Supporting Parents And grandparents who are “distant”
“How do I deal with parents or grandparents who let their children walk to or from the classroom alone, and don’t accompany them?”
This behavior represents either a parent or grandparent who serves in the church during the service, or a parent or grandparent who is naïve or lazy. If the parent or grandparent serves at the church during the service, you may have to make an exception for him/her. If the parent or grandparent doesn’t serve at the church during the service, you must stand firm on your policy that the parent or grandparent accompany the child to and from the ministry area (check-in and checkout policy). You need to protect the child and the CM from dangers caused by a lack of supervision.
“Then Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. And there was a man named Zacchaeus, a chief tax collector, who was very wealthy. He was trying to see who Jesus was but could not see over the crowd because he was small in stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to see Him, since Jesus was about to pass that way. When Jesus came to that place, He looked up and said, ‘Zacchaeus, hurry down, for I must stay at your house today.’” Luke 19: 1-5
The CM should seek to build bridges between the church and the home as much as possible! A “distant” parent or grandparent might have abdicated his/her biblical responsibility of developing his/her child spiritually (Deuteronomy 6: 4-9). A “distant” parent or grandparent may take the biblical mandate in Deuteronomy 6: 4-9 very seriously, but he/she serves at the church during the service, and can’t accompany the child to or from the ministry room. It is critical to discover the reason for the parent or grandparent’s “distance.” It is important that you establish a check-in and checkout policy that requires parents, grandparents or legal guardian to accompany the child to the CM area, and to be present to check out the child. If a child’s “distant” parent or grandparent isn’t present at checkout, you must hold the child in the room and wait for the parent or grandparent to come to the room. It usually takes only once for this to happen, and the checkout process will be learned and established in the parent or grandparent’s mind. If the parent or grandparent serves at the church during the service, you should make a plan with the parent or grandparent to safely transport the child to and from the parent or grandparent’s location at the church. This must be done by a cleared CM team member, or a cleared church staff member because the CM becomes instantly liable when the parent or grandparent releases the child. The time and distance from the parent to the CM ministry area is a risky, uncontrolled environment. You don’t want to deal with an accusation of abuse while trying to assist a “distant” parent or grandparent! For more help, click on the links below.
Visit other articles in the “Supporting Parents And Grandparents APPENDIX” (COMING SOON)