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Old 01-21-2013, 08:37 AM
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Holiday Park Holiday Park is offline
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Default Termination Etiquette & Advice on How To Respond Please

I took away Fridays with no notice from my Mon&Fri DCG Family, due to her continual biting. *However they would have had a full week to find alternative care before the next Friday came* . I told them this past Friday and I would be continuing to offer care on Mondays.

I've been trying to work with her for about 3 months now. 2 months counting when she started biting anyone other than my own son. My son has only been bit once,and there were two attempted bites by her,with him as well (that was 3 months ago). Last time it happened (with her biting another daycare child), I texted the mom and said it is a problem for me ,and that night we had a discussion about it. I did tell her verbally that if it happened again, there is a possibility that I would either have to call the gramma to immediately pick up DCG, and/OR care on Fridays would be terminated. That is because the child who has been repeatedly bitten does not come on Mondays, and is contracted for Tue-Fri's . Ok,so my mistake was not putting this in writing and sending it by email. I think she might not remember me even saying that. BUT ,when I gave out the new Parent Handbook (which she had TWO weeks to look over) it did cover biting,discipline, reasons for termination,etc..etc..etc.. AND she had been verbally warned this might happen !

Per Handbook Policies I feel I am within my rights to not allow any more Fridays (on short notice) as I would already putting myself past the risk of losing the other child who was getting bitten. This would have been the 3rd bite and 4th attack from the biting child to that one particular victim. When she bites,it is not just 1X in one week,but 2/3X in one day ,and then a week or two will pass before she does it again .

Here is the info in the Parent Handbook that I feel backs me up :

Provider Termination
The Provider has the right to terminate the
parent/provider contract at any time without
notice. In most cases the child care provider will give a
two weeks’ notice in writing. The Provider, however,
reserves the right to terminate service immediately under
any circumstances including, but not limited to
:

And there is this long list of stuff..two of which do apply in this situation for "immediate" termination, with no notice.

"Disruptive or hurtful behavior of a child that
persists. "


And:
"Our inability to meet the child's needs without
additional staff, time, more attention than the
usual, equipment and/or remodeling of the
childcare home."



I had them for an entire year with no contract & no Parent Handbook,and just had all that done before the first of January. They needed me 4 days a week instead of two, the first three weeks of Jan so we agreed I would do a temporary contract for that,and starting this week, she would start on a long term contract with her regular days again starting this week. So that temporary contracted ended Friday. And as of right now, we are not contracted .

** I will hit reply a couple more times,to include the rest of this post,so it's not one super long post,and to make it easier to read **

Last edited by Holiday Park; 01-21-2013 at 08:41 AM. Reason: adding that i am replying with my continued post,so its not one long huge post...
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:38 AM
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Here is the email I sent Friday afternoon, before they both got off work:

"They are all napping so I had time to write.

I really do enjoy having ****** here . She's a cool little girl and I've grown quite attached to her. Unfortunately I don't feel I can keep her from biting that same child again when I have them together on Fridays.

For the safety of others I can't allow her back on Fridays until further notice. She's welcome to continue here on Mondays.

I will give the un-deposited check back to who ever picks her up or I can apply it to the following Monday after next week. "


Both parents showed up late by 7 minutes past my 5:30 cut off time (but stayed till almost 6 with their trying to confront/discuss it with me) .

They rode together so they could confront me about the termination for future Fridays. DCD was not happy and acted like it was my fault for being unable to stop her biting,and gave me the third degree as if he didn't believe it happened right before my eyes,while she was sitting in my lap,(as if it had to only happen due to not supervising her) and the other child was sitting on my other leg on my lap too. He couldn't it could happn that fast right before my eyes. He said why couldn't I just keep them separated. I have a play yard set up in my Huge Play room. But I don't feel it's fair to confine either child(victim or biter) to that area all day long every single Friday.

The victim (baby who has gotten bit too many times by her) actually can't handle being confined even for one hour and cries,and throws tantrums when hes in there. Although I do feel he needs to get used to being confined/separated as needed without having to throw a tantrum/freaking out, that is a separate issue with him I choose to work on separately, and I still feel it's not fair to confine either of them like this for that reason, for any period of time longer than it takes for me to use the bathroom,clean up kitchen,etc.. But not all day! So Fridays clearly don't work out for anyone with her here. I had to put him first because hes here FT and I like his family/mom a lot more than the other child's parents.

