Teacher fired for putting out fire

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by judiz, Jul 25, 2013.

  1. judiz

    judiz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2006
    Messages:
    3,318
    Read this on AOL, a day care teacher smelled smoke during nap time, she walked out of her classroom to investigate leaving the children sleeping and alone The teacher discovered a small fire in the school kitchen which she extinguished. The teacher was fired for leaving her class unattended and is now suing the owner of the school. As a day care teacher myself, you are told from day one never to leave the children unattended. Was the teacher right in leaving the children unattended or should she had notified the management of the school of the fire, gotten the children out of the building and then notified the fire department?. What is everyone else's opinion? A lot of people on the AOL seem to think the teacher was justified in leaving the children unattended.
     
  2. julieann

    julieann Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2010
    Messages:
    3,625
    Of course she was justified, would they rather she wait until the fire was so out of control that they all burned to death? If she only got a few kids out, they would have complained about that too. How hard would it have been for her to wake all the napping kids to get them out in time? Really hard. Without more information, that's my opinion.
     
  3. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Messages:
    18,100
    She was definately justified. Was she meant to sound the fire alarm and evacuate the building when she had a chance to put it out, thus saving potential lives and building loss. She is a hero in my book. Good on her taking the initiative.
     
  4. BigB08822

    BigB08822 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Messages:
    20,788
    Maybe she tried to get someone elses attention so she wouldn't have to leave the room but when no one responded she was left with no choice. She was completely justified. What is more dangerous, sitting in a room full of children while you smell smoke or leaving them alone for just a few minutes to put out any potential fire? It doesn't take a genius here. I can't imagine doing something that possibly saved tons of lives (not to mention saved the owner tons of money) and being fired for it. Even if it was against policy, maybe just remind her of policy and move on with a big THANK YOU.
     
    BittyBug and (deleted member) like this.
  5. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Messages:
    18,100
    Well you just saved my business but you get fired anyway.
     
  6. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    11,949
    I really don't know what to think about this. As someone who taught daycare, it is drilled that you NEVER leave the children unattended. If I was working by myself, I had to pee with the door open so I could still see them (and pray that wasn't when a parent came to pick up unexpected!)

    That said, what she did was clearly the right thing. The other option was to follow the evacuation plan and hope the fire department got there before the building burned down. That would be a stupid choice to take when you can SOLVE the problem.

    I don't think she should have been fired, but I could understand some slap on the wrist retraining required due to leaving the kids.
     
  7. DarrellH

    DarrellH New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2007
    Messages:
    4,763
    This is SO wrong.
     
  8. judiz

    judiz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2006
    Messages:
    3,318
    I started the thread, guess I should comment. The teacher took a big risk, she had no idea what was causing the smoke, could had been an electrical fire in the walls that could had erupted and prevented her from returning to her classroom (the article didn't mention how close or far the kitchen was ), she could had been seriously burned and unable to get help for herself since no one knew what she was doing and while she was gone, one of the children could had suffered a seizure, woken up and left the room or gotten ill. While I do not think she should had been fired, she should had been disciplined for leaving the children alone.
     
  9. pamela95

    pamela95 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2010
    Messages:
    75
    Honestly, the only part that jumped out to me was that she was alone in the room with the kids. It doesn't say where this happened, but around here there are strict child:adult ratios. Whenever I'd go pick my niece and nephew up from daycare, the was always at minimum two teachers in the room. Usually there are three to four adults. Even during nap time there is at least two adults in the room. That being said, it's a difficult situation. Do you wake all the kids and make them stand outside and it turn out to be nothing? Or do you investigate before you raise the alarm? Either way, she should be lauded as a hero for keeping her head in an emergency and keeping the children and the building safe.
     
  10. Angelskates

    Angelskates Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Messages:
    12,792
    Is there a link to the article? I've searched and can't find it.
     
  11. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Messages:
    31,167
    i wonder if the owner was ever in a burning building. my dorm caught fire on my floor when i was in college. knowing what you were told to do in an emergency and actually doing it when you are faced with something serious like a fire are two different things. i know i totally froze when i saw it. the fact that she managed to do anything constructive is pretty amazing.
     
  12. falling_dance

    falling_dance ToT Thread For Sale

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Messages:
    23,511
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  13. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    11,949
    My state has very strict ratios, for infants it is 1:4, but there were still times I would be alone. We would open the daycare at 6:00 a.m., and I would be the only teacher in the infant room until 8:00 a.m. I could have up to 4 babies in there. If the fifth parent came early at 7:50, they knew they could not leave their child until the other teacher showed up at 8:00. If there were lots of early pick-ups, the director would dismiss the other teacher and I'd be alone at the end of the day too.

    I wasn't alone in the building, but due to ratios, unless the toddler class had no-shows, it wasn't like I could call another teacher in or combine the classes.

    So alone in the room isn't a red flag at all.
     
  14. taf2002

    taf2002 flower lady

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    Messages:
    14,405
    I'm trying to imagine a scenario in this day & age in which someone has NO WAY of communicating from her classroom. She was alone with the children with no cell phone or land line? She couldn't have called someone about the smell? I read the article & I don't think she's a hero. The fire turned out to be small enough for her to be able to handle it but how often is it the smart thing to do? If she really had no phone she should have woken the children & gotten them outside. I think she showed poor judgment & I wouldn't want her in charge of the safety of kids.