How To Be Sure Your 'Tween/Teen Is Safe When BabysittingBy Child Safety Specialist Mar 2 , 2011 | 10:05:00 amPosted in: Family, Home Security Tips
When my kids were younger my greatest concern was finding trustworthy babysitters who I felt my kids would be safe with. Now, as my daughter is getting older, I’m more concerned about when she starts babysitting and being sure that she’s in a safe situation. For parents of ‘tweens and teens that are getting ready to start babysitting here are some points to consider:
1. Do you feel that your child is mature enough to handle whatever emergency might arise? Have you left them alone or in charge of a younger sibling as a test?
2. Insist that your child take a babysitting course if your community provides this or a CPR/First Aid course.
3. Do you personally know the parents and neighborhood where they will be babysitting? If not, don’t be afraid to ask some questions. It would probably make the family feel more comfortable as well if you asked to speak with them prior to her babysitting. Ask if they have a home security system and whether it will be enabled.
4. Make sure the length of time your child will be required to stay is clearly established. If you would prefer for her not to be out later than a certain time, make sure she communicates this to the family ahead of time so that there is no misunderstanding.
5. Review with your teen who should be the first person they call in each type of emergency. Make sure they understand that if the situation warrants, 911 should be called before you or the parents.
6. Make sure your teen is comfortable with the number and age of the children they are charged with. Some babysitters will not be comfortable with infants, diapers and bottles.
7. Talk to them about respecting the family’s home. Nothing is to be used, touched, or eaten without prior approval from the parents.
8. Follow the rules the parents give them regarding bed time, TV and activities.
9. How is your child getting home? If both the parents have been drinking you certainly don’t want them driving your child home. Explain to her ahead of time that if she suspects at all that they have been drinking or feels uncomfortable in any way, she should call you for a ride home.
10. Before the parents leave the home, make sure your child knows how to reach them.
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