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Any JOURNALISTS out there??? We'd love to hear whether or not you'd be interested.......

(20 Posts)
bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 15:27:41

A lot of us Childminders and Parents are fed up with OFSTED's silly rules etc. bureaucracy gone mad!!!

Here's one of our threads, we ALL feel very strongly!!

I've set this up and will be taking it to OFSTED, MP's all round the country and we may take to local newspapers and radio stations? I also set up a group on Facebook to draw in non-mumsnetters and we have new members already (only set up yesterday)

Before setting the Facebook group up, I did a search and I came across one particular OFSTED group where the description disgusted me and many others. It said We work at Ofsted - We're awesome ... We own you shock

Someone on our big thread in the childminders etc section thought a journalist could have a field day with this as a headline. What do you think???

We'd love to hear from any journalists.

TIA

saltire Mon 22-Oct-07 15:28:46

looney email me on saltire70@hotmail.com

bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 15:37:04

Done

jumpyjan Mon 22-Oct-07 15:44:07

I know a freelance journalist so will draw it to their attention. Could you summarise the sitution so I can explain to them as don't have time to go through thread at the mo. Also could you explain that quote (we're awesome etc) where did that come from?

Thanks.

saltire Mon 22-Oct-07 15:46:01

Have emailed you back

bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 16:05:28

JJ - will be right back

Saltire - emailed you back chuck wink

bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 16:40:25

Here's a link to the OFSTED group on Facebook where that comment was put in the main description

Yes, our thread is a tad big at 118 messages! grin I've just picked out a few posts that I thought would give you an idea of how crazy things are, first one is from a Childminder, the rest are from Parents:

"I was heavily criticised for not having disabled dolls....despite having a severely disabled DS2 of my own, and my mindees accompanying me to his SN nursery/special events etc etc.....And I was told that the only way I could have this criticism amended/removed from the report was if I wanted to lodge a complaint that the inspector had behaved "unprofessionally" during the inspection. Well, no, she had been very professional, but has just made me look incapable of providing for any children adequately by the implication that I'm not providing adequately for my own!! Have just c/pasted this from an old thread. Would like to add that the way that this made me feel (namely rubbish, stressed, impotent) meant that I have now stopped childminding. I gave notice to my mindee (only did 1 day a week to give mindee best attention while still meeting DS1 and DS2's needs). We're worse off financially, but stress-wise it's better for me. "

"I have used three childminders for ds1 not for 6 years though, the first was pre ofsted the second and third were fully ofsteded.
they were both great, the first was like ds' second mum, she adored him. I was confident in her ability and trusted her wholeheartedly. then we moved area and ds went to the second cm, It was a rushed decision, I met her afew times before we signed contracts, her paperwork was impecable, I imagine that she ticked all of ofsteds boxes but I had a bad gut feeling about her which I, insanly, ignored. things went very wrong after the first day and I removed him on day 2. (long long story that involved my ds being left in bed at lunchtime where he smeared poo from his nappy up the walls... this was so incredibly out of character, my ds loved his sleep and would always wake up and call out to be got out of bed in the afternoon, and he had NEVER gone near his nappy contents before that or after that, so I am horrified to think what had happened that day. she was very p'eed off that it had happened (?!) there were other things that were very strange about her but her crudentials seemed perfect. we then moved again to the third cm, she was very mumsmy and warm and cuddly and playful, her kitchen was alway a tip (that I ccould see, no need to go in there) the mindees seemed to be very included in her whole family (grandma and all!) so I was very happy with her and in fact she became a friend. so as a parent, if I needed to look again for a childminder I would deliberatly NOT take the ofsted inspection into account, I would go on my instinct and references and reputation where possible."

"OK I'm a parent and have used childminders for over 7 years. When my CM had her last Ofsted I was terrified that it would tip her over the edge and that she would retire - she must be in her late 50s. The paperwork was ridiculous and so was the pressure. The reason I have her as my CM is that all the children in her care are like a little extended family, a gang of all ages who really look out for each other. My two (8 and 6) are disappointed if they are NOT going there after school. If I wanted a formal learning environment I would have chosen a nursery. What I actually wanted was an informal family environment for them where they were loved. She is often seen around the town taking the little ones for long slow walks where they watch things at a child's pace and learn as they go along. I hate the idea of her having any sort of curriculum or set of educational targets. I am one of those who thinks we start formal education too early in this country as it is. Anyway - the Ofsted inspector sat behind motionless behind her laptop and then afterwards said she was cold. (The kids weren't - they move about..) My CM was told off for not having any racially mixed toys...It's as if they are looking for problems. And so for this she was given a "good" and not an "excellent" which really depressed her as she is the most conscientious of people. And as I said earlier, there is so much paperwork...Anyway the parents rallied round with chocs and flowers and her son who is a trainee teacher helped her to come up with the right management-speak language for the forms. And she is still working. But frankly I wouldn't blame her if she just jacked it in. Ofsted should leave well alone and the government should stop trying to institutionalise small children. Let us keep the choice of informal childcare. Yes OK there have to be safeguards but let's exercise some common sense here. They are childminders not penpushers."

