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Old man on playground who doesn't appear to be dropping off/picking up children-what would you do?

(32 Posts)
Ineedsomesleep Sat 11-Oct-08 08:18:20

DH came home from the school run yesterday and asked if I'd ever seen an oldish man on the playground with a stick, then he asked if I'd ever seen him drop anybody off or pick them up. I haven't.

Last year he used to stand in the street outside school, but I used to assume he was waiting for the bus. I just hadn't clicked that he was standing where all the children have to walk past him in the school grounds. Some of the mums are friendly with him, so I don't want to upset anyone.

What would you do?

CoteDAzur Sat 11-Oct-08 08:20:38

Ask about him (nicely) to the mums who are friendly with him. Don't start off with the assumption that he is a paedophile.

thesockmonsterofdoom Sat 11-Oct-08 08:21:56

tbh nothing, he might just like to be around children, they are great like that. There used to be an old man where I grew up who would ive out conkers to us all, he just lovewd children, now he is not allowed to but he still hangs bags of conkers on all the railings for the children, some people just like children.

Ineedsomesleep Sat 11-Oct-08 08:27:18

I know that some people just like children, my dad is about the same age and just loves children, he too leaves conkers on the garden wall for them. I just can't imagine him going onto the school yard to be near them, it just seems a bit too weird.

brimfull Sat 11-Oct-08 08:28:42

I would talk to the school about it.

YeahBut Sat 11-Oct-08 08:28:53

He might be a lonely old man who likes to be around young children without being a paedophile. Small children with all their noise, busyness and joy are a tremendously life affirming sight. There are countless threads on MN about old people "tutting" at the sight of children being children, I think it's lovely when we meet people who like to be around them.
If you are concerned, perhaps have a quiet word with someone who appears to know him and find out a bit more.

justaboutstealswinegums Sat 11-Oct-08 08:32:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ineedsomesleep Sat 11-Oct-08 09:18:03

Don't think I am being hysterical, its taken me weeks to even notice, even then it had to be pointed out to me by DH!

Think I will talk to the school, or maybe get DH to do it.

dinny Sat 11-Oct-08 09:20:06

he shouldn't be in the playground though

ask the school who he is

Flamesparrow Sat 11-Oct-08 09:28:41

if he is always there then the school will be aware

hecAteTheirBrains Sat 11-Oct-08 09:31:40

he might be lonely. He might have grandchildren of his own that he never gets to see and he misses them.

Ask folks who talk to him. Ask the school.

edam Sat 11-Oct-08 09:50:06

I wouldn't do anything. What harm is he doing? Such a shame we are so suspicious of anyone who enjoys being around children these days.

peanutbutterkid Sat 11-Oct-08 19:38:47

I would ask some of the mums who are friendly with him what his story is, why he is just waiting around like that.
Maybe he is waiting for a lift to his Day Care each day??

nickytwoooohtimes Sat 11-Oct-08 19:40:04

Remember teh good old days, when people could look at kids wthout anyone feeling suspicious?

brimfull Sat 11-Oct-08 19:40:19

well I think it's a bit odd

Shitehawk Sat 11-Oct-08 19:43:01

Are you always the first parent in the playground and the last out? Because it's perfectly possible that he's there picking up a child and you simply haven't been there when he's done so.

If some of the mums are friendly with him, why not ask them who he is?

Mercy Sat 11-Oct-08 19:43:44

Yes, but not for days on end.

And I'm not suggesting anything sinister in that.

There are a few parents who hang around in and around school here. They have their reasons and the staff are aware

Heated Sat 11-Oct-08 19:45:03

Maybe he's the caretaker!

notsoteenagemum Sat 11-Oct-08 19:46:01

Maybe he's a relation of someone working at school? Why is everyone so suspicious these days.

Mercy Sat 11-Oct-08 19:48:09

Not necessarily suspicious, perhaps concerned for the old chap?

goldndiamonds Sun 12-Oct-08 13:26:47

Go up and speak to him! Just in a nice chatty way - strike up a conversation with him - the only way, surely, to suss things out. That's what I would do!

Ineedsomesleep Sun 12-Oct-08 14:38:20

Bumped into a couple of mums who say hi to him while I was out yesterday. They don't really know who he is either or why he is there.

He not the caretaker and I don't the school are aware as he has only being doing it since the start of term.

He won't be waiting in the playground for a lift to his day care, because traffic can't get to where he stands, or even on the school grounds.

No, I'm not always the first there and the last out but remember it was DH who pointed it out, and he hasn't seen him with any children either and neither have the mums I spoke to yesterday.

Will make an enquiry with the school in the morning.

justaboutstealswinegums Sun 12-Oct-08 19:21:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WigWamBam Mon 13-Oct-08 09:30:00

How did we get from old man standing in the playground, to confused old man wandering around behaving strangely and needing to be checked out because he may have dementia? I don't see any of that in any of the OP's posts.

He is probably simply collecting his grandchildren. Just because you or your dh haven't seen him pick someone up doesn't mean that's not what he's there for - my daughter is always the last child out of school, and there are dozens of parents who will have seen me waiting there without seeing me pick her up or drop her off. I'd be mortified if any of them thought I had sinister reasons for being there, or that I needed to be checked out for dementia because of it!

uptomyeyes Mon 13-Oct-08 09:36:51

This happened at our school last year. I became aware of a man standing by his car (engine running) outside school everyday. After a couple of weeks I spoke to the lolly pop lady who confirmed that he neither dropped or picked up kids and also that a number of other mums had raised it wit her at the same time. We went to the school office, who sent the deputy head out to speak to the chap. He alleged he was waiting for a mum from the school whom he gave a lift to work though he couldn't name her. Anyway a couple of days later he parked his car outside my house (I live in the same road he parked in so it was easy to identify me)and then screeched away as I walked past his car. He did various other "scare" things before eventually giving up - and we haven't seen him since. I would mention it to school if I were you.

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