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What A Week.......


Guest MaryEMac
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Guest MaryEMac

We have a child in our group who has given us cause for concern since he came for an introductory visit. He started in September and we noticed that he seemed unaware of the other children around him, he had to play with the train set a certain way and got annoyed if the other children didn't do it. Also if they were too slow going round the track, he has been known to climb over them. There is also a lot of repetitive play as in drawing a circle on a white board, putting in the features and then cleaning the board. This he repeats several times.

We approached mum in January and asked if they would give permission for us to contact the Early Years Support Team. Initially she said yes but the next day she had changed her mind. Apparently she was a nursery nurse and her sister is a special needs teacher and they think that there is nothing wrong. We had to tear up the referral form in front of her and say that obviously we could do nothing without their permission. We left it at that but continued to monitor him.

On Wednesday of this week she asked how he was doing and I said that he was doing okay and was trying hard to interact with the other children. His keyworker said that he had done some lovely painting and had waited patiently for the other children to finish. We were making very positive comments and off they went.

On Thursday the child didn't arrive and then his dad rang me during the session. His manner was quite aggressive and asked what our problem was with his son. I tried to explain but felt that he wasn't hearing what I was saying. We seemed to be wrong for saying we were concerned and wrong for being positive.

I spoke to my chairman who said that it might be an idea to have a meeting to thrash out the problems. When the chairman approached the mum she said that it was none of her business but the chair is persistant and a meeting was arranged for next Mon. This morning the child came and the mum asked to speak to me. Basically we went through everything that we were supposed to be doing on Mon. She accused us of being unprofessional and seemed to take referrals lightly.

She asked me outright what I thought the problem was, which of course I couldn't say. She also said that I had had no right to go to my chairman and say that her husband was aggressive.

I explained that I felt his attitude was aggressive and that I had every right to speak to my chairman. Mum then burst into tears. Once calmed she asked if she could stay in our little room and watch her son. I said that she could stay as long as she would like.

Later this morning she phoned me to say that she had made an appointment with the HV and would prefer to go that way than through us. I know that it is her prerogative but feel that the health visitor will not pick up on his lack of interaction with other children as she has said that she won't be visiting the setting. If when the child goes to school,they pick up on this it will seem as if we have not been doing our job.

Needless to say the meeting on Mon has been cancelled. Is she trying to stop hubbie from coming in? At the moment I am feeling very frustrated because we only had the best interests of the child at heart.

I'm sorry for the long post but needed to get it off my chest and I know that you are all good listeners.

 

Mary

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Poor you Mary, whata a nightmare situation, one which I feel we are heading with a child at our setting, you can only do your best, don't beat yourself up about it, you know you had the child's interests in mind, virtual hugs to you.

 

Have a restful weekend.

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Hi mary,

Been there done that :o you have my utmost sympathy.

You may find that when mum has been to the HV your area senco may contact you anyway.Just keep obs and recording.It is a very difficult highly sensitive area for parents to take on board,just sit and wait it may sort itself out you cant do anymore but you can cetainly prove you were aware and prove what stratergies you put in place. :)

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We're damned if we do and damned if we don't sometimes.

 

You seem to have acted totally professionally. I guess it must be difficult for some parents to accept that there might be something 'wrong' with their child. Although it makes you wonder why. Continue your observations in the positive vain as you have done.

 

Very upsetting for you when you are only trying to do your job and the best for the child. Try to have a break over the weekend.

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You seem to be doing all you can , All I can suggest is to keep on recording observations etc as suggested

 

but also ensure that you have already recorded the events of this week, including the phone conversations, what you have done, who has been consulted, meetings made and cancelled and why etc etc etc. perhaps with a note and entry from the chair,

 

 

we had a problem where a parent who denied any problem with the child despite all we did to help, when the child went to school and the school picked it up, she continued to deny it, but them complained to Ofsted that we had not picked anything up sooner or voiced out concerns, so had an investigation about it. In our case we were lucky in that all records had been kept and the complaint was made over a year after the child had left so they felt it was not a just complaint, but it could have happened sooner and without records......

