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To be panicking about new job and taking time off if children are unwell?

(65 Posts)
WreckTangle Mon 02-Sep-13 18:29:11

I went for a job interview a few weeks ago, I had been looking for a job for months and was pretty desperate. Anyway the interview was fine but the manager questioned me about what I would do if my children were ill. On the spot due to desperation I said it would be fine as I had family I could call on. I was offered the job straight away.

Now, I have no family close by and I'm panicking about the kids being unwell now. I have no one to call on. Shit! She kept stressing at the interview that the children were a worry and she can't have me being off all the time with sick children ( I have 3 dc btw). I just needed the job so badly and reading this back I can see I probably was Unreasonable to say I had it covered. I guess what I'm asking is is it unreasonable to employ someone then with children under the basis they are never off due to their child being ill.

Also my youngest came home from school today with a sore throat and runny nose so this is what prompted my post. Crap!

missmapp Mon 02-Sep-13 19:13:10

Apart from s and d, we often dose up with calpol and then try to leave early to pick up early! Do you have childcare, my cm will look after ill children if it is a cold/virus.

I understand , we have no family near and dh works away a lot- there is nothing worse than having a phonecall to say your child is ill and your first thought isnt' I hope they are ok' it is ' Bugger, what will I tell my boss'

Spongingbobsunderpants Mon 02-Sep-13 19:14:53

You got me thinking ..I found this too

missmapp Mon 02-Sep-13 19:19:43

Fab link, sponging - I have added it to my favourites!

Solopower1 Mon 02-Sep-13 19:24:45

Congratulations on getting the job, WT! Try to stop worrying about your children being ill (easier said than done, I know) and enjoy getting to know your new colleagues.

I'd be a little wary though, because it sounds as if your boss scared you into lying to her during the interview, and she could turn out to be a bit of a bully ime.

I think she is being totally unreasonable if she expects anyone with kids to be able to give her a categorical assurance that they will never be off when a child is ill! It's when kids are sick that they sometimes really do need a parent to be there, and can't be looked after by anyone else. There's nothing you can do about that.

As Onesleep said, build up credit by always being on time, working hard, never being off for anything other than an emergency, etc.

Good luck!

Turniptwirl Mon 02-Sep-13 19:25:36

Some employers will allow you to use AL to cover child are emergencies, others will require you to take unpaid leave. Either way, they should allow at least a day or two off in an emergency, but would (understandably IMO) be annoyed if you had every Monday off cause dc got a sniffle. If you're a good worker when you're there and don't take the piss you should be fine.

SilverApples Mon 02-Sep-13 19:31:01

Solo, some jobs you just can't take regular time off for sick children, nice though that would be. It's why a lot of teachers and nurses prefer agency work, more flexible than a job with no wiggle room.
OH was very ill for a week, and I taught with DD in a sling. That was a very understanding school, head and parents!

Solopower1 Mon 02-Sep-13 19:48:05

SilverApples, if you mean taking time off on a regular basis - no, I shouldn't think you could do that anywhere, really. I was talking about emergencies.

It's terribly hard for single parents, whether employees or employers. The only way I got through was by using a nursery and then child minders, and finally, someone started up an after-school club, which saved my life! But you can't send sick children to any of these places!

Ime no-one could help when my children were ill. It had to be me.

SilverApples Mon 02-Sep-13 19:52:40

It's unbelievably hard.
My friend resigned when her two were ill for a month, first one then the other. There was just nowhere that she could get continuous help for them, nursery and ASC wouldn't take them, she had no close friends or relatives.
Waste of a fantastic teacher.

Solopower1 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:02:36

Now with 40% of our staff on zero hours contracts where I work(university), there are very few young parents on the staff at all.

If that's not discrimination, I don't know what is.

<Sorry - won't hijack thread.>

waltzingmathilda Mon 02-Sep-13 20:07:31

You will find your family gets remarkably healthy and 'mans up' to snuffles etc.

Two of mine 19 and 13 have never had a day off school. The middle one has had the odd day here and there but I dont indulge colds and silly bollox. I can count every sick day Ive taken off since 1983 when I started work at 17

noisytoys Mon 02-Sep-13 20:08:53

YANBU. I have just got my first full time job since DD1 was born 5 years ago and this is the one thing that really worries me. My DCs aren't sicky children but I have no back up childcare near here sad

WreckTangle Mon 02-Sep-13 20:09:29

It is really hard, It would be a huge relief to have someone to rely on.

SilverApples Mon 02-Sep-13 21:49:25

Yes, matilda, I have had to deal with the consequences of sick children being sent to school when they weren't fit to be out of bed, and parents refusing to pick them up from the office until the end of school.
It's why I donated cell blankets and washable pillows to the resources.

WreckTangle Mon 02-Sep-13 23:13:39

I would feel terrible sending mine to school if they were genuinely unwell. I know them well enough to know if they need to stay at home. A runny nose and sore throat could possibly develop into a high temp viral infection within a couple of hours. Refusing to pick up isn't on at all, I can't imagine doing that.

PrincessFlirtyPants Tue 03-Sep-13 08:08:14

Hope this link puts your mind at rest:

You are legally entitled to unpaid leave for a dependant

PrincessFlirtyPants Tue 03-Sep-13 08:09:40

Here's a link that shows what your employee can't do:

PrincessFlirtyPants Tue 03-Sep-13 08:16:19

Oops that was mean to be what your 'employer' can't do!

Oblomov Tue 03-Sep-13 08:38:55

One of my friends found an elderly 'mrs doubtfire'. She was happy to come and sit, when the children were in bed with a runny nose.
She was a godsend!!

SilverApples Tue 03-Sep-13 10:29:14

Sounds like a good retirement plan to me, I'll be an emergency grandma for ill children. grin

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 03-Sep-13 11:30:23

As the link points out you are entitled to time of to deal with illness and make other arrangements to care for the child, not to be of yourself for the whole sickness.
I use emergency nannies in this scenario, they have been brilliant even offering to cook my tea!

Solopower1 Tue 03-Sep-13 21:22:27

Useful links. Thanks, Princess.

PrincessFlirtyPants Tue 03-Sep-13 21:44:51

Not a problem, Solo

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 03-Sep-13 22:21:55

if kids are ill, they are ill sad

im a nanny and i do a lot of work through the link someone put up - i get sent a text early am and if i can do the job i reply

have a look on netmums and see if any nannies in your area,ring some and meet them/check ref etc and keep hold of their numbers and if a child is ill then can call around and hopefully one will be free

Mimishimi Wed 04-Sep-13 00:13:25

Asking friends to look after your sick children is a really, really bad idea. I've been 'asked' (turned up on doorstep&#65289;and decided not to continue friendship after that as I was so pissed off that they assumed, because I was home with DD at the time (who was only a baby and much younger than their toddler), I'd be okay with expuaing ourselves to whatever bug their DS had. Fortunately we didn't get sick but even if they had just rung and asked, I still would find it quite offensive.

The Gumtree idea is a good one except you won't know them. Even still, if someone is off sick anyway and they can charge a good amount to look after a sick kid too, I can see takers for that.

Mimishimi Wed 04-Sep-13 00:15:36

argh .. sorry typed on phone..exposing

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