Jane, a petite just-turned-3-year-old, is new in Kristen’s class. Jane’s father brings her to school each
day at breakfast time.
As required by licensing and the USDA food program, the school serves milk at breakfast and lunch.
Like a number of children in the class, Jane refuses milk and drinks water instead. Kristen allows
children to make this choice. One day Jane’s father tells Kristen that he and his wife do not want her to
allow Jane to drink water until she has drunk at least a full cup of milk. Kristen assures them that she
will encourage Jane to drink her milk.
At the next meal, Kristen tells Jane that her family wants her to drink milk so she’ll be healthy and grow
strong. Jane sobs uncontrollably. Kristen comforts her and allows her to drink water. She tells Jane she
will talk to Jane’s father about letting her drink water. Jane’s eyes grow wide, and she sobs even
harder, saying, “Don’t tell Daddy! Don’t tell Daddy!”
Consider the questions below to prepare for your assignment responses:
• Should Kristen honor the wishes of the family or allow Jane to continue to drink water instead of
milk? How could she use the NAEYC Code to guide her thinking and decision making in this
• What suggestions do you have for Kristen if her team is not in agreement with her decision on
how to handle this situation? How would she handle this conflict within her team in a
professional and ethical manner?
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