"Ok Looney dont know if this will help. I lost the most fantastic CM ever as she could no longer deal with the ** you are having forced down your necks from OFSTED. It took what was an enjoyable job for her (and she loved all the kids as if her own) and turned into hell. When you stay in a small place like where I stayed you relay on good CM's especially when you dont have the option of a Nursery, unfortunatley there are only about 3 left in the place now and when my CM quit it had to take drastic action to to find care for my DS as at the time I needed to keep my job. The CM in question is a very good friend now and offered to whole heartedly help with DS anytime she could and he still loves her so much, she is like a granny to him and a 2nd mum to me. Why are they forcing people like this out of the most important job you can give someone?? "


These are just a few of the posts, anyone reading the whole thread would probably be shocked and some of the comments. Also, OFSTED are SO inconsistant, we don't know where we stand. One childminder was told off for having no scissors in first aid box by one inspector. When had next inspection, was told off for HAVING scissors in first aid box!!!

HTH

jumpyjan Mon 22-Oct-07 16:45:32

Thanks - will def pass on to journo friend. Can't believe that facebook thing - how unprofessional!

bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 16:46:49

I know.....our campaigne is obviously to sort out things with OFSTED but I was DISGUTED when I came across that - it makes me think that they don't care about the children, they just want to show off their power!!! angry

Thanks so much, I hope she's interested wink

saltire Mon 22-Oct-07 16:51:39

Plus of course there is their insistance that any childminder who moves down from Scotland i.e from another country within the UK, not outer mongolia, have to absolutely everything from scratch.
because, after all, obviously scots are uneducated and don't know how to properly register their childminders, or ensure that they comply with the national standards, which only vary ever so slightly from the English ones, or do paediatric first aid, or ahve smoke alarms, policies, risk assessments forms etc etc etc

bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 16:54:54

I know, we were talking about you on that thread - a good childminder being wasted for months and months and months.....!!!! angry

saltire Mon 22-Oct-07 17:04:27

I just knew you talk about when I'm not there!wink

bloodsuckingLOONEY Mon 22-Oct-07 17:20:14

grin

sazzlepops Tue 23-Oct-07 16:40:57

I think the Facebook thing was just an employee joke taken out of context. I don't think anyone was meant to be offended by it.

There weren't very many people in that group from what I saw.

As a parent myself, I am reassured by Ofsted reports, I think they provide a valuable service to the country. I'd like to know that the people caring for my son are fit to do so and that the care they're providing is suitable.

TwigorTreat Tue 23-Oct-07 16:49:41

ofsted is total bollocks as is the whole training to be a childminder course (with the exception of the first-aid course)

I'm aneducated ex-professional with children of my own .. the childminding course seemed mainly concerned with my ability to write an essay and source it correctly (WTF?), the ofsted inspection involved a very nice, but tick-box driven woman coming round to my house, having a nice chat, eating my cake and commenting that she didn't need to worry about multi-ethnicity because I have a couple of wooden statues from the Gambia as ornaments .. again WTF?

I did it for 6 months, one day a week .. I was rather good at it because I'm rather good with children and I'm a SAHM and rather outgoing .. I would do it again for the love of it, but would go nowhere near it because of the paperwork now involved which is bollocks .. so I'll stick to doing voluntary work and being school governor I think

vonsudenfed Tue 23-Oct-07 16:58:59

interestingly, that group seems to have disappeared now...

bloodsuckingLOONEY Tue 23-Oct-07 17:16:17

sazzlepops - the thing is most of the time it is rubbish because it's all an act!! I have a good OFSTED report because my paperwork is good - thank god I'm actually a good childminder too but I'm afraid there are childminders out there that are just good at 'doing a good OFSTED!'

TwigorTreat - totally agree

vonsudenfed - very interesting! grin

sparkybabe Tue 23-Oct-07 17:20:49

I've never understood why childminders come under the Office of Standards in Education?? LO's need a home environment, not a school one. They need love and care more than they need to be protected from germs. They should come under an office for HomeLove or some such (but then we'd all be inspected - and found wanting!)

mrz Mon 01-Sep-08 11:47:57

www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2008/09/01/do104.xml&posted=true&_requestid=2002 2

AvenaLife Mon 01-Sep-08 11:57:12

My son was assaulted by a member of staff at a nursery. He had marks on his head and it took him two weeks for him to tell me that he had been hit across the head by the staff member. I reported this immediately to social services, who passed this on to Ofsted. I was told I would be contacted so I could discuss this with them. ds was only three but very bright and very articulate so I waited. They didn't contact me at all. They 'investigated' and removed the nursery's details from their web site. The member of staff who hit my son was still working there and now I've been told he's working in a SCHOOL! hmm

Ofsted are rubbish and have failed every single child this staff member has been in contact with.

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