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has anyone had experience of a nursery they didn't like?

(22 Posts)
bluemoon Wed 05-Jan-05 22:24:53

... and if so, why didn't you like it and how long did you give it before you took your child out?
I'm in those neurotic, agonising first few days of settling dd into a nursery 3 mornings a week for 3 hours each and I'm just not sure what she'll get out of it. She's 2.3 and has never been away from dp or I before and she's a very quiet little girl. So far I'm just not convinced as to what she's going to get out of the experience and I'm waking up at night worrying myself stupid about it. I'm not being objective at all I know because I'm so emotional about it. I hoped she'd get some good socialising experience and a different kind of 'discipline' than she gets from doting parents. But I'm worried she'll get upset there and some of the rougher kids will be hard for her to take etc. etc.

Sorry I'm not being clear. I'd appreciate some experiences from you guys ...

kinderbob Wed 05-Jan-05 23:17:38

When I was looking for a preschool for ds (when he was 20 months) I just wanted somewhere where they would not kill him (he has allergies) and they seemed caring and consistent. That was it.

I don't care if he chooses not to socialise, doesn't learn anything...he is there while I work and tidy the house and go to the odd movie or read a book, it's not life or death that he does any more than doesn't hate it.

So ask yourself why you need her to be in nursery (there are no wrong answers) and if those needs are being met.

I felt lonely the first time he went, but thoroughly enjoyed myself the second time. He missed it dreadfully over Christmas and kept asking to go!

phatcat Wed 05-Jan-05 23:29:06

bluemoon - sympathies - fortunately my ds settled at nursery fast and it's a good one (thank goodness as it's the only one for miles) so no direct experience per se but do I know where you're coming from. I was mortified at ds's rough treatment by older boys at a toddler group I once went to and haven't been back since. IME they are much more closely supervised at a good nursery.

What's your gut feeling about the place / are the staff friendly and welcoming / what does dd say about it / could you turn up 'early' and see her in the group / ask her main carer for detailed feedback every day.

What would set your mind at rest?

It's early days yet - if there's nothing obviously amiss I'd say wait a while, monitor things and see how she settles.

Tommy Thu 06-Jan-05 00:04:05

Bluemoon - know a bit how you feel. My DS1 started at pre-school in November and, although there is nothing actually "wrong" with the place - i.e. they take perfectly good care of him etc - I don't like it and am really glad that he's leaving in 5 weeks time to go to a nursery school! He seesm to enjoy it OK although he is shy until he gets to know people and tells me very little about it. If he wasn't going to the other place, I would take him out but I figured that it's only for a few weeks more so I shouldn't worry about it too much. the trouble is that, if like your DD they've never been away from you before, then no where is going to be good enough for our babies!
Good luck - I hope it turns out OK and sending lots of sympathy and empathy!

colditzmum Thu 06-Jan-05 00:15:17

I took my ds to a local nursery, and stayed with him for half an hour, then I informed the staff I was leaving, and left.


I got 200 yards before I realised they had not asked for a contact number, emergency number, allergy advice, child's preferances or second name, or my name at all.

I walked staight back and picked him up, a pity cos he was loving it, but I didn't feel he was safe with such apathetic staff.

bluemoon Thu 06-Jan-05 15:12:12

My fears turned out to be completely founded. Dp took dd in for settling today and there was a horrible incident in which after play was ended in the courtyard at the back (small fence and 500 yards from main road) a little boy was left locked outside by mistake!!! He was knocking on the door for 10 mins before anyone heard him. If he'd been younger than he was he may well just have wandered off. It doesn't bear thinking about. Dp also confirmed some of my other fears that the staff aren't paying enough attention to what's going on with the kids. There's a tiny Japanese girl there, just gone 2 and she wanders round sucking her thumb and crying and not once did I see a member of staff attempt to engage her in playing with something.

