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Old 10-09-2009, 09:40 AM
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GretasLittleFriends GretasLittleFriends is offline Member
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Georgia
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Default I Need Some Opinions/Advice - Contemplating Dismissing a Family

I'm contemplating dismissing a family I have. I need some opinions/advice...
Here's the scenario. (Warning... lengthy)
I have a family of three that enrolled with me in May. A 4yr old boy, Bob, a 3 yr old girl Betty, and a 2 yr old boy George. (Not their real names). These are their ages now, not at enrollment. I offer 24/7 services. I have this family every Mon & Sat 2p - 12a, unless I have a personal even in which I close. This has happened 3 times since they've started with me.

In the comment section of the signature page the mother wrote me out their typical schedule. The kids get up at 10am, eat breakfast & lunch at home. They get dropped off here, the youngest takes a nap, play time, dinner. Then the mother requests that I give them each a bowl of cereal, then a bath, pjs, brush teeth and put them to bed NLT 9:30p. So the cereal does fit in with my scheduled evening snack, so that's ok. I thought requesting a bath for each of them was a bit much. But each time these kids show up it looks like the last time they had a bath was the last time they were here. There have been times when I've given them a quick wipe-down with a wash cloth before I even let them in to the main part of my house they are so filthy.

Bob is a pretty decent kid. Quiet and fairly well behaved, but not the brightest bulb on the tree. He's social with my husband and the other kids and is learning daily. If it were just Bob, I wouldn't be posting this.

Betty is a handful to put it mildly. She's very intelligent and conniving. The poem about the girl with the curl in the middle of her fore-head is this girl to a T, except this girl is rarely if ever good. When she's naughty, you catch her in the act and work to correct the situation, she'll blatantly ignore you. She won't look you in the eye, or if she does, it's only to quickly acknowledge that she's going to ignore you as she turns her head away from you and continues the bad behavior. I've talked with mom and dad about this and she's quite a handful at home too. Mom offers no advice, just laughs. Time outs don't work, neither do loss of privileges.

George... Where to start. George is still in diapers and shows no signs of potty training... That's ok. He just turned 2 in August. George, to me, seems to be a special needs child. He has a mouth full of teeth, and chews my toys, the furniture and other things up just fine. However, this boy is still on stage 3 jarred baby food. He will go as far as to spit out the carrot pieces if he feels them in his baby food. When he first started I did try to give him some real food, peas, cheerios, etc. Instead of chewing or sucking on them he just tried to swallow them whole causing him to choke. Instead of a bowl of cereal he gets a bowl of rice cereal before bed. The parents had just been sending the powder for me to mix up for him, until she was here one day for my son's bday party. I mix the rice cereal the consistency of oatmeal. Mom about freaked. I told her he ate it for me just fine. From that point forward she has mixed up the cereal at home and it's as runny as soup. It runs off the spoon. So with that his eating has progressed backwards since he started here. This child also doesn't speak at all. He does nothing more than grunt and point. He doesn't even make baby babbling sounds. This child shows little to no emotion which honestly scares me some. When you look into his eyes, they are very vacant. There is no spark, no gleam, no hint of anything behind them. He is also very naughty. He does whatever he wants and no form of discipline (that I'm allowed to hand out) does any good.

Lately, at bedtime the two younger ones have not been sleeping. George was keeping Betty up until recently when I decided to put George to bed in a playpen because he wouldn't stay still or quiet. This was not only disrupting his siblings, but my own children. Now the last two times, Betty has been loud and obnoxious at bedtime, and when their parents show up at midnight she goes rushing (wide awake) into their arms. Mind you, she doesn't nap during the day.

I get very frustrated with the two younger children. Not quite to tears, but I do find myself shorter with my own children when these kids are here. I also DREAD Saturdays and Mondays.

On the flip side. They are county children, so the guaranteed paycheck is great. I also feel like I need to help them.

I've scoured my contract and can't find anything that they've done wrong to justify termination. However, my husband is very concerned because I'm a little over 2 months pregnant. My last pregnancy I was put on bed-rest for preeclempsia and high blood pressure. ( I was extremely over weight when I got pregnant that time though.) He knows that stress can cause high blood pressure and is concerned that these children will affect my health and pregnancy. We kind of need that money right now though, yet not at the cost of my health and unborn child.

