Proper use of time-outs in preschool
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|Thu, 03-27-2003 - 2:57pm|
DD is generally well-behaved in school; it's rare that I get a report that she got a timeout. She's also honest with me when she does get them; it's the first thing she tells me when I pick her up. Yesterday when I picked her up, she said she and her friend Allie got a timeout. When I asked her why, she said it was because they went to the bathroom together. That sounded odd, so when I dropped DD off this morning I talked to her teacher for clarification.
The teacher said my dd & her friend went to the bathroom together without telling her. She said she never saw them leave; all of a sudden she noticed that they were missing and was about to start looking for them when they returned from the bathroom. She put them both in a timeout for not requesting permission to go to the bathroom, and for going together. I can understand some sort of discipline for breaking a rule, in this case not asking the teacher for permission to go to the bathroom, but I couldn't understand why they'd be disciplined for going together. The teacher explained that two little girls in the bathroom together without adult supervision is unsafe and inappropriate. Huh??? Whatever the reason, I told the teacher that I felt a timeout for a relatively minor infraction was a bit extreme. She disagreed with me, and the director backed her up. It wasn't until I got to work later that it dawned on me that the teacher never noticed the girls were missing...she wasn't doing her job, was she? I intend to bring that matter up with her tomorrow.
In any case, was the teacher going too far in putting the girls in a timeout for not requesting permission to use the bathroom? What about going together? It can be potentially unsafe if they started horseplay, but how is it inappropriate? What do you think would have been a better alternative to a timeout?
Thanks in advance for your thoughts.