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CM issues....AIBU??

(10 Posts)
ChunLi Wed 14-Sep-11 10:30:30

Hi, first time posting so bear with me if I ramble slightly....

My DS, just turned 2yo, has been with CM for about a year now.

A little background information....We have always been happy with CM and her husband, they seemed a lovely couple/family and they go Kidspace nearly everyday so DS was very happy.

I told her he had allergies, which we were still trying to figure out, she seemed to brush off a lot of what I said (because I'm a young mum perhaps?)and ask me if I'm sure, perhaps it is just his hair products (he has afro hair)!!
We knew he was lactose intolerant and reacted to eggs, but in the last few weeks she told me he'd been eating cheese pizza and also 'accidentally' picked up some scotch eggs!!
His RAST tests showed he is allergic to egg white! He is lactose intolerant!! NO dairy!!
I insisted that she made sure that didnt happen but she kind of played it down that they couldn't stop him, he was too quick, and he is very very active so I tried to understand.

But in the last month before the summer holidays there were more issues forming, I noticed she wasn't changing Ds's nappy, he would come home soaking wet, a couple times with poo in his nappy, but as I tried to sympathise (she has 7 children pregnant with 8th plus others she looks after)I never said anything. This I now know was a mistake.

I thought it would be okay because he wouldn't be with her long, we had told her we may not continue after the term, and she said fine just let her know, but when we did she stated "that's fine I will just need 4 weeks pay in lieu."
This we weren't aware of, I said I will have to see and she shut the door on me.
After checking the contract I saw tht she was right, I was infuriated that she hadnt mentioned this but I accept that I should always read the small print, you can't give notice in holiday time so I waited till the first day back to give 4 weeks notice and that was a week and a half ago.

So now he is still attending, but I feel so guilty. I have been marking the nappies to make sure, and the last two days he came home wearing the same nappy he went there in (he attends 9.15-3.45).

Today I spoke to her and asked her how often she changes his nappy. She told me 2-3 times a day, and I stated that he wore the same nappy all day yesterday, but she tried to say she changed him and she "has all different nappies around the house", how is that even relevant? He was wearing the SAME nappy!!! WHY is she lying to me??!!
Anyway I said no it was definitely the same nappy (I didnt tell her I marked it), could she write down everytime he has a nappy change and everything he eats in the day (the gp needs me to do this now as he has to go for further testing).
She asked for her book before she could do that, a little book that she used to write in everyday, but I stopped taking this in because she stopped writing in it and she always told me she didnt have time to.
So I dont know where that book is now, I asked her to write it on paper till I get a new book.

One last gripe, in June she gave me a set of fees for the extended care hours, (which will just be for the last two weeks of his attendnce now), saying 7.30 - 6pm will be £45 a day, I still have this letter. When I emailed and gave notice, stating the lst two weeks will be extended hours, she wrote back sying all ok, reminder of fees policy and that week one and two will be £175, week 3 and 4 will be £275...that's £50 more than she originally stated!! Can she do this? I plan on putting £225 in her account anyway lol... I also want to state my experience (in a much more succinct paragraph lol!) on a review (that's how i found her) to warn other parents...can I do that without hassle? Should I mke a complaint to OFSTED?

Anyway, he will be leaving at the end of the month to go to a small private nursery.....but I just feel SO guilty, I have to attend university which I have just started and I can't even think of skipping lessons for three weeks, things are fragile at OH's job already because he taken time off for our other children and we can't afford to pay her and someone else at the same time.

I just worry if she really looks afer him, how much attention he gets, if he's learnt anything while there?? Does she record anything about their time during their day?? Is it that she can't handle all these children she has??

And I wish I hadn't tried to be so plesant about everything! Just too nice all the time! I'm always trying to be polite, not make a fuss...argh!!

I guess it is too late now but I just needed to vent, my OH thinks I'm paranoid and that there is just 'tension'...he even suggested that maybe she sees the marked nappy, changes him and makes the same mark on the nappy!!! (not only highly improbable but just a completely ludicrous suggestion in itself!!!). My best friend who is the only one with with children herself said she couldn't believe I left him in her care and I should take him out immmediately...but I have no other choice!


