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To expect parents to not bring sick older sibling to baby/toddler group when off school

(24 Posts)
Happilyacceptingcookies Wed 03-Apr-19 07:09:10

This has happened on 2 consecutive days this week. Parents have brought the 6 or 7 year old sibling to toddler group with their younger sibling because they are off school with headache/abdominal pain/viral symptoms. And these siblings have sat in the baby corner! I have a 3 year old and a 9 month old. When the 3 year old is too ill for nursery or meets exclusion criteria I wouldn't then take her to a play group instead. (I am a GP so not unfamiliar with being around bugs all the time!)

Surely the reason they are off school is two-fold. 1. To give them recovery time and rest and 2. To try not to spread their virus around school.

I understand that it's hard being at home with your child is ill but why should the well population be entertaining the poorly child, and harbouring their virus, instead. Coughs, colds, runny noses are the norm. But a school aged child who has been kept out of school should therefore also be too ill to attend toddler group, where it doesn't matter if their younger sibling misses a week.

Nanny0gg Wed 03-Apr-19 07:10:50

Did you say anything to them or group leaders?

Sirzy Wed 03-Apr-19 07:16:31

Poor kids. If you have a headache he last place you would want to be is a toddler group

Happilyacceptingcookies Wed 03-Apr-19 07:17:46

No, I didn't know if I should. I don't have a school aged child so didn't know if I was being judgy and PFB, perhaps this is the norm of if they aren't actively having diarrhoea and vomiting it's OK for them to attend? That's why I wanted some MN opinions and experiences.

Happilyacceptingcookies Wed 03-Apr-19 07:21:58

sirzy the kids were running around with the toddlers, seemed to be enjoying it?!

stucknoue Wed 03-Apr-19 07:23:01

It depends why they are off but generally I agree. If the reason for absence from school is they had an asthma attack or something else not contagious the equation is different of course, my dd had time off following seizures because they made her super tired but she wasn't a danger to the toddlers

Friedspamfritters Wed 03-Apr-19 07:24:31

YANBU. If they're well enough for playgroup they should be in school. If not let the poor child rest! I'd have more sympathy if they were taking the toddler to a vital appointment but it's hardly the end of the world to miss playgroup!

AdoreTheBeach Wed 03-Apr-19 07:26:45

Well, I think it’s a case of people losing their common sense. Your two points make perfect sense :- recovery/test and not spread virus/cold. Why these thick or selfish parents don’t comprehend this is beyond me.

I’m sure it’s not in any group’s rules because it should be common sense. They’ll have to initiate group rules for stupidity.

Reddragonqueen Wed 03-Apr-19 07:26:53

Yanbu! At a group yesterday a woman said her 9yo was with her as she was off school with a sickness bug! She even said her 3yo hadnt had it yet so would probably start that day. the lady in charge just smiled all nice and said she'd make 9yo some toast to. I was livid and left

WorldCupWidow Wed 03-Apr-19 07:32:04

I have been at a group before with newborns toddlers and pregnant mums and another mum brought along her 2 year old and the 6 year old silbiling who was off school which chicken pox!!! She got really angry when the group leader asked he me to leave due to the risk to the newborns and pregnant women, shouting, said the group leader was “on some jumped up power trip,” “it’s a church playgroup you can’t ask people to leave”, left evtually slated the group on Facebook etc and then turned up again the next week (with just the toddler) as though nothing had happened.

Happilyacceptingcookies Wed 03-Apr-19 07:32:14

Glad it's not just me then. Totally see that some children are off school for non infectious reasons. But a the group leader smiling and then catering for a child with the sickness bug?! I also think it's selfish to make it other people's problem instead of containing it at home.

Happilyacceptingcookies Wed 03-Apr-19 07:35:28

Ah chickenpox, the other favourite around babies and pregnant women hmm. Often followed by "most parents want their children to catch it" That group leader did well!

SnowdropsiUnderTrees Wed 03-Apr-19 07:37:03

I imagine the group leaders didn't ask them to leave as they are only volunteers trying to be nice to everyone. Why didn't anyone else ask them to leave? For the same reason. No one wants to upset any one /be shouted at.

