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Would you be concerned about this with CM

(34 Posts)
livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 02:38:14

Had dc1 and 2 with CM since June 2014 - with a break for maternity and now DC3 goes aswell. Lately I've been a bit concerned that

A) she hardly appears to take the children out, they go to playgroup once a week (they go 3 days) but that appears to be it

B) today she has taken on a new child, her mum works as her assistant but isn't there all day - so when I dropped off today she had 5 under 5,s plus her own daughter who has only just turned 5.

3) whenever I ask my daughter what she's has for dinner she always says pasta or pizza

4) we never seem to get and paperwork from her or much. Information abor how the children have been that day/done that day

5) often when I pick up the children are never ready, often have no trousers (do have nappies) on

6) DS aged 2 has been diagnosed with autism and I asked for a report for the paediatrician which never materialised despite constant reminders.

I will say the kids do seem happy there, my daughter and hers are best friends and in the same class at school, DS doesn't bond easily but has bonded with her mum really well, I love her mum as she honestly adores the children. But I feel when I'm paying the bulk of my salary to a childminder, she's not really pulling her weight

livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 08:23:18

bump, unsure how much (if any of this) is just me being picky

ShinyShinyShiny Tue 05-Apr-16 09:01:00

From what you've said I would be concerned, it sounds like she's acting like a child's friend's parent who is watching your children for you rather than fulfilling her obligations as a childminder.

happystory Tue 05-Apr-16 09:21:08

I'd be unhappy about this. As she's obviously not giving you any info at pick up or a diary entry, you are entitled to ask what they have been doing and eating. I'm not sure if CMs are meant to do progress reports, and I totally agree they shouldn't be doing paperwork at the expense of looking after the children, but she should be sharing info with you most definitely. It doesn't sound very stimulating there.

HSMMaCM Tue 05-Apr-16 15:14:58

She should be providing a progress assessment against EYFS for the paediatrician. One of a CMs remits is to work with other professionals involved in a child's care.

She should also be working closely with you.

Ratios are hard to assess without knowing which children are at school.

She might not be going out as much because she has taken on extra children with an assistant and can't get out as easily???

LittleNelle Tue 05-Apr-16 16:37:31

Were all of the children under 5 below school age? She should only have 3 pre-schoolers, but for example my CM often has two toddlers, two 4 year olds and two 5 year olds but one 4yo is school age.

One playgroup a week wouldn't bother me if they are out in the garden and doing activities at home. One playgroup and watching TV the rest of the time would bother me.

I don't expect to get anything written as a daily diary from the CM but if I ask about their day she'll tell me.

livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 18:16:24

1 8 month old, 1 15 month old (mine), 1 2ish year old, 1 2.5 year old (mine), 1 4 year old (mine, shes in school nursery class? not sure if that counts as school age) 1 5 year old who is hers and is school age.

We showed her DS preschool report and she said 'oh i'm meant to do those' well why arn't you! it is starting to grate on me as I am paying a lot of money and she can't even write a report for my son for the paeditritian!

DD came back to say she did go to the park today which is nice, however DS and DD2 got left at home with her mum, which .is a shame, I know DS is a handful but he loves the park sad

Also I have asked her to give DD no dairy as it is giving her really bad bowels. I offered to buy dairy free butter/almond milk etc. last night DD was up with bad belly and the CM said she had pizza and a yoghurt yesterday! well that will be why then!

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 05-Apr-16 18:27:43

Maybe she got continuity of care as your 3rd would be young - Not sure if that's possible??

So would have 6 under 8 still but as her dd would be counted as school age would be 5 under 5 ?

Is that allowed?

Does she have all little ones every day without help?

I would want to know diary of what they have done And ideally menu planner for week or be told what they had - wouldn't be happy with pasta every day

If sound fun creative things at home then no reason to have to go out every day

Now you have 3 under 4/5 may be Cheaper for you to employ a nanny

They will do nursery duties such as children's washing and keeping play areas tidy - plus cook meals for them

As well as no getting them and you ready in the morning. Just yourself. Nanny will dress and give kids breakie if you want

Maybe something to think about ??

Blondeshavemorefun Tue 05-Apr-16 18:28:33

Is mum a registered cm?

livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 18:30:37

i believe mum is an assistant?

LittleNelle Tue 05-Apr-16 19:03:35

Wouldn't it be cheaper for you to hire a nanny? Childminder for 3 would cost about £15 an hour where I am.

jannier Tue 05-Apr-16 19:06:18

If mum is an assistant they can depending on space have up to 6 under 5's when working together. It maybe that when you said you wanted to return after mat leave she registered mum for this reason....you would need to talk to her.

4's turn to5's for ratio once they start full time school not before.

Continuity of care would allow a cm to have up to 6 under 5;s but is strict and for short term....unforeseen absence of assistant, taking on siblings of existing children ...which may be your case. or a cm's own new baby...not for new business.

If you attend 3 days and she's out 1 as others say it depends on what else happens through the day, Your own attending school nursery could limit her ability to attend other groups, it can be a tight turn around to get to nursery for a group by 11.20 similarly if its a drop off at 12.15 its tough getting everyone fed and changed then delivered if you also do a cooked meal, realistically you would be eating by 11.15 at the latest., maybe why she now has an assistant and less time to do diaries.

She should be doing transition reports, progress reports, 2 year old reviews, maybe she's snowed under if she's doing this after a8 to 10hour day with no breaks...again talk to her.

