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#1 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 04:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have to vent before I actually talk to the staff at the before-school care program.

This is what I want to say but won't:

WTF! Why did you force my child to eat breakfast this morning just because I dropped him off 45 minutes earlier than normal! You refused to listen to him explain that he had already eaten a full breakfast at home and was not hungry. I have been through this with you before and I explained that you are never force my son to eat! What part of "never force" do you not get?! Your treatment of him this morning got him so upset that he was struggling during his regular school day. He was withdrawn and sad. He didn't want to complete his math test because he was having trouble focusing due to the emotional turmoil. I was in his classroom for 2 hours this morning volunteering and he kept needing hugs and wouldn't tell me why he was late getting to class. Right before I left he finally told me. What you did was completely against my wishes and was emotionally abusive!



Sigh...I guess I feel a little better. I really can't believe they did this to him again. He has some sort of fear (bordering on phobia) of eating school food. I don't understand it, but I am fine with just accepting it and letting him have space and time. They forced him to go and have school breakfast about a month ago and then wrote him up on disciplinary action when he refused to eat. They called me at work that day and I told them they were never to force the issue again.

This isn''t just an issue of all the kids going to the cafeteria for breakfast because of staffing issues. Kids who are dropped off after 8am do not go to the cafeteria unless they want to. I have a call into the assistant staff person. I refuse to talk to the head woman because I think she is a poor leader. She seems to have a knack for pushing my son over the edge and has never expressed any interest in understanding his SPD issues. The assistant was there last year when there was an excellent lead staff person. She has a good relationship with DS and I trust she will be able to help me navigate this issue with the head person.

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#2 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 04:28 PM
 
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Moved from Childhood Years, perhaps you'll get more advice on how to correct this and prevent it from happening again.

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#3 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 04:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Autumn Breeze View Post
Moved from Childhood Years, perhaps you'll get more advice on how to correct this and prevent it from happening again.

I should have made it clear that while his before school care is located at the school, it actually has no relationship to the school or the school's policies. It is run by the YMCA so I view this as a daycare issue, not a school issue.

Kris wife to Stew and mom to Joey 8/03 who cares for , 2 frogs and a worm
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#4 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 05:17 PM
 
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I would be furious. Beyond FURIOUS. I would have to really REALLY calm down before I could address it without being abusive.

Your poor poor little boy. Who forces a child to eat? I just don't get it. My daycare sends home a sheet telling you what a child did and did not eat so you know as a parent what to expect that evening. Like, "Joe did not eat his lunch or late afternoon snack so he might be really hungry when he gets home..."
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#5 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 05:59 PM
 
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Well, I certainly would be furious! If it's not a school issue, you will have to take it up directly with the head of the YMCA, I guess? Pin a note to him when you drop him off early? I'm so sorry that your poor DS has had so much trauma surrounding this. I'm not sure I could hold back my anger when bringing this up.

I know that at DD's school they raised a *HUGE* stink one day when I was trying to get my *own* DD to eat more than an apple and milk. I don't think they knew I was her Mom and DD's teacher got an earful about how nobody is allowed to even SUGGEST that a child take more than two items. Even after finding out it was *my* child, she still said that it was not allowed. Bizarre. (p.s. It was burrito day, I was volunteering all day and forgot my lunch. So, I was gonna eat it! DD threw a big hissy that *she* didn't want it and I was like, "just get it!" LOL!)

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#6 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 06:43 PM
 
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Other than the WTF at the beginning, I really don't see why you won't send this. I would be livid.
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#7 of 20 Old 11-08-2010, 07:04 PM
 
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I see NOTHING in your vent paragraph that I wouldn't actually say TO these people!Ok, maybe not the WTF part, lol. Seriously though, what they are doing is TOTALLY unacceptable. If the head lady doesn't want to listen- then maybe you need to go above her. There MUST be someone that's HER boss....I would talk to the school about this (assistant principal or at least the counsleor) because maybe they can HELP you address this with them. If this program is ON SCHOOL PROPERTY they still have to abide by some school rules. They(the people that rent? sub-contract with the school) can't be abusing kids (and forcing a child to eat- particularly a child that has sensory issues- IMHO is a form of abuse) on school property and then say they aren't allowed to protect the child. KWIM?

