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To be so upset with the school? Leaving dd age 4 alone and scared

(253 Posts)
D0G Thu 03-Oct-13 16:44:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pixiepotter Fri 04-Oct-13 15:35:45

I am guessing that they don't want to set a precedent of allowing non collected children join oversubscribed clubs or some parents might take advantage of this.

Jenny70 Fri 04-Oct-13 14:50:24

Did you speak to the school today about what their proper procedure was for no-show collections? Even if they are misunderstandings and you didn't just no-show, what should they have done if you didn't show up?

MrsBungle Fri 04-Oct-13 14:07:17

Sorry 4 year old - fat fingers and iPhone!

MrsBungle Fri 04-Oct-13 14:06:51

I'm shocked anyone would think it's reasonable to leave a 3 year old sitting unattended next to an automatic opening non-locked door.

Op yanbu at all.

Hulababy Fri 04-Oct-13 13:46:52

We don't invite volunteers and students into the staff room either - primarily due to the confidential information available in there. They have another area to go to.

Hulababy Fri 04-Oct-13 13:45:58

We don't take children into our staffroom either. It is tidy and cramped as it is, not enough room for the teaching staff to all sit down. Its also cluttered and with confidential information about specific children in there - so teaching staff can see it obviously. Also there will be cards and/or photos from staff events sometimes. If staff are in there they may be chatting about things not suitable for a young child - confidential information about other children, information about staff and general adult chit chat. There isn't often teachers working due to no table space but it wouldn't be fair on other staff to have a child in the corner.

However, we have other systems in place for late collection of children.

Sparkleandshine Fri 04-Oct-13 13:15:10

I think its odd that given art club was on they didn't just pop her in there anyway.... that's what our school would do. Any parent who doesn't get there within 10 mins of pickup, kid automatically goes into late club with all the others who have parents who pick up later due to work. They would never sit them in a corridor....

pixiepotter Fri 04-Oct-13 08:47:50

shakeand vac It wasn't an hour it was 20 minutes .By the timethey had found your number, rung you and you had set off, you would have almost been there anyway.There clearly were adults about- the SENCO and the secretary.Almost every night there will be a parent late because of traffic, or some other unforeseen reason.It is absolutely standard practice to have kids wait in the reception area in every school I have had any dealings with.

OrchidLass Fri 04-Oct-13 06:40:04

The whys and where fors are irrelevant IMO. OP admits she fucked up and I don't understand why they didn't just put the child in one of the after school clubs until they found out what was happening. You don't just stick a four year old on a chair to wait when that child will have no idea why they haven't been picked up, any idiot can see that. I hate that just showing concern for a very small child is seen as 'precious'.

edam Thu 03-Oct-13 23:23:53

Aw, that's really sad for poor dd. The school should have MUCH better procedures for looking after children who haven't been collected - a 4yo shouldn't be expected to sit on their own by automatic doors. It's not safe and it's not kind.

What if you'd been taken ill suddenly, or run over or something?

As an ex-school governor, I would have been very concerned to hear of something like this happening at ds's primary. And it would have been taken very seriously.

In fact, ds did manage to escape and make his own way nearly home once when he was six. He was supposed to be at after-school club (which is off-site - they collect the children and walk them in a crocodile to the other school involved) but took it into his head to go home. Managed to sneak past his teacher - he pretended he'd seen me in the playground, so she let him go.

There was a BIG hoo-hah when this was discovered - not caused by me, I was just glad to have ds home and told him off very clearly, but the school and after-school club were horrified and had already worked out what had gone wrong and how to make sure it didn't happen again before I'd calmed down enough to ask searching questions.

MidniteScribbler Thu 03-Oct-13 23:23:41

I think it's pretty terrifying that there are teachers here who think it would be ok to leave a child unattended when their parent is late. We all know it happens, and we all complain about the persistent offenders, and we internally roll our eyes at the knots they tie themselves in trying to come up with excuses, but ultimately it is the children that matter, and that's what takes priority.

Shit happens. Cars break down, people get stuck in traffic, public transport doesn't run on time, people have accidents. Our school fees include the right to charge a parent late fees (equivalent to an afternoon in after school care) if they are late. Those that are genuinely late generally come in with their wallets open ready to pay (and we usually say don't worry about it). Persistent offenders will be charged without hesitation.

Children could end up in any number of places at our school if they aren't collected on time. In the classroom with the teacher, or with another teacher that is staying late to work in their classroom if their own teacher has a meeting or even the library if the librarian is still there, or the office where they might end up doing some jobs for the head or the secretary depending on who is around. Even if everyone is in a whole staff meeting, it's not hard to set the child up in the corner of the staff room and hand them a couple of books to keep them amused for a while. Usually we tell them to get started on their homework.

Canthisonebeused Thu 03-Oct-13 23:20:20

I think they were terribly mean to have her sit in the corridor and not let her join art club with her brother and just try to clear up the misunderstanding once you arrived.

SPBisResisting Thu 03-Oct-13 23:10:39

No I can completely understand that in general staff don't want students tramping through the staff room. But as a one off...
We looked at a lovely infants school for DS. The headmistress's office had a huge sofa with a load of stuffed toys on it. She said most days she had a child sitting on the sofa who just wanted to cuddle a toy or fall asleep grin

D0G Thu 03-Oct-13 22:42:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SPBisResisting Thu 03-Oct-13 22:39:59

"judgejudithjudy Thu 03-Oct-13 21:08:34

yes dog have read & funniest thing is you wanting a room.for parents who pick up late!!!! really?! whos gonna pay for this room?

Since when? Use your common sense, if you have any. There are plenty of solutions that don't involve special rooms paid for by god-knows-who. Plenty on this thread alone.

