No love allowed in daycare facilities

Over the years childcare rules and regulations have changed immensely.

Some for the better, and now some are for the worse.

Research shows that children who start getting an education before the age of five will have a better chance of doing well in school. The opportunities for a child will have more success if education if enforced on a regular basis.

Although there is currently more emphasis on book smarts than on life skills for most children, the balance should be relatively even.

During this day and age it is almost impossible to raise a child without the help of daycare professionals. Life, as we have all learned, is expensive and most parents are forced to work full time, 40 hours a week, five days a week.

The struggle is even harder for single parent homes, which according to the 2011 US Census, includes 14 million American families.

These facts have demanded focus on one issue: when do we draw the line? When do the rules become ridiculous?

Parents are leaving their children in the hands of daycare professionals for forty hours a week.  Whether we like to admit it or not those daycare professionals help raise them during the hours the parents work to provide for their children financially.

And as most daycare providers can tell you, families of all kinds bring their children in, including those with difficult family situations, odd schedules, state assistance and foster care. For some of these children, daycare was the only form of stable adult contact.

According to OCS (Office of Children’s Services), on average 1,200 children each month are placed in foster care. The average stay in the foster home is 23 months. For these children, the need to be loved and nurtured is even more necessary than the average child.

The fact is children need to be loved and nurtured. Children at this age are learning how to deal with emotion, a process that most adults struggle with throughout their lives.

And now daycare classes around the Anchorage community are no longer allowed to say, “I love you.”  That phrase has now been changed to “I like you.”

Parents should be happy to know that the people who spend forty hours a week with their children love them.  Of course, there is nothing that can take away the love between a parent and child. But there are different types of love.

A daycare provider who spends 40 hours a week minimum with a child should love these kids. If not, these teachers are clearly in the wrong profession.

Children tend to have more faith in someone they know loves them than in someone they don’t feel loved by.

For a parent who is enforcing some form of punishment on a child, typically they still want the child to know that they love them. This is no different for a daycare provider. Timeout is the most common form of discipline for daycare providers, but when discussing the issue with a child the child still needs to know they are still loved, even if they did something wrong. How can this be expressed without the expressed balance of love and structure?

As a former daycare provider myself, I have seen the issue come up numerous times.

In one instance, a child was being disciplined and put in timeout. As the four-year cried and regretted her bad choice she asked if I still loved her, how was I supposed to tell her I didn’t, or that I just liked her?

Kids look for love; they need the reassurance that they are loved. If they don’t get it at home, they deserve to receive love from somewhere else.

Better loved from the background and fingerprint checked employees of your daycare, than a stranger.

My response to this the child, was “Of course I still love you.” It wasn’t a lie. Never could that love be anything compared to that of the parent, but I would do anything to help these children if they needed me – without one second’s doubt.

This is true of most daycare professionals and rest assured, the ones who don’t love your children are not the ones saying they love your children.

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