Well,I didn't try to reason with him. I am just telling you all my reasons. I simply stated that it was not personal. That even though I loved their little girl and she was a joy to have here, I had to put the safety and well being of the whole group first, and Fridays just didn't work . After he stated they would need to find other arrangements, I told him she can just be Drop in care only,from now on.
I felt disrespected that they CHOSE to ride together in her car (He got off work early and she apparently picked him up from home) to confront me,risking making themselves late. So that's why I charged the $5.00 late pick up fee. At first he challenged it, by saying it had not been 15 minutes yet. He was rude for being late,and rude to argue about a late fee. I said I am just following Handbook policies and I must enforce my rules or no one would follow them if I didn't enforce them.

This is what it says in the P.H. about late pick up fees:
"Late Pick-Up Fee
If a child is picked up later that the expected time
without advance notice the child care provider may not
be present and it will then be the responsibility of the
client to either go to the child care provider’s location to
pick the child up or wait until the child care provider
arrives. A $5.00 fee per child will be added to the
clients account for every fifteen minutes, or portion <---
there of, that the child is late in being picked up when <---
it's past the contracted pick-up time. This fee is due <---
immediately at the time of pick-up
if on a Friday/last
open day of the week, or late payment charges may
apply. Otherwise,it’s due on Friday/last open day of that
same week,along with your weekly payment for the
following week. "

DCD said he didn't have his check book. I got the vibe he was already being difficult and at that point I wasn't sure if I even wanted to keep providing care for them at all. Mentally I was ready to just send a immediate termination for ALL days, after they left. And I didn't want to have to chase after $5.00 and $10 per day of late payment fees for them not paying it. I had a check they had given me that morning for the following Friday (Since I closed today,and don't charge when I close) . Since they wanted to apply that check for next Monday's care, I offered to give them $25.oo cash in exchange for the $30 check so technically I would be paid that $5.00 fee on time,saving them from late fees (or me having to deal with chasing after late fees). This way (in my mind) if I chose to end care altogether,I'd be done with them,and wouldn't owe them anything.

They agreed to do that and just pay for the following Monday28th, separately. That night DCM texts me that they lost the $ and it must be in my front yard somewhere. And if I find it,just keep it,and apply it for Monday the 28th. I text her back stating I didn't see any cash anywhere in my yard. I thought that sounded strange and started wondering if they were trying to pull one over on me.
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:39 AM
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Fast forward to Saturday morning. I decided to try cashing their check at their bank instead of mine, because even though they had always paid on time,and never bounced a check I had a bad feeling about it. So also just in case they did a stop payment. I didn't trust them after the way DCD was acting so rude Friday. The bank couldn't give me the $ or tell me why ! I was so angry and thought they were trying to be spiteful because they were angry at me. But to give them the benefit of the doubt, and not assume anything too quickly, I text her letting her know the check is no good,to see how she responds first. I have it covered in my policies that if a check is bad, late payment fees do apply. I didn't mention any late payment fees yet. I was going to wait to see how she reacted. If she reacted not nice I would throw in the late fees . Otherwise I would let it go since they are leaving anyway.

She text back apologizing for the check being bad and said DCD did some online banking and try to cash it on Monday. PPHEEW! *Sigh of relieve* that it wasn't them trying to be spiteful. OK,so they were just being irresponsible. I told her I couldn't try cashing it again, because they put a stamp on it,and I would need new payment in cash now and I would return their bad check to them next time I see them. I wasn't home,and so they agreed to drop what they owed (minus any fees,because I didn't charge them at this point) by my house in the mailbox. So I received the $30.00 (my 25 in cash back,plus the $5 late pick up fee fee) plus another $30. for Jan 28 (next Monday).

