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to say I can't mind this child

(40 Posts)
Tonberry Sat 06-Jun-15 00:10:14

I'm a childminder and I've gotten an email from one of the mums in DS class saying she'd like me to have her DD five days a week before and after school during term time and all day in the holidays.

She is in the same class as DS at school (5yo), including the same phonics and numeracy groups, and I don't think it's fair on him as it doesn't give him that separation between home and school when he's with the same child from 7am to 6pm every day and all day in the holidays too. I also think it can potentially create awkward situations and makes business matters difficult. I have tried this set up before, briefly, late last year when I minded a child in the same pre-school class as DD. I had to give notice due to piss-taking from the mum, she was doing things like asking me to have her DD on a certain day (not her usual day) and then faking confusion when I billed her because she thought it was a "play date with a school friend". My home and ny family were gossiped about, my fees and my policies were openly discussed. It all felt a bit too close to home IYSWIM and taught me to keep as much of a divide between work, friends, and home as possible (or as possible as it is when working from home caring for children!).

I emailed her back to say that, while I appreciated her interest in my services, I don't feel I'd be the bet childminder for her DD due to her being in the same class as DS and the conflict of interest this would create. I gave her contact details of some other local childminders with whom I have a good working relationship and who have vacancies and directed her to the local council who offer a free vacancy matching service.

She has emailed me back tonight to say that I am discriminating against her DD because she's got additional needs (this was not mentioned until now, I didn't know she had additional needs or what the additional are) and that she's going to complain to the council and to Ofsted! She thinks I've been gossiping with her previous childminder and have taken details of incidents that occurred there completely out of context. I haven't spoken to her previous minder, I don't even know who she was with previously and haven't asked around. I'm certainly not discriminating against anyone.

Was I BU to turn down this child?

ollieplimsoles Sat 06-Jun-15 00:13:56

She sounds insane frankly. You are totally within your rights to turn this down op. As a rule I do not work for family and friends and avoid working for people I.know at all costs. Just causes trouble!

Don't worry about her, yanbu!

Chchchchangeabout Sat 06-Jun-15 00:15:00

YANBU. Sounds wise to me.

PresidentTwonk Sat 06-Jun-15 00:17:28

Her response just goes to show you were right to refuse. YANBU.

HirplesWithHaggis Sat 06-Jun-15 00:18:36

I don't think yabu, and I don't see how this mum imagines that she can "guilt" you into taking on her dd and that that would be a happy relationship.

yesiwouldlikefrieswiththat Sat 06-Jun-15 00:19:25

Wow she's got a massive chip on her shoulder hasn't she?!

Yanbu op, your emails were both reasonable and professional. Keep them to hand just in case

BackforGood Sat 06-Jun-15 00:19:38

Looks like you've made a pretty sound decision.

SilverBirch2015 Sat 06-Jun-15 00:21:07

YANBU. Your business, your family, your decision about criteria.

Sounds like you made a very fortunate decision if this was her response. Also quite intrigued about what may have happened at previous childminder's.

griselda101 Sat 06-Jun-15 00:21:56

she sounds nuts! avoid avoid avoid and don't feel you have to explain yourself any more than you already have.

BerylStreep Sat 06-Jun-15 00:22:08

Agree with others, her response is bonkers.

You might want to keep yourself right though by replying that you have no idea what she is talking about, and you have no knowledge of her child's needs or previous experiences with other childminders (then wish her luck in finding a place).

NoSquirrels Sat 06-Jun-15 00:22:12

Oof. You sound totally reasonable, and she sounds bonkers.

Try not to worry about it. How would she prove that sort of a complaint anyway? You have proof in writing of your reasons for turning it down, and her "complaint" would be just speculation.

Sorry you're having such a tough time. I have used childminders both pre-school and school-age wraparound, and you sound very child-centred and professional to me on what you've written.

twofalls Sat 06-Jun-15 00:24:18

YANBU. Just write back explaining you have not discussed her DD or her additional needs and reiterate its your policy not to mind children you know well or your childrens friends. Everything you say is reasonable.

mrstweefromtweesville Sat 06-Jun-15 00:26:13

You are right.
She is wrong.

TeresaGuidice Sat 06-Jun-15 00:26:19

I think you've dodged a bullet there and your reply was spot on.
Sounds like there could have issues with the last childminder. Wide berth required here..

The5DayChicken Sat 06-Jun-15 00:32:15

Well, you were obviously right to turn her down!

I'd be tempted to mail her back asking why she wanted you to mind her DD if she thought you were gossiping about her.

But it's best to stay professional really. Maybe a quick mail back reiterating your reasons and also making it clear that this is the very first you've heard of her DD's additional needs.

HirplesWithHaggis Sat 06-Jun-15 00:35:58

Quite apart from anything else, she's looking for pt care during school term, and ft during the holidays, so you're expected to reserve a ft space for her dd when you could actually have, and be paid for, another ft child. It doesn't make good business sense.

Aeroflotgirl Sat 06-Jun-15 00:52:34

Yanbu she is a piss taker and quite frankly insane. You have had a narrow escape.

BlinkAndMiss Sat 06-Jun-15 01:05:11

Lucky escape! Just keep copies of all correspondence incase she does carry out her threat, I doubt she will though. Your reasons are more than justified and Ofsted will appreciate that.

She should have mentioned additional needs in her initial request, the care required is on a different scale to childminding a child without additional needs. If you already have other paying childmindees then you have to think about the impact on them too, sometimes it's just not possible to do.

She sounds crazy, just be prepared to explain exactly what you've said on here and completely avoid any further exchanges with her.

GiddyOnZackHunt Sat 06-Jun-15 01:12:49

I agree yanbu but I think you should go at it from the business angle too. She wants a confirmed holiday place? She has to pay 39 weeks at your full rate for the hours she isn't using. If you get a term time only child who suits your allocation then you'll accept a holding fee.
*I'm a parent who relies on a cm

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 06-Jun-15 01:28:26

Well if nothing else she's confirmed you made the right call there!

mimishimmi Sat 06-Jun-15 02:13:52

Hmmm. YANBU at all and now I would be really interested to find out from her former childminder just what those incidents were grin

GymBum Sat 06-Jun-15 02:22:44

Wired. Take no notice. YANBU

MiscellaneousAssortment Sat 06-Jun-15 02:23:49

You need to reply to keep your reputation shiny and clean, though I can understand why it would be tempting to ignore her completely.

But of course YANBU and she's obviously had some rubbish experiences that she's projecting into you. I feel sorry for her.

mimishimmi Sat 06-Jun-15 02:31:48

Or it sounds more like her former childminder had some rubbish experiences ...

Probably related to non payment of fees. As her child is a classmate of yours, there's too much potential for her to treat you like a 'playdate mum' again like the other mum did and find reasons not to pay you regularly except for the fulltime care provided in holidays..

sadwidow28 Sat 06-Jun-15 03:21:36

"Dear Mrs X

I am confused about the statements you made in your latest email to me. Perhaps you did not understand my previous communication.

My business policy is to maintain a healthy balance between my child-minding duties and my own children. I therefore do not offer placements to any child who is in the same class as one of my own children. In my professional experience, it is too challenging for non-siblings to spend 11 hours a day together over an extended period of time.

I hope this clarifies my policy.

Yours.... !

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