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CMS - Advice needed on communication to parents about sickness.........

(13 Posts)
looneytune Thu 05-Nov-09 10:25:11

I have a clear sickness policy but as we all know, some parents decide to ignore that! Most of my current parents are great but I have a new one who arrived for a 2 hour settling in session carrying a bug (I was told at pick up - too late!).

I've now got the bug (well, feel better but had to close for 48 hours) and so have at least 3 other mindees! I'm FURIOUS as the parents knew and they have cost me £345 due to having to close!!!

I want to do a communcation reminding parents why children with certain illnesses need to stay away. I'm fully aware that these bugs can spread without knowing a child is infectious but I'm trying to stop people bringing children when they DO know they are ill.

Has anyone had to do this before? I could do with some help on wording this as I want to get my point across but without being as obviously angry as I am! wink

Any advice would be much appreciated

Danthe4th Thu 05-Nov-09 11:49:05

Can you add it to an autumn newsletter, or if it is just the new parent I would be blunt and tell them that they DO NOT bring the children if they are ill. What did the parent say to you at pick up, had the child been sick?

Blondeshavemorefun Thu 05-Nov-09 12:24:20

aww looney - im angry for you

how rude

maybe the new parent didnt know your policy - but assume it is in your contract which you both signed

sorry dont how to word it bluntly politley but sure a cm on here will be able to help you

looneytune Thu 05-Nov-09 12:28:24

Unfortunately I did an autumn newsletter and it went out last week!

The reason I found out is mindee came for first session on Friday (just 2 hours). They were collected and I commented on the nappy as seemed a bit loose and pale but of course never seen this child's before so don't know what they are usually like. When the dad collected he mentioned that child was still not eating and at the end of a bug and went on to say how very ill the mum was atm with it (at home). This is when I reminded them they MUST NOT bring a child with a bug. I said I appreciate they are used to a nanny but I simply can't accept children with bugs.

What gets me more is that a couple of months ago the mum sent me a list of questions and one was asking for what reasons I'd give notice apart from none payment. My reply was:

'The only reason I would give notice for anything other than a payment problem (and this wouldn't be for just a one off) is when the contract is being breached. For example, I once had to give notice to a family as they ignored my sickness policy and kept pretending their children were well and fit to be with me when they were clearly very poorly (things like sickness bugs etc). The parent would refuse to collect their poorly child and then myself and lots of children got sick (this happened many times!). As a result of me having a sickness bug, I had to close and therefore refund parents and I couldn't afford to let this carry on............'

They seem like a lovely family but I'm really upset about this, not a great start is it

HSMM Thu 05-Nov-09 13:42:21

I sent out a very blunt and direct note to parents with my newsletter this month, as being polite and relying on their honesty has not worked over the past couple of months. Two families have sent ill children and although I only caught one of the illnesses, the other was passed around the other children, one of whom has quite fragile health, so it really was NOT ON! They are all lovely people and I think sometimes the pressure of their own work gets to them and they do not want to miss a day's work if they know their poorly child can be well cared for by me. Sometimes you have to spell it out in black and white for them to realise the implications for you, the other children in your care, your family and your bank balance.

looneytune Thu 05-Nov-09 13:51:23

Good for you!!

Katymac has sent me a fab letter and I'm going to adapt that!!!

I've now had news that 2 others have come down with it It's really not fair. Especially as this wasn't affecting the work on that occasion, was just a 2 hour settling in session so all this could have been avoided!!

If another particular mindee gets it, even though I'm open tomorrow I'll loose another £50 as they are due to stay overnight. Fingers crossed they don't get it!!

wheresmypaddle Thu 05-Nov-09 13:55:39

My son attends nursery once a week- this month's newsletter had a reminder about their sickness policy. It then went on to say that not following this policy puts unacceptable pressure on staff and exposes other children to illness. The final line said that if this policy is not adhered to children will be given notice to leave the nursery.

Hope you manage to resolve the situation.

looneytune Thu 05-Nov-09 13:59:46

Thanks for that. I do feel like I want to warn them that notice can be given. A lot of the time you can't prove it but there have been times when I've found out people have lied (I gave notice in the past because of this) so having a bit on there would be good. Thanks

pippin26 Thu 05-Nov-09 14:58:49

AS everyone has said a blunt but polite reminder of your sickness policy - even if you have already sent out a newsletter you can still do a reminder.

I have been known on occsion to add in - that if persistant breach of this policy occurs then due to the child been bought when ill resulting me in having to close then the costs of closure will be passed on to that parent. Not exactly sure what a legal stance on this would be (probably non-existant and totally unprovable lol) but it was enough to shock said parent into not bringing an ill child!

My newsletter stated in very big red bold type - DO NOT BRING YOUR ILL CHILD TO MY SETTING.
But by that point I had got fed up!

Katymac Thu 05-Nov-09 15:02:10

I put a statement about "My child has not had D or V during the last 48 hrs" at the top of the page they sign in on

looneytune Thu 05-Nov-09 15:05:34

lol pippin, I like that! grin

Thanks Katy, I'm doing the letter right now!

I'm attaching AGAIN the HPA guidance with the letter but as I scrolled through it, I noticed something I don't remember seeing before:

'Immunisation status should always be checked at school entry and at the time of any vaccination.
Any immunisations that have been missed should be given and further catch-up doses organised at school
or through the child’s GP.
For the most up to date immunisation'

What happens if a parent is anti vaccine and therefore their child hasn't had them? Surely that doesn't mean they can't come? I was going to start another thread for this but thought I'd ask here first

Katymac Thu 05-Nov-09 16:04:18

Well it's tricky

If you have a child younger than the should have been immunised child, then the younger child is 'potentially' at a higher risk

But it's all relative

looneytune Thu 05-Nov-09 16:36:15

Hmmm yeah, it's difficult isn't it. Just that one of my new ones hasn't had any and won't be. They are over 1 yr old but pretty much the youngest I have 'atm'. Need to get clarification on where I stand I think.

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