This is when DCD sent that text Saturday night confirming if I would still save her Monday spot for her until they found some one:
"It's our understanding until we find other arrangements you are keeping her on Mondays like normal since Fridays are no longer available ? .... Just wanted to Clarify "

and it took me until Today to reply because I needed to word it just right.
My reply:

"To answer your question above about Mondays:
I'm sorry but I can't promise to keep a spot for her after Jan 28th, if you are seeking care elsewhere and are no longer contracted with me. "




So I get an email back from her within 10 minutes saying:

"DCD just forwarded me your text in response to Mondays. Because you decided last minute on Friday that this was not working out with DCG on Fridays it would be nice if you'd respect us enough to continue on MOndays until we can find other arrangements. THis was not my choice to leave and thus I feel you could give US two weeks notice to find something...its the least you could do. I feel I have been forced to find other arrangement as just Mondays with you will not fulfill our needs for MOndays and Fridays obviously. Trust me, I will find them ASAP. Right now this is forcing me or DCD to take off work.
Per your own email Friday at 3pm
"For the safety of others I can't allow her back on Fridays until further notice. She's welcome to continue here on Mondays."

Is she not welcome to continue on Mondays as you offered in your own email or are you changing your mind? "



Since she is no longer on a contract
*they told me they would be looking for some one else
*I told DCD they will be Drop In only from now on
*I do have someone who is ready to replace her,as soon she gets her new job
*I am also trying to decide on taking all Mondays closed since my (now) only existing DCB doesn't come on Mondays,and I want to spend more time with my family.
*They would have had two weeks to find some one to start Monday Feb 4TH !

I don't have a problem with her still coming for Mondays after the 28th IF I am available, which most likely I am.. I just felt I had to reply with that to cover my own butt, so I wasn't "promising" or guaranteeing" anything.
Does that make sense ?
As for how to respond, do you agree I should tell them I felt everything has been more fair being that:

I not only warned her what would happen, This has gone on 2-3months , They have 1 week to find someone for this Friday,and two weeks to find someone IF I'm unavailable after the 28th, I did them two favors #1) by offering to give them cash in exchange for that check to avoid late fees on the late pick up fee & #2) Didn't charge them late payment fees on the check for it being no good.

And explain that I DO want to continue providing care on Mondays, but I have to say it's not guaranteed because any number of reasons could prevent me from being unavailable, such as someone taking her spot, or me deciding to close on Mondays.
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:50 AM
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Good grief! I'm tired just reading your post.You have to be exhausted. Just terminate care and be done. Is one day a week worth all this hassle? Just be done.
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:57 AM
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This is what I would LIKE to say in reply:

"You both did not respect me enough to pick up DCG on time,and then DCD was rude enough to argue with me about the late pick up fee.
I did you both a favor and was kind enough to give you cash in exchange for the check, so that late pick up fee would be considered on time,and not late (saving you from late payment fees otherwise) . After doing you that favor per MY suggestion, That check was still no good. I could have still charged late payment fees,which would have been $10.00 per day for each day it was unpaid (Friday and Saturday) including the original fee. But I didn't want to fight over $,since the $ wasn't what was important to me.
When DCD told me you two would have to find other arrangements, I understood but I did say to him verbally that she can just be on a drop in basis from now on.

With Drop in Clients, there is NEVER a guarantee of availability, but I STILL promised to keep her Jan 28TH, as a courtesy, to give you both two full weeks to find someone in the event I were to be unavailable after that. Because I too did not want to end care entirely as I mentioned previously, enjoy having her here,but have to put the needs and safety of the entire group first.

I was still happy to keep her Mondays after the 28TH ,as long as I'm available,which at this time I am.... However again... Anything could happen to cause me to be unavailable. This is why in my reply text to DCD I stated that I could not PROMISE to keep her spot .

Also, I did inform you in our last phone conversation (about the biting)that Fridays may have to be taken away ,if it happens again. I did tell you that last time, that it was a problem,so you did have prior warning,and time to start looking else where in the event that it happened again. Also, All of the above is backed up by my Parent Handbook Policies and the contract you signed,that ended on Friday. Please see page 30,for Provider termination. The reasons listed below for "immediate termination do apply in this situation:
Disruptive or hurtful behavior of a child that
persists.

Our inability to meet the child's needs without
additional staff, time, more attention than the
usual, equipment and/or remodeling of the
childcare home.


