This last week in Toronto, a very respected daycare/after school care facility discovered they had a predator in their midst after going 35 years without a problem. This really breaks my heart on two levels. First and foremost, innocent children were scarred. Second, a institution that tried really hard to keep their kids safe, accidently let a predator inside.
Which brings us to today’s topic: References. References. REFERENCES!
I’d like to share a form my wife and I made up while interviewing daycares, babysitters, coaches and school trip supervisors. Please feel free to improve it any way you can, if helpful we will add your information to the sheet. Then you will always find it here on Street Smart Kidz and be able to download it any time you need it. I look forward to your replies.
Full Name _______________________________________________________________
Nick Name (if applicable) ______________________________
Date From___________________________ Date To___________________________
Contact Name_______________________ Position___________________________
*ALL the above information MUST be filled in
Questioning the Reference
Now it’s time to question the references, be in a quiet room, pay attention to what you are being told, but more importantly, what your NOT being told, and don’t skip any questions, because when the reference check is over, you will need to analyze all the info and come to a general conclusion by writing down what made you feel good, and what set off warning signals.
Discuss your notes about the following questions, with a mate, family member or close friend
Verify Above Information By Asking The Following From The References:
dates of employment from_______________ To:_______________
will there be someone on site at all times with FIRST AID TRAINING?
last job title________________
would you hire them again? why?________________ why not___________________
tell me about their interpersonal skill’s______________________________
how was their general attendance?______________________
would you be comfortable leaving your children with this person?_________
how much supervision do they need?___________________________
Signals To Listen For (reading between the lines)
does the person answer right away, or is the phone quiet for a few seconds
are they stuttering and stammering, looking for answers, or is there a natural easy flow to the conversation
To Do List
- PLEASE, complete this form for every situation where your child needs to be left with a stranger.
- Use at least three references for each person you plan to allow around your children.
- ask a lot of questions, take notes and keep in mind that the references could be fake.
- follow through by phoning each and every reference
- then give yourself a pat on the back for being a good parent