Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Daycare (Still) Don't Care

So, a friend of mine who sends her kids to the same daycare as mine sent me this year's inspection report.  I have read them in the past and there have always either been no violations or one or two paperwork related ones (probably my fault, I never turn stuff in on time).  This year it was different:

The ones in red are considered serious violations.

Outdoor play fall surface:

Swimming and water safety:

Administration of medication:

I have seen their playgrounds and they look safe enough to me (woodchips galore, I'm not even sure what would have concrete under it), so I am less concerned about the first one.  

The swimming definitely freaks me out - I make the girls sing loud in the bathtub if I even have to step out to get a towel from the closet.  I'm not sure what the "not seeing the bottom" is all about, because as far as I know the pools are all relatively small inflatable pools.  But I know that the staffing there is crazy and it doesn't surprise me that the kids weren't being actively supervised.  But it's one thing to suspect that, and another thing to see it spelled out right there.  If they aren't watching them during an inspection, I can only imagine what the non-inspection days are like.  

And the medication thing also irks me.  This year I found out that the sunscreen I sent in for the girls (Aveeno baby in spf 55, which is the only one that doesn't bother their eczema) was just going into a box of community sunscreen.  When it was time to put it on, they would just grab any old bottle and slather all of the kids.  I definitely went off on the teacher when I found that out, because NO.  For all I knew, other moms were sending in spf 15 tanning oil.  No wonder their eczema flared up.  Plus every time the girls transition it's always way more confusing than it should be getting their meds (and other belongings) sent to the next room, and once I was even handed some other kid's diaper cream.  I didn't even let MY OWN KIDS share diaper cream (cross contamination!) so that sketched me out.   And last time Lucia had a rash I learned that they had put all medications in the front office and I was supposed to magically know that if I wanted to get it back in the room I had to resign the paperwork.  So she had been going for months without any cream.  

All of this combined with the pinching incident and other stuff I wrote about here plus the fact that the menu is super unhealthy, they didn't tell us when my friend's kid had hand foot and mouth (or about any other relevant information ever), they lost an entire box of diapers, and one of the teachers consistently doesn't do a thorough diaper change, I am just done.  It's time.

So next fall when Adriana goes to her new school, I am going to put Lucia in the JCC.  My nephew went there and they loved it, so I'm excited.  Plus my friend from high school teaches there and I could request her, so it's a great excuse to reconnect.  She has a little boy and another baby on the way, so I'd LOVE to see her more.  It's actually going to be a touch cheaper than the place we are now, and the food is way healthier.  We are required to get a membership to the JCC if we send our kids there, so we will belong to a gym again.   Plus I am all about exposing the kids to different religions, so I'm excited about Lucia learning about Jewish traditions before she's off to Catholic school.  It was pretty cute when my nephew would bust out in Hebrew at dinner time.  

There is a down side but it affects my parents more than it affects me.  Lucia will have a stricter schedule if we go there - none of the last minute switching days around.  But I think with them just watching one kid that will be less of an issue next year.  They will just have to schedule around it.  I will also have to make sure it's okay if she goes full time when they go on vacation.  But I *THINK* as long as we are giving them $$ it's fine.  

The only thing left to decide is if I should pull the girls out even sooner and send them both to the summer program there.  I think I want to.  I really like Adriana's teacher right now, but at some point Lucia is going to transition to the teacher Adriana was really scared of and I'm not looking forward to that.   Anything that cuts her time in that room down is probably a good decision.  

So yeah.  I'm glad my friend sent me the report - after over three years of going to the same daycare I had stopped looking.  If you live in Ohio, this is where you go to find inspections.  You can type your daycare into box #6, and then click on its name on the next screen.  Under program details it says "Current Inspections: Click here".  Then under "Inspection Report" you can either click "All" to read the whole thing or "O/C" to see where it is non-compliant (like the first picture in this post).  

So, do you think I'm overreacting or would you do the same thing?  Or would you have pulled out sooner?  I'm always curious to see WWTID (What Would The Internets Do), even if it's after the decision has been made.  


Lacey said...

Gahhh. That's tough. I think that seeing any violations at all though are just what you needed to make up your mind. You already had your doubts about Lucia's next class among other things, and these violations (the swimming one!!) helped push you to make the decision. I would have done the same. 1 internet validation point for you.

