Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

Implications For Committee Volunteers


Guest
 Share

Recommended Posts

Is anyone else having problems finding a parent volunteer to be Chair from September 2008? The legal implications of the EYFS statutory framework (especially the welfare requirements), together with the already demanding responsibilities of being Chair, are stopping parents from being willing to volunteer their time for this position. We're a PLA-parent-led Preschool and without a Chair, we have to close.

 

Is it right that Mums should be asked to take on such a responsibility? - isn't this whole PLA model outdated by the EYFS? These are the questions we are struggling with right now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I happen to agree with you!! When a representative from out LEA came round to see us a few weeks ago, I said the same thing! Is it right and fair in this day and age where we are expected to be professional in every aspect of our work, that a parent without childcare qualifications or experience has to take on the responsibility of 'running' a preschool!!!! I dont know what the answe is!!!

?????

jx

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have this problem every year and there really isn't any easy answer. Our committee generally accept my recommendations but they are made up of parents who are there because they have been threatened with closure if they don't join and often have few business ready skills to offer ~ they are taking my word for everything and I could be telling them a bunch of hooey good job I am honest!!. I get paid and they don't so alot of their work is carried out by my self and our administrator (which adds to our work load) our Chair is in a difficult position, constitutionally she has to step down in April, and i don't know what we'll do.

One of our biggest problems is that we work in a very bad neighbourhood and finding 'willing volunteers' who can pass a CRB to gain OFSTED clearance is increasingly difficult.

It can take a while to get a new committee trained to 'our way of thinking' and then they're off again but I do get a kick out of seeing how empowered some of them become almost as much as watching their children develop

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is anyone else having problems finding a parent volunteer to be Chair from September 2008? The legal implications of the EYFS statutory framework (especially the welfare requirements), together with the already demanding responsibilities of being Chair, are stopping parents from being willing to volunteer their time for this position. We're a PLA-parent-led Preschool and without a Chair, we have to close.

 

Is it right that Mums should be asked to take on such a responsibility? - isn't this whole PLA model outdated by the EYFS? These are the questions we are struggling with right now.

 

Hi, totally agree its coming up to that time of year again where one committee leaves and the search begins, The role is just too much responsibility for a parent volunteer and requires someone with early years expertise, its about time the pla reviewed the whole committee business and came up with a more realistic way of managing charity run pre-schools.As supervisor I already do most of the administration, in fact the only part of the management I can't do is handle the finances. Let you know how we get on over the next few months, we have also considered the incorpoarated approach but not really sure that is ideal either.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi and welcome.

 

I really couldn't agree more, I always feel so guilty when I have to ask parents to join the committee. I know the ethos about empowering parents, learning new skills - but in reality I am just grateful to get anyone and it's not fair on them. Some enjoy it, others just do it to be nice and all are juggling it with bringing up very small children.

 

I'm in a similar position to Freda, but must admit I get frustrated about the expectations of our development worker on the committee - I am always more than willing to assist and guide them, because very often I will have come across the issue before or regualrly complete a piece of work for them because I need it and can't wait (how can you pressuarise a parent!!!) .

 

Anyway our development worker met the chair last week (has a seperate meeting with me next week - won't meet us together, too much to do apparently) and worried the chair asking her lots of questions about how they are delivering the EYFS, have they changed all our literature...

 

It really is an insult to "the professional workforce" that is being developed, we are spending hours of our own time training- I have two of my team doing FD and one on NVQ3, everyone else has NVQ2. As a team we are on top of the EYFS, child initiated play, using learning journeys, keyperson being developed .....it's not fair to expect the voluntary committee to understand all that as well, I really would not expect them too the lesser experienced members of my team are just going on courses.

 

sorry as you can guess I am a bit fed up with my development worker's expectations and to be frank irritated - it really feels that as staff we are not trusted. I know they have legal responsibility, but it really is not fair.

 

That felt good to get that off my chest.

 

Sorry again and thank you, but I needed that rant.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi all !

I know how stressful it is being involved with a committee run pre-school, to the point that I have decided to leave my current position. Although I do feel sorry for parents having to be press ganged into being on the committe I also feel that they should take some responsiblity for the management of the group. In my setting we have no administrator, a chairperson who doesn't communicate with me or the rest of the committee,( I think the last time I had any communication was through his wife about three weeks ago !) a treasurer that only does the accounts and writes the bills out, oh and signs the cheques !. The rest is left for me to sort out which is a nightmare especially when you have five members of staff and only one qualified to a level three and one training. Its been hard going trying to implement all the other stuff e.g EYFS, keyperson system, good observation, assessment procedures, operational plan folder, policies and it goes on and on !

It would be good if we could have just shared the work load, prehaps I wouldn't be leaving. I have worked myself into the ground and feel I just can't go on, I don't mind hard work but I can't produce miracles on my own !

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i agree it is hard with the new EYFS or not! :o

we are a committee run group and i (supervisor) like others have said do everything apart from the finances - so committee/chair just trust me and have overall responsibility if it all goes pear shaped! so its not just them that have to step upto the mark! xD

 

and we too usually have the probelm of threatening to close before anyone steps forward! :(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with you - voluntary run committees were great when the idea first came about, but would question if there is a place for them now. My local playgroup was founded in 1973 and what worked more than 30 years ago no longer does as childcare has changed out of all recognition from those early playgroups. It makes me cross that the SPPA (PLA equivalent here in Scotland) are still promoting voluntary committees as being a viable option. I think what they should be doing is consulting with groups and formulating a plan on how these can be kept open but run on a more professional basis.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Wolfie

I used to be very involved with the PLA but not nearly so much now - do they still employ development workers to support all groups? And if so, what is their response to your concerns and issues?

 

I imagine that these concerns are nationwide and that the PLA as an organisation must be considering how to address the problem in response to the needs of their members?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We do have a PLA Development worker, but she's so over-stretched that there's no real support available. I could try to con a parent into taking on Chair, but I'm reluctant to sell it as something it isn't. It's a full time job now - I can't pretend otherwise. And the level of responsibility is simply far more than any parent volunteer should be expected to manage. On the other hand, we're not a viable business option and we can't afford a paid manager.

 

It makes me very frustrated to see things like the EYFS becoming statutory without any consideration to the model under which so many Preschools are currently run.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just echoing everything that has been said already! Who else works for an employer who has no understanding of the job and it's legislative issues or has no skills in business and finance? and more to the point the employer changes annualy???

 

PLA need to look long and hard at this perpetual problem!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just echoing everything that has been said already! Who else works for an employer who has no understanding of the job and it's legislative issues or has no skills in business and finance? and more to the point the employer changes annualy???

 

PLA need to look long and hard at this perpetual problem!

 

Just how I feel!!!!

How can you turn to your employer for support and reassurance when they have no experience/qualifications in the field. xD

 

We keep looking into buying out our preschool, but PSLA no help as they are all for the committee!!! :o

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with every thing every one has said. I used to be a PLA committee member of our local committee as a private representative. Then it was difficult to find volunteers but now it must be worse. I think it is so unfair for a volunteer to be made responsible for employing people, money which can be large amounts. All on a subject that they don't really understand. If the government wants us to be professionals then surely the people that employ you should be professionals.

I was very glad when I became my own boss and had to take responsibility for the group. The only problem that I have a t the moment is looking for premises and our borough is Conservative and keep telling me I'm a private business so its not their responsibility.

Still thats a whole different ball game.

Good luck all of you out there doing the annual "culling" of parents.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)