I read the other thread about not every provider having the key to every child, yet I feel bad letting them go. It's very hard to find care in this area that caters to their schedule. I'm also worried about the parents being angry with me and spreading bad rumors about my daycare. The horror stories she told me about her previous daycare... I'm not sure if they were true or not, and now I regret not finding out more information and perhaps talking to that provider.

Sorry so long, any comments, advice and opinions will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!!
Give a little love to a child, and you get a great deal back.
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Old 10-09-2009, 10:18 AM is offline
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I would just tell them that due to your pregnancy you are cutting back. Give them 2 weeks to find someone else and play the pity card,... I hate to do it but I cant risk my health or my babies, I have to cut back. and its not lying,.. you are cutting back. You are cutting out the stress that this family is giving you. First and foremost,.. imagine my hands on your shoulders and looking directly into your eyes,... YOU ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR SITUATION. They are. It may be hard to find care in your area that caters to their needs,.. but that is THEIR responsibility. Not yours. YOUR responsibility is to care for your kids the best you can. This stress is making you worry about your belly bean. NOT WORTH IT. Not worth the guaranteed pay, Not worth the extra income, Not worth the difficult situation it will be talking to them. Just tell them, your cutting back. You are doing what's best for your bellybean. After the pregnancy you willl give them a call, but that at this time you have to cut back and your sorry. But you have to give them 2 weeks notice. You just have to be healthy.

I would say,.. Hi Mom,.. hey can I talk to you? You know I love the kids, and they really fit in well here. They enjoy our activities, and have adjusted really well to this arrangement. But,... I really need to cut back on my workload. I have had issues in the past and I dont want to be back on bedrest with this pregnancy so I am cutting back on my schedule. I hope you understand,.. I will be able to keep them for the next two weeks but I have to ask you to find other care for after that. I just can't keep up with the hours Ive been working. I will call you after the pregnancy when things settle down, to see if you need me, but for now Ive got to throttle back.

I would then have her sign the termination papers that state,....

Childcare arrangement terminated positively. Provider cutting back on numbers and hours and that is reason for termination. Not for adverse behavior on the part of either party.

Then give her a copy,.. tell her that it is like a letter of recommendation for her to show the next place. Since she isnt a bad client,.. they always pay (because of state pay) and no monies are owed,.. you arent lying.

Thats what I would do.

I read the other thread about not every provider having the key to every child, yet I feel bad letting them go. It's very hard to find care in this area that caters to their schedule. I'm also worried about the parents being angry with me and spreading bad rumors about my daycare. The horror stories she told me about her previous daycare... I'm not sure if they were true or not, and now I regret not finding out more information and perhaps talking to that provider.

Sorry so long, any comments, advice and opinions will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!![/quote]
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Old 10-09-2009, 10:45 AM
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tymaboy tymaboy is offline Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Iowa
Posts: 449

I take it you not have anything about

-Continual or serious behavioral issues with the child
-Failure of child to adjust to the child care after a reasonable amount of time
-inability to meet the child's needs

From what I have read anything along these lines would work. If you dont have any of that in your policy then just be tell them that you do not think it is working out & that you need to do what is best for you & your family.
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Old 10-09-2009, 11:30 AM
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You need to take care of yourself and your family first. You don't owe your health and well being to anybody else.

On a side note, don't you just love when a family comes in talking smack about their previous center or care provider? Anymore if someone does that now a bright red warning light starts flashing in the back of my mind.

I love laundryduchess's idea with the letter. If things can be kept civil that's great, but if they've talked someone else down in the past, they may do it again.

Good luck and please remember you might be the one in need of care if you don't put yourself first this time.
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Old 10-11-2009, 12:36 AM
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Chickenhauler Chickenhauler is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: MN
Posts: 437

You forgot to mention how they have trashed the couch (they dug their fingers into the fabric until it tore, then proceeded to gut the foam out of it), how they view toys as something to be destroyed, or how they stare at just about every food you put in front of them that isn't cereal like it's a foreign dish (simple stuff like grilled cheese, soup, mac and cheese, hamburgers, etc).

But, you already know my opinion on this subject.
Spouse of a daycare provider....which I guess makes me one too!
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discipline - consistency, terminate - bad behavior

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