More musings on day care
I guess it's easy to say what you'd do as a parent if you're not a parent. I know me, though. I don't like when people look at my dogs funny. I can't imagine what I'd be like with a kid. Okay, I would so not be leaving my kid at the library unattended. At least not under the age of thirteen.
Here's the thing, though. When I worked retail, I worked in pet stores. We regularly had people thinking the pet store was a safe place (they never saw the guy we had taken off by security... several times... for shoving parakeets in his pants. I wish I was kidding.) They'd leave their kids with us in the store. And the managers were cool with that, because the customer is always right, even if they don't buy a damned thing.
I could bitch about society in general, but I won't.
I think Great Western Dragon makes an excellent point. The good kids are something to worry about too. I notice that most of our good kids, like our bad, travel in groups. That relieves me somewhat, because there is safety in numbers. But how often do I have to go down to our really secluded non-fiction areas and move kids (or sometimes a single kid) along? Several times a week, and I try to at least look at what's going on down there every half hour.
There is stuff that goes on down there that I miss. I know it. I only know of one other librarian that really checks down there regularly.
What makes me laugh is that these are the parents that are probably all for tighter security in schools...
The library shouldn't be like a church. It's not sacred. It's meant to be used by everyone. I have little tolerance for the adults who yell about the young adult area being noisy, and then just check hotmail for ten minutes and leave. The kids have every right to be there, and are often times using more of the library's resources more effectively than the adults.
However, manners are extremely important. And structure. My job isn't to teach manners, or to provide structure.
I am a librarian. I give you information. I find you books. I make the place run, and I make it so you can find the information and books on your own if you are so inclined. I do bibliographic instruction. Where does child care fall into that?
Question for public librarians out there, when you have had to call in the authorities when children have gotten out of hand, did you warn them first? I told them the police were coming. I also knew their parents were and they were virtually captives there.
Every other time I've threatened calling the police, it's worked and the crowd has dispersed.
I will eventually get my "librarian legs" and when to draw the line in the sand will become crystal clear, I know. ;).