Please update us when you DO talk to these people. I would be talking to the caffeteria as well! "LO was forced to eat breakfast the other day, and this has happened in the past- I just want you to be aware that this is happening with the before school care program." I would be livid!!!

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#8 of 20 Old 11-09-2010, 10:29 AM
 
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Plus he already ate breakfast. So he wouldn't have been hungry for food he liked let alone food that bothers him.

Out of curiosity, isn't there a charge for the breakfast? How did they get him the breakfast without you??



And I agree that you should tell them exactly what in your post. Don't actually say "wtf" but let your tone of voice say it for you!

Hope it went well.
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#9 of 20 Old 11-10-2010, 10:26 AM
 
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Eating 2 breakfasts is really unhealthy, I would focus on how over eating is a huge heath concern, and how children should not be taught to ignore the signals they get from their bodies.  Obesity is considered an epidemic in this country, and teaching children to over eat is only going to add to the problem.

 

I must add, that I always found school lunches to be scary and it doesn't surprise me at all that your DS does too.


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#10 of 20 Old 11-10-2010, 11:22 AM
 
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I think you should say something to them.  My dd told me last year that they had made her eat breakfast after we had already been very clear with the teachers and director about this issue and I was furious.  I was able to ask about it calmly and it turned out that she hadn't been forced to eat even a single bite, they just had to put the required components on her plate because she wanted to have the juice and she had a huge fit about it.  The food program has an all or none rule when it comes to serving but not eating and they tried to explain that to my dd but she was very obstinant about it.  It may be that they did force him to eat and that is something you should address with the director but there could also be something else going on.

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#11 of 20 Old 11-10-2010, 12:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by One_Girl View Post

I think you should say something to them.  My dd told me last year that they had made her eat breakfast after we had already been very clear with the teachers and director about this issue and I was furious.  I was able to ask about it calmly and it turned out that she hadn't been forced to eat even a single bite, they just had to put the required components on her plate because she wanted to have the juice and she had a huge fit about it.  The food program has an all or none rule when it comes to serving but not eating and they tried to explain that to my dd but she was very obstinant about it.  It may be that they did force him to eat and that is something you should address with the director but there could also be something else going on.


Oh, I hope to goodness it was something like that. Mind you, since the OP's ds apparently feel he did have to eat it, it's going to be a good idea for them to just call his mom before he gets any food other than water and anything she sends in with him.

 

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#12 of 20 Old 11-11-2010, 10:37 AM
 
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I hear ya! I had a similar situation with my 7 yo dd's teacher. My dd never wanted to eat the school lunches and I couldn't figure out why, especially the food that she normally would eat. Come to find out the teacher was making the tables with school lunches finish ALL their food before they could go out to play. And all the kids at the table would have to wait til all the kids were done eating at that table. I'm a firm believer in listening to your stomach.

 

 

I spoke to the director and it was stopped.

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#13 of 20 Old 11-25-2010, 07:13 AM
 
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Wondering if the OP has talked to the before/after school care program?  I hope this has not happened since, for the sake of your LO.


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#14 of 20 Old 02-10-2011, 05:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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 Sorry it took me so long to come back to this post. I did calm down enough to talk with the program leader. She said she didn't force him to go to breakfast, that she talked with him and "convinced" him to go. But I don't buy it. When I talked further with DS, he said that the talk basically consisted of her telling him her reasons and then making it clear that he had to go because this was her new policy. It took a lot of talking to DS to convince him to go back on subsequent mornings. I spoke with the leader and told her that he eats plenty of breakfast at home and if he says he is not hungry, then do not make him go. DS said that she asks the kids if they had any fruit for breakfast and if they say no, then they have to go and if they come to the care program before 8am they have to go. School breakfast is free at his school so I think she feels it shouldn't be a problem for  a kid. So our solution: Ds eats fruit in morning before he goes (usually he eats 5 servings of fruit during lunch, snack, and dinner). I take him as close to 8am as I can and then directly tell the teacher that DS does not need to go to breakfast unless he asks. So far they have respected that. DS still worries about going in the mornings, but it is slowly been getting better.

