact it's the only one I've ever worked for.
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Lianne 05:07 AM 05-24-2012
I did my high school and college field placements in daycare centers because I had planned to work in a center. I quickly learned that I did not like the daycare center atmosphere. I didn't like the large group, the politics, the cattiness and gossiping of the workers or how they treated the children but most of all, I hated the unbending structure. If the kids were having a blast playing dress up, they would have to stop just because the clock said it was time to do puzzles. I much prefer caring for children in a home atmosphere where there's some flexibility, no politics, no gossip or crap from other workers, etc.
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SunshineMama 05:18 AM 05-24-2012
I worked in a daycare center for 1/2 of a day and quit at lunchtime.

It was a very reputable place in our area!

The kids walked around with snotty noses and no one wiped them. The staff never washed their hands (theirs or the kids) before or after diaper changes.

The kids would drop food all over the floor and then just eat it, share it with eachother, etc.

I was disgusted and walked out.

Of course when the parents came everything was "on."

I swore my kids would never go to a daycare center ever.
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EntropyControlSpecialist 06:30 AM 05-24-2012
I have worked in two centers (when I was getting my college degree).
One was horrendous (and is a very popular daycare chain, The Children's Courtyard) and one was just fine. Not the most amazing place, but not the worst place to work in the world either.

I took off 1 day to miscarry a baby at The Children's Courtyard, and they called me up at the end of it and said, "Are you coming in tomorrow?" I had to tell them no, I was still miscarrying. They replied, "Aren't you DONE yet?!"
I also reported someone that I knew was abusing children to many people higher up at The Children's Courtyard and she wasn't fired until 2 years later. She knew just where the cameras wouldn't be able to see her. Seriously.
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Meeko 09:50 AM 05-24-2012
When we left the Air Force and moved back here, I took a job opening early just on Saturdays (5AM) at a local center. It was horrendous. As the kids (mostly just dumped by parents who wanted to go back to bed) went back to sleep....I busied myself cleaning the filth. I found a moldy, half eaten jar of baby food in the block box. I could only find a handful of crayons and when I asked the girl who came in at noon about it....she told me the owner didn't like replacing things and that's all they had.

The bathrooms were a health hazard, so was the kitchen. I went home with raw knuckles and cried. The following week, I arranged for licensing to show up while I was there. I showed them around and they they were dismayed. I called the owner, told him to get down there and when he expected me to help him make excuses, I gave him a piece of my mind and told him I was the one who called licensing (they don't normally go out on weekends) and I quit. sad to say, he did just enough to amend the huge long list licensing gave him and is still in business today. It's sickening.

After that, I got a job in another center and spent three glorious years there. Great owners, great staff. I only left because my last daughter was born and I wanted to be home with her. I still pop in when I have time and see the owners and their kids. They knew I was leaving to do home day care and they were very happy for me. It wasn't great pay...but the work atmosphere was wonderful.
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My3cents 10:57 AM 05-24-2012
yes and it was horrible. I can't even write about it.
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jokalima 11:04 AM 05-24-2012
I worked in one well known and big center, they have 3 different centers. My coworkers where fine, one or 2 just would not get along with me but it did not bother me. What I could not stand is how they treated us, I mean, staff crying all the time because they would be so hard on us,I just hated it. Hate how structured they are with the kids, they are kids in day care not teenagers in school. My co-worker use to call it "baby boot camp"
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jokalima 11:07 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by My3cents:
yes and it was horrible. I can't even write about it.
I know, we could write a book about terrible things in DC, one thing I know is that as a parent, if I knew how the staff is treated and how the kids are treated and the real things that happen in there; I would not give money to a place that makes the person that cares for my child miserable.
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MarinaVanessa 11:15 AM 05-24-2012
I think it must depend on the type of center that it is. We have a daycare center on the city college campus where you must volunteer at in order to complete your CD AA and even there they say the same things that have been discussed here. However we have a RIE center on base in the next town over that I was able to observe and it was so calm and soothing. The kids were very happy and you just feel their contentment and bond with the childcare providers. They had low numbers and it was all child led, it was very nice. The staff all seemed happy and said that they loved what they did, it was very impressive. Their whole theory revolves around being an "educarer" vs an "educator" where the child is respected as an individual, even infants.
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Ariana 11:25 AM 05-24-2012
I worked in a not-for-profit centre which is basically the "cream of the crop" in terms of daycare employment. My pay was gov't subsidized so I was making 3X what others were making in for-porfit daycares. I also got wonderful benefits and paid into a pension plan. My salaray was similar to a teacher. Depending how long you were there you had the potential to make upwards of $65K with 5-6 weeks of vacation. It was pretty sweet. Most of the people there had been there for 20+ years because you had to 'earn' your way in by doing years of supply and building up your seniority.