OneDayillSleep Wed 03-Apr-19 08:06:57

This would make me really angry. I actually stay away from baby groups when my children just have a bad cold, it's awful when small babies particularly who breast feed can't breath through their nose, it makes feeding very difficult. If I can avoid spreading germs around I do. I get annoyed when toddlers turn up coughing and spluttering everywhere, nevermind older siblings too infectious for school. I'd have questioned why the sibling was there. If it was something contagious I'd have just left.

PregnantSea Wed 03-Apr-19 08:09:27

This seems very silly to me. If one of the kids is sick then it's not exactly urgent to get to a baby rhyme time or toddler play group. I would be pissed off too because you're infecting all the kids there. If my child was truly sick I'd let them stay home for the day and if there was no one else to take my toddler to a group thing then we'd just skip it that day. No big deal.

Thirtyrock39 Wed 03-Apr-19 08:22:42

Terrible to do that and as previous posters have said if well enough for toddler group = well enough for school, I'd bet they're on the second day of a 48 hour thing when often kids seem fine in themselves and it can be hard keeping them home but sensible parents do as they're still technically infectious
On the other hand I've helped run a toddler group and would have found it difficult to deal with - although this was pre Facebook groups - the leaders could put a polite reminder on the Facebook page we had to send a letter from brownies about not sending kids in if they'd been off school unwell- easier than having a face to face confrontation

Spideygirl77 Wed 03-Apr-19 08:38:52

Just wait until your children start school and your chatting to a parent and they tell you how they have been up with little Johnny all night vomiting but it’s ok calpol has done the trick, that’s when your teeth really are on edge. I’ve given up saying anything to these parents they don’t care. Even when a whole class comes down with it.
I teach mine to avoid avoid avoid it’s the only way. We have a type one diabetic in the household stomach bugs are not any fun for us when we end up in A and E trying to stabalise her after yet another stomach bug.
People do not care about anyone’s circumstances except their own it becomes mind numbing and the schools are powerless to do anything unless the parents are honest. Same with play groups people don’t want drama so these types generally get away with it.

Brunobear Wed 03-Apr-19 08:42:10

If the child is contagious or feeling miserable then they shouldn't be taking them. Sometimes children can be off for other reasons - we've had ds not allowed in school because of being on antibiotics although not infectious - so it that case it depends on how the child feels.

lola006 Wed 03-Apr-19 08:42:30

There’s a soft play close to me that has a big sign on the front door that says “if your child is too sick for school, they are too sick to be here.” Reception told me that it’s SO common for children with chicken pox or d&v to turn up. Ick.

YANBU OP, I would quietly pull aside whoever the leader/organiser is and have a word next time it happens.

NewSchoolNewName Wed 03-Apr-19 12:01:58

YANBU, if they’re too poorly to go to school they’re too poorly to go to a toddler playgroup.
Especially so if they’re off school with something contagious.

YesimstillwatchingNetflix Wed 03-Apr-19 13:37:39

I'd be furious.

As a GP, surely you're in a good position to say to either the parents or the group leader that this is a stupid thing to do? The group leader will then be able to act with more assertion and confidence because they have a medical opinion in their corner.

The sick children should not be mucking in with the little ones. If they must be there (because their parents are selfish idiots) then they should be sat away from the group with a restful activity like colouring or reading.

The group leader needs to make an announcement- due to the spread of illness, children who are too unwell for school cannot be brought along to playgroup from now on.

It's not fair on anyone.

Urgh2019 Wed 03-Apr-19 13:40:51

My playgroup was very strict about older children coming, I think to stop parents bringing them on school PD days etc.
They said they weren’t suitable for older children to attend. I think it’s a good policy to be honest.

Bear2014 Wed 03-Apr-19 13:42:49

This happened to me last week - we were signing in for a stay and play at the children's centre (18 month old DS). A dad shows up with a 2 year old and a 5 year old, tells the receptionist she's off school as she had tummy ache. The receptionist asked if she had vomited, he said no and they were waved in. Just rude IMO, she may have been sick at any point and exposed a whole room full of 6 month-4 year olds.

tinysnickersaremyfavourite Wed 03-Apr-19 13:50:04

Yeah, people do this around here too.
YANBU at all, there are enough germs at toddler groups as it is without knowingly bringing a sick older child.
My youngest has been stuck indoors this week because big one has a virus and I'm not taking him to spread his germs over the babies!

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