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dropping off/picking up policy for babies

13 replies

MotherGlasgow1 · 08/07/2015 16:53

My daughter (15 months) has been in nursery since the age of 9 months. There have been many changes in the nursery, with the most recent manager going 'on holiday' for three weeks and then not returning due to 'ill health'. The deputy has also been moved to another branch of the nursery - parents weren't notified. The new manager seems capable but has instigated a rule where parents are not allowed into the main nursery area to collect the child, you must wait at the door and wait for the child to be brought to you, even if you are the first/last to collect that day. I am not sure how I feel about this. (Also, there is a double door from the car park, but the inner (heavy) door does not lock at all - so there's only one actual lock between them and the street - is this correct safety?)

My gut reaction is that I would prefer to see her environment as that's how I see what she's up to and this was previously welcomed/encouraged - also I was able to point out that there were random electrical flexes etc in the babies grasp under a previous room leader etc, I'd like to see the outside area where they play, plus see the kids' artwork and photos etc. I was happy to take my shoes off to enter and have no problem with DDs key worker (she's lovely and the reason we're still there), although I feel that adult to child ratios are not adhered to mornings/nights. Sometimes there are six babies and one carer till the other starts at 8.30 am or 9 am and I feel like I have to stay and feed my child breakfast etc to help out, when I should be starting work by then. I'm happy to do a quick drop off rather than loiter if ratios are adhered to but would prefer to see her in the environment she's going to spend the day in (you can't even see it from the doorway, because its a room within a room)... I don't have a lot of confidence in the nursery's running as so far they have been very disorganised elsewhere - I've had massive issues with billing where every single payment I've made in six months has been wrong and/or questioned, most recently they invoiced me - when I begged to have payments brought up to date and proper billing - £400 in the nursery's favour three days later they couldn't find that payment made by bacs! it makes me fearful of what else is not being done by the book there. Never been Oftsted'd. But I am loathe to move her from where she's settled out to a nursery that's further away and more expensive and I do really hope that things will improve with this new manager. Does anyone have any thoughts about this drop off policy or what I've described in general - I don't know if I am over cautious so thought I'd ask for your experiences. Is this drop off style widespread in this age group? How do you get your head around never seeing them in situ at such a young age?

OP posts:
Callofthewild · 08/07/2015 22:34

I would not be comfortable being made to wait at the front door for pick up / drop off. Seeing your child in 'their' environment I think is critical for you as a parent being happy to leave them for the day. The ratios thing would be a massive red flag for me and personally I would be moving my child ASAP.

Xmasbaby11 · 08/07/2015 22:56

Agree with pp. It is not normal and I would not be told I couldn't enter. I would look into moving, I'm afraid.

JassyRadlett · 08/07/2015 23:16

I wouldn't like it at all - I want to see DS in the environment he's spending/spent his day.

It would be a dealbreaker for me - it would feel like they're hiding things.

MotherGlasgow1 · 09/07/2015 09:10

thanks guys. I asked another lady who works closely with DD this morning and she said she wasn't sure, but she thought the wait at door policy was now going to be for kids 2+. To be honest I'm not sure I like that either but we will see when my girl reaches that age if she is still there, as another parent said to me all their new rules get forgotten quickly most of the time. The 2+ group is also a room you can't easily see from the front door. I am going to watch ratios closely. This morning there were four kids including my daughter in the baby 'room' with one carer. As I said I have no problem with her hands-on ladies, who are lovely and kind, it is a question of are they being asked to do too much. The baby 'room' is half of a large open plan area partitioned off. Sometimes the other half is empty, and all the older kids are in the toddler room which is separate, sometimes everyone (including the punctual babies), in one area together. Today there was one other (very young, like 18 yo who has been there a few weeks) girl on the other side with maybe eight older kids aged 2-5 with another (I know responsible, well qualified) staff member supposedly starting shortly ( because my lady quickly said oh where is Charlotte, she is starting shortly etc (they often make comments like that, i think so it doesn't look so bad!)). However I couldn't see anyone else in the whole nursery, they were probably in the staff room, but the office/kitchen etc were empty. Six babies to one adult has deffo happened for short periods but would be unusual - however four babies at breakfastitme as described is more usual than not? Sometimes if there are four of five babies they get the auxiliary in to stand in the room til more qualified staff arrive. Any thoughts from nursery staff?

