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Biting?


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I usually approach the parent with the first aid report and by let the parent know that we are not only supporting the child who is injured but the child who bites. I have a biting policy that I share with both parents, we reassure the parent of the child bitten that the biter will be closely monitored and strategies for behaviour management will be discussed across the whole staff team. I usually make sure I let the parent of the bitten child know that we understand how upsetting this is and that we are always available if they have any other concerns.

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Guest sn0wdr0p

We have a two year old in at the moment who has bitten 3 children and it is very stressful. We are having to work almost 1-1 with him. His brothers also bite - one age 3 one age 7 with ADHD and we think they are all copying off each other. We go to family support meetings and the family are given strategies and support but nothing is working. He didn't come over the summer and I had rather hoped that when he came back he would have stopped but sadly not. There is no reason or trigger for him doing it and it appears that all he needs is to see an arm infront of him and he goes for it. One parents said last term that he will remove his daughter if she is bitten again. I did reassure the parent and told him what we were doing and he seemed happy with that. I have also kept a copy of all that we are doingand all correspondence just incase we get a visit from Ofsted. It's very very stressful and exhausting. He is in for 3 days a week from 9-4 and I have to put an extra staff member on when he is in. It's losing me money but we are not allowed to exclude him-are we?

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We have a two year old in at the moment who has bitten 3 children and it is very stressful. We are having to work almost 1-1 with him. His brothers also bite - one age 3 one age 7 with ADHD and we think they are all copying off each other. We go to family support meetings and the family are given strategies and support but nothing is working. He didn't come over the summer and I had rather hoped that when he came back he would have stopped but sadly not. There is no reason or trigger for him doing it and it appears that all he needs is to see an arm infront of him and he goes for it. One parents said last term that he will remove his daughter if she is bitten again. I did reassure the parent and told him what we were doing and he seemed happy with that. I have also kept a copy of all that we are doingand all correspondence just incase we get a visit from Ofsted. It's very very stressful and exhausting. He is in for 3 days a week from 9-4 and I have to put an extra staff member on when he is in. It's losing me money but we are not allowed to exclude him-are we?

I feel for you I really do. Sounds like us last year, and to be honest it put such a strain on the team it's a wonder that the staff came back in September!

Ours had no real reason - other than extreme attention seeking . It took as a while to work out why the bittern children didn't actually cry when bittern .... Turned out our bitter had such control over themself that they didn't so much bit - but did some kind of 'tooth press'. It left tooth marks but caused no pain ( you can try this yourself - just press hard on arm with open teeth!!) HOWEVER it still counts as a bite when telling the victims parents :-( .

I think we had every kind of documentation you could think of.. ABCs, diaries, home books, incident sheets....

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our biter is under 3, very physical and has low speech and non exisiting social skills, mum is mortified and is dealing with this at home and has given us very specific instructions on what to do when he does it at preschool although we have had to explain that we cannot actually do half of what she wants. He does show that he knows its wrong but he has such poor communication skills that it seems to be his " go to" reaction when he does not get what he wants .I had to watch him like a hawk yesterday ( hence no incidents) but its exausting as he is always running everywhere! hoping this one grows out of it! parents of victims have been understanding so far but one was furious! its random victims not anyone specifc.

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As i have so many with communication issues this year i have already told all parents that biting may be an issue...they have all been warned! (had one bitten on first day...but since then.......!!!)

IMO when dealing with biting the big question is WHY? there will be a reason for a child biting and trying to get to the bottom of it will be the first step to sorting it. Most often it is frustration due to communication needs ...sometimes it is learnt and sometimes for attention. The difficulty is that sometimes we give lots of attention for it inadvertently a reaction of any sort may be the trigger for the bitter to do it again...especially if you have highly strung staff who make a huge fuss!!!! When being trained to work with children with ASD it is common for you to be told not to react at all, this way the attention is given to the recipient and the offender gets NO reaction....so the result is NO result therefore the trigger to 're offend' is not there.

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Every September i think this is hard, but my goodness we are all frazzled this year. Communication problems and parent problems. yesterday we had 18 children in with six staff and we were run ragged! No biters but pushers, hitters, screamers, I want it now ers.

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Guest sn0wdr0p

I have received an email from a father over the weekend along with a bite mark on his daughters arm. He has said he will remove her from the setting if the other child continues with us. This little girl is targeted by our biter and staff have tried to keep them apart but he has clearly managed this on the quiet. What on earth do I do now.

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Guest sn0wdr0p

Just to add that staff today have assured me that our serial biter got nowhere near this little girl on Friday and that staff watched him like a hawk so it looks like we have another little biter. Hey ho here we go again.

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we have one serial biter but at least 3 others who I have seen go in for a bite or bitten before, all boys of the same age with varying speech ability. We have had biters before but a few years apart, its odd that they all seem to be prone to this behaviour! I am guessing they are learning it! we all have eyes in the back of our heads but its hard work keeping tabs on them.