Gobbolino6 Tue 05-Apr-16 19:12:40

I would be concerned, yes.

HSMMaCM Tue 05-Apr-16 19:17:49

No dairy means no dairy and it was very kind of you to offer alternatives.

livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 19:36:39

sorppry i wasn't clear, DD attends nursery class full time, i drop her at 9 and childminder collects her at 3.15 along with her own daughter. term time i have no issue with how often they go out as DS goes to preschool 2 of the mornings and I know all too well that by the time you get home and do lunch etc its his nap time, but as its the holidays i was hoping she'd get them out a bit.

childminder only works 3 days, which she prefers but i feel shes trying to squish a full time job into those days.

I guess i kind of have to suck it up as it took so long for DS to settle and shes the only CM that collects from the very rural preschool and school the kids go to.

I think I will pack a dairy free bag for the baby tomorrow - at least if i provide the food i know she won;t be eating any dairy - It amazes me how much stuff has dairy in!

LittleNelle Tue 05-Apr-16 19:38:21

Full time nursery class still counts as under 5. If she has an assistant though she could have 6 of them.

livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 19:38:35

she had assistant before DD started, her mum has always worked with her, she has never done diaries, even when i was on maternity and she only had DS for 6 hours a week

Hatethinkingofusernames82 Tue 05-Apr-16 19:39:34

It doesn't sound great to be honest. I think the ratios seem OK. I'm almost positive it is 6 children under 6 of which only 3 can be under 3 and of those only 1 under 1.

But she should really be doing daily reports. Our child minder does a written daily diary which includes what they ate for each meal, when they slept and for how long, and when they had nappies changed and if they were wet or soiled. She also does an overview of how the day went and what activities were done. She does this as she says its so easy to forget to mention something during the handover with people trying to get away home etc.

On top of that she updates on online diary that grandparents/parents that work away can access. She posts photos on this too as it is all secure and password protected. It's called my baby's days.com

My little one is with cm 3 days per week and they go out each morning- straight after the school run to the local toddler group/library for singing and story sessions etc. They usually return home just before/after lunch and then spend the afternoon having naps, painting, playing in the garden etc. She also works in partnership with 2 other childminders and in the holidays they hire a minibus and go for full days out to the zoo/beach/woodland parks etc etc. We don't even have to pay extra for these as they raise money throughout the year for bus hire etc.

We know we are very lucky with her and value her so so much.

Just reading this back and I'm worried it sounds like I'm boasting about our cm but I'm really trying to get across what is possible with a child minder. Hope it helps.

livvylongpants Tue 05-Apr-16 19:40:00

but can she have 6 if assistant isn't there? her mum isn;t there at drop off or pick up, she usually gets there at 10-11 and leaves at 3.30-4 thats 2/3/4 hours a day she has all those kids alone

Hatethinkingofusernames82 Tue 05-Apr-16 19:42:18

I'm pretty sure 6 is fine without an assistant. But the age of them all does matter so she couldn't have 6 1 year olds or even 6 3 year olds.

Hatethinkingofusernames82 Tue 05-Apr-16 19:45:46

I just googled childminder ratios Scotland (that's where I'm based). Look up foundation years.org.uk and there is a section on childminder rations frequently asked questions.

Maryann1975 Tue 05-Apr-16 20:58:46

I'm a cm. are you in England? I'm only sure of the regulations in England, not any where else and I think diffeent parts of the UK have different rules. In your op you say your dd and her dd are in the same school class, then later on you say one is at nursery one is at school, so I'm a bit confused. I think your cm if she is alone is going above her ratios. You can get round the 3 under school age bit, for existing children and their new siblings, but she has five of them, so she is two children over. I don't know the rules about assistants so it could be when her mum is there it's ok, but I thought you had to give permission for dc to be left with assistant.
Meals - is your child normally quite truthful and have a good memory of what they have eaten? Speak to the cm and ask what they are having for meals, it's inportant they are eating a balanced diet and if you are paying for food i owuld expect it to be varied. I'd be cross she had ignored the no dairy thing and would want an explanation about that.
Daily diaries, I don't bother with these. I've done them in the past and found them highly repetitive and parents weren't bothered, it was just extra work, loose sheets got lost and never read and a book was often left at home. All the information that needs to be passed on can be done verbally at the end of the day and if there is something really urgent or important i send a text. Parents are sent there childs learning journey about once a term to read and comment on to formally keep them up to date on their childs progress but apart from a childs 2 year check there is no official reason to be writing reports on a child (unless eg the paediatrician wants one and in that case of course it should be done).
Why aren't the children dressed when you get there?

Pollaidh Tue 05-Apr-16 21:05:54

We've only used a CM a short while, but we got:
Weekly menu in advance.
Emailed photos of activities.
Verbal report on activities.
Weekly theme plans.

And that was a CM looking after our 5 yr old after school!

jannier Thu 07-Apr-16 09:32:21

Cm's do not have to do a daily diary, they may choose to its up to them.
Themed planning is not considered a priority as planning should be child led following their interests to meet next steps many inspectors grade down settings with themed planning if it is followed rigidly.

Jw35 Thu 07-Apr-16 09:46:51

Trust your gut instinct on this. A good childminder will be obvious to you and you wouldn't be to ask the question. I've seen more crap cm's than good ones I'm afraid sad

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