Please see page 29 for parent withdrawal :
It states the parents must submit a 2 week written notice. Since we are no longer on a contract, I have no way to enforce you to give a 2 week notice. I still agreed to care for her until the 28th as Drop in care ,which was giving YOU both two weeks to find someone for mondays. You do have 1 entire week to find someone for this Friday.

Late payments (this includes any fees):
see page 8

As for late pick up fees:

see page 9

Drop in Care:
Please see page 10 ,reservations for Drop in Care page 11 (explains about it not being guaranteed)
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:02 AM
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I don't understand why you said they couldn't come of Fridays. Can't the other dckid still get bit Tues - Thurs?
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Holiday Park View Post
This is what I would LIKE to say in reply:

"You both did not respect me enough to pick up DCG on time,and then DCD was rude enough to argue with me about the late pick up fee.
I did you both a favor and was kind enough to give you cash in exchange for the check, so that late pick up fee would be considered on time,and not late (saving you from late payment fees otherwise) . After doing you that favor per MY suggestion, That check was still no good. I could have still charged late payment fees,which would have been $10.00 per day for each day it was unpaid (Friday and Saturday) including the original fee. But I didn't want to fight over $,since the $ wasn't what was important to me.
When DCD told me you two would have to find other arrangements, I understood but i did say to him verbally that she can just be on a drop in basis from now on.

With Drop in Clients, there is NEVER a guarantee of availability, but I STILL promised to keep her Jan 28TH, giving you both two full weeks to find someone in the event I were to be unavailable after that. I would still be happy to keep her Mondays after the 28TH ,as long as I'm available,which at this time i am.... However again... Anything could happen such as my choosing to close on Mondays,or if she is replaced with a client who needs FT care. It would be unfair to myself,to promise /guarantee a Monday only spot for DCG and lose out on a potential FT Client as a result, AND when you did not even give a two week written notice,so you could leave at any given time being that we are no longer on any contract.

Also, I did inform you in our last phone conversation (about the biting)that Fridays may have to be taken away ,if it happens again. I did tell you that last time, that it was a problem,so you did have prior warning,and time to start looking else where in the event that it happened again. Also, All of the above is backed up by my Parent Handbook Policies and the contract you signed,that ended on Friday. "
I wouldn't bother telling them any "favors" you did for them. Parents don't see it that way.

Here is what I would say:

Dear DCP

Due to lack of respect from DCD in regards to late pick up and the correspnding fees, I am no longer willing to continue providing care on a regular basis.

I will continue to allow DCG to be a drop in child for care on Mondays PROVIDED I have available space since drop in children do not have priority in scheduling spaces.

I am sorry that our arrangement has come to this but I must do what is in the best interest of my business and for the other children in care.

I will be happy to provide you with the number to the local Child Care Resource & Referal office to assist you in finding alternate care arrangements.

Please rest assured that biting is a normal developmental issue for some children and although it can cause problems with care situations, it is something that can be overcome with patience and continued guidance.

I apologize if this causes any inconvenience for you but I am simply unwilling to provide care when there is such a lack of respect from clients.

Sincerely

Provider
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:16 AM
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Crazydaycarelady,

She only comes on MOndays&Fridays. On Mondays She is the only child. I did a have a new boy start m-f ,and the last day of, during his trial period (this past week) his mom had to give notice on good terms due to the dads recent unemployment.

So starting next week, (since Im closed today) she would have gone back to being my only one on Mondays again allowing me to be able to accommodate her on Mondays,but not on Fridays.
The baby she seems to be drawn to biting the most comes on Tue-Fri's . So yes, technically she couldn't come any other day beside Monday. But they only need Mon&Fri"s .

Last edited by Holiday Park; 01-21-2013 at 09:26 AM. Reason: corrected spelling errors
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:23 AM
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Thank you Black cat for the re-written email. i was re-writing my above reply to her (editing that post) .
But anyway, I would like to change it to this:

Dear DCP

Due to lack of respect from DCD in regards to late pick up and the correspnding fee,that was why I told him at my front door that
I will continue to allow DCG to be a drop in child for care on Mondays PROVIDED I have available space since drop in children do not have priority in scheduling spaces.

But I was still willing to keep her on the 28TH.

I am sorry that our arrangement has come to this but I must do what is in the best interest of my business and for the other children in care.