Any Netmums listening your advice is GREATLY appreciated!!!

Imnotaslimjim Wed 14-Sep-11 10:37:22

I'm not a childminder, but I wouldn't be leaving him there. You're not comfortable with her and she's neglecting your child. A CM should show a lot more interest in your childs dietary needs, and lying about the nappies? I'd be pulling her up on that one!

I don't know what you need to do about it though, whether you need to pay her even if you pull him out or whatever, I'm sure there will be others with ideas for you soon

Bananamash Wed 14-Sep-11 11:13:34

Poor you and poor DS.

I am sure some more experienced CMs wiill be along soon but is there anything in your contract about gross misconduct and therefore forefitting the notice? Surely the neglect- lack of nappy changing and refusal to heed his dietry requirements are negligent and therefore you can pull him without paying the notice period?

Also i thought childminders were only allowed a maximum of 6 children, including their own.... but i think if children are over 8 they don't count...

hayleysd Wed 14-Sep-11 11:28:18

Ofsted wouldn't be interested in money matters but would be if she was failing to care for him properly ie ignoring allergies and not changing nappies etc.

Childminders can have 6 under 8 including any of their own and on my ( ncma) insurance I can have 6 over 8's but I also have an assistant so can have extra little ones, usually in England if you care for more than 6 at once you have to get planning permission.

ChunLi Wed 14-Sep-11 12:39:39

Just want to say he is home with me now! He tried to say he changes the nappy 3 times a day everyday and I told him "I don't believe you!" also the paper i asked her to write, stated 'changed x 4' and what he'd had for lunch!!! He had only been there for 3 hours of which part of the time he was sleeping and it was not even lunchtime yet!!! LIES!! I will NOT be paying, this is blatant breach of care and I am so insulted to think they would just lie in my face like that!!!
So thank you all for your help, I'm glad I've done the right thing, just wish I'd done it sooner. I feel so so awful but I am glad he is with me now, safe and sound. Hopefully my complaint to OFSTED will prevent this happening to anyone elses LO!!

savoycabbage Wed 14-Sep-11 12:46:45

Well done and I'm glad you feel happier. What an awful situation to be in.

I bet your baby will love it in his new nursery.

ChildrenAtHeart Wed 14-Sep-11 16:10:20

I think you are quite right to be removing your lo and in reporting her to Ofsted as she is in blatant breach of her registration - she is failing to meet Welfare Requirements in a number of areas which Ofsted are bound to investigate. You should also put your complaint in writing to her and she must respond within 28 days to this. HOWEVER I would suggest you grit your teeth & pay the contracted notice, otherwise Ofsted may see your complaint as being a malicious one just made to get out of paying fees. I know this will seem unfair as you clearly aren't doing that but it is a good idea. You can pursue her through the small claims court to get the fees back for breach of contract afterwards if you want to!

HSMM Wed 14-Sep-11 17:17:56

I am a cm. I can care for 3 under 5s. I have cared for children with allergies and food intolerance, but I make sure they don't come into contact with these things. Putting your child at risk with lactose and eggs and not changing nappies is not acceptable. Check your contract for what you should be paying and pay no more. You could put a case for no payment due to lack of care, but that is more complicated.

thebody Wed 14-Sep-11 21:10:39

i am also a cm, am horrified by the care that your precious child recieved, absolutly disgusting that you felt the need to mark his nappy,, please dont think all cms are like this, we definatly are NOT as you will see by the posts on here.
i have 4 under 5 every day and can honestly say that they are looked after with as much care and love I gave my own 4 dcs. they are part of our family while they are here.

I also was a young first time mum( oldest ds is 22 tomorrow so long time now) but remember all too well its hard to assert yourself though I have to say that your oh could be more supportive but thats men aye!!

live and learn, dont blame yourself and you did the right thing removing your ds, she sounds horrid.

contract wise its difficult as unfortunatly there are parents out there who claim bad care to get out of paying their bills so it may be your word against hers, good luck though.

mranchovy Wed 14-Sep-11 21:21:27

Don't pay her a penny. If she takes you to court, defend it - tell the court what you have told us here. Worst case is you lose and have to pay her the remaining notice plus the court fee which will be less than £100.

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