" 'Let Me Tell You What Really Happens At This Place' ".

Fine. Tell me about it.

I am the OP of the post about the director who wouldn't help me with an issue at my old center. The story of this post is the new position as a center director that I accepted and started at the end of December. I found the center on social media, and walked into apply for a teaching position. The owner, an older African lady with a heavy accent, looked at my qualifications and hired me as the new director, as I am qualified for a center director in both WI and IL. I feel blessed with opportunity and within the two weeks that I have been there, I have made subtle changes that parents and even the state licensor have noticed. The owner is very pleased with my work, and is onsite if I have questions about anything. In other words, we are working hard to put the center back together, and make it better than before.

Before. Before. The owner said the other day that she wishes I got there sooner, as there was so much crap that happened: and it was due to the leadership (old directors) and the staff. The owners travel back home to their country and are sometimes out of state due to family obligations, therefore, they trusted the old management and staff to provide high quality care. That didn't happen: files were a mess, repeated liscensing violations for attendance (and not signing children in or out, etc) and more. Staff would come into work high, smelling of weed, they would group all the children together in one room including infants and just let the children play. Like a party. From what the owner said, it was a hot mess. So bad to the point that families left and did not return due to the staff and management. There is more, but you get the idea. Former employees who quit or were terminated are attempting to have their jobs back. These employees have the attitude that the owner will hire anyone, including former employees. These people are sending their relatives to apply for positions without qualifications and/or experience. A former family attempted to return to the center but the owner said no, largely because the mother gossips too much, and the owner feels that the parent will bring drama to the center, something she is trying to avoid. In fact, she even asked the owner to re-hire a teacher who pinched children, and offered to bring someone in to " 'keep an eye on ____' " (me, the director).

Talk about drama. Social media is huge now when finding childcare-in my area, there is a FB page where parents seeking care and family child care providers, plus center directors and nannies (like myself) can create posts accepting enrollments or seeking jobs. That being said, a center in the area closed and parents of that center are panicking, as the owner of that center gave families twelve hours notice. Speculation is that the center won't be open by Monday, and I posted on that same thread that we are accepting enrollment and applications for qualified, experienced teachers. The former director of my center is also on that page, and she is the assistant director at a different center. I posted contact info for families. A person wanted to know if we were accepting enrollment for an infant, and the person also mentioned she was looking for a job. I told her to call me. The person who posted below me was the old director, and this is what she said:

" 'Be careful of ____. Still waiting for my last check' ".

Seriously? Posting THAT on FB? On a thread where you know people are searching for childcare and teachers seeking positions. How professional is that?

In the two weeks I have been there: I separated children by age, something that wasn't done before. I wrote up a teacher for not having accurate attendance, after being told repeatedly by the owner she needs to work on that. I created labels for infant belongings, and made new daily sheets. I have a tracking system and opening/closing checklists, and daily/weekly/monthly cleaning sheets. I'm evaluating staff and working on a new curriculum. I also created new schedules and reminding the staff to follow DHFS rules. The classrooms are not allowed to play in the large room, which is the classroom of our 4-5 year olds and school age. The center is clean. Organized. I'm doing things that were never done before by the old management.

The owner supports me and loves it. Due to the area that we are located in, we have mainly state funded families, however, our location is excellent, due to the highway access. We are attempting to market to private pay families.

When the parent left Friday night, she said " 'call me anytime so I can tell you about this place' ". This family pulled their children for reasons that I felt didn't make sense, but to each his own.

My assessment? I feel like the owner is very easy to talk to, and I am learning from her about running a business and marketing. Most of all, I think she is very nice, and I feel blessed to have this opportunity, something that I was denied in my old center because I wasn't friends with the right people. Just yesterday, the staff and I came in on Saturday to clean up and organize for an open house that I am planning on having in a few weeks.

We're not done, but we are getting there. I have a tours scheduled for tomorrow for new enrollment, and I am praying every night that I can do this. I'm overwhelmed, anxious and excited. This is the bravest thing I have ever done, and I know I can do it.

Keep talking. Say whatever you want. Your words don't scare me. They just make me work harder and do better. Perhaps your upset because you screwed up and are just not realizing it. That's not my fault. It's yours. It takes teamwork to create something, and more teamwork to maintain it. Just like the old team created a huge mess, the new team is working hard to clean it up. Opinions are fine, but make sure you have actual facts to base them. The owner did nothing to you, you did something to the business, like selling weed on the property, not doing your job and more. All the crap that happened could've cost the owner her business. And say what you want about me. I take my job seriously. I'm sorry if you don't.

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