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Is my nanny taking the michael? Or am I being judgey?

(140 Posts)
stinkingbishop Mon 23-Jun-14 09:24:52

We've already had a few talks about time off. She's got 20 days' holiday a year. We're at 27 days off already including holiday still to be taken and 5 days sick/appointments. Some of that time is holiday we're taking, so she has to be off, but she's known those dates for ages and could have sorted her own holiday accordingly (she's young, free and single).

Last week she texted late at night to ask if she could have a.n.other day as she'd got flights wrong, and I said, OK, but we're going to have to start docking pay now as it's getting silly as I have to pay for extra cover/not work. Miraculously the flight sorted itself out.

Last Monday she had an urgent hospital appointment for a problem with her jaw. Fine. But she booked it in the middle of the day which meant there was no point coming in at all. Again, I couldn't work. She then texted to say it was because she was grinding her teeth thanks to stress, and she needed to calm down.

Am I being a beeyatch to think being a nanny isn't the most stressful occupation in the world????

And then at the weekend she texts to say she fainted, was taken to the walk in centre, who told her she was anemic, needs to be on iron pills, and was to take the whole week off.

I'm retraining in a medical field and this was my first week of seeing patients and I was so excited! Am scrabbling round trying to sort things out with a childcare jigsaw puzzle and trying sooooo hard not to text something counter productive and rude back/panic/rage...

WWYD wise MNers?

The DTDs (age 2) love her. She's v good at playing with them. There's some stuff I'm not happy with as she has funny priorities, but not sure that's relevant here?

glasgowstevenagain Mon 23-Jun-14 10:15:54

You cant get rid?

Surely if you no longer require the services of a nanny give her notice and pay her off -

I would pay her to be on gardening leave though - I would not leave a short timer in charge of my kids!

Then replace her with an au pair - so you have actually made her role redundant.

stinkingbishop Mon 23-Jun-14 10:16:43

PS she's been with us since January this year, so just over 6 months.

Icelollycraving Mon 23-Jun-14 10:18:35

Sick pay & holiday pay are different things. The comment about it being not stressful being a nanny is unnecessary IMO.
I think you need to have some form of agreement about holiday. How far in advance it's planned etc. Make it more formal.

rubyslippers Mon 23-Jun-14 10:18:42

There's a process to go through

If she is unwell and she cannot fulfil her duties then that skews things

I would call ACAS

rubyslippers Mon 23-Jun-14 10:20:01

Has she notified you of the sick leave correctly?

I would say let's review on Tuesday / she may have been advised to take a day to two not an entire week

She's unreliable through a combination of factors and it's not working

HermioneWeasley Mon 23-Jun-14 10:21:24

With her length of service, she has very few employment rights.

How much of an issue would it cause you if you called her and gave her a week's notice today?

Either way, you need to be recruiting for a new nanny. Anyone with this track record in the first 6 months (7 days sickness absence as I understand it) is going to be a nightmare going forward.

Did she come through an agency? Did you get references?

musicalendorphins2 Mon 23-Jun-14 10:22:50

Good grief! Sounds like she doesn't know how to be a good employee. Did she mention going to the dentist to be fitted for a night guard to help her with the teeth grinding/clenched jaw issue? I don't know about where you live, but here people who have issues clenching their jaws get night guards. Good luck.

Viviennemary Mon 23-Jun-14 10:23:53

I thinik 20 days holiday is a bit mean to say the least especially when some of it has to be taken when you are away. And two year old twins must be extremely hard work. She probably just can't manage.

rubyslippers Mon 23-Jun-14 10:24:47

You can get emergency childcare to tide you over

I agree with the PP who said the sick leave doesn't get better / that's true and I'm saying that from very bitter experience

HayDayQueen Mon 23-Jun-14 10:25:17

Then go to statutory sick pay which is £87.55 and kicks in after being sick for 4 days (which don't have to be working days, so the weekend days would be included in the 4 days - but the 4 days are unpaid. You don't have to pay her her normal pay.

rubyslippers Mon 23-Jun-14 10:25:39

20 days holiday is totally standard

Plus 8 bank holidays

That's what I have always had from my employers

DeWee Mon 23-Jun-14 10:28:39

I would ask for a doctors' notefor the anaemia. I was nannying when I was pg with dd1. At 36 weeks I was discovered to be so low on iron that if it had been after birth I probably would have had a blood transfusion. I don't think I missed a day of working-and I had to cycle out there first, 30 minute cycle. I just made sure I'd set off in time to recover before they had to leave.

It's not easy looking after other people's dc. Your own are easier, it is much more stressful looking after other ones. You not only have to consider their needs, but also parents' wants too.

I'm not sure about her having to have her holiday when you take it. It depends on do you discuss it with her, how much of her holiday is your choice etc.

It sounds like she's 2 days holiday over, and I don't think she should expect to be paid for those. She may not expect to be paid though.

AgaPanthers Mon 23-Jun-14 10:30:00

20 days (plus bank holidays) is what the majority of the population of Britain gets, and far more generous than many other countries. It's almost six weeks off work.

KoalaDownUnder Mon 23-Jun-14 10:32:10

I think DeWee has a good idea about the doctor's note. If she's genuine, it shouldn't be a problem.

I'd certainly need one if I wanted to take a week off sick from any job I've ever had.

Finola1step Mon 23-Jun-14 10:32:18

She does sound flaky and not particularly committed to the job.