I will be happy to provide you with the number to the local Child Care Resource & Referal office to assist you in finding alternate care arrangements.

Please rest assured that biting is a normal developmental issue for some children and although it can cause problems with care situations, it is something that can be overcome with patience and continued guidance.

I apologize if this causes any inconvenience for you but I am simply unwilling to provide care when there is such a lack of respect from clients.

Sincerely

Provider

They have not ever really shown lack of respect before this,though. And it's always been her husband who I have been uncomfortable with. DCM DID try to make up her own rules a few times in the past,but I did put her in her place,and then I created the Parent Handbook, to be able to back myself up if anything were to come up again. I don't think SHE was intentionally trying to be rude/disrespectful. Her husband, maybe because I had to tell him twice to sign on the correct line for my new sign/out sheet,which he still refused to do on Friday (I didn't notice until after the fact) .
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:36 AM
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Please dont even offer drop in care past what you absolutely must. things are already tense with this family and i think the relationship is past repair.

for the future, ALWAYS put everything in writing in a short and simple way. no over explaining and offering multiple options. I do think the parents were disrespectful but I also understand how they might be confused. I think the communication here has been very poor. just learn from this experience and move on.
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:36 AM
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I'm afraid if I provide the referral number/website (which is the state licensing website) they will try to report me for something false and I may have to deal with licensing as their way of retaliating. I am legally licensed exempt. I know I did nothing wrong. But I don't want the hassle of having to deal with the licensing agency on my back,or wanting to inspect my home/start watching over me / have a complaint on their record.

edited to say i was posting&editing at the same time cheerfuldom posted.
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:41 AM
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If you haven't already sent the email, I'd include a paragraph where cash payment for each day of drop in care is required the morning of care or care would be refused
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Old 01-21-2013, 10:08 AM
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re-writing this post here...

Here is her email and my thoughts... Still trying to think of a way to respond in a way that will convey these thoughts .

DCD just forwarded me your text in response to Mondays. Because you decided last minute on Friday that this was not working out with *** on Fridays it would be nice if you'd respect us enough to continue on MOndays until we can find other arrangements.
UM, respect them enough ? It has nothing to do with me respecting them, or not respecting them . They were disprestctful by showing up late,and then adding insult to injury by arguing with me over the late pick up fee.

THis was not my choice to leave and thus I feel you could give US two weeks notice to find something
They HAVE two weeks to find some one else if they do the math from Friday Jan 18TH-Monday Feb 4TH ,Or you can count it as 1 week if you count from Friday jan18-Thursday Jan 24TH .

...its the least you could do. The LEAST I could do? As if I have done nothing? I could have given immediate termination for both Mondays&Firdays, I could have charged late payment fees for DCD refusing to pay the late fee but instead I offered to trade cash for a check they had given to me,that I was gongi to return (so I'd keep the difference of $5.00 as a result being paid ON TIME) , and even after that their check was STILL no good,resulting in them STILL being late,and I still didn't charge any late fees,and allowed them to come pay it in cash Sat night.

I feel I have been forced to find other arrangement as just Mondays with you will not fulfill our needs for MOndays and Fridays obviously. NOT my problem, DCM was warned 1-2 weeks ago that this would happen if she bit again.

Trust me, I will find them ASAP. So I won't get MY two weeks notice,but I have to hold a spot for her she no longer has,because they gave notice? That doesn't sound fair to me.

Right now this is forcing me or DCD to take off work. Again, NOT my problem, poor plannign on their part does not consistute an emergency on my part.. She was warned. AND there are plenty of Daycare's in the area who will take her as drop in until they find someone, not to mention her mom can watch her but she just isn't admitting that.
Per your own email Friday at 3pm
"For the safety of others I can't allow her back on Fridays until further notice. She's welcome to continue here on Mondays."

