So, I am in the process of dealing with an issue at DD's daycare and am looking for other parent's opinions on how I should deal with the situation, just so you know, it is a daycare run by the hospital that I work at, and as a benefit to the hospital employees, is subsudized by the hospital and only hospital employees are able to enroll their children there. So it is as follows:
DD was bitten last Friday. She was also bitten two times in one day two weeks prior to that, and inbetween the incidents, was not at the daycare for a solid week following the first two incidents since we went on a week long vacation. So she has been bitten a total of 3 times within two weeks. She was also bitten awhile ago. The daycare keeps the biters anonymous, which I have no issue with. But I am not happy that this is the fourth time total she has been bitten. She is 19 mos and recently moved up to the next age group classroom as did most of the children that were in her previous class. She moved up when we got back from our vacation. The first three biting incidents occured in her previous classroom, the most recent in her new one, except her regular teacher was not present that day as she had taken a day off...a different teacher was watching her and the others in her class.
I know the first incident was when she pulled someone's hair and the child bit her in response...I can understand.
The second incident where two bites occured in the same day was one was in the middle of a dispute over a toy, my daughter had the toy, the other kid wanted it, she wouldn't give it up and she was bitten. The other incident that day was unprovoked, the child simply walked over to her and bit her for no reason.
The third incident and fourth biting happened when again, the child wanted to take a toy my daughter had and bit her when she wouldn't give it up.
I sent a fairly not happy email to the director of the daycare program that I did not feel this was acceptable especially the three occurances that happened within two weeks of each other, I could only assume that other children are getting bitten, not just mine and that for the concern of my child's wellfare, for the offending child who is biting to be removed from her classroom.
She responded today to inform me that children bite for a number of reasons and they do not have a policy that removes a child that bites, that they believe in other methods of attempting to prevent biting from occuring such as diversion, shaddowing, etc. My frustration occurs with multiple points: 1) she informed me she was not aware this had happened multiple times to my child until I emailed her 2) She mentioned they can shaddow the child more who is biting.
1) She is the manager, is it not her responsibility to be aware of the things that are going on that are potentially problematic within the daycare she is responsible for managing? 2) Since this child has bitten mine more than once (and from information from another parent in her class, her son has been bitten too) that other children are being bitten, that since they are aware there is a child who bites in the room, that shouldn't this shaddowing have been done initially instead of now? And if they have been doing that, clearly it is not being effective considering my daughter and my coworker's son have both been bitten?
Now, a bit about my personality: I do not back down from an argument, but I will discuss something that concerns me civilly, appropriately and professionally. I am not afraid to confront an issue but I don't go looking for a fight.
My two ways I am considering dealing with this are as follows:
1) I send another not so happy and matter-of-fact email stating the above concerns that I am not happy she is not aware of things like a child being bitten repeatedly, and therefore what sort of reporting system do they even have for these type of incidents? And if shaddowing is something that should be done, why hasn't this been already implemented, why wait until the 4th time and until a parent makes an issue out of it? If the techniques other than removal of the child they discussed were already being done, it is clearly not effective and a risk to my child's safety and health, and I do not feel that they are providing a safe environment for my child, and if the child is not removed, I will involve the hospital administration if necessary.
2) Send another email recognizing the conversation the two of us had, and state that I anticipate further information from her regarding the situation, what is being done about it, and want the two children kept apart. If my daughter is bitten again, at that point I will involve and notify her superior within the hospital administration that she is unable to effectively handle situations concerning the safety and well-being of children in the daycare that she is responsible for supervising.
Any thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?
ps I am looking at other daycares in the area...just in case. It is unfortunate, as until this point I have been pretty satisfied with the daycare. And dang is it super affordable, since it is subsudized by the hospital, it is the cheapest. Period. Like less than $200 a week because the hospital foots the bill for the facility, the utilities and upkeep of the building. All the daycare is responsible for are salaries and supplies.
Side note in response to some comments: My daughter is an only child thus far. I am also aware that she may have been bitten by more than one child, I had expressed that idea in the initial email to the supervisor when I notified her of my concerns. I also had stated that if in fact all four instances were the same child, that I felt that my daughter was not adequately kept from the child who has been biting and shaddowing or more close supervision was not done earlier and I did request the child to be removed.