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Notice to Childminder

(14 Posts)
LubyG Wed 09-Jun-10 16:37:44

Hoping someone might be able to offer some advice on this one... I terminated my contract with my childminder with immediate effect following the 3rd accident with my children whilst in her care. First 2 accidents involved trips to A&E the 3rd was a serious injury and hospital stay. Citizens Advice was to not give the 4 weeks notice payment requested in contract (she has one weeks pay as standing order couldn't be stopped in time). She's texted and written asking that we fulfil our contractual obligations and pay her. I've reported the accident to Ofsted, she's lied about the circumstances, they've cleared her of negligence without talking to my children and now she's going to take us to court. Due to the accident this is a very difficult time for the whole family....can't believe I being made out to be the one in the wrong. Any advice would be very welcome

What a nightmare - can't offer any advice but bumping for you.

cece Wed 09-Jun-10 16:42:13

Has your house insurance got free legal aid?

ANTagony Wed 09-Jun-10 16:48:07

Appeal, appeal, appeal. Contact your local council to get her off lists. No childminder should involve a child having three trips to hospital without a proper investigation and full feedback to you.

Write down all dates and facts of all instances and send it to ofstead. Ask her for a copy of her accident book and all paperwork associated with the accidents.

Consider a counter court claim for loss of earnings and expenses that occured due to inadequate care - maybe through small claims court.

prh47bridge Wed 09-Jun-10 17:02:46

I'm not overly surprised Ofsted found against you. They are taking away the childminder's livelihood if they decide to take action so they need strong evidence. Anything your children say doesn't really help.

I'm afraid you can't stop her from taknig you to court. Her claim should be through the small claims court which is fairly informal. You don't have to have legal representation. You will be able to make your case that she wasn't providing an adequate standard of care. Get as much evidence about the accidents as possible. You can, as ANTagony suggests, counter claim for any losses you have suffered as a result of her failure to care for your children properly.

Do let us know how you get on. This woman should be banned from looking after children. One accident maybe, but three sounds very suspicious - and needing to be hospitalised - must have been quite serious. She either has inappropriate facilites or does not take proper care. Good Luck.

nannynick Wed 09-Jun-10 17:45:50

All the accidents resulted in a trip to hospital... be that A&E or being admitted overnight.

On the first two occasions you didn't terminate the contract. Third time you did, so was that occasion a lot more serious (you say it resulted in an overnight stay, but don't mention surgery)?

I don't feel you can stop court action, unless you come to some agreement with your ex-childminder. Does not sound like coming to an agreement is that likely, so a court will need to rule on it. I would love to know the outcome, so please do update this message thread in the future after it's all sorted out.

We don't know enough about the circumstances to be able to make any useful comments really.
Start making up a file with all correspondence in it, hospital discharge documents, whatever you have relating to the accidents - along with a copy of the contract between you and the childminder.

Info about special procedure for handling smaller claims in county court.

LubyG Wed 09-Jun-10 19:54:57

thanks for the posts and support - will keep you informed. I've found both Ofsted and NCMA very biased to protect the childminder, wonder how many kids suffer due to this. I did struggle with the idea that my complaint might affect her job, but then I have to take my job seriously and hope I'd accept the consequences if I didn't.
I think some childminders see their work as as a vocation and are a godsend, perhaps others see it as an easy way to earn extra cash whilst staying at home with their own and don't take their responsiblities seriously.
Harping on now....but....there will be no record of my complaint as the childminder reviewed her own safety measures, risk assessments, etc, so Ofsted didn't need to ask her too. Her latest report even says that children are well protected from harm and accidents! I'll never take an Ofsted Inspection report seriously again.

ElsieMc Wed 09-Jun-10 20:17:46

I had a similar problem but with a day nursery. Following two accidents then an outbreak of e-coli, I removed my child.
The owner said I had to pay a month's notice; I refused and she said she would take me to court. She even made threatening phone calls to me and said she would report me to social services due to my "behaviour".
I was scared and upset.
I went to the CAB who told me to stand my ground and reminded me that this nursery owner would certainly not want any more bad publicity.
I paid for the time I had used that month, no more, no less.
I never heard from her again.
You dont say whether you have received court papers or not; you may well not do.

shoshe Wed 09-Jun-10 20:39:24

Luby weather the CM had put things in place or not, your complaint will be on her record and she has to have a copy of it.

I'm sure Nick can find the relevant standard .

shoshe Wed 09-Jun-10 20:42:41

Think I have it here

bodenbore Wed 09-Jun-10 20:47:13

ElsieMc- that is unreal - ecoli in a day nursery???

bodenbore Wed 09-Jun-10 20:48:09

Oh and do stand your ground - what on earth happened to your children???

nannynick Wed 09-Jun-10 22:20:49

From The Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework (May 2008 edition)
This can be found on Teachernet though the site does warn that it may be out of date following the new Government.

~~~
Registered providers must put in place a written procedure for dealing with concerns and complaints from parents and keep a written record of complaints and their outcome (1).

Registered providers must investigate all written complaints relating to the requirements and notify complainants of the outcome of the investigation within 28 days of having received the complaint.
Registered providers must provide Ofsted, on request, with a written record of all complaints made during any specified period, and the action which was taken as a result of each complaint.
~~~
The (1) bit says: "Childminders are not required to have written policies and procedures."
However many childminders do have a written complaints procedure.

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