At for-profit daycares it seems that employess are treated like crap! I worked in one for a total of 2 months. The guy who owned the centre was an Engineer and didn't have a clue. Just hired some recent ECE graduate to run the centre and then hired relatives to work there. It was a disaster to say the least. At one point they were making a young girl sit in her own vomit to 'teach her a lesson' and I completely lost it on them. In the end I got recruited by the not-fot-profit and they didn't want me to go. The owner told me he'd offer me a bigger salaray and when I told them the starting rate at the other centre his jaw dropped and he said he just couldn't compete with it. High turnover rates in for-profits for sure!
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Sugar Magnolia 11:25 AM 05-24-2012
Look, ladies, I am not going to say that ALL CENTERS ARE HORRIBLE! Yes, some are, but not all. I pride myself in having a small, very clean, very well run center. With only 15 children to three staff members, our ratios are super low, and our employee is paid well, treated with respect and loved by the children. We have a stellar reputation with extremely low staff and student turnover. Those that know me here know I get upset with center- bashing. Sweeping generalizations hurt. There are horrible home daycares as well, but I would never say that here. I have a child enrolled that came from an absolute nightmare of a home daycare where she was mistreated, but I wouldn't make sweeping generalizations based on that one place. I know as a "center person" I am WAY outnumbered here, Hunni Bee the only other one I know. Huge centers with high ratios and poorly paid staff and negligent directors do exist, but we are NOT all like that. Sigh. Hurt. Looking for some affirmation and support here please! OP, really, centers can be good places to work. Some children love their center, mine do.
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Sugar Magnolia 11:30 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa:
I think it must depend on the type of center that it is. We have a daycare center on the city college campus where you must volunteer at in order to complete your CD AA and even there they say the same things that have been discussed here. However we have a RIE center on base in the next town over that I was able to observe and it was so calm and soothing. The kids were very happy and you just feel their contentment and bond with the childcare providers. They had low numbers and it was all child led, it was very nice. The staff all seemed happy and said that they loved what they did, it was very impressive. Their whole theory revolves around being an "educarer" vs an "educator" where the child is respected as an individual, even infants.
Thank you!
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MarinaVanessa 11:38 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia:
Huge centers with high ratios and poorly paid staff and negligent directors do exist, but we are NOT all like that. Sigh. Hurt. Looking for some affirmation and support here please!
That was the point that I was trying to make, it depends on the center that it is. The way that the center is run, ratio and the attidute of the employees are all factors in whether a center is a quality center or not.
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EntropyControlSpecialist 11:40 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia:
Look, ladies, I am not going to say that ALL CENTERS ARE HORRIBLE! Yes, some are, but not all. I pride myself in having a small, very clean, very well run center. With only 15 children to three staff members, our ratios are super low, and our employee is paid well, treated with respect and loved by the children. We have a stellar reputation with extremely low staff and student turnover. Those that know me here know I get upset with center- bashing. Sweeping generalizations hurt. There are horrible home daycares as well, but I would never say that here. I have a child enrolled that came from an absolute nightmare of a home daycare where she was mistreated, but I wouldn't make sweeping generalizations based on that one place. I know as a "center person" I am WAY outnumbered here, Hunni Bee the only other one I know. Huge centers with high ratios and poorly paid staff and negligent directors do exist, but we are NOT all like that. Sigh. Hurt. Looking for some affirmation and support here please! OP, really, centers can be good places to work. Some children love their center, mine do.
Ask me about home daycare centers. I'll give you horror stories about those as well.
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Sugar Magnolia 11:42 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa:
That was the point that I was trying to make, it depends on the center that it is. The way that the center is run, ratio and the attidute of the employees are all factors in whether a center is a quality center or not.
Thank you Marina! Your post was excellent.
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Ariana 11:43 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by MarinaVanessa:
I think it must depend on the type of center that it is. We have a daycare center on the city college campus where you must volunteer at in order to complete your CD AA and even there they say the same things that have been discussed here. However we have a RIE center on base in the next town over that I was able to observe and it was so calm and soothing. The kids were very happy and you just feel their contentment and bond with the childcare providers. They had low numbers and it was all child led, it was very nice. The staff all seemed happy and said that they loved what they did, it was very impressive. Their whole theory revolves around being an "educarer" vs an "educator" where the child is respected as an individual, even infants.
How do I get a job there!!? haha
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MarinaVanessa 11:52 AM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by Ariana:
How do I get a job there!!? haha
If you don't have one near you you can always run your own daycare like it. It's pretty much just a mind set. You learn how to be a calm, peaceful and respectful person to teach children to be calm, peaceful and respectful kids. I think that even if their foundations aren't all followed to a T they have really cool and valid but SIMPLE points that both canters and childcare homes can implement. My goal is to move out of our condo and into a bigger space and take a few of their classes (in LA) and incorporate them into my FCC. For those interested, check it out Resources for Infant Educarers
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Sugar Magnolia 12:01 PM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by LCLC:
Ask me about home daycare centers. I'll give you horror stories about those as well.
Not looking for home daycare bashing either. There are good and bad of both. Sorry guys, I just get upset by the "centers treat staff and kids horrible" posts. I can't help it. When my husband and I opened a center, we knew what we didn't want to be, a big box kid mill. We choose quality over quantity. We have high overhead, we make less $$ because we choose quality. It isn't always about the $$ with centers, some of us do care about staff,.ratios and happy children.
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jokalima 12:03 PM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia:
Look, ladies, I am not going to say that ALL CENTERS ARE HORRIBLE! Yes, some are, but not all. I pride myself in having a small, very clean, very well run center. With only 15 children to three staff members, our ratios are super low, and our employee is paid well, treated with respect and loved by the children. We have a stellar reputation with extremely low staff and student turnover. Those that know me here know I get upset with center- bashing. Sweeping generalizations hurt. There are horrible home daycares as well, but I would never say that here. I have a child enrolled that came from an absolute nightmare of a home daycare where she was mistreated, but I wouldn't make sweeping generalizations based on that one place. I know as a "center person" I am WAY outnumbered here, Hunni Bee the only other one I know. Huge centers with high ratios and poorly paid staff and negligent directors do exist, but we are NOT all like that. Sigh. Hurt. Looking for some affirmation and support here please! OP, really, centers can be good places to work. Some children love their center, mine do.