 

To the teacher's credit, she did email me about DS not cooperating during the after school homework time and she asked for input. I wa able to identify a couple of language choices and procedures that would help her work with him and also gave her back ground on his sensory processing issues and his fine motor control challenges, both of which can result in him resisting his homework, but are easily handled with understanding and small accomodations. This was the first time she had expressed any interest in my son as an individual. Things improved tremendously. But then yesterday happened and I am feeling really frustrated again. She seems to have knack for backing him into power struggles and seems unaware of it happening. I was able to send a very calm email with suggestions from me and insights from DS (who if she took the time to listen to has very good problem solving skills). Hopefully we will get back on track soon.


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#15 of 20 Old 02-10-2011, 09:09 AM
 
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I am guessing the before/after school program gets funding or reimbursed for the food they serve or the school serves, but I really doubt it is required since no one can force a child to eat. And so what if he hasn't eaten fruit in the morning. I know my kids can't stomach fruit early in the morning, but eat it for snacks, lunch and dinner. If they would like to see a kid throw up, go ahead and give my middle child fruit for breakfast, she needs something more hearty. I am sure their concern is the child who hasn't eaten breakfast because they may have food or someone to home to make sure they eat breakfast but respecting individual differences in food needs and consumptions should also be part of the program.

 


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#16 of 20 Old 02-10-2011, 09:27 AM
 
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Maybe the teacher does it because she feels the kids aren't getting adequate breakfast at home, or feels this is the best food the kids will get?  Are there low income families that use this program?

 

I once read about a mother who sent her son to school with a lunch which included some veggie Pirate Booty.  The teacher wouldn't let the boy eat it until he had finished the rest of his lunch because she considered it junk food.  I think sometimes teachers and care givers over step their boundaries.


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#17 of 20 Old 02-10-2011, 09:31 AM
 
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Eating fruit for breakfast is entirely an arbitrary decision, and I wouldn't stand for that as a rule. As a pp said, my dd is likely to vomit if given that much sugar early in the morning. My sister is still that way as an adult. Some people just don't handle fruit well in the mornings. Even saying "protein" would make more sense, though I'd still oppose anyone making my kid get a tray because 1) it's unnecessary and 2) it's wasteful.


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#18 of 20 Old 02-10-2011, 11:27 AM
 
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Did she actually make him eat or did she just bring him over and he was served?  I think that is a stupid policy, but if they have a policy about going then that is the policy and you will have to go above her head to get it changed unless she is willing to bend it or rethink it for your son.  I think you should ask her what your son is doing to get in trouble, tell her you would like to know so you can help him think about ways to follow the rules.  Even if he does have many ideas and she does seem to do power struggles he still needs to follow the rules.  If those rules or the teacher aren't a good fit then I think you should find another place for his care.

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#19 of 20 Old 02-11-2011, 07:26 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Did she actually make him eat or did she just bring him over and he was served?  I think that is a stupid policy, but if they have a policy about going then that is the policy and you will have to go above her head to get it changed unless she is willing to bend it or rethink it for your son.  I think you should ask her what your son is doing to get in trouble, tell her you would like to know so you can help him think about ways to follow the rules.  Even if he does have many ideas and she does seem to do power struggles he still needs to follow the rules.  If those rules or the teacher isn't a good fit then I think you should find another place for his care.

He had to go to thecafeteria, serve up a complete breakfast (this is the most stressful part for him because for whatever reason he has a real problem...bordering on an actual phobia of going through the food line) and then he had to eat a certain amount of it. He refused and they held him until the final school bell was about to ring. I was volunteering in his classroom that morning so I was curious why he showed up so late since they usually release them from before school care about 20 minutes before class starts. He missed doing his morning jobs in the classroom including time to catch up on his handwriting workbook. I now make it a point to mention every time I drop him in the mornings that he does NOT need more breakfast and doesn't need to go to the cafeteria unless he volunteers to go. They have been respecting that.
 


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#20 of 20 Old 02-11-2011, 09:15 AM
 
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I think you should also make it clear that you don't want him forced to eat beyond what his tummy is hungry for if he does say he wants to go.  We have had a few teachers who disagree with my feeling son this and I have had to make it really clear and talk a lot about how horrible it is to build the habit of eating beyond when you are full because it leads you down the path of obesity.  Some teachers are willing to bend their policies to fit that and one set of teachers wasn't so we moved classes. 

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