Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Weekend Conundrum

I was reminded that Wine in the Woods is coming up this weekend when I saw this advert on Twitter.

I don’t know much about Idea Lab Kids beyond this ad. They look to be a franchise providing STEAM-based childcare options. Some enterprising person over there looked at Wine in the Woods and saw an opportunity: you go have fun. We’ll take care of your kids.

As a lifelong teacher I look at this and see one glaring problem. Who is going to drive the children home? I know from personal experience that you never want to dismiss a child into the care of someone who has been drinking if that person is going to be driving a car. It puts the childcare provider in an excruciatingly difficult position. The safety of the child is your first priority. But the parent is the paying customer.

Well, that’s easy, you say. Have a designated driver. Surely everyone does that these days, right?

Do they?

If you go with a group of friends, I imagine that often one person agrees in advance to be the designated driver. I think Wine in the Woods has a special wristband for that. But imagine that Mom and Dad are have a romantic afternoon at Wine in the Woods. Who is the designated driver?

I’m a childcare professional, folks, I get paid to worry about these things.

If the folks at Idea Lab Kids put a kid in a car with an inebriated adult who then gets in an alcohol- related incident that results in injury to the child, will they bear any liability? After all, the entire plan for this childcare option was devised around an alcohol-focused event. I think Idea Lab Kids is trying to provide a service and make some money here. I would not touch this with a ten foot pole.

I don’t know what the answer is. My daughter suggested that the childcare package should include the cost of an Uber. The best advice I can give is do not ever drink and drive. If you will be transporting children don’t ever put childcare providers in the position of being reluctant to release your own child to you.

Have a plan that involves a sober driver. Period.

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