to challenge a childminder contract?

(62 Posts)
missusmrs Thu 27-Feb-14 16:05:42

We have been with our current CM for 5 months now and there have been various issues that have bothered me but I have never addressed - too much TV, pizza/fishfingers every night, panics over every runny tummy/spot etc - ringing calling me home from work etc.
We started potty training 3.5 weeks ago, we had our 2.9 at home as she was on hols for 2 weeks mid term so we we spent the time potty training and went back dry with no accidents. he has been with her now 1.5 weeks and he has had 2 accidents, both which have lead to a near meltdown on her behalf. Last week he had an accident at soft play and she was furious both with my DS and us wheb we collected. My DS1 (5.5) has since quoted her going on about a waste of money and how naught DS2 is etc. Since then our drop off an dpick conversations have only centred around toilet routine. yesterday he was at he park and had an accident she told my DH on pick up last night. At drop off this am, she has a right go at me wondering why he couldnt 'get it', most kids did at 2, she has never had a kid who had accidents (She 60 and has been a CM all her life). To such an extent I went to work in tears. It has since come to light (DH didnt tell me as he knew it would upset me) but she left DS2 standing in the park in his dirty and wet pants until she was ready to go home with other kids!!!! I just want to go home now pick them up and never go back - an option Im strong considering - where does it leave me in terms of our contract - I think I need to give her 2 months notice ..but I think her actions have invalided it in some way?

ToootSweet Thu 27-Feb-14 16:07:55

Get them out now and sod the contract.
Let her take you to court.
She sounds horrible.

Isthatwhatdemonsdo Thu 27-Feb-14 16:09:00

I've no idea about your contract, but I would remove your child ASAP.

I wouldn't be sending my child back there! I don't know much about childminders as I've never used one, but surely they have to conform to regulations like a nursery does? I wouldn't think she was conforming too well if she's getting furious over a 2 year old having a couple of accidents. My ds wasn't dry properly until just over 3, which I think is within the "normal" range.

MetellaEstMater Thu 27-Feb-14 16:10:17

Get them out now.

HoratiaDrelincourt Thu 27-Feb-14 16:10:51

Run. And consider informing Ofsted. Leaving a toddler in wet/dirty underwear to teach him a lesson is completely unacceptable.

DomesticDisgrace Thu 27-Feb-14 16:11:09

Oh my God I'm usually easy going to a fault but I'd be straight around there to whip them away from her! Two months notice my arse after that treatment! Your poor DS, no wonder he's having accidents she sounds horrendous. They're the most important things in your world and that's her attitude, no I wouldn't have that.

fedupandtired Thu 27-Feb-14 16:11:26

Sod any notice period. She's guilty of cruelty and neglect and would have a difficult time suing you for breach of contract.

Horrible woman. Get your DS away from her.

Finola1step Thu 27-Feb-14 16:11:55

Take your dc out ASAP. You might want to consider reporting her to Ofsted for the park incident.

MyNameIsAnAnagram Thu 27-Feb-14 16:11:58

I would be complaining to ofsted about your child being left in dirty clothing deliberately. And they wouldn't be going back to her.

littledrummergirl Thu 27-Feb-14 16:12:52

Remove them and contact the regulator (ofsted?).

MigGril Thu 27-Feb-14 16:15:07

I would think under the circumstances you could pull them out straight away, I had a friend who did after her DS told her the CM had taken them in the car without car seats her DD is only 3 years old.

I'd also report her to ofsten who also regulate childminders over leaving your child in soiled cloths which isn't on. It's totally normal for children this age to still have accidents epically when newly potty trained. So please don't worry about that.

missusmrs Thu 27-Feb-14 16:17:17

Thank you just as I felt, I have been in tears all day thining about my baby boy in the park. My husband have just spoke again and and I are on our way now, we have cancelled direct debit and vouchers and as he says let her try and challenge us if she dares.

missusmrs Thu 27-Feb-14 16:18:29

Sorry for typos I'm in a bit of an upset muddle at the moment.

Mumoftwoyoungkids Thu 27-Feb-14 16:19:18

Why on earth does she not carry clean clothes with her?my dd (nearly 4) has been clean and dry for a year now. I still carry spare pants and trousers with us everywhere. I was just thinking about stopping when she had a poo accident the other week at a friend's house. I took off her pants, chucked the poo down the loo, wiped her bum, gave her new pants, she went back to playing.

