Areas of difficulty :
Parents not collecting their child on time – getting later and later.
Parents with outstanding fees
Parents with a complaint i.e they claim a child has hit their child
Speaking to a parent about a concern I have about their child (I feel that the child has specific needs, and I worry how they may accept/not accept it).
Parent has been discriminating against another parent (possibly verbally to the other parents).
How are I am going to deal with these Here are some strategies to deal with areas of difficulty and try to challenge encountered in professional practice in early years settings :
First of all I always go with the policies and procedures and if the complaint is getting too much I refer to the manager.
When speaking to the parents, if they come to me with a concern/complaint -I listen – really listen, even if they start to shout, often they just want to say their piece – then if they have cause to complain or bring something up – I may be able to deal with it there and then and always to speak in a professional manner, I never take it personal, it is a concern/issue. If I am able to resolve it, I do so, if not monitor the situation/deal with the concern, I report back to them if needs be. I always thank them for pointing it out. It doesnt matter how small a concern is – its important for that child and their parents, and I want to assure to those parents that I take things seriously.
If the concern/situation is unfounded, I speak to the manager. If there has been an incident where a child hits the other child and I was the one to see it and the manager wants me to speak to the parent then I must deal with it (again professionally) and explain why it is not so. I explain sympathetically why children behave the way they do – but dont call any child a liar, they arent lying, they often believe what they say – after all we spend alot of our time really fairy tales/fables and encourage them to make-believe.
If I need to speak to a parent whether its because I have a concern about their child or I need to because they owe fees, are constantly late, are discriminating (verbally) another parent, I will have my policies and procedures, so i.e. with fees we need to speak with the parents for reminders as advised by the manager, I may decide to them a letter (possibly a polite reminder) about their fees, then what follows will depend on what I do next. With the parent who is discriminating me may have to start by saying (when they are on their own, or ask quietly if I can have a word after the session/day) It has been brought to my attention that I have been speaking about another parent unkindly/discriminatingly. They may interject here and say who said, they are lying I just have to remember to say something such as …I am not at liberty to say, but whether it is true or not I must remind myself we are an equal opportunity setting who celebrates diversity and cultural beliefs. Remember to explain (sensitively/nicely) that I am duty bound to make sure all the children/families are treated equally, and I would do the same for their child, if I felt they needed my support.