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Would you consider this a Health and Safety Issue?


Rafa
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Last week a member of staff did'nt deal with a behaviou issue in a sensitive way. Wont bore you with the detail but I have noticed she seemed 'irritated' by children not 'listening' to her. So speaking to my Manager about her addressing this i found out that she is working long hours four days a week. I knew she helped out at the after school club as well as doing 25 hours for me- but was shocked to hear she 'works' four, ELEVEN hour days!!! So at my setting 8am - 1pm then home to housework and prep evening meal for family of 4 then OOSC 3 - 7pm getting home about 7.30!! So no wonder shes 'snappy'!

 

Now I know her home situ and she has 'no money worries' - well no more than any of us......

 

I personally think this is too long a day to be able to maintain patience with children and that a decision about how long and where she works needs to be made - by her. I dont want 'snappy' at my setting!

 

Would offer to reduce hours with me - but Manager thinks she would take 'umbridge' with this - shes pretty friendly with her.

 

What do you think? Btw my Manager also works 3 days at OOSC.

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I would make the focus the snappiness, rather than the hours. There could be another reason, unrelated to her hours that's causing her to be less patient at the moment.

I would find a time to mention that she seems to be struggling to stay positive with the children at the moment and is there anything I needed to know about or could do to help.

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I agree with Upsy Daisy... tackle the main concern which is the way she is communicating to the children rather than her personal choice to work long hours. I think you might get into murky waters over employment law if you try to reduce her hours if she hasn't asked for it.

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I think your concern must be her working practice during her working hours with you.

 

On another note, I would think lots of workers in early years work more than one job as the wages are usually fairly low. She is working 9 hours a day over the two jobs. Her choice, but you have every right to expect 100% from her during your 25 hours.

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Some great advice here as usual.

 

it might be a good idea to conduct some peer observations on all your employees. You can then use these during your supervisions and bring up the concerns you have with regards to attitude with children. With the evidence of the peer observation to back you up, and because you observed all your employee's it is a fair process and not to single any one person out.

 

Once you have discussed your concerns regarding this and maybe found the reason or even if no reason is given, you could suggest a way to support this employee in some way. This could be training courses, or work shadowing from a good role model etc. If this employee's attitude does not improve, you will have good enough reason to take it further.

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Thanks for all your very good advice! I realise that many people in and out of childcare work very long shifts and this shouldnt be my point - I guess I assumed she was losing patience because she's tired out! I will get my Manager on the ball with the peer on peer and then her supervision.....the best way is always the right way..........thanks again : )

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