Abuse of 8-month-old girl stresses importance of daycare safety
Do you really know who you are entrusting your kids with when you leave them at a daycare center?
Leaving your child at a daycare or child care centre means entrusting their safety to people who are practically strangers. While most daycares are equipped with the proper security measures and trained, caring staff, sadly, daycare abuse stories still surface.
Just recently, a daycare center in Taichung, Taiwan came under fire after a nanny was caught on video abusing an 8-month-old baby girl.
In the short clip, which has sparked outrage online, the nanny can be seen striking the baby at the back of the head and pushing her down forcefully several times.
This latest case in a slew of daycare abuse stories emphasises the importance of anger management
The daycare centre's principal, Ms Wu discovered the abuse. She relates to the Straits Times that she first noticed bruises on the little girl's forehead. This prompted her to investigate further. She later found the surveillance footage that confirmed her suspicions.
The principal has since apologized, explaining that the nanny was under severe stress. The baby's incessant crying seemed to be too much for her to handle.
After discovering the abuse, Ms Wu immediately contacted the baby's parents and showed them the video for full disclosure.
The baby girl was brought to the hospital and her parents are planning to take legal action as investigations are underway.
You can watch a clip of the incident below.
Daycare abuse stories: Can they be prevented?
This kind of abuse happens across the world. In 2017 alone, daycare abuse stories surfaced---one case involved a teacher rubbing wasabi on a toddler's face in Shanghai, China.
In Malaysia, a four-year-old girl bled from the ears after being slapped repeatedly by a 19-year-old kindergarten teacher.
Being stressed or exhausted is one of the common reasons cited to try to justify losing their temper. But there is no excuse good enough to ever make hurting a child the right thing to do --- especially when a person's career is looking after kids.
One child abuse story is one too many. Schools and daycares should be safe, nurturing spaces for our little ones. Though there is no surefire way to stop daycare abuse stories, mums and dads can help prevent this from happening by choosing childcare centers carefully.
When trying to choose the right childcare center, remember these guidelines!
According to the Ministry of Social and Family Development, child care centers offer full day and half-day programs to kids aged 18 months and above. However, there are centres that provide care for infants as young as two months old.
Aside from a convenient location, affordable price range, and childcare philosophy you agree with, here are a few reminders to choose a centre best suited for your child.
1. Check the daycare center's legitimacy
Childcare centers in Singapore are licensed by the Ministry of Community development, Youth and Sports under the Child Care Centres act and regulations.
In keeping with this regulation, childcare centres should meet certain standards: health care, safety precautions, food quality and security measures.
They must also be able to provide the right activities "to stimulate a child's mental, physical, and social development."
2. Do background checks on individuals, not just the center
Though a center might be reputable as an institution, remember that you also need to get to know the attendants and educators who run the place.
The internet offers a wealth of resources, like LinkedIn and Facebook, where you can get a clearer picture of their employment history. Checking with their past employers is just a message away.
3. Seek the help of other parents
Nothing beats the feedback and experiences of other moms and dads. Reach out online or around your community. Yes, this might seem like overkill, but no safety measure is ever too much when it comes to the welfare of your child.
4. Make surprise visits
Get a sense and "feel" of the place by paying regular, unannounced visits. Observe how daycare staff interact with other kids---not just your own.
Remember that even if security cameras are in place, this doesn't assure your child will be safe. So don't leave anything to chance and be proactive. Yes, it might be time consuming, but it is one good way to avert possible abuse. Watch the employees closely.
Do they seem overextended or exhausted? Someone who is burned out can easily snap or be unable to function as a good caregiver for children.
5. Ask specific, detailed questions
Observe your child and talk to them every single day. Make it light and fun; ask them what they did, who they played with. Note any change in behavior, especially in younger toddlers who still can't express themselves much. Look for unusual bruises, scratches or other marks on their body.
Enrich their vocabulary by giving them the proper names for their body parts---even their private ones---and make it clear that no adult has the right to hurt them or tell them to keep secrets from mommy and daddy.
Republished with permission from: theAsianParent Singapore