Thanks to those who explained about late kids. Amazing.
Next question - what does go on in staff rooms that has made teachers on this thread clutch their pearls at the thought of a 4yo sitting in the corner? Am I far off the mark with my orgy guess? grin

babybythesea Thu 03-Oct-13 22:26:53

Yes, there are adults (teachers, all 2 of them, and the TAs) in the playground. But not by the gate, and with all the other parents coming and going if anyone wanted to scoot out they could. In the chaos of drop-off it would be easy to do. So far the only child I know of that has escaped was a toddler belonging to one of the parents who legged it as she was getting the older one into class. As it is a small school though, he was spotted by another parent who knew who he was and grabbed him and took him back in to his mum. I recognise it may not be quite the same, but it honestly hadn't occurred to me to question the lack of locking the kids in. I just assume dd, also 4, will go in and stay in unless she's told she can do otherwise. Am now wondering if I'm very lucky or very neglectful!

I'm not defending your dd's school, in that if she was upset someone should have been with her. But I do think there may have been an element of the school knowing you were coming anyway so when they couldn't get hold of you (say after 10 minutes of trying), thinking 'Well, her mum will be here in 10 minutes now anyway so we may as well wait.' I do think they should have put her in to the art club. But I can see why they didn't put her into an office with just one other adult - there are potential safe-guarding issues here too (having seen what my dad went through when a 7yo falsely accused him of hitting him, I would always recommend a teacher avoids putting themselves in that position.) I just wonder if the staff sat her down, she seemed happy enough to them, so they kept an eye on her, as in kept popping their heads round to check on her and she seemed fine, they tried to call you but couldn't get through and thought as it would only be a few minutes more it would be fine, and it all got too much for your dd when she saw you.

I think you may be being a fraction U, but I think it's understandable as your dd was upset by it all.

Levantine Thu 03-Oct-13 22:10:50

When something similair happened to my ds he played with Lego in a corner of the head's office. That school isn't perfect but it is pretty good on making sure that children are safe and happy. Your school did badly OP your poor dd

ParkerTheThief Thu 03-Oct-13 22:10:33

It's difficult.
I hate lateness, but I have no problem with a one off incident when a parent phones or apologies when they arrive.
The ones that really piss me off are the repeat offenders who just don't care.
My colleague phoned a parent recently because no one picked up a child. The mother went mad, not with her husband who had forgotten, but with the teacher for daring to interrupt her at work.

Hulababy Thu 03-Oct-13 22:08:13

Judge - schools doors areNOT looked at all times in many schools. I've worked in various schools for past nearly 20 years and know this isn't true!

My own school has doors on timers, so actually there are various times of the day when the doors are unlocked: morning arrival times, break times, lunch time and home time. There are also occasions where the timers fail and doors remain unlocked. They shouldn't but sometimes there are failures . Obviously rectified as soon as known, but it occurs in all workplaces. We have to check and double check to ensure it isn't an issue. But there are plenty of times when doors are not locked due to the need for parental access. These times, ESP morning and night, overlap children being in school's care.

D0G Thu 03-Oct-13 21:50:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ParkerTheThief Thu 03-Oct-13 21:44:34

SPB, same faces and it's really difficult.
We phone, but never get an answer.

On the last day of the summer term one persistent offender turned up 35 minutes late, came in, shouted at me because her child's PE kit wasn't on her hook.
She then had the nerve to say 'it's alright for you, you're on holiday now'
I don't think she was very pleased when I replied that actually I'd been on holiday for half an hour already.

Playboxpony Thu 03-Oct-13 21:39:55

Just wanted to say I don't think you're being unreasonable in the slightest. Your dd is only 4 for goodness sake! And you're quite rightly upset that she was upset. The school could have handled this better. I really feel for you. And I am really gobsmacked at some of the sanctimonious, judgemental bile posted by some people here. Are you all really so perfect??

Give the op a break, she is upset, has had to comfort a young upset daughter. Bit of kindness and sensitivity....

MollyBear Thu 03-Oct-13 21:39:31

re: locked school doors. As I said earlier, my school doesn't have locked doors, either.

I had to pick dd up for a dentist appt last week. I told her teacher in the morning, and we arranged I would pick her up from the classroom.

I got there (it was about 11.30, so not break/lunch time - place was deserted as everyone in class) and parked up. Strolled through the playground gate, across and up to the classroom door (admittedly itis technically not possible to open this door from the playground, but it was left propped open). To be met with a note on the whiteboard (was really hard not to type blackboard then grin showing my age ) saying 'we are in the hall, please come across and collect dd'.

So I strolled back out of the classroom (although should I have wanted to, I had direct access to the whole of the infant block at this point, having never seen a teacher/official, nor encountered any locks), and across the playground, out through the other gate, up to the hall, and in I went. wandered about a bit to find out where exactly dd's class was, then collected dd.

as is then common practice, I stopped off at the office and told them I had collected dd. until that point, I had not seen anyone official (dd's class were with a sport's assistant whenI collected her) who actually knew who I was.

same for when I dropped her back. parked up and wandered in to deliver her to her classroom.

not a locked door in sight.

5madthings Thu 03-Oct-13 21:33:49

lol amanda i had to read back to see what you meant! obviously i meant late...

seriously tho this is just one of those threads where people seem to be nasty for the sake of it. the oo is nbu, the school should have kept her daughter somewhere safe and they should have tried to contact her and her dh. i am amazed they didnt, i have five children from 14-2 and ime its standatd practise to have a system such as the one hula described.

Doubtfuldaphne Thu 03-Oct-13 21:30:06

This reminds me of the time my 4 year old started to get the school bus
The bus eventually pulled up at 5 with my ds in tears
They had forgotten he was on there and even done anther job with him still there!

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