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Is it a midday assistant (translation = dinner lady : ) 's job to comfort a crying child?

(18 Posts)
Tinkjon Thu 08-Oct-09 09:35:57

Tell me I'm right about this... Surely if a playground supervisor (not a teacher) sees a Y2 child crying, they should go over and find out what's wrong and try to help, yes?

kreecherlivesupstairs Thu 08-Oct-09 09:37:10

I would hope so, but, from what I read about the UK and paedosuspicion it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if they didn't.

PuppyMonkey Thu 08-Oct-09 09:38:08

I would like to think so too..

ABetaDad Thu 08-Oct-09 09:40:04

When I was at primary school 40 years ago that is what the dinner ladies/playground supervisors did. Do they not do that now?

DailyMailNameChanger Thu 08-Oct-09 09:42:15

I would say that sorting out problems is part of supervising yes - so, what happened?

Tinkjon Thu 08-Oct-09 09:45:47

Thanks. DD has a lot of trouble at lunchtime and she seems to get ignored by the dinenr ladies. If she tells them she has a problem they say "oh, never mind..." and carry on chatting angry

cory Thu 08-Oct-09 09:53:10

I would go in and have a chat with the head or your dd's teacher.

Our dcs' infant school had extremely cuddly dinner ladies: bit of a shock to me, with my memories of beetle-browed giants with stentorian voices who would put the fear of God into you over an uneaten bean.

PuppyMonkey Thu 08-Oct-09 09:58:08

grin cory.. we had some like that too. But cuddly ones to make up for it.

I'd chat with the teacher too.

overmydeadbody Thu 08-Oct-09 10:01:11

tink yes of course. In fact, at my ds's school, it is their job to deal with all playground incidents, including comforting children who are upset, finding out why they are upset and recording it all in the 'playground incidents' book.

Tinkjon Thu 08-Oct-09 10:01:47

I've spoken to the head who made all the right noises about helping but it still seems to happen... I've left a msg with the school and the senior dinner lady is going to ring me back but I'm not really sure what I'm going to say to her!

overmydeadbody Thu 08-Oct-09 10:02:54

Tink unfortunately you always get some like that, and you wonder why they bothered taking the job tbh.

Talk to the teacher, and also ask to talk to whoever is in charge at lunchtimes (there will be a head honcho among the dinner ladies that supervises them all and everything) talk to her too.

atworknotworking Thu 08-Oct-09 12:30:27

Nope sadly the dinner ladies at DD's school seem to view the children as inconviniences.

verona Thu 08-Oct-09 14:38:09

I'm a dinner lady at an infant school and would definitely comfort a child who was crying, as would most of my colleagues. Sadly, there a two or three who seem to loathe, rather than like, children.

katiestar Thu 08-Oct-09 17:54:48

But some children do cry for the most minor things and it is best to ignore ,unless they approach you.

MrsSantosisafeminist Thu 08-Oct-09 18:18:32

katiestar - How do you judge that it is minor? Do you know what is going on in the child's life in general? Crying is crying, and the very least an adult charged with supervising can do is find out what the matter is. Too many adults dismiss kids' worries as silly. The cause of the crying might be a bit daft-sounding but feelings are feelings. How do kids learn to manage their feelings if they are ignored? A shy child may not approach a carer, feeling too timid to raise a problem.<<goes off to hug tree and knit some lentils>>

Hulababy Thu 08-Oct-09 18:27:19

OP - at the school I work at (state infants) then yes, a playground supervisor would comfort a child who was upset. If it was anything more serious and needed more than a quick hug/pat on shoulder type reaction the supervisor would take the child to the office her his/her teacher or TA to deal with.

ICANDOTHAT Thu 08-Oct-09 20:44:03

I was a 'diner lady' at my sons school for his first year and yes, we would be expected to attend a child who was distressed. It's your job at this time to supervise the children. Whether they are hurt or upset, she should have been 'looked after'. They should also have let her teacher know if she was very upset. However, I worked with a few others who were as you describe .... uninterested and couldn't be bothered - one of them was their boss sad

lalaa Sat 10-Oct-09 15:25:51

I am a dinner lady too, and yes, I would comfort a child that was crying, and if it was happening on a regular basis, I would raise it with someone more senior so that it could be monitored and action taken if necessary. She could be being bullied, or she might be just unhappy generally in the school setting and both issues need to be dealt with. Ignoring a child who is regularly upset at lunch time isn't right, imo.

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