OP posts:
googietheegg · 09/07/2015 09:14

I can't believe you've not decided to take her out of this nursery yet, you know it sounds terrible.

TheTigersComeAtNight · 09/07/2015 09:19

I would have taken my child out when I saw a baby playing with an electrical wire! The ratios thing is unacceptable, and while the kids are eating is awful, what if one choked? At my dd's nursery parents are encouraged to come in and chat and see the artwork and photos on the walls, come out to the playground if that is where the kids are etc. I would be finding somewhere else asap, regardless of potential increased cost/travelling distance. And maybe calling the LA/OFSTED with my concerns?

Trottersindependenttraders · 09/07/2015 09:23

MotherofGlasgow1, I'm a big believer in listening to your gut feeling and from what you have written it sounds to me like you don't have confidence in your DD's nursery.

If it were me, at the very least I would be discussing this with the Manager and at the same time I would be looking for a new setting.

At my DC nursery they had an open door policy, they were warm and welcoming and I felt like the lovely staff were an extension of our family - particularly in the baby room and the tots room. We were welcomed into the room, we could see what they had been doing, speak to the staff etc

Time to speak up and voice your concerns, if you do not have confidence in your childcare, then something is wrong.

MotherGlasgow1 · 09/07/2015 09:30

You're right of course. I think your shock is jolting me to action. The new manager has only just started. We are due to go to italy for a couple of weeks so if things don't improve very dramatically by the time we return it looks I will have to go to plan b.

OP posts:
Paulklee · 09/07/2015 09:49

I urge you to take her out even if it is a bit inconvenient at first.

There were lots of issues at dc1's nursery, however I was strangely attached to it as it was the first nursery of my pfb iyswim. I also like the key worker but the staff turn over was ridiculously high and bank or agency staff had to help out every day so loads of new faces all the time for ten children to get used to Sad.

Parents around me were taking the children out but we continued as I was expecting dc2 and did not want the hassle of changing. In the end things became so bad (nursery manager off for six months!) really nice new staff leaving after a few weeks and nursery nurses who had been there for a long time also leaving. When I picked up DS and a bank staff prevented him from coming to cuddle me when he hurt himself in the room whilst I was there I order to force a cuddle on him making him cry even hard and trying to break free of her (he did not know her as she was agency staff, neither did I ) I had enough, it was disgusting. I took him out and never sent him back after that day. I know that DS has minor behavioural issues because he spent two of his formative years at this horrid place. I feel very guilty about it and have since made sure to never let things that bother me as a parent slide with a nursery / school again. I am on it like a hawk now.

Sorry this was my experience but your nursery sounds dreadful.

Paulklee · 09/07/2015 09:50

*not ten children / the children

MotherGlasgow1 · 09/07/2015 16:38

Thanks PaulKlee. I'm not surprise you took your little one out that sounds awful, well done on your actions. I am thinking seriously about what comes next. Like I said, we have got holiday booked next week so I hoping the there have been a lot of changes when we are away if not we have some tough decisions. Am going to ask DH what he thinks also. Fingers crossed all is well in the end!

OP posts:
CatHackney · 24/07/2015 10:39

Actually, our nursery has the same policy about drop-off/pick-up at the entrance, but I think it makes sense and they are happy for us to come into the nursery at any time to come and see (and we can actually peer a bit through a window in the door anyway).

The point at our nursery is that they have really long opening hours and so some children are dropped off or picked up much earlier or later than others, so having parents coming in and out would be very disruptive. Also, it avoids children seeing other parents arrive at 4pm and then saying "where's my Daddy" when that child won't be picked up until 6:30pm.

On the other hand, I really don't have any of the other concerns you've raised about your nursery. I would find it completely unacceptable to discover that they had electrical cords in reach, insufficient staff ratios, etc. I would certainly expect to be allowed in to see the nursery upon request at any time, including in the middle of the day for a "spot check". I feel entirely confident that I am dropping my son off with cuddly, fun, and responsible people, and that keeping a constant stream of parents out of the nursery rooms contributes to a more calm and happy environment for the children.

SueBigFatSue · 24/07/2015 10:48

I'd take her out. Her safety comes first and whilst it might be inconvenient and more expensive, imagine the relief of being able to pick up and drop off with no worries of whether there's enough staff, whether the whole environment is safety checked and being able to see her in the environment she spends the day in Smile

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