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Am I being unreasonable?


Devondaisy
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Hi everyone, it's been a stressful day (again!) and I would appreciate some opinions on whether I'm being reasonable or just stroppy please!!

 

As a village pre-school we have an arrangement with our village primary school that for 2 terms we run a short session at school, just over an hour, for the children who will be starting there in September. We ask for a small donation from parents and pay a member of pre-school staff to run this (I also go in voluntarily). We do an activity with our children in a small room first, then join the reception class for play time and story. In addition the school have 3 transition afternoons in the summer term which we as pre-school staff are not involved in. We make a loss on these sessions but do this in order to forge good links with the school and ease transition for the children, and it has worked really well so far.

However I have just heard that a child who lives in the village but goes to another pre-school will be going to primary school in September and has been told by the school that he can come along to this session too. I have e-mailed the head for confirmation but I am furious! Neither my staff member nor myself know this child at all so it would be quite tricky, and we already have our hands full with a number of our own children who need extra support. I really don't want to be responsible for this child as he is not 'one of ours' but don't want to cause a problem with the school with whom we have good relations, or be seen to be unreasonable.

 

Any opinions please??

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i think you need to go and have a chat with the head and express your concerns. He is not registered with you so you will not know him, his medical information, his likes and dislikes and his stage of development. I can see that he might be included in the classroom activity...with the class teacher in charge but i don't think i would be happy with him joining in the preschool bit

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and to play devils advocate...what if he puts you over your numbers (may be ok now but what happens if other children join your pre-school and are due to start school this year and need to be included in your group) - who pays for the additional member of staff?

 

Could it be an innocent mistake in that the school don't realise the 'ins and outs', responsibilities and full implications of doing what they have suggested? We hear so many stories of how schools don't value the early years so it could just be that they don't realise we have so many regulations, considerations etc (and they are probs more strict than in school)

 

Have the other pre-school raised any red flags regarding the suggestion?

 

for what it's worth I don't think you are being unreasonable or stroppy and I wouldn't be happy either

 

If they become awkward could you devise a very very long winded and time consuming risk assessment to put them off completely!! :blink:

 

Joking aside have you been approached in person by the school - it's always nice to be asked and consulted in such important matters!

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this seems very unfair. you should have been consulted. you need to support your children to ease transition, not worry about another child who you do not know and who may have behavioural difficulties, allergies or get upset and have no one familiar to settle him. he could do the school bit of course. if you say yes now you will be expected to do it for other(s) another year so think carefully. everyone seems to be with you here ....x

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I'm soft.............................I'd say yes, because I would want the child to get to know the others he'll be going to school with. If he doesn't put you over numbers ............and his parents pay you the same donation..........and you get his info to cover yourself.................well, it's not his fault and it will ease his transition into school. Look at it this way: he might have a set of sextuplet younger siblings, who you could pick up for your setting. :)

 

Seriously, I agree the Head should have sought your opinion first, but maybe s/he thought you were so lovely and accomodating that you would be bound to say yes? Make it clear that you can't have the school adding numbers willy nilly, but is it really going to hurt to have him in with you?? Poor little chap won't know anyone otherwise?

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Thanks for your replies. Gingerbreadman, no I haven't been consulted by the school, it was just a passing comment which alerted me. He goes to a pre-school in a different village and was going to go to school there too, but our village school has had a change of senior staff and has improved enormously over the last year or so, and they now want him to go there, which is good. I would like to support him obviously, but as I've said I'm concerned that he does not know us and may not settle, and he really is not our responsibility.

 

Anyway, ready for a difficult conversation with the head of the school....

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I would tell the head that I was more than happy for a member of staff from this little boy's nursery to bring him to join the session but that I couldn't take responsibility for him without enrolling him formally. Of course if the school can spare a TA to be responsible for him during the sessions that would be fine.

 

When my younger daughter attended a pre-school outside our village I took her along with the group from nursery who were doing similar visits and joined in as a volunteer. I did occasional work at the nursery so they had a CRB for me which helped of course.

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I would like to support him obviously, but as I've said I'm concerned that he does not know us and may not settle, and he really is not our responsibility.

 

Whichever way you spin it, that remains the point. I suspect the school is just being naive re the ratios and the registrations as they don't have the same "rules" in school by dint of being a different type of organisation. They are probably just trying to kill 2 birds with one stone. Good suggestions re: An adult he knows must be with him, or school must provide a responsible adult...what would the situation be if say he fell and bumped his head? Who would be responsible? The setting he is registered with? the school? You? You are working with the school but not providing a service for them!!

Cx

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mmm I agree with you and narnia but it is disappointing the head did not consult you especially if you have good links - wheres the communication??

 

our transition sessions work in the following way - wednesday afternoons are only for our older children only and after Feb half term or Easter depending on children we go across once a month to the school - the children are encouraged to have school dinner ( parents pay for this) and then we have the use of the reception class and facilties ( it is teachers PPa time ) or we may join the class if this is not possible but has not happened yet. we too are village based. We take all the children whether or not they are going to that school . Parents drop off children at school into our care and collect them from us too at school. We have previously had parents who attend other preschools wanting just to send their children to our preschool on a Wednesday afternoon only but previously this has not been allowed as a minimum of 2 sessions is the rule. this has not happened in my time but could do and then i shall make the decision as to whose best interests this would be.

 

Just to add parents are already paying for the session or are funded and therefore the only extra is the dinner fee if they choose to have it .

Edited by lashes2508
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