This is an article I came across just the other day from another provider who is a director of a daycare center for 30+ years. I really love her content and will be featuring different articles in my blog over the coming months. She goes by “The Spunky Childcare Provider” and requests to be anonymous. My republishing of her article is with permission. Enjoy the article she wrote!
Dear Parents, Clean Out Your Car 😱
I know what you are thinking. What business is it of the child care provider whether or not I clean out my car? Talk about being a control freak.
I know you are thinking what the cleanliness of your car has possibly got to do with your provider. Believe me I’m not talking about your trash being kicked out the car as you get out. Nope I’m talking your provider avoiding getting closed down. I’m talking your provider avoiding a lawsuit. I’m talking a child in your providers care dying or being injured because of your car.
You see while you are getting your child out of the car to walk in to the daycare they are quick. They grab whatever they can to show their friends or just because it’s contraband.
Stay with me here. We providers take our jobs seriously. We keep our environment safe for the kids. We scam our areas, walk through the outside area to make sure your child is safe.
Unfortunately we get surprised from home. I’ve had pocket knives snatched from the cubby in the vehicle. I’ve had tobacco products. I’ve had lighters. I’ve had coins. I’ve had medication. I’ve had earrings. I’ve had cosmetics. I’ve had wedding rings. I’ve had tiny liquor bottles. You name it I’ve had some interesting products come in.
So you ask why I don’t take it away? Oh I do after I realize it. You see your kids are sneaky and they know it’s not to be here. The day I discovered a pocket knife was when I saw a whispering group of 3 year old boys. They were using their teeth to get the knife open.
That lighter snuck in by the kid he was rolling it’s wheel on my carpet near the window. Anyone know how many fires start with an inquisitive child playing with a lighter? Way too many.
The coins? Nothing like a dime or button battery being swallowed. Same with earrings. No provider wants to start their day calling an ambulance because some kid gave the baby or toddler coins, batteries or other objects.
The tiny liquor bottle? They like to pretend to be grown up. Medication even though it says child resistant does not mean a kid on a mission and a good set of teeth can’t get it open. It just takes diligence.
One of the worst is vitamins that looks like candy. Plus for some odd reasons parents don’t get how dangerous iron and vitamins are. Plus I personally prefer manufacturers quit making them look like candy. It’s dangerous.
This provider quit backpacks and diaper bags coming in my facility long ago. Although I would write policies and remind parents not to send medicines, ointments and contraband in the bags they’d slip in. I’d remind them if the state came in and looked I’d be written up for hazardous chemicals. After all, the state just doesn’t write hand sanitizer or Tylenol with child resistant cap. Oh no they have to write “facility deemed unsafe due to hazardous chemicals.” I’m sorry but when a novice reads that online they have visions of poisons and medicines just laying around. No, that diaper bag or back pack could be hanging on a hook 5 feet in the air in the classroom and it’s deemed accessible. After all we all know how kids climb and scale walls.
One problem with diaper bags is moms tend to want to use them as purses. Then get all in a tizzy because they were positive they left cash or electronics in there. Nothing bristles a provider more that being interrogated over missing possession. Usually followed that evening by “LOL, found the iPad under the sofa.” 😳
So parents, this is why you need to keep the car tidy. You need to check the kids pockets and see if they are clutching anything. You need to make sure they did indeed swallow their medication or vitamins if they took it prior to leaving. Always be observant. Your provider doesn’t need the heart ache of a tragedy. Especially when it could have all been avoided by just making sure your child brought nothing to daycare.