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Children Of Staff Policy?


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I think that a children of staff policy must be the only thing we don't have!

 

We have just appointed a new leader to start in September and she would like her to attend 3 sessions (we are open 5 mornings a week). She will be a registered paying child and I have no problems with it but do want a policy in place so we all know where we stand.

 

I am thinking along the lines of managing the childs expectation of parental interaction etc.

 

Should the parent be keyworker or not?

 

Is there anything I need to include - what are your experiences from having a staff members child at the setting?

 

Thank you

 

Kirsty

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Hi Kirsty

 

My youngest grandaughter attends my pre-school, as did her sister befor her and my grandson (from other son) too! This has never proved to be a problem at all.......we all live in the same village and I own and manage the village pre-school....so no choice really!

 

However....I am most certainly not her keyperson......and nor would I want to be! :oxD

 

Don't have a policy I'm afraid.

 

Hope that is of some help

Sunnyday

Edited by sunnyday
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I would say definintely 'no' to mum being child's key person.

 

From my experience of working in the setting my child attended, I have to say it was the most stressful thing I ever did. I developed my own policy whereby if I saw him do something he shouldn't be doing, I spoke to another member of staff and got them to deal with it. I then turned my back and walked off and did something else. We never ever brought up things he did at nursery at home later (unless he was being particularly angelic or he did something he was proud of!).

 

A tricky thing can be the child finding it hard when mum gives attention to other children, although I have to say mine were never keen to spend time with me in nursery! However other staff members can help here too, by engaging the child in something else if it is causing a problem.

 

For me personally I found the thing I most wanted to avoid was anyone accusing me of giving my son preferential treatment - so much so that he would probably be able to justifiably claim that I was stricter with him than any other child in the nursery.

 

Good luck Kirsty - hope it all works out for you! Perhaps it would be good to have a full and frank conversation with your leader about potential issues and agree how to handle them together. That way, if the child falls and scrapes a knee or uses a choice swearword during snacktime, you'll have agreed in advance how to deal with it and everyone will be clear on what their responsibilities are.

 

Maz

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Very similar experiences to HappyMaz! Only had my youngest working with me. Found he got most upset if, for example, I was trying to get the children to all do something together, i.e. tidy up time, being quiet for a story etc. and the other children were not paying attention, he then used to get quite cross with them. Also, although I think he would have been the same had I not been there he used to get upset if he wasn't chosen to do a specific helper job. My other work colleagues were great with him and I never felt the need to discipline him over and above what anyone else had to. I most certainly wouldn't have been his Key Worker.

 

Some children find it hard to accept mum giving attention to others, and if we have a parent helper in for the odd morning their child quite often turns into a different personality altogether, recently one child spent a good part of the morning just whinging and whining around her mum - most definitely NOT what she was usually like - quite an eye opener really.

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we dont have children in with their parent - if a member of staff is working the child doesnt attend they come on days when paretn not working. have tried child in with paretn in past but it became so stressful for the paretn, child and other members of staff we decided not to do it again .

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I remember the joys of having my youngest in setting with me and for the majority of the time it wasnt a problem I kept my distance like Maz got other staff to deal with incidents and over all it wasnt a major problem

 

Id definately have a different key worker and where ever possible put the member of staff in a different area to the child

 

I sent my daughter to another setting on afternoons so she would have some preschool time without me around

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I did the very much the same as Alison, I was lucky as my son's key person was a very experienced assistant, she told me that she would deal with any issues, it took the stress off of me I would just leave them to it.

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One of my staff has a son who starts with us in November. She's planned that he'll be in on her off days s she can get things done. She's been bringing him in ever since he was born so he knows us all. She won't ever be his key person and insists we treat her like the other Mums - comments in notebook 'can I have a word please?' etc. (hehe)

 

As others have said, when I worked in school I often went the other way with my own children - they'd never be in the first group to do something or be singled out for praise etc. We were so bothered that someone would shout 'favouritism!' but they understood that and could see the reasons for it. They did more 'behind the scenes' stuff of course and put more into stuff at home than other children did - they had a lot of say in what we did and how things were put together.

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I have two generations of this experience,

 

First experience; My own son 20+ yrs ago, I tended to 'treat him as any other child within the preschool and he appeared, at the time, to 'enjoy' preschool and everything seemed to run smoothly with 'other' staff treating him like all the other children. However, on hindsight, I wished I'd done it differently but I don't know how. Now grown up my son says that he ALWAYS felt that I put work before him, that he had to behave better than everyone else because he was the supervisors son etc and so it wasn't as good as I thought it was. :( (just food for thought)

 

second experience; My step daughter was staff, her son (my grandson) attended. Long story short but the negatives;my grandson appeared to find it 'difficult' to take 'guidance' from other staff, including me, only wanting 'mum' to take care of his needs. Sometimes behaviour was difficult, we put this down to the work/family situation and worked together (step daughter, me, staff) to do our best. However, he has recently been diagnosed as being on the Autistic spectrum and ADHD, we missed this at preschool, I think, because we thought his behaviour was due to the 'family' situation.

