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Childminder with 'outstanding' OFSTED report but a smoker...

(20 Posts)
WhoahThere Tue 12-Jul-11 10:02:20

Would you consider using the above? Haven't even made contact at all yet as not sure if I should even consider it - her profile on the childcare website is very good APART from the 'yes' to smoking.

What do you think?

susiesheep2 Tue 12-Jul-11 10:30:26

I would be a bit worried to be honest, even if she is smoking outside the house, where does she leave the children (assuming she has them from age 1 +) my mum smokes :S, but she doesnt smoke all day if shes minding the little ones because she can't (cant go outside and leave them!) but I wonder if the childminder in question would be the same, I suppose you will have to ask. I think meeting them is the best way to judge of childminders, find one who is most like you, mine is only average but, she is the most lovely loving childminder I have ever known and my dd1 loves going and its like a home from home for her xx

BoysRusxxx Tue 12-Jul-11 12:23:56

I dont think I would go with a smoker to be honest. Id wonder how many times a day she was leaving to have a smoke..

garliclover Tue 12-Jul-11 12:52:43

I think it's odd for someone to be in the childcare profession and be a smoker. Not saying that being a smoker while caring for children is wrong (as a parent or gp), just that I find it slightly strange that someone whose profession it is to look after children in their own home hasn't quit smoking as part of being a professional! Rather like a cook who doesn't keep their fingernails clean IYSWIM
Having said that, I wouldn't discount them automatically and agree with the others about meeting her.

BlueberryPancake Tue 12-Jul-11 14:38:21

So much with Ofsted has to do with paperwork, policies, procedures, academic understanding of child development, and there is so much paperwork to fill in to be outstanding and it has little reflection on the childminder's personality as such. I would say not to base your decision only on that. Personally I wouldn't go for a smoker.

megkat Tue 12-Jul-11 16:25:20

garliclover... there are plenty of nurses / teachers etc who smoke* and* drink shock

DurhamDurham Tue 12-Jul-11 16:29:23

garliclover teachers don't smoke in the classroom and nurses don't smoke on the ward. I wouldn't ever choose a childminder who smoked, even if she was perfect in every other way. I hate the smell of it, I visit people at home as part of my job. When I visit people who smoke I can smell it on the clothes an my hair for the rest of the day. It's vile.

DurhamDurham Tue 12-Jul-11 16:30:12

Ooopds that should have said megkat

megkat Tue 12-Jul-11 16:37:11

Durham Durham - very true.

But given that - if it was part of being professional, surely the op would expect these professions to give up too?

DurhamDurham Tue 12-Jul-11 16:46:13

I don't think the op 'expects' anyone to give up smoking, she just wants to minimise her childs exposure to the smoke/smell/chemicals produced by a smoker.

I would love the people I visit to give up smoking but I wouldn't 'expect' it and it's never going to happen. However I have to put up with it because I'm visiting them as part of my job.

megkat Tue 12-Jul-11 16:52:50

And I totally understand that - really I do. I would feel the same. It was the apparent disbelief that anyone in a profession could smoke that got me - this is real life, not fairyland.

Some things have to be accepted and dealt with - if your gut instinct tells you not to use a particular childminder, for whatever reason, then don't use them. Simple.

LynetteScavo Tue 12-Jul-11 16:53:32

I would ask her when exactly she smokes.

Some people are social smokers only, and will only smoke when having a drink on a Saturday night. She may not want to say she is a non smoker, then bump into you at an adult BBQ and you see her having a cigarette.

threefeethighandrising Tue 12-Jul-11 16:53:52

I think is requires a little more investigation just to find out what kind of smoker she is.

Have you mentioned it to her? It would be a shame if she'd ticked that box by accident.

Or, what if she doesn't smoke while working.
The last 2 years when I smoked, I only had 2 a day in the evenings. If that's what's she's doing (and it's outside) then it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

However personally I wouldn't send my DC to a CM who smoked while looking after them (even if out of sight).

But if this is your only reason not to choose her I would let her know, she should know that people are staying away for that reason alone, you never know, it might help her give up one day.

garliclover Tue 12-Jul-11 16:59:08

megkat, the difference between a teacher and a childminder is that the cm's job is to look after children in her own home. Wards and schoolrooms are always smoke-free, whereas presumably the cm's house would be permeated with smoke. I don't know, I just think that quitting cigarettes would be an integral part of becoming a professional childminder. But I was brought up in Spain with two chain-smoking parents and teachers who used to smoke like chimneys in the classroom (early 80s), so am a bit oversensitive about this issue...!

WhoahThere Tue 12-Jul-11 21:09:02

Thanks for the replies everyone. I'm going to make contact and ask the questions - I'm right at the very start of the process so probably need to see as many potential CMs as possible. All very stressful though, the thought of leaving DD with anyone is not filling me with joy!

megkat Wed 13-Jul-11 16:03:59

Yes, I think I acknowledged in my previous post that I understood that?

I repeat that I totally understand the problems - but as for permeating the house, I would argue that this entirely depends on where / when she smokes (see social smoker post above).

My point is that if you are unsure of a childminder's suitability for whatever reason, then don't use them. Parents' peace of mind is paramount.

StartAllOver Wed 13-Jul-11 19:14:17

Nurses and teachers also get a breaks and lunch times in which to have a cigarette. Childminders dont get either. If a childminder said they only smoked outside i still wouldnt be comfortable leaving my dc as then he wouldnt be being watched.

I smoke myself but only outside and when my ds is asleep, sometimes this means i go the whole day without smoking til 7pm but least i feel comfortable with the fact my son isnt around smoke or left unattended.

I think it all depends on the op's personal opinion and what they feel comfortable. and I remember the search for childcare when i went back to work last year it was horrible! Have u tried the direct gov website? You can search by distance and see what the ofstead report is too.

Good luck!!

baldbyfifty Thu 14-Jul-11 10:59:17

Personally I wouldn't use a childminder who smoked, you have no choice over whether there teachers smoke as you dont choose the teachers!!

halcyondays Fri 15-Jul-11 09:37:27

Garlic clover, we can't assume her house will be permeated with smoke, many smokers do all their smoking outside these days. I can't imagine she would get many parents wanting to leave their children with her if her house stank of smoke. I suppose it also depends if she is constantly going out for a cigarette during the day, or if she only has a few during the evening.

Can teachers still smoke on their lunch breaks while on school grounds? I would have thought that was frowned upon. I remember when the teachers used to be able to smoke in the staff room (my mum taught at the primary school I went to)

MyMamaToldMe Fri 15-Jul-11 09:55:00

I wouldn't even consider her.

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