Offending was not the intention, yes we know there are some good ones out there but for me, my case, I don't know one person that likes working in a center because of the way they are treated. If you ask me, my experience was terrible and I can only talk from what I know. Mount Olive Child Development Centers in Hartford CT bully their employees and does not care about the children, as long as the parents are "happy" they are happy.
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jokalima 12:06 PM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by Sugar Magnolia:
Not looking for home daycare bashing either. There are good and bad of both. Sorry guys, I just get upset by the "centers treat staff and kids horrible" posts. I can't help it. When my husband and I opened a center, we knew what we didn't want to be, a big box kid mill. We choose quality over quantity. We have high overhead, we make less $$ because we choose quality. It isn't always about the $$ with centers, some of us do care about staff,.ratios and happy children.
I am not against centers, if I could I will open one but would never treat people like the center I used to work for does. Is not the only one, again, My sister works for the YWCA some horror stories there as well. We are talking about personal experiences here not about some ones DC in specific.
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youretooloud 12:12 PM 05-24-2012
I worked in centers years ago. Small centers, large chain centers.

We did things that would blow a parent's mind. I was always astounded that nobody knew what was happening.

I do think things have changed a lot though.
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Sugar Magnolia 12:16 PM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by jokalima:
Offending was not the intention, yes we know there are some good ones out there but for me, my case, I don't know one person that likes working in a center because of the way they are treated. If you ask me, my experience was terrible and I can only talk from what I know. Mount Olive Child Development Centers in Hartford CT bully their employees and does not care about the children, as long as the parents are "happy" they are happy.
I am sorry I got a little bent out of shape. And I am sorry you have to work in a bad center. If you worked for me, you would be responsible for only 5 children, would have lots of input and opportunity to do things your way, would be paid well, and would work directly with the owners, not some absentee owners and heartless director. I hope you find better employment. hugs.
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My3cents 12:38 PM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by jokalima:
I know, we could write a book about terrible things in DC, one thing I know is that as a parent, if I knew how the staff is treated and how the kids are treated and the real things that happen in there; I would not give money to a place that makes the person that cares for my child miserable.
The parents saw how we were treated. I was called out many times in front of the parents.

