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Old 11-23-2015, 05:53 PM
 
Location: somewhere
4,264 posts, read 8,157,083 times
Reputation: 3144

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I recently interviewed for a teacher assistant for a headstart program in TN, part of the job description mandated that I have a drivers license and my own vehicle, no problem, just figured they wanted to make sure I would be reliable. Went for my interview, the last three questions were do you have a valid drivers license, your own car and liability insurance.

I was talking to someone over the weekend and they mentioned that there have been instances where staff has had to take a child home in their private vehicles when parents didn't have transportation. The person who did my interview was out this week so I couldn't ask for clarification but I will not use my own private vehicle to transport a child, we will live in a state where quite a few people do not have car insurance and if I was in a wreck while transporting a child, I could be sued. Any thoughts until I can talk to the person who can answer this question.

If it is indded necessary for me to possibly transport a child but wasn't outlined in the job description can I refuse to do it?
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Old 11-23-2015, 06:54 PM
 
580 posts, read 436,912 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajzjmsmom View Post
I recently interviewed for a teacher assistant for a headstart program in TN, part of the job description mandated that I have a drivers license and my own vehicle, no problem, just figured they wanted to make sure I would be reliable. Went for my interview, the last three questions were do you have a valid drivers license, your own car and liability insurance.

I was talking to someone over the weekend and they mentioned that there have been instances where staff has had to take a child home in their private vehicles when parents didn't have transportation. The person who did my interview was out this week so I couldn't ask for clarification but I will not use my own private vehicle to transport a child, we will live in a state where quite a few people do not have car insurance and if I was in a wreck while transporting a child, I could be sued. Any thoughts until I can talk to the person who can answer this question.

If it is indded necessary for me to possibly transport a child but wasn't outlined in the job description can I refuse to do it?
You have a right to refuse whatever you find that may make you feel uneasy and something like that would make anyone feel uneasy. Be sure and clarify that. That's very important. If they for some reason say it's mandatory that you do so, ask them will you be covered if something DOES happen, because there are idiots out there who are on the roads unfortunately. If for some reason they do not offer you the job because of your refusal to do said duty, then you will have to decide if it's worth going after or just find another job, but I suggest you also start looking for another job in case this falls through. Best of luck.
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Old 11-23-2015, 06:58 PM
 
Location: NW Indiana
40,219 posts, read 15,184,892 times
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I can understand your reservations re: transporting a child from the program. I don't know the legality of it, but there's more than one reason you should refuse to do it. First is the liability / responsibility in the event of an accident. Then there is the fact that you will be alone with a minor. That opens you and the employer to all sorts of liability. In these days of lawsuits and accusations of inappropriate behavior by adults, I'm shocked that a program such as Headstart would ever allow any employee to be alone with a child, especially in a car.

In my state, you must have a chauffeur's license to transport others as a part of your job.

Something seems fishy to me. Make it clear to the potential employer that you will not transport any child in your personal vehicle.

.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:15 PM
 
Location: somewhere
4,264 posts, read 8,157,083 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PJSinger View Post
I can understand your reservations re: transporting a child from the program. I don't know the legality of it, but there's more than one reason you should refuse to do it. First is the liability / responsibility in the event of an accident. Then there is the fact that you will be alone with a minor. That opens you and the employer to all sorts of liability. In these days of lawsuits and accusations of inappropriate behavior by adults, I'm shocked that a program such as Headstart would ever allow any employee to be alone with a child, especially in a car.

In my state, you must have a chauffeur's license to transport others as a part of your job.


Something seems fishy to me. Make it clear to the potential employer that you will not transport any child in your personal vehicle.

.
This was another issue I was concerned about. I know the headstart classes have cameras in the facility for the protection of both the staff and the children but if someone is having to use their own vehicle then there is no way for cameras. At the time of the interview I had no reason to think anything of it jus that they wanted to make sure I was going to be dependable. My FIL who is a retired HR manager said there was no reason for them to ask me about the liability insurance unless they did indeed have staff take children home.

I also thought a special license was needed, I know the bus drivers have to have a special license so would assume anyone who would be transporting them would require it as well.

As soon as I am able to talk to the person I need to I will get this clarified.
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Old 11-23-2015, 09:30 PM
 
Location: NW Indiana
40,219 posts, read 15,184,892 times
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Is it possible you were misinformed about staff members driving children home? Or perhaps it only happened once (which is still wrong, in my opinion) and was an isolated incident.

Hopefully, there's a simple explanation for all this and you will not be put into the position of having to refuse to transport a child.

Good luck with everything.

.
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Old 11-23-2015, 09:41 PM
 
Location: Eastern Shore of Maryland
5,941 posts, read 2,703,569 times
Reputation: 5617
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajzjmsmom View Post
If it is indded necessary for me to possibly transport a child but wasn't outlined in the job description can I refuse to do it?

I would not carry some one else's child anywhere in my own Car, under any except maybe, the most dire circumstances, such as found on a back woods road someplace walking. but never from a school. Your leaving yourself open for dozens of potential liabilities. I may consider it, if requested, as part of my job, if given a School vehicle, with an inside Camera, and a second Teacher, as an Assistant, but that's it. No other way.
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Old 11-23-2015, 09:52 PM
 
2,826 posts, read 1,865,774 times
Reputation: 991
This sounds more than fishy to me.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Front_organization

This sounds vaguely like smuggling or something to me.
I could be wrong, but you should probably tell someone this. Including their location and other relevant details. Remember sometimes it's in the best interest of security to keep quiet. Sometimes it's not.

Transporting children in vehicles without a proper license, the sketchy questions, taking kids "home". The fact that they are asking you for an interview, when there are probably people who do have the right background and experience if this were on the level.
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Old 11-24-2015, 04:35 AM
 
Location: NoVA
832 posts, read 1,181,202 times
Reputation: 1622
I had a job working with kids and young adults that required transportation.

I needed a clean license to make sure I could drive, insurance to make sure that I was covered in the unlikely event that I was at fault in an accident and my own car to make sure I could be there on time and available to cover for others shifts. The "company" provided the car and I drove the kids around. No big deal in my mind and standard practice in a number of human service jobs.

In Tennessee though? Where they don't care if someone has a valid license, insurance or registration? And so close to other states that it's common to see out of state plates?

Whole other issue. I've had my car hit in TN by out of state drivers with no valid registration or insurance and the driver was drunk. The cops told me that there's nothing that can be done since technically the "accident" occurred on private property when the driver veered into a parking lot and hit me there, not on a street.

So in TN, it seems that you can do whatever you want anywhere except public streets and sidewalks owned by a state or local government.

Yeeeeee HAW!

I'd ask more questions before accepting.
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