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I am sooooo keeping my fingers crossed for this year.

So far one bite/suckier who knows the minute they do and waves/flaps their hands saying 'sorry, sorry sorry- I know, I know I know' it's actually quiet sweet! It is more of a suck than a bit though.

Snowdrop - I would try and get the parents in for a meeting and discuss face-to-face. Explain what you are doing, what plans you have and how you while achieve them. Also- does the child gravitate towards the biter? We had this problem with our serial biter last year. We had to explain to the victims parents that their child would actively provoke the biter, this did make them actually understand the issues more.

Although that said you do appear to have phantom biter in your group so maybe my comments are not that helpful really :blink:

The strain put on a team when you have a biter in the group is just unbelievable :( :(

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Guest sn0wdr0p

Thank you everyone for your advice. I spoke in length to Dad this morning and he has no issues with the way we are handling things but understandably he will still remove her if she gets bitten again. I have told him the majority of what we have done but can't go into detail about the biters home life and that family support and HV's are working with the family.

Interestingly I have been told that a staff member overheard Dad this morning telling his daughter to bite anyone who bites her!

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............and we wonder why we have so many biters! :huh: :blink:

We told our children to call out loud (shout!) for an adult if they felt threatened - not sure if this was/is politically correct :o - but it least it gave us time to sort out any issues quickly.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Guest sn0wdr0p

So upset. I received a letter from Ofsted yesterday saying they had received a complaint (clearly from the father mentioned above)which claimed his daughter had been bitten FIVE times and that we never told him!!! What absolute rubbish. Now the daughter did not turn up on Monday and I then received an email saying she would not be coming back and that he had no problems with the setting. All I can think is that she may have had had a bite mark on Friday but we had checked her when she arrived and before leaving as I had started to wonder if she was being bitten by her younger brother at home as staff were adamant that she had not been bitten here and that our little biter had not done so since returning from the summer break.

 

What really annoys me is that he told Ofsted that we were doing nothing about it. Luckily I have copies of the email conversations with him telling him what we were doing and records from family support meetings where we had asked for extra support in the family home to address the problem(this bit he didn't know about because I could not break confidentiality.

 

Even more annoying is the comment in quotation marks that the manager (me) said she had tough skin because she didn't cry. Now what idiot would say that and what a load of codswallop-certainly not me.

 

I am very pleased that we have a good record of conversations but really really upset that the next time Ofsted visit they will already have a biased view of us. I have been told I do not need to contact them but to investigate and have information available for the next time they visit. After last years malicious complaint and another complaint (which the inspector said was ridiculous and they should not have been called in and that nothing had been done wrong)I have really had enough.

 

Sorry rant over (this has been nothing compared to my rant last night when I opened the letter). I removed myself to my bedroom and let out rather a few expletives - not something I do often. My boys thought it was hilarious seeing me so angry as I later paced up and down the kitchen.

 

Heading off to work now where I am sure my staff will be pretty cross too. Deep breath. Look calm and reasonable OK off I go.

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So sorry to hear that and I can understand why you feel so upset. It sounds like you'll have a less stressful time without this family. Regarding Ofsted, I'm sure they understand that settings have these sorts of complaints leveled at them and that often there is no basis for them. Once they see your evidence it will be dismissed and your setting won't be penalised.

 

At least it's Friday. Try to pamper yourself this weekend and put this sorry episode behind you.

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Guest sn0wdr0p

Thank you for your kind words and support. I have calmed down and completed my complaint log including copies of 15 pages of (non existent) emails between Dad and I during which I had provided information, and discussed what steps and action we had taken to address this.

It's not all bad. This month I finally turned the corner and am able to pay myself for the first time since opening six years ago after ploughing every single penny back into the business and having to borrow money from my husband at times to pay the staff and it has put a bit of a downer on my euphoria of being FULL. Oh that sounded good. My new baby room is FULL, the out of school club is FULL. Could do with a few more 2s and 3s but it's not bad. I have had over 60 new children signed up since September!!! Happy days (most days).

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............and we wonder why we have so many biters! :huh: :blink:

We told our children to call out loud (shout!) for an adult if they felt threatened - not sure if this was/is politically correct :o - but it least it gave us time to sort out any issues quickly.

I think it's not anything to do with being PC louby lou , I encouraged this with some of our children in previous years as it enables children to deal with conflict and protect their own rights when someone is trying to hurt them .

 

We had a child who was aggressive , we knew why and had plans in place to support but often the offender as in our case becomes alienated because of their actions , mostly understandable but sadly often encouraged by parents ie stay away from ? , we encouraged the children to say 'stop! Loudly using their hand as a visual signal as well , this actually helped the children prevent an incident becoming worse and made the offending child stop and realise that how other children were feeling. It is a life lesson that children can take with them , teaching them to defend and stand up for themselves appropriately especially when someone tries to hurt them whether it's another child or adult. It's empowering , I tell parents that's what we do sometimes if needed.

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