If I had a pound for every parent who tried to send their sick child to me under the guise of teething, I'd be a very rich childminder. Every high temp, runny nappy, being so unwell they need calpol and ibuprofen every four hours, is passed off as teething. Really, I understand it might be on the odd occasion but children never seem to just be ill lately, it's always 'just teething' - 'they can still come can't they?'
How would parents feel if I took another child in to the setting who was poorly? The sick child's parents insist they aren't contagious but there is no way of knowing and so it could pass on. Then the next child's parents have to take time off because now we know it is a bug...
I have zero tolerance policy for d & v in my setting and I really do understand that parents are under pressure to go to work but what is my option? The EYFS states clearly that I must keep children healthy and this includes their exposure to infectious conditions. I feel caught in the middle and like the bad guy when I have to say to parents, 'I know you think it's teething causing the diarrhoea but no they still can't attend'.
How do other childminders deal with illness in their settings?
Watching with interest. Had so bugs passed on by the kids lately I've ended up with a chest infection. The worst one was a parent sending their child with scarlet fever (discovered after I sent the poor child home ill). One of my other parents is pregnant and already had to have tests for slapped cheek ffs.
I do now ring and send home. As you say, we have a responsibility to the other children and can't look after them and a sick child properly, it's just not fair on any of them.
I don't accept teething as an excuse. Yes, I know your child gets a runny nappy every time they are teething, but this time they might have something catching. I've had a few instances over the years where a sickness bug has been passed around ALL the children (and me) and it's simply not fair on the other children, or their families.
There is no research to prove that teething and diarrhea are related. AFAIK it's sometimes blamed on the excess of saliva the baby has swolled loosening the stools. But nothing (excuse the pun) solid has been proven yet.
What is your sickness policy like? Can you re-write it to include a line that says something along the lines of ANY diaorrhea, regardless of what the parent feels the cause is, means the child has to stay home for 48 hours. Then get them to sign it. I find parents are more amenable to these policies when they're not actually in posession of a sick child - they wholeheartedly agree because they don't want their well child to catch something. Once they have seen and signed the policy then they kind of know they've agreed to it and they try it on less.