Not the most pleasant part of my day but no big deal. If you look after small children there will be a lot of poo and wee! expecting there not to be is like becoming a dustman and expecting there to be no smelly rubbish!

So no - YWNBU. She sounds awful. Don't know what the legal position is but get your kids out of there!

werenotreallyhere Thu 27-Feb-14 16:20:18

I would not leave my child there, and I would report to ofsted. Let her pursue you through the small claims court if she wants to

ThePinkOcelot Thu 27-Feb-14 16:21:10

Like Everyone else said, sod the contract. She sounds awful!!
Yes, some children might be dry by then, but certainly not all and if she was an experienced cm or even a mother, she would know that . Horrible woman!

You are so doing the right thing taking your DC out, what a horrific CM

She sounds like she has had enough of being a CM now - she really should chuck it in if that is how she treats the children in her care.

No way would I keep sending my child to Ofsted though!

43percentburnt Thu 27-Feb-14 16:26:44

I think you should report to ofsted. Not to worry you but if she admits to leaving a child in soiled clothing what else is she doing that she hasn't mentioned?

WilsonFrickett Thu 27-Feb-14 16:28:25

What a nasty piece of work and no, 'most kids' don't always get potty training at 2. You are doing the right thing.

NadiaWadia Thu 27-Feb-14 16:28:46

That's awful - very unprofessional. At 60 and having been a childminder for many years you would have thought she must have had plenty of experience of small children having accidents - part of the job I'd say. What right has she got to be 'furious'? She sounds horrible. Your poor DCs. Like everyone else I say get them out of there ASAP. Sod the contract.

Please please report her to Ofsted and any other appropriate authority, for the sake of the other kids she is minding.


ooops sorry

Your dh knew ds had been left in that state? I would sack childminder and report her to Ofsted for being abusive and I would give dh a piece of my mind too! Glad to see you are on your way to deal with this.

MoreBeta Thu 27-Feb-14 16:31:59

We took our DS1 out of a nursery under different circumstances and actually quite grave on reflection. They did not pursue the 3 month notice period. Your CM will not either.

Make sure you put it carefully in writing stating the facts as to the reason why and say you will not be giving the contractual 2 month notice as a result and have cancelled the direct debit. She will not pursue the matter I can guarantee you of that.

squoosh Thu 27-Feb-14 16:33:12

She should have a lot more to worry about than you OP!

Lifeisaboxofchocs Thu 27-Feb-14 16:36:27

This woman would never dare pursue you, as she knows that her gross failings as a CM would come to light.

Get your children out of her care pronto.

cardamomginger Thu 27-Feb-14 16:36:44

Get them out now and report her to OFSTED. Her behaviour and attitude is dreadful.

NatashaBee Thu 27-Feb-14 16:37:04

I'm glad you're getting your kids out of there, OP. Nobody should shout at a child for wetting themselves, especially if they're new to potty training - that's just awful.

notthegirlnextdoor Thu 27-Feb-14 16:38:55

Remove your child. Complain to OFSTED and don't give her another penny or another minute of your time. I'm disgusted and furious on your behalf.

MaryWestmacott Thu 27-Feb-14 16:40:15

Just adding to the chorus of "remove your child" - agree, put it in writing to her why you are removing your child. To her face tell her she's lucky you're not reporting her to OFSTED and if she wants to pursue you for the 2 months notice, she can try.

PooroldJumbo Thu 27-Feb-14 16:41:29

I'm glad you're dumping this CM, op. I'm full of sympathy for how you feel and think your DH is bang on. Let her try.

aworkingmummy Thu 27-Feb-14 16:54:22

I would never take them back. That's appalling - she's supposed to be nurturing and looking after your kids not humiliating them. Fuck the contract, she's in breech for her disgusting behavior.
I can't believe DH didn't tell her to shove it when he was told - it would've taken all my DH's self control not to rip her head off when if he heard that.
There are people out there that look after kids because they love them, not for the money - go find one of those.

frumpet Thu 27-Feb-14 17:25:27

Walk away and find another childminder , there are lots of fantastic ones out there .