I asked a Grandmother to make sure little "Susie" had extra clothes, because she had nothing and I had asked the mother numerous times. The child went home dirty with Grammy, because there were no clothes to put on her- exhausted the supply that I had brought in out of my own pocket, that never came back. Mother was livid, Grandmother was livid- I was called out on this. This is the smallest of events that happened with my experiences.

Not all Centers or Home Day cares are horrible. I am talking of my experience with the Center that I worked at. Never have I been treated the way that I was at this place. Not to make it worse- but it was a Church daycare--- no longer working, no longer there and the Pastor and his wife are no longer together-
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jokalima 12:55 PM 05-24-2012
Originally Posted by My3cents:
The parents saw how we were treated. I was called out many times in front of the parents.

I asked a Grandmother to make sure little "Susie" had extra clothes, because she had nothing and I had asked the mother numerous times. The child went home dirty with Grammy, because there were no clothes to put on her- exhausted the supply that I had brought in out of my own pocket, that never came back. Mother was livid, Grandmother was livid- I was called out on this. This is the smallest of events that happened with my experiences.

Not all Centers or Home Day cares are horrible. I am talking of my experience with the Center that I worked at. Never have I been treated the way that I was at this place. Not to make it worse- but it was a Church daycare--- no longer working, no longer there and the Pastor and his wife are no longer together-
Wow!

I remember one time I cried and cried in front of the HT and she was like "you can't cry about this" I got this new kid, he was always smelly, smelly in the really bad sense, I always brought it as a concern, always told to leave it and forget about. He had this things on his skin that looked like bug bites but it was all the time in all weather, also told to leave it. He rarely had change of clothes, mom never brought wipes or diapers, was always a struggle to make her bring things for him. Mom was always on nice heels, always nice wigs, nails done, nice perfume... He really needed wipes and his bottom was always with diaper rash, anyways I asked for wipes for about a week, during this week she came everyday ( like always) with a cup a Dunkin Doughnuts coffee, when I came in one morning I asked the HT if she had brought the wipes, the HD told me that mom had said she is not bringing more wipes because she can't afford them. If she said no to her morning coffe everyday she would have been able to go to the dollar store and buy a 1.00 pack of wipes, i was told not to think about it.

As a provider it's difficult not to take it personally, if you think about it this kids are with us during most part of the day, we end up loving them and when seeing them mistreated it does hurt. The point is that Mom did not want to be bothered with the clothes, diaper and wipe situation so the center did not want to bother her about it to keep her happy. I've seen things with kids in DCC that is just not right. In my case I could not get sick because they would let me know how bad I was for getting sick, it was terrible.
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Bookworm 03:20 PM 05-24-2012
I've worked in Centers and as an asst. in an in-home center and had good and bad experiences with both. As far as working in a Center, my biggest problem was "warehousing kids". By that I mean stuffing the maximum amount of kids allowed in a class regardless of space. We would be in ratio but would have so many kids that we would have to send at 8-10 kids to other classes to nap and sometimes to eat. It was hard to do any activities because there were just too many kids.

The place I work at now is pretty good. The staff is very good and we get along for the most part. We maintain ratios based on room size with my class being the biggest so I have the most, 17 (17:1 ratio). We establish relationships with all parents beginning in the infant room even if the child never comes to our class. We believe in open communication and encourage all parents to come to us with any problems (this has backfired on me many times).

I guess I'm saying this to say is that if the owners of these "bad" centers really cared about the growth and development of the children that they are in charge of then they would any and every effort build up their Center to top levels of care. Far too often, many of these owners own several other businesses and the daycare is just an after thought and an easy way to make money. As long as the money flows, they could care less about what is going on. Many of them don't even bother to come around to talk to their employees. It's this indifference that causes their centers the bad reputations and high turnover that they have.
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AfterSchoolMom 03:36 PM 05-24-2012
I never have, mostly because every time I interview, they don't want to pay more than minimum wage. After reading these stories, it sounds like I've dodged a bullet!
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