Sunday, November 29, 2009

How much risk can kids take?

Uphill battle

This lady in Santa Barbara (LA Times photo at right by Kirk McKoy) has a family child care, and she takes the kids to the beach to look for crabs. Her shtick is teaching outdoor stuff to preschoolers.

When they're done with the crabs, her son and one of the kids in her care climb a hill at the back of the beach. They've done this before, and they like to climb. She thought it was a good challenge for them, with enough hand holds to make it doable.

One of the kids, the caretaker's own four-year-old, got scared at one point, so the caretaker went up and got him down. Two other kids reached the top and were guided back down by lifeguards.

According to the article in the LA Times, passersby called the cops, who called licensing, who suspended her license for "conduct inimical to the health, morals, welfare, or safety" of children.

Now obviously I wasn't there, but I think I'm on the provider's side here, especially since the parents thought it was fine. She had known the kids for years and knew what they could do. I figured with my own issue that a broken bone or two in the course of a childhood was an acceptable risk for the reward of kids successfully climbing stuff.

If she and the parents have agreed that this hill is a good climb for their kids, that should be enough for licensing.

No comments:

Post a Comment