Positives; He is very bright, and I believe part of this is because his mum had more 'play' time with him during his preschool years and therefore got to know really well his learning style, interests etc. xD

 

One thing not mentioned yet is the 'other' staffs feelings in terms of how they should respond to the child. In a sense they do need 'permission' to respond to the child as they would others, and to have this 'permission' regularly given, and to be reassured that 'they are doing it right, ie maybe after dealing with a behaviour issue. Not just right in terms of practice, but right in terms of supporting their fellow staff member (the mum). They need to feel able to step in without having any reproach from the mum. (hope that makes sense).

The important things to consider, I think are;


Agreed boundaries and consequences, (positive-ie cuddles etc as well as negative-ie sanctions)when it is the 'mums' role to step in and when it is the 'preschools' role KEEPING IN MIND that however much you try to practice 'it's the preschool not family/home rules being followed here' to the child mum is still mum, whatever the social setting.


consistency


flexibility to review what works when ( and change if necessary)

 

keep communications open and don't fester on grievances about the relationships between all concerned.

 

I would suggest that this is a policy that all staff should be involved in writing together, and even the children if possible (depending on age/ability)

 

Peggy

 

p.s. I think it is a good idea to have the child in for at least one session without mum if possible so he can be 'a child' rather than 'a son' for a day each week, forming his own identity etc away from mum.

 

p.p.s. Policy is of course guidance in that life is never as black and white as what is written, especially in terms of human emotions/relationships :o

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Thanks Peggy - some food for thought there. Hopefully as his initial months will be without Mum present he will be settled well before she does a shift with him there.

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Thanks Peggy - some food for thought there. Hopefully as his initial months will be without Mum present he will be settled well before she does a shift with him there.

 

 

I think that will be good for him to find his feet 'independently' so to speak. :o

 

Peggy

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Since we are sessional and term time only we are closed until September and so essentially Mum's first day could well be childs first day (we wouldn't have that happening though).

 

Mum will be working all 5 sessions and daughter has been requested to be in for 3 sessions. She will be in another setting for a full day on the Thursday mum has staff meeting in the afternoon, no idea about the other morning, nursery or family member.

 

Some good things to think about and I am waiting to hear from committee and staff what they think. I wish she had asked in her interview so we could have drafted a policy before everyone went off on holiday.

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My old supervisor (seems strange saying that now I have left!) had her son at pre-school. I was his keyworker and she really stresed I was to treat him like other children. Thing was he had behaviuoral isues which were tough on both of us (him and me!)...but now we have a lovely bond and he thinks of me as his "teacher". Mum (supervisor) a much as is able (unles no one else there) allows me to deal with it all. However, the other two staff are reluctant to step in which makes things difficult. ..not because of the superviosr but the behaviour can be quite physical. Supervisor is thinking of now moving her son to be in my new pre-school. He is actually like most children completely different when she is not there! I am sure I would be fine with this.

 

I have however had my own son at pre-school with me whae i first startd as an assistant. It was for 3 months and I would say it took about a month for him to get ued to it all. His issue was h would always come running to me to try to sort squabbles out, wanted to be the one that would sit on my knee. He soon got bored of it all though (or grew up!!)

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My elder son was already at preschool when I started working there, and really didn't enjoy the experience of having his mummy working at his preschool (though it may have also been partly that he didn't enjoy the preschool anyway as he was always fine with my being a parent helper in nursery /school).

 

Before younger osn was old enough for preschool, one of my colleagues had her son with us, and it was hard for them both, becuase he had behavioural issues. She was very happy for other staff to deal with him, and he was very happy for other staff to deal with him (unless hurt, when he wanted his mummy!), but she always knew about it, even the trivial stuff that you deal with in the setting and don't need to discuss with the parents.

 

Because of these expereinces, I refused to have younger osn at preschoopl with me, and he went to another preschool manily taken by his childminder. He did come in on odd days by arrangement with boss, eg when childminder was on holiday, and that was ok, but I think every day would have been too much!

 

On the other hand I know of at least 2 people who've had their daughters in with them and that has generally seemed to work better, so maybe girls find it easier...

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We have had a big problem with a staff's child this last year and I regret that we didn't deal with it as well as maybe we could have.

 

We tried various tactics and the mum did try to let us deal with his (extremly) bad behaviour but the problem was that she couldn't detach herself from him when he went crying to her that one of the other staff hadn't let him do what he wanted and it made the situation very stressful for him, his mum and the other staff. He wasn't the only child we had problems with this last year which made it even more tricky.

 

I have read your various ideas with interest and do feel that communication between everyone, consistency and support are what is needed - but it can be very difficult!!!! The child is going to school in September so we are all looking forward to a more peaceful year!

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