Webster Square Day Care Center, Inc. believes that children should be encouraged to develop responsibility for their own actions in a gentle but consistent manner. Educators will use only positive guidance, redirection and setting of clear limits that foster the child’s own ability to become self-disciplined. Staff will encourage children to be fair, respect others and learn to be responsible for their own actions. Discipline involves teaching character and self-control. Because people differ in how to approach discipline, parents and staff must discuss the goals of discipline and the method that will best attain the goals for an individual child. However, educators will never use physical punishment, abusive language or the withholding of food as these approaches teach children to respond on a similar manner.
Educators will guide children to develop self-control and orderly conduct in relationships with peers and adults. Aggressive physical behavior towards other children and staff is unacceptable. Staff will intervene immediately when a child becomes physically aggressive to protect all children and encourage more acceptable behavior. To achieve these behaviors educator will show children positive alternatives rather than saying “no". Positive behavior will be recognized.
Educators will use discipline that is consistent, clear and understandable to each child. Discipline will be explained to the child before and at the time of any disciplinary action. Children shall be included in the development of the rules, policies and procedures where feasible and appropriate.
The following discipline guidelines will be used by all educators and staff when disciplining a child:
- Give the child a choice. Help them decide the best course of action.
- Re-direct the child to a different area or activity in a positive way.
- If safe, let natural consequences take place.
- Give the child a logical consequence and consequence should be immediate.
- Reflect the feelings of the child.
- Remove the child from area or activity.
Educators will always use one of the above guidelines when discipline a child. Time-out is rarely used at WSDCC but on those rare occasions time-out will not exceed the age of the child and children will not be confined to a piece of equipment in lieu of supervision.
For acts of aggression toward staff or other children, educators will follow these guidelines:
- Separate the parties involved and diffuse situation
- Comfort the individual who was injured and actively involve the aggressor in comforting.
- Care for any injury suffered by the victim involved with the aggressor
- Have victim and aggressor, with support, reflect on the incident
- Notify parents of all involved.
- Review why the incident occurred and how to avoid other such incidents.
If a child is removed from the situation, the educator will explain, on the child's level, why the behavior is unacceptable and what the child needs to do to correct the behavior. If removal of the child is not possible, the child and educator will sit quietly and reflect together. The educator will explain acceptable to behaviors to the child. If the child is upset about the removal they need to calm down before refection can occur. They child may possibly need help to calm down and this is where it is acceptable to let them be by themselves with educator support nearby. This is a learning experience not a punishment.
If the child’s action is of an extreme serious nature and cannot be adequately dealt with by the educators in the classroom, the children may be brought in to the administrative office. An administrative staff member will speak with the child. The parent may be notified and encouraged to speak with the child to calm the child and help the child gain control. A child may be sent home from the program for the remainder of the day when the child is too disruptive to be contained in the office or if the child poses a health or safety concern to themselves or others. Once a child is returned to the classroom the educator and child will have an opportunity to speak but no other consequences will occur. It is our policy to provide for the safety of all the children in our care and keep the staff safe. We will make every reasonable effort to provide support and work with the child, parent, educators and outside services to eliminate endangering behaviors.
Corporal punishment or any type of physical punishment is never permitted. This includes hitting, spanking, beating, shaking, pinching, yanking, grabbing or any other measures which produce physical pain. Withdrawal or the threat of withdrawal of food, rest or bathroom opportunities is never permitted. Abusive, profane or derogatory language including yelling and belittling is not permitted. Any form of public or private humiliation, including rejecting, terrorizing, ignoring, isolating or corrupting a child is never permitted. No child shall ever be punished for soiling, wetting or not using the bathroom.