Vinomum Thu 27-Feb-14 17:51:00

Get rid immediately. What you know about what this woman has done to your children could be the tip of the iceberg (sorry, not trying to scare you, just being realistic). If you have any doubts about your childcare provider you should trust your instincts and remove your children.

Document every conversation or piece of evidence you have about what's gone on. Sign it and date it (do it on a PC if possible as further evidence of when it was written). If she does end up taking you to court for breach of contract/loss of earnings the most important thing you can have is contemporaneous evidence. It's good that you and your DH are going together to remove them as you will be able to verify each other's versions of events.

Do you know any of the parents whose children are also in her care?

Have you paid her upfront for childcare services?

Does your contract mention anything about her requirement to treat your children with respect (in line with EYFS guidance)?

Really sorry you're in this position, I know how awful it is.

BillyNotQuiteNoMates Thu 27-Feb-14 17:55:58

Don't take them back, but make sure you put in writing why you will not be doing so. Inform Ofsted about your concerns as they will be interested in her conduct.

LydiasLunch Thu 27-Feb-14 18:35:46

Take him out and make a complaint. That is outrageous.uou should have a copy of her complaints policy which should tell you what to do AND how to contact Ofsted if needed. I am a childminder and I am really upset to read this. She sounds horrible. I would phone her tonight and tell her he won't be going back and why.

floppyfanjo Thu 27-Feb-14 18:51:53

Report her now !!!!!!

She should never be allowed to care for children again and it should be recorded as such.

Oh and while you are at it I'd be thinking long and hard at why your DH thought not to inform you about the park incident and why he thought it was ok to continue to send your child there.............................

HadABadDay2014 Thu 27-Feb-14 19:18:11

Never ignore your instincts, take them out and send an email stating the reasons why and that you will not be giving notice.

Alliwantisaroomsomewhere Thu 27-Feb-14 19:23:26

I agree with all the other posters about removing your children immediately and about reporting her to OFSTED.

I am an ex childminder and get very, very upset about other CMs treating children this way because it give the other lovely, kind, decent CMs such a bad name.

Don't pay her another penny. I also agree that you must put in writing exactly why she can shove her notice period up her arse. If she pursues you for the money via the small claims court, then your letter can be entered as evidence against her claiim. However, only if she was EXTREMELY bloody stupid would she consider small claims court.

Hope your kids are ok.

AnitaBlake Thu 27-Feb-14 19:35:59

Oh my goodness! I would be removing them too! DD1 has been at her preschool now since the beginning of January, we all send in changes of clothes for accidents, in fact today I was in early and greeted by a little girl saying 'I've wee'd my pants'! It's so normal for accidents to happen, and creating anxiety around it only makes it worse.

You're doing the right thing xxx

Goldmandra Thu 27-Feb-14 19:39:32

Put what you have described in writing to her and say that you consider her to have breached the contract by not providing adequate care for your child, therefore you are withdrawing both children with immediate effect.

She sounds horrible. She probably should have stopped childminding years ago before she became so jaded.

NeedAdviceNameChanger Thu 27-Feb-14 19:50:24

I hope you're ok op

Cakeismymaster Thu 27-Feb-14 20:09:22

You've done the right thing to remove. A few years ago when my son was about the same age as yours we had a very similar incident, except in our case the cm smacked our son and put a nappy on him - she said he was wetting himself on purpose. He had a visible bruise on his bottom where she had smacked him and it was my son who told me she had done that.
I reported her to ofsted and they investigated, at their leisure! And subsequently came back to me to say they could find nothing wrong with her or her setting nor any evidence that the incident happened so did not pursue it further, nor did they put a 'report' or whatever it is on her registration. I was made to feel like the one at fault..
I didn't pay her notice obviously!
And as a pp mentioned, it was slightly a tip of the iceberg as after that other things came out re her being horrid with ds, friend witnessed her shouting at him and him in tears etc.
so moral of the story is you have done the right thing but don't get your hopes up that ofsted will do anything. I also made sure I told the other parents about what happened but 2 of them chose not to believe me!

FabBakerGirl Thu 27-Feb-14 20:16:43

I hope you find someone better next time.