Is she not welcome to continue on Mondays as you offered in your own email or are you changing your mind? She's completely disregarding our verbal discussion Friday evening when I told DCD that DCG can be Drop in from now on. I had a hunch she probably didn't hear me say it,because she was standing about 50 feet away on my sidewalk,while she let her husband do all the talking. This is why she should have been at my door next to him too,to hear everything I said to him. NOt my problem if he didn't communicate to her,what I said to him.
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Old 01-21-2013, 10:55 AM
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What I see from reading all of this is

1) your over explaining yourself
2) your wishy washy on your rules, I will do you a favor here, but not here and I will allow no fees here, but here you will pay.
3) I agree if they are going to be done, terminate and do it as sweet as possible and be done with this back and fourth stuff
4) I can understand how the parent's feel that you said you would watch the child on Monday's and now its a maybe you will. Again wishy washy to me.
5) I can feel your passion for your job, and chalk this one up to a learning experience and move on.
6) Best of luck with this.

I would separate the biter from the other child and try to work through the biting, make the biter my shadow and not give her any chance of being able to bite another child. If it kept up then I would terminate immediately. Work together with the parents to try to find a way to stop the biting. Maybe offer another chance and try separating on Fridays.

It sounds like these parents are good clients and maybe a possibility of going full time in the future?

Why do you have a fee if they are late on arrival? I ask for a curtisy call if they are going to be late on arrival.

Again, best-
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Old 01-21-2013, 01:39 PM
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My3cents,

I have done everything I could with the biting situation for 2-3 months. Separation,shadowing, etc.. I can't separate them any more because the FT baby throws a full blown tantrum when I confine him in the play yard. And he doesn't stop. Even so,she has proven she can still bite HANDS through the play yard when another little one comes close or puts their hands on the gate.

As for late pick ups: I am not as lenient as you . I have late pick up fees/strict late pick up policy because I do not want late pick ups unless prior ADVANCED notice AND approval is given for care outside the contracted times. i did not get advanced notice or approval. DCM waited until after her contracted pick up time to text me that they were up the RD & on their way. When i commented oh you both came together, He said something about getting off early (If I remember correctly ) So they CHOSE to ride together, making themselves late .
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Old 01-21-2013, 01:41 PM
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Going FT is not something I would want,because although I enjoy having her 1-2 times a week,she would be too much of a handful to have 10 hours a day, 4 days a week,for the same amount of $ I make caring for the other child who's parents pay for FT (but don't always attend Ft) for much less hours,and is an easy going baby that my son enjoys playing with more.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:43 PM
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This is what I ended up doing. I just ignored all that other stuff she said in her email and answered the last question .

To answer your question at the end of your email : "Is she not welcome to continue on Mondays as you offered in your own email or are you changing your mind?"

Yes, at the time I wrote the email the offer was on the table. It was time for renewing her contract and I would have just made it for Monday's only, had that worked for you. I'm sorry if not explaining that ,confused you.

** However, on Friday evening when DCD said that will not work for you guys, to continue care on only Monday's, and you both would be looking for other arrangements, I said she could be drop in until you two found some one else. **
I understand the need for looking else where, and have no bad feelings about you needing to withdraw her for scheduling conflict reasons/Mondays only not working for you, under the circumstances and a result of her not being able to come on Fridays.

But Drop in care is not guarantee with out approved reservation&payment in advance. That's why I answered your question clarifying Monday's ... by saying I can't promise every Monday. It didn't mean she wasn't welcome or that I didn't want her here.

Per Handbook Policy regarding Reservations&Drop in Care: For info on making a reservation and modifying a reservation, please see page 11 . I have her things packed and ready by my front door so you can just bring a diaper bag with her each time she comes for drop in care. And she will use one of my own pack n Play Beds for nap time.

My husband said to leave it alone and not say another word about anything else. He said she can choose to bring her or not bring her,and there won't be any further discussion . We'll see how I do on that...
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Old 01-22-2013, 11:22 AM
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itlw8 itlw8 is offline
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several things that could be confusing. Your late policy could be read that it is $5 for 15 minute meaning they have a 15 minute grace period. Change it to say something about it starting at 5:31 and accruing at a rate of $5 every 15 minutes.

I do see why they would want to come together Friday though they could have called and asked for a conference.

You did say they could not come Fridays but did not say anything about Mondays. Did you really think they would not start looking for other care if they still need Fridays. Placing a toddler is not always easy. I do think you were not real clear about letting them stay on Mondays. Your first post did not say they would be terminated from Mondays in a week. So they are confused.
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