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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Assistant dilemma WWYD
spedmommy4 09:03 PM 11-10-2015
I hired someone for a part time am position. She is well educated, had experience, and came with good references.

She is really sweet and nurturing with the kids but I two big issues keep cropping up.

The first is that stuff I generally consider to be common sense stuff does not occur to her. Off the top of my head, she didn't have the kids put away their play dough and it dried out. Today, she painted with the toddlers and when I went into that classroom this afternoon there was dried paint all over the table. (she knows where the spray is and only had 3 kids this morning)

She does have an employee handbook that outlines "classroom cleanup" as part of her job but I have had to tell her each time. Don't forget to xyz. After a month I thought she would get into the swing of things since we are pretty routine but . . . Not yet.

The other big issue is discipline. I have a few tough kids. No hitters or anything outrageous but they certainly test boundaries. No matter how much I model she cannot use her firm teacher voice. And I have a few kids that completely ignore her super sweet tone.

When they ignore her, she gets the deer in headlights look. I have been giving specific suggestions and directions for how to deal with behavior issues but I have found that I still have to step in almost every time.

For those of you that have had employees- is there any hope here? I want this to work out but I am getting really frustrated.
Play Care 05:13 AM 11-11-2015
I have two assistants, one during the school year and one in the summer.

My summer assistant is very sweet, great with little ones (under 2) and awesome at cleaning up. But she also is waaaaaaaaay too sweet and gentle for the older kids (and I primarily get older kids)

I think when she started working here she thought I was too loud/mean with the older kids. She learned But it did take a couple of years. Had she not be awesome in every other way I probably would have let her go.

Have you sat down and had a frank discussion with her? Are you able to leave the area completely so she doesn't have you to step in? I think part time is hard because they may not get the hours necessary to be completely comfortable with the job. It's why when I hire subs I have them with with/under me for a few months before I leave them on their own.

I would try to give her some more time to settle in but also have a frank discussion about what needs to happen (taking care to also mention what is going well)
I have had a bad assistant in the past and I should have been more straight with her. She eventually left me (completely in the lurch) for a "real" job (her words) and was fired from that after a few months.
Good luck!
daycare 07:31 AM 11-11-2015
I have had this issue as well in the past.

At the end of the day I will just sit down with her and tell her

you are doing great here and here, however, I have noticed this______. I need for you to work on _________ otherwise you are doing great.

I would create a check list of everything that needs to be daily.

like putting away art supplies, and etc. I would remind her in your talk that the childcare being clean is a must, as it affects the health and safety of the kids.

as for being assertive, I would tell her that while it might be uncomfortable at first, it is necessary so that you can have consistency in your program. If your assistant lets the kids get away with everything, they they are all going to start testing the boundaries again, with you too. I would help her to find a way that she can be assertive with the kids and still be kind at the same time.

My assistant who has been with me for over 4 years now was like that at first and she found out the hard way that you have to be teachers first and friends second. Just like parents can't be friends to their children first.

If I can offer any advise, just be upfront and let her know how you expect things to go. If you don't she won't know what you want.

I think as the owners and leaders, we sometimes forget that we already know everything that needs to be done and expect for others as well, but the truth is they just don't know it all yet.

BTW the check list I have is the best thing I ever did. I have one for am and one for PM and I require they check it off and have me look it over before they can clock out.
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