 

Also had an aggressive parent who complained to Ofsted about confidentiality when I did what you did and went to the committee/chair for support. Again not upheld but luckily I had recorded everything had statements for witnesses etc.

 

Seems like I get lots of complaints, but its not really like that, just 2 issues we ahve had to contend with over the years.

 

must say I now record, date and sign everything with witnesses if I feel the need and after the aggressive parent will not speak to any unless another member of staff is around to help if needed.

 

Inge

Edited by Inge
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I think a lot of us can probably recognise your predicament Mary.

Its a shame, but it really is difficult for some parents to recognise their child may need help.

If you've got all this recorded it wont look like you werent doing your job and I'm sure no one would think badly of you. :):)

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My three year old started nursery last month and while I know he can have his 'moments' I just put it down to immaturity and lack of language. His Nursery teacher approached me yesterday and said they are having a few probelms with his behaviour and would like to put him on a record of concern. While I was upset to hear this, I have absolutely no probelms with them putting whatever actions they feel necessary into place. The way I see it if there are problems the sooner they find out the better and if there's nothing wrong then no harm's been done.

Karrie

Edited by aliamch
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I honestly don't think would of reacted differently, if he had been my first child or I didn't know the school maybe. Unfortunately I don't really see the extreme side of his behaviour because it doesn't happen around me, but I accept it's there because family and friends have experienced it. For a long time it was put down to it being a 'boy thing' and his lack of language and to be fair as his speech has improved so has his behaviour in general. So like I said before I'd rather find out if something is wrong sooner rather later.

Karrie

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Mary,

 

The only other thing I can add is that this can be recorded in a brief way and sent to his next setting with whatever other records you send on. This way they will see that you had concerns but that the parents chose not to follow your recommendation.

 

Good luck :)

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Guest MaryEMac

Thanks everyone for your support and advice.

I had a lovely day yesterday with my nearly 2 yr old grandaughter and was looking forward to gooing out last night to the pub with friends. After we had taken Millie home there was a message from my chairman by the phone saying that the parents do want a meeting tomorrow. That really spoilt my night. Anyway I spoke to my deputy this morning who is also the child's keyworker.The chairman told her that the mum had mentioned that they were thinking of complaining to ofsted. It's really bugging me but I know that we have done nothing wrong. Anyway I will post update tomorrow after meeting. Thanks. :o

 

Mary

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Keep strong Mary, you really have done nothing wrong. What a shame that it has spoilt your weekend. :o We're all with you and thinking of you, let us know how it goes.

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Try not to stress too much you've done everything properly so you've nothing to worry about. As you know sometimes it's hard for parents to accept something might be wrong with their child and accepting help means having to face up that there just might be.

Karrie

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Mary,

Try not too worry your actions were professional with the child's best interest at heart.

It can be a difficult thing for parents to accept their child may be having problems even if they know in their

heart of hearts there is a problem.Unfortunately it is a case of shooting the messenger.

As others have said log your actions and keep on observing! It will all work out in the end!

Have a large glass of wine and try not to worry.

Bookworm.

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Guest MaryEMac

Well the meeting went very well today. We were ready to be verbally attacked but it didn't happen. We let them have first say and we really only repeated what had been said previously. When we said that we weren't going to ask to refer their child at this time but would monitor his progress, they visibly deflated and seemed to listen to what we were saying. As we finished I invited them both to spend time in playgroup during the session so that they could see how their son interacted with the others. I think mum will come in but I'm not sure about dad.

The chairman was pleased because she had said that today was the last time that we were going to discuss this problem and we had to make closure. I think we did but I must admit that I will choose my words very carefully when I speak to these parents again.

Thanks again everyone for your support and guidance. It's really good to know that I have somewhere to go to get unbiased advice. :D

 

Mary

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