Only in France (sorry Ktllc :))

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, Jun 1, 2012.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    An illuminating conversation with the lady who looks after J occasionally. J went to her tonight as I have my meditation group and she told me that she had recently been visited by two ladies who were "inspecting" her as a childminder. They asked her many questions about J, apparently. She said that he was possibly ADHD and that I had asked her not to punish him because it did not work with him and was actually counter-productive. Amazingly (to me), these two specialists in child care told her that she was not fulfilling her role correctly, that her job was to punish a child so that he could be educated properly for the future. Yikes! NO understanding of different children and how to handle them, NO understanding that the contract is between the parent and the childminder. And this unquestioning belief that punishing a child is an effective means of teaching her/him the difference between right and wrong, etc.
    This couldn't happen in Britain, i don't think.
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    And who, exactly, were these two ladies?
    What is their official capacity?

    It could either be local busy-bodies trying to stir up trouble, or...
    Really, it wouldn't be CPS or an equivalent, would it?
  3. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    No - in France, childminders have to be certified and this certification runs for five years. The childminder's premises are inspected and she is interviewed. This childminder's certification has recently run out and she is applying to renew it. The two ladies were a social worker and a children's worker.
  4. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    I would not worry too much about it. I know who you are talking about (although I'm not sure of their exact qualifications and education) and they are not educators. Those are safety rules, sanitary rules, ratio, etc. type things. You will find those people everywhere: the ones who know best, who raised x amount of kids, who knows the special need child of a cousin's friend. The reality: unless they have at least a Master's in Special Education, or are parent of a special need child themselves, I could care less about what they have to say.
    Talking about punishment, I don't punish V either. I tend to withdraw him from the situation and just ask him to come back when he is ready. There are no set amount of time, I let him decide. If he destroys something, it is simply not replaced (natural consequence).
    I'm sure you take some kind of action when J is not appropriate. If you want to be more socially proper in your environment, just call this action "punishment" even if technically it is not.
  5. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Ktllc, that's exactly what I was thinking. To the kid, it's punishment whether we call it that or not. I guess with these two women, different terminology is needed. UGH
  6. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    I think it was the aspect of the certainty of their words and the fact that, according to the childminder, they would have "failed" her for this response except for the fact that they were friendly with her husband (who works as a security guard in a supermarket) that shocked me.... It is perhaps, again, simply a question of cultural priority. In Britain, I think, the aspect that would take priority would be that of the agreement between childminder and parent. As long as it was not dangerous to the child, obviously, a childminder must carry out the instructions of the parent. But it's a long time since I lived in Britain, which has gone kind of regulation crazy, so I could be wrong about that...
    Punishment is more controversial than these ladies seem to think. Some respected educators and writers do not believe in the concept at all, under whatever name. I don't think Ross Greene believes in it, for example. As I said to the childminder, the question for me is how to make it clear that certain boundaries exist without having recourse to punishment. I know she herself doesn't really believe in what I'm saying or understand it - I find her very harsh and critical with her own son, very intent on having all the "power" (not with her daughter), and not very child-centred. But she is also just an ordinary, decent woman trying to do her best by her lights. People have different views and experiences. All I know is that continuially scolding and punishing a child damages her/his self-image and this is what J's teacher is doing and for which I really resent her, frankly!
    Middle of the night here and I can't sleep... too hot!
  7. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    We have a similar system here, in some areas of child care. For a while difficult child 3 was being minded by a woman who was registered this way. His carer was a lovely person, very capable and very caring. But the people doing the inspections were a problem at times. One day I collected difficult child 3 and was told that during the inspection that day, these inspectors had decided that difficult child 3 showed all the signs of emotional neglect, and they had dobbed me in to the child welfare people. I had a lot of hassle proving that I was not an unfit parent. I got proactive and rang the welfare people myself and talked it out, then put some things in place for difficult child 3. We'd had his name down for speech pathology, for example, but when I rang the clinic to check, he had fallen off the waiting list. The lack of his name on a waiting list was then seen as more evidence of my neglect. Luckily I keep a diary, I was able to say exactly when we had put in the paperwork, what day, even what time of day.

    In our case, the carer was profusely apologetic, angry on our behalf, but not able to prevent any of this. By me getting proactive, we headed the problems off and the case was dropped in a matter of weeks. But it was scary for a while, I was especially concerned by how easy it was for things to get out of hand.

  8. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    This is true in most countries. The sad part is that while many of us have oodles of documentation and professionals that can vouch for our involvement with our children and our efforts to get them help, there are many parents out there without the intelligence/education/resources to do what we do and then when CPS swoops in, the children get taken and placed in foster care with the resources now available, often the children will improve and that is taken as more "proof" that the parents were neglectful.