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How often is your CM off sick - and at what point does it become an issue?

(8 Posts)
vonsudenfed Tue 20-Jan-09 12:12:34

we've used the same CM for a year and a bit now, and she is wonderful, and DD adores her. But I'm starting to have a bit of a problem with the amount of days that she can't take DD because of sickness, and I'm wondering what's normal.

It wasn't so much of a problem before, as I was freelance and at home and so could juggle. But since December, I've been in an office one day a week, and since then (so six weeks) she's called in sick three times. Once her, once her daughter, once her helper. Work are understanding, but it is becoming difficult to do this over and over again.

One of the problems, I think, is that the day she takes DD she relies on 2 helpers (her partner and her mother) and so if one or other of those is sick, she feels that she has to cancel all the children to be fair.

Is this reasonable? Normal? Or should I start looking around for another CM. I am loathe to move DD, as she loves it there.

It's getting to the stage where I'm thinking about getting a second day's childcare in place 'just in case' which is absurd, and makes working insanely expensive. Or giving up work.

elliott Tue 20-Jan-09 12:35:01

I think it seems ridiculous to cancel all children if one helper is sick - do they charge for those days? Couldn't they take it in turns to cancel the kids? I mean I would think that with more staff you would expect more reliability, not less - effectively they are shutting up shop every time one of them is ill, which means three times the chance of them being ill...

elliott Tue 20-Jan-09 12:35:57

I think you need more reliable childcare. 50% reliability is not acceptable imo.

Idrankthechristmasspirits Tue 20-Jan-09 12:43:05

I think it's an unacceptable level of sickness tbh. You can't expect a childminder never to be sick but 3 times in six weeks because she is reliant on others to help her is not workable.

I think you would be better to find another childminder as your employer will not be this understanding forever, also i think that resentment can build and make things awkward if the situation carries on too long.

popperdoodles Tue 20-Jan-09 13:13:21

If i am sick or one of my children is so sick i can't cm then I don't charge therefore I would only take a sick day if it was the only option, i.e it would be iresponsible to work in the circumstances.
Sounds like you need to review things.

vonsudenfed Tue 20-Jan-09 13:26:19

Thankyou, that's all very helpful - and good advice.

I will try and talk to her next week to see if we can improve things (the idea about cancelling children in rotation is a good one), and if that doesn't work, try and find another answer.

elliott Tue 20-Jan-09 14:00:49

You didn't answer whether they still charge if they cancel everyone for one person's sickness? If they are not charging, then surely they are losing a lot of money unnecessarily. If they are, then its a bit of a joke - someone phones in sick, they all have a paid day off hmm

vonsudenfed Tue 20-Jan-09 14:34:24

Sorry, no they don't charge - which is something. But then it's not as if someone's phoning in sick, it's all family.

And yes, she is losing a lot of money this way, and I find it a bit wierd too.

I would think about a nursery, but DD is painfully shy and hates even m&t groups, so I don;t think it's a great idea.

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