We're not going back.

lisalisa Thu 06-Jan-05 15:24:55

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phatcat Thu 06-Jan-05 15:25:15

crikey - how awful - well you've definitely done the right thing re that nursery. I think I'd make a complaint about this if I were you. Do you think you'll try another nursery? Don't let one bad one put you off them all - there are good ones out there.

ladymuck Thu 06-Jan-05 15:28:10

I'm sorry to hear of your experience -how so awful for you. But there are other places, and it will do you and dd no harm to wait a month or so and try somewhere else. I do hope that you fid the right place for dd, and you should be proud of your maternal instinct for spotting the problem so quickly!

acnebride Thu 06-Jan-05 15:28:52

sympathy bluemoon - you must be feeling ghastly - look forward to tomorrow when you wake up knowing that he never has to go back there again.

not exactly the same but i moved from something i wasn't happy with to something I am very happy with - well worth listening to that churning stomach. Well done for sorting it out so early.

bluemoon Thu 06-Jan-05 15:30:58

lisalisa it was a little boy but I don't know how I'd get his number. I agree with you totally though.

phatcat I'll definitely look for another as the only positive thing I got out of this is the sense that if the place were right I think dd herself would enjoy it. Trouble is I'm in a pretty rough bit of SE London and it's hard to find a nice nursery, this one is meant to be one of the best!

But you should see it, the toilets and nappy area are tiny and unheated and definitely not clean. The main room is very small and none of the days I was there the staff 'remembered' to bring fruit for the mid-morning snack. I ended up sharing dd's banana out.

edam Thu 06-Jan-05 15:47:03

You could always call Ofsted and inform them of this incident. Sounds very dangerous. Glad your dd is out of it.

lailag Thu 06-Jan-05 16:04:40

ds never liked his nursery, so finally took him out of there. By then he was 3 years (went from 5 months old...), took him out because of different reasons though. To me(and reading Ofsted) it was supposed to be one of the better ones.
For me most important thing would be if he likes it or not.

lailag Thu 06-Jan-05 16:09:32

O, and personally one incident I might "forgive" them, but to let a small child cry doesn't sound very encouraging..
Will be a relieve to "have escaped them"...

lisalisa Thu 06-Jan-05 16:21:43

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bluemoon Thu 06-Jan-05 20:35:32

Well, this afternoon I've had the manager and deputy manager on the phone apologising and offering me my deposit cheque back and more or less begging me not to report them! The manager herself is actually very nice and I think that the problems have been happening primarily because she's been on holiday this week. She was mortified.

I really don't know what to do.

lailag I might forgive an 'incident' but I do think this goes beyond being an incident. If dp hadn't been there who knows how long it would have been before a tiny knock from a three year old was heard from within a different room ...

ks Thu 06-Jan-05 20:38:07

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bluemoon Thu 06-Jan-05 21:44:16

ks, we are considering it. I just feel bad because the manager seems genuinely really nice and organised and has been running this nursery for a long time. It's her staff who aren't up to much. But it's the manager who'll suffer if we report the nursery.

handlemecarefully Thu 06-Jan-05 22:38:44

Still report it Bluemoon. Imagine if you were that child's mum - you wouldn't hesitate then.

It's kind of you to think of the Nursery manager and empathise with her, - but take a deep breath and report it anyway. If she was truly effective as a Nursery Manager it would make little difference whether she was physically present or not. If she has established a good sound child care culture it would pervade everything and would be robust enough to ensure standards were maintained when she was not there.

hunkermunker Thu 06-Jan-05 22:43:35

If the manager was that much cop, she'd hire decent staff. She's crapping herself that you'll report her which is why she's being so nice.

I'd report her - the shiver that went down my spine when I read of the little boy being locked out - and the poor little girl left to cry... A manager who leaves children in the 'care' of uncaring staff isn't managing anything, IMO.

bluemoon Fri 07-Jan-05 09:55:23

Yes, I think you're right. This does need to be reported. Dp reminded me last night that after it had happened none of the workers there apologised to him or seemed that shocked by it. When he left, picking up all dd's stuff like nappies etc. so clearly not coming back one of them said 'so we'll see you next week then?'

Where do I report it to?!

lailag Fri 07-Jan-05 10:02:19

With "incident" I don't mean I don't think it's not serious but more that it might be a one off.
I did report the nursery about a repeated problem with the result that Ofsted visited the nursery. (I think the problem still continued butneverhad any proof).

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