Time off work for anaemia is unusual I would have thought. It's likely she will be back next week as for this week she can simply self certificate on return to work and so will not need a certificate from a doctor.

The weather in the UK is lovely at the moment. Wimbledon is starting and the World Cup is on full swing. I would love a week off work...

Fact is, this arrangement is not working out for you. Bar the odd hiccup, child care should run mostly smoothly. If not, change it. I have always used nurseries as there is then no problem with holidays, sickness cover etc - nursery is open every day of the working week except the Xmas week and Bank Holidays.

VeryPunny Mon 23-Jun-14 10:35:16

We need a doctor's note here at work for any leave over a week. I'd be asking for it!

Legionofboom Mon 23-Jun-14 10:39:59

Given the wording of the contract I would let her know that you will be paying her SSP after the qualifying days (where she gets no pay).

WooWooOwl Mon 23-Jun-14 10:53:57

How on earth is 20 days mean Vivienne? That's standard!

I'm assuming you don't work if you think that's mean. If she can't manage two year old twins, she shouldn't be a nanny.

Seriously OP, get rid.

HayDayQueen Mon 23-Jun-14 10:55:14

I think you can only ask for a doctors note if they are off for 7 days though.

Cornettoninja Mon 23-Jun-14 11:03:01

I think she sounds flakey as fuck tbh. Sickness is unfortunate, but to have used all your holiday allowance in the first six months doesn't scream 'reliable' at me. In fact won't she owe you that pay back if she finishes before the 12 months of her holiday year is up?

Nhs certainly deduct unearnt annual leave that had been taken back from final payments.

I don't think you have to have much of a reason to let someone go if they've been employed for under two years, I don't think you even have to follow warning procedures but do check with ACAS, discrimination laws still apply.

It depends how you want to handle it. You can fire and replace, or if you want to try and salvage it sit her down, go through her attendance and make sure she understands that she literally has no annual leave left now till after new year and you will not be authorising any. Do whatever you were going to do for your holiday, but draw a line other any other time off.

Medical appointments you do need to accommodate and I think it's a fair compromise (if you can) to agree to work with half days where possible - unpaid though.

I'm presuming your in the nhs, I think you should follow their lead - return to work interviews and if you can possibly fund it, an independent occupational review if her sickness levels hit a certain amount.

My gut internet feeling is she's a flakey piss taker though, if that was me and sequences of events had put me in the same situation I would have my lips permanently attached to your arse trying to make you see why I was worth the short term hassle. If she's not doing that she clearly doesn't see an issue and it doesn't sound like a good match to me.

stinkingbishop Mon 23-Jun-14 11:07:08

hayday so if she notified me on Sat re sickness, from Weds onwards goes down to £87 a week? Need to be absolutely sure legally and then will let her know about that and see if, like the miraculously changing flight, that makes the anemia disappear.

Have asked for a doctor's note, and am speaking to neighbour about the nannyshare/nursery combo.

I know I'm being cowish about the stress. I find my own children stressful, so! I think it's just the (unfair) comparison with people I see through work who have just narrowly escaped death, and a lot of them are remarkably chirpy about it!

We'd booked this year's holidays when we interviewed her in December, so she knew them all already. She told me about one week she needed to take, but then there are another 6 days that have popped up.

She's mid twenties but the opposite of a party animal. Real homebody, committed Christian, spends a lot of time with family. Sweet girl. Most of the time!!! She has a bit of a lazy/entitled streak. And sometimes makes wrong decisions (eg other day DP came back and she was halfway up the stairs with the twins and one was screaming because she'd banged her head but she wasn't cuddling her, and when DP asked why she said stinking says they need to be in bed for 6.30 and we're late!)

PeterParkerSays Mon 23-Jun-14 11:09:15

In my contract, if you're off sick for a 7th consecutive day, you need to provide a sick note from your GP. As this will be her 2nd week, I would say that she needs one.

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Mon 23-Jun-14 11:17:19

She's taking the proverbial. If your contract says you need to give her a month's notice to terminate then pay her but put her on gardening leave as soon as you've made alternative arrangements. You don't need a reason to terminate her employment if she's done less than two years service. No reason, no disciplinary, no warnings, nothing. Do it.

I was a nanny for a couple of years back in the Dark Ages, looking after three kids 2, 4 & 6 and didn't take one day odd sick the entire time. My employer depended on me, so I made sure I was available come hell or high water.

HayDayQueen Mon 23-Jun-14 11:28:22


Here it is - sick leave linky

To QUALIFY you need to be sick for 4 days and isn't paid for the first 3 days you can't work.

BUT, if she falls sick again within 8 weeks, she gets SSP from day 1 of being sick, so no missed days.

Here is their website link to calculating the sick pay - sick pay calculator

PixieofCatan Mon 23-Jun-14 11:37:30

fleder I thought that even working less than 2 years they can't just give notice without disciplinary? Probably good for OP if that's not the case though, and anybody else lumbered with a piss taking nanny. There are plenty of us who are good!

I'd still say to cover yourself with proper warning though, at least if I employed a nanny I would.

RE Sick pay, if you are paying it, then stop. SSP is something like £80 a week and that only kicks in after a week? You don't need to pay her full pay for sick days, it's harsh and difficult when you're genuinely ill, but it'll stop her taking the mick.

But what is in the contract about holiday? Because that's where you're really losing out and you need to sort it.

I think you need to talk to an agency for advice, many are happy to advise on situations. Or go over to the childminders/au pairs/nannies section of here.

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