Kara Keenan said...

Those are scary warnings. I totally would have pulled my kids without a second thought. The swimming/water one is kind of strange though- is it just water tables or something?

Side note- my youngest has really bad eczema, and as a result was on really strong steroid cream when she was younger (and during her worst flares a sedative). The medication she was on was considered a black box medication. I needed to find a daycare that had an actual trained medical professional on staff, because no one else would touch the stuff. It limited my choices greatly.

Becky said...

I would pull them out early.

Meaghan said...

Honestly, that is A LOT of out of compliance issues. For comparison, mine had 2 and they were separate instances employee verification of paperwork (employee signing a form).

I read the other stuff you wrote about daycare and if you want to move them anyways, I'd probably get them on a list at that place now. I know daycare decisions and changing up the routine can be so hard though. Moving from a place with a comfort zone is hard, although it doesn't sound like you are totally psyched about this place anyways.

Tia said...

Pull them out. Those are serious violations, especially the excessive dose of Advil. Yikes!

Jessica said...

Hmm. Daycares are hard. A lot of this sounds exactly like the daycare we sent the kids to for three years. We always had an issue with something, whether it was lazy diaper changes, cream-applying issues (or lack thereof), food stuff, sunscreen...

I debated taking them out several times, but we never did. Reading over the list of issues you have here, I'd be inclined to say you should find someplace else immediately, but that's not always practical. And who's to say the new place will be better? (Assuming you can't get right into the JCC.) The issues sound bad - I'm not saying you should put up with it without complaining - yet...there's always going to be something, you know?

(I will say, though, the medication dosage issue doesn't worry me at all. It sounds like they were giving a child the exact dose the parent told them to, instead of realizing they needed a doctor's note to legally give that dose. Should they be providing an extra layer of safety for the child (and liability protection for themselves) by making sure the parents aren't asking for an unsafe dose? Yes. Is doing exactly what the parents told them to a big red flag? No.)

Jessica said...

Oh: and to sum up what may have gotten lost in all my wishy-washy-ness, I definitely think you should move them next summer. I was just saying even sooner might be better.

Laura Diniwilk said...

Jessica - YES on all of that. That's exactly what I said to the friend who sent the report - what if EVERYWHERE is like this and this is as good as it gets? I think I have let a lot of stuff slide because that's easier than making a change. I do have some level of comfort with the JCC because my SIL is even pickier than I am and never had issues, so I think it will be better.

Also agree with your dosage comment to some extent, but the fact that they can't seem to keep track of who gets what and when really drives me bonkers. That's just straight unprofessional and potentially dangerous.

The JCC summer program is expensive though, that might keep them there longer. Stupid money.

susan said...

Interesting... I haven't obviously looked into anything yet, because we have no idea what age children we will eventually be adopting, but this is good to know!

Heather said...

Yikes. I don't know if I'm completely qualified to answer since I've never sent Tory to a daycare, but these infractions would totally upset me (esp. the swimming one). From what I've heard from friends, all daycares usually have some minor issues, but a lost box of diapers is way different than not having enough people supervising children and water. If you were already having reservations about the center, I would go ahead and pull them out as soon as possible.

d e v a n said...

Yeah, I think I would pull them out!

Karen Box said...

Man! The compliance issues are freaky-scary, but you weren't there for that, so you don't know if they're being over-zealous. You were present for the diaper rash and missing diapers and SPF craziness and all the other etc's.

I think your reasons for placing Lucia in the JCC are well articulated.

Emily said...

If they didn't have such a history of poor supervision and other issues and they fixed the issues promptly, I'd leave them there. However, they've shown you over and over again that they've got issues and they aren't doing a very good job of fixing them. That would make me want to pull them early.

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

I am responding in two different ways. First is by the books. As you said, if *this* is how the center is run on an inspection day, what the hell is going on during the other days? I'd definitely be concerned with the issues they raised regarding swimming and medications.

On the other hand, as a parent, you have to trust your gut. If your kids are happy at the center and your gut tells you they are being cared for properly, then sometimes it's OK to overlook the "books" ... especially if you have a chance to talk to the director about the incidents that were written up.

However, in your case, it seems like your gut has been telling you for a while that this place wasn't a good fit ... and this report confirms it. I say yank the kids out and enroll them at the JCC soon!