OurMiracle1106 Thu 27-Feb-14 20:17:48

Surely within your contract there is a duty of care to your child ro provide a safe and healthy atmosphere. She has failed to do so by leaving him in dirty clothes and quite possibly the reason behind his accidents is anxiety caused by her. I should add the advice I got from the health visitor was to start introducing the potty at around 2years ish

It may be a good idea to talk to your HV - they may be able to help with a complaint to OFSTED.

MsMarvel Thu 27-Feb-14 20:33:07

I'd imagine somewhere in the contract it mentions safe care, or along the lines of looked after well etc which she has broken so you wouldn't be the first one to break it.

underachievingmum Thu 27-Feb-14 20:33:27

So glad you have taken them out - you poor things!!

My childminder is fab - my 3.5 year old DS is having a period of accidents. Last time it happened with her she not only changed him but also washed and tumble dries his trousers as she knows I don't have a drier!!

There are truly fab ones out there - it's just finding them!!

missusmrs Thu 27-Feb-14 20:44:08

Thanks everyone for the input it has been a great morale boost to log on and read. It has been hugely upsetting for us all but we went round and collected them and told her they're not coming back. She was shocked and upset. We didn't engage on any issues/reason just said we would send it all in writing. As much as I hate confrontation and upset when I think of my little one standing in a wet dirty pants in the park I'm furious. Last week after his first accident at soft play she was very angry, as we walked home I asked him if she had been angry, he said yes, DS1 said 'furious' I asked DS 2 if he had cried and he said 'No..just sad' breaker.

starlight1234 Thu 27-Feb-14 20:59:04

shocking behaviour...I am a CM and yes I would say pull them out...

Not only is it neglect but also at the time of toilet training they need lots and lots of praise not to even feel sad about.

My Ds had 2 soiling accidents the first week back at nursery when toilet training... just to reassure you that Ds's is perfectly normal...

Hope you find much better care for your children

Sharaluck Thu 27-Feb-14 21:09:55

This is so sad sad
I hope you find a lovely new cm very soon flowers

NadiaWadia Thu 27-Feb-14 21:22:44

She was 'shocked and upset'??? So she thought you would just accept your DS being treated like this?

TBH it sounds as if she doesn't even like children very much, so goodness knows why she has carried on being a childminder for so many years.

Whathaveiforgottentoday Thu 27-Feb-14 21:34:20

Good on you. Please do report to Ofsted. I removed mine 2 DD's from a childminder and I wish I'd reported her as recently I've heard 3 other parents with similar but much worse complaints about her. I didn't want to report as it felt malicious but I wish I had, hearing what others went through.

MsVestibule Thu 27-Feb-14 21:42:07

Do report her to OFSTED. She'll be advertising for more children soon and will possibly treat them as she has just treated your DC. I realise it's going to be her word against yours, but at least your complaint has been logged.

Rauma Thu 27-Feb-14 21:45:09

Pull the kids out of there and makes sure you leave truthful comments on any local childminders site.

Aeroflotgirl Thu 27-Feb-14 21:49:11

She sounds awful, she should not be a CM, I would remove him straight away, poor boy

Aeroflotgirl Thu 27-Feb-14 21:50:37

Yes report her to OFSTEAD she should nit be working as a CM

Goldmandra Thu 27-Feb-14 21:59:43

If you report her to Ofsted they will either contact her to ask for an account of her actions by phone or it will trigger an inspection.

She will be given an opportunity to explain her version of events and tell the inspector her policies on behaviour management and toilet training.

She will, of course, give a very good account of herself and deny that she would ever neglect/humiliate a child by leaving him in wet/soiled clothing or express anger when a child has an accident. However, it will then be on record and she will have to be careful to make sure nothing gets reported again. That may well mean that the children remaining in her care are treated better in the future.

Aeroflotgirl Thu 27-Feb-14 23:23:40

Mabey this is the wake up call she needs, sounds as though she has become too se in her ways and needs ofstead intervention

AlbertoFrog Thu 27-Feb-14 23:33:34

You're doing the right thing OP


nennypops Thu 27-Feb-14 23:56:49

Cover your back and write to her detailing why you took the children out, stating clearly that she was in breach of contract.

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