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to have lost faith in CM due to "white" lies to Ofsted

(56 Posts)
Totempig Fri 12-Dec-14 10:15:05

I have been using a CM for the last 2 years for my 5yo and 2yo. I've been happy with her and the kids love her, but there have been a few things that I've been uncomfortable about, mainly that she seems a little untrustworthy with little things eg. I have caught her out in a few little lies before, like saying that she did a certain activity with my kids, which my 5yo insists that they didn't do, and stuff like telling the school that her daughter was sick when she just wanted to spend the day with her grandparents. Nothing major but just makes me feel that she finds it easy to be dishonest.

Anyway, she recently had her Ofsted report which came back good. I was just shocked when I read it as it sounds like she lied to Ofsted about quite a lot of things. For example, it says that she gets the children to play outside or at a soft play group every day and they frequently go on outings to farms etc (not true), she reads with my 5yo after school every day (not true - she's NEVER read with him), she gets the children involved in helping to cook/prepare their meals (not true), the children have a varied and nutritious diet (not true, and something that I've asked her to change a number of times, as my 2yo always get cheese sandwiches for lunch (and he'll eat most things) and they usually have things like chicken kiev, chips and ice-cream for dinner which isn't exactly nutritious!), she talks to the children at meal times (not true, the TV is usually on).

So, none of these things are really serious or anything, it just made me think that when Ofsted visit it must be quite easy for a CM to lie about what they usually do and put on a good "show" and then revert to their usual practices the rest of the time.

It has made me feel a bit uncomfortable about using her as I need to be able to trust her and feel that this has undermined that trust. But I don't really have any other childcare options so not sure if IABU and overreacting?

MoonAndBackAgain Fri 12-Dec-14 10:20:28

I would stop using her immediately, it would make me wonder what she is up to and why she felt the need to lie about doing activities with your children.

It doesn't sounds like a stimulating environment and it sounds like she's covering something which I couldn't let go of.

Hoppinggreen Fri 12-Dec-14 10:21:53

My CM lied to me about quite a minor thing - she said that she had been doing one thing when I knew for a fact she was doing something else.
I had to withdraw my DS as soon as I could as I felt that the trust was gone - this was a lie I knew a about, how many more were there that I didn't?
Stupid thing was the lie was totally unnecessary but once the trust was gone I couldn't send my son there.
I would look for an alternative OP

sanfairyanne Fri 12-Dec-14 10:24:11

i would think it normal to 'put your best face on' for ofsted
your problem is not the lies, its that the lies show up her usual lack of effort. why have your child in a boring and unstimulating atmosphere?

Totempig Fri 12-Dec-14 10:27:13

Oh dear, I was kind of hoping IWBU. There are very few CMs available in my area and all the good ones get booked up ages in advance. I'm not keen on nurseries. DS1 can go to after school club instead but I am stuck with what to do with DS2. A nanny would be ideal but its just too expensive and risky e.g. with maternity leave etc.

I am also thinking that if my CM managed to pull the wool over Ofsted's eyes, how many other CMs have done the same?!

Screenclean Fri 12-Dec-14 10:27:35

She sounds shit. Not from ofsted but from you.

It's a big deal. Were you happy before the report? If not then there's your answer.

Screenclean Fri 12-Dec-14 10:29:52

Hmm I've had various clubs, Cms and nurseries. I don't go in thinking they're all lying, but try and judge what the children feel? Are they happy going in? Are they coming home with soaking nappies? Ravenously hungry? Stuff like that.

How often do they go... Is it a massive proportion of their life?

Totempig Fri 12-Dec-14 10:30:23

sanfairyanne I actually find that its the lies that is the major problem with me. She does do lots of stimulating things with the kids e.g. lots of craft, imaginary play, there are loads of good quality toys. DS2 goes to a music class once a week as well. My only real concerns with her in the past have been the food on offer being very plain and unvaried, and having TV on at mealtimes which I've asked her not to do. They don't seem like deal breakers to me. It really is the lies/dishonesty that gets to me the most.

Totempig Fri 12-Dec-14 10:33:08

The boys are both happy there and have a great relationship with her. They go 3 days a week although DS1 is only after school. There have always been a few niggling concerns e.g. about the food etc but not enough to make me want to leave.

I guess I am someone who sees lying as a big deal, and this Ofsted report has made me see her in a new light - is it really normal/acceptable to lie to Ofsted?

AlpacaYourThings Fri 12-Dec-14 10:41:23

The lies would make me feel uncomfortable and it would be a deal breaker to me.

