We’re happy to be up-front about it: The Planet is different.
As we say in our brochure and on this website:
“..we particularly invite those parents who share our determination to find a wholesome way through our rapidly-changing world.”
“..modern kids’ behavior often shows a lack of center or continuity. Kids may win ‘sportsmanship’ awards yet remain unable to play fair without adult referees.”
“Our policies, always subject to review, allow some unusual freedoms: like doing nothing, mutually-agreed rough play, and toy weapons – and they impose some demands that are not always found in kids’ programs: like responsible eating habits, ‘good judgment,’ and courtesy. But all our policies express only one principle: sensitivity for the rights and safety of everyone.”
Yes, we are true professionals, and that is what we profess, in a comprehensive theory – always under development and subject to improvement – as true professionals do. We are not in this work to prioritize income, but, instead, to accept and even explore the risks of providing best-possible child-socialization. We believe we embody the utmost principles of traditional easygoing neighborhood courtesy; yet we know we risk missing out on utmost income every time we remind a child to cover his mouth when he coughs – or ask a child to take his fingers out of his mouth – and when we’re consistent about age-appropriate food-control – and about not interrupting teachers, even in our relatively casual shops – and when we’re mechanical about imposing consequences when a child repeatedly intrudes into the rights of others – all policies that most parents require at home, and which produce the happiest and safest social environments – but which are apparently neglected in many “programs.” And we believe that easygoing openness and community conversation are not just healthy, but essential, when the interests of children are involved. We have always found that nearly all parents appreciate all this about us.
Nearly all. There is always the risk that, very occasionally, a parent will feel offended, if, in his view, we break the code of adult congeniality by applying our time-honored standards, “even” when the parent is present. There is the particular danger that, very occasionally, a parent will feel our need to be consistent and maintain our values, even in his presence, as insulting or embarrassing to him. Most parents thank us and appreciate our good sense. Most. In the past, we’ve felt regretful, but sadly ok about losing the children whose parents react against us for our realism – a danger that induces staff-people in many programs to play it safe and compromise realism – causing the erosion of standards sometimes seen in children who, in this modern world, spend so much time in “programs.”
The problem is that Yelp now gives “offended” parents a way to retaliate – by presenting a, shall we say, “biased” view of what took place. It appears that anger is a very motivating influence, and the most elaborate, seemingly knowledgeable complaints have left out the crucial need for easygoing talk, the elementary “talking it out” that’s the basis of all conflict-resolution policies, as well as happy community. Oops. We must be able to speak candidly – caregivers have an obligation to be deeply honest with their clients – without dread of retaliation.
In fact, it might be fair to wonder if a perfect five-star Yelp-rating reflects an over-emphasis on “pleasing the customer.”
So we wish to ask parents who appreciate our professionalism – who’ve had the experience they deserve to merely expect – to take a moment to let Yelp know, in order to help counter-balance the drives that motivate people to hurt us.
But, most of all, we hope parents will come and see for themselves. We have absolute confidence in that good sense.