She obviously knows that her standard of care isn't great or she wouldn't need to lie to Ofsted.

hmm

TooHasty Fri 12-Dec-14 10:41:39

Hmm I think you are putting a lot of faith in the word of your 5 yr old.You aren't there you don't know what happens.It may be she I doing an activity and your Ds isn't interested.She may go to the farm on a day when your DC aren't there.

adsy Fri 12-Dec-14 10:42:05

I wouldn't be bothered about her lying to school about her own child. That's really not relevant. She does sound a bit crap though. Unfortunately, lots of nurseries and CM's feed children crap food but they're not going to tell OFSTED that, are they?
If you're relatively happy and it's just the OFSTED report I'd let it go.
Most of us embellish the truth a little when it comes to OFSTED ( though she does sound like it's a bit more outright lies than bigging herself up slightly!)

NotSayingImBatman Fri 12-Dec-14 10:44:44

Just out of curiosity, why aren't you keen on nurseries? I chose a nursery precisely because if I or my son's didn't like one member of staff, there would be a dozen more that we did.

sanfairyanne Fri 12-Dec-14 10:45:41

ok then so you are happy. why do you think they are lies then?

how do you know they dont play out most days? do they stay inside? that is crap imo whether she liesabout it or not
frequently visiting a farm might mean once a term - i would expect photos etc. how do you think she lied exactly?
you say the food is plain. this is not the same as not nutritious

is it really lying or just the way these things are worded?

flowery Fri 12-Dec-14 10:47:28

Why aren't you keen on nurseries? DS2 went to a fabulous nursery from the age of nearly 3 and I'm certain his lovely nursery workers would be horrified at some of the things you say about your CM. Telly on during meals? Unvaried and not nutritious meals?

DialsMavis Fri 12-Dec-14 10:49:50

I know you are not keen on nurseries and don't want to start a bun fight or question you on your feelings and why you have them. But my daughter attends nursery and they:
never watch tv
are read to each day
& eat an extremely varied diet (the staff sit with the children and eat together).
Do music classes and yoga etc

Do have a think about whether a great nursery for (toddler age and above) is worse than a bad/average or just adequate cm

adsy Fri 12-Dec-14 10:49:52

Actually, from your later post she sounds pretty good. Lots of activities , kids love her etc. lots of people get very nervous about Ofsted inspections and will spout what they know they want to hear just to get rid of them for another 3 years.
Did you know the average inspection is 4 hours long. That's 4 hours of being quizzed on everything whilst amusing the small children etc.

I really wouldn't worry about the odd lie to OFSTED. wait till they're at school and you read the bullshit the school says to inspectors. They take lying to a whole new level!!

DialsMavis Fri 12-Dec-14 10:51:07

X posts, I was slow typing

adsy Fri 12-Dec-14 10:51:18

IME food at nurseries is consistently worse quality than food at a CM's

DialsMavis Fri 12-Dec-14 10:53:03

In quality or variation adsy ?

NotSayingImBatman Fri 12-Dec-14 10:53:14

Not a good nursery adsy, with a proper dedicated cook. The menus at ours sound delicious!

Totempig Fri 12-Dec-14 10:54:22

DS2 has a daily diary and she writes in what they have done during the day, so I know that they have not been outside/to soft play. I suppose frequent visits to a farm could mean once a term but they have NEVER done this or anything like it and she doesn't look after any other children (she works at the school the other 2 days a week).

The food is plain and I think the lack of variety means that it isn't nutritious. Children should have a varied diet and try new things. DS2 eats lots of different things at home, he's not fussy. There's also lots of crisps, biscuits, sausage rolls etc. I've spoken to her about it before but nothing changes. Maybe it is just how she herself eats and she thinks it is healthy? I don't know.

I do think that it is lying. "Small" lies yes but they are still lies and that makes me feel like she can't be trusted with bigger things, IYSWIM

adsy Fri 12-Dec-14 10:54:28

And yes, it is normal to lie to OFSTED although I'm upfront with telling my parents what bullshit I deemed ofsted wanted to hear this time. ( usually stuff like saying I do a dedicated learning observation at a set time each week; bollocks but that's the sort of shit they like to hear)

DialsMavis Fri 12-Dec-14 10:55:06

Oh sorry I didn't read your post properly adsy

Viviennemary Fri 12-Dec-14 10:56:22

I think people tell Ofsted what they want to hear. If you aren't happy with her and it sounds as if you're not then look for somebody else. But I wouldn't let the Ofsted thing put me off. What's the point of a childminder who gets a glowing Ofsted report and yet the children aren't happy there. None at all.

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