Caregiver using unapproved discipline tactics on children at daycare in TexasOur Texas daycare injury lawyers are seeing a scary trend: More parents are contacting us about daycare centers using unapproved disciplinary methods that harm children physically and emotionally. In the span of just a few months, our firm has helped families across Texas with these cases, including:

That is why we are educating parents about improper disciplinary methods and how little ones can be seriously injured when daycare centers do not comply with redirection tactics outlined in the minimum standards.

Here are the five types of improper discipline methods that we most commonly see as daycare injury lawyers:

  1. Abandoning Children When Timeouts Go Wrong: Timeouts are popular for disciplining children, and the state of Texas allows children to be placed in timeout for one minute every year of a child’s age. However, this tactic can be harmful when daycare workers become distracted or the isolation of a child gets misused. In some instances, children can be left in dark classrooms alone and unsupervised for hours, compromising the child’s safety.
  2. Corporal Punishments: Untrained daycare workers may use corporal punishment tactics like hitting, pushing, slapping, or spanking. These violent actions are not approved by the state and can physically harm a child as well as leave them emotionally traumatized. Corporal punishment methods also set a dangerous precedent with young children that violence is an acceptable way to resolve conflicts, creating lasting behavioral issues.  
  3. Grabbing or Yanking a Child by a Single Arm: When a small child misbehaves, untrained and frustrated caregivers at daycare centers are prone to grabbing or yanking the child by a single arm. This dangerous reaction can seriously injure the child’s arm and other bones in their fragile bodies.
  4. Harsh and Unkind Language While Berating a Child: While verbal reprimands or stern reminders are quick ways daycare workers can redirect a child’s behavior, they can escalate into a worker using harsh or belittling language or even yelling at a child. This inappropriate treatment can impact a child’s self-esteem and create a hostile environment where children do not feel safe.
  5. Withholding Basic Needs: Negligent daycare centers and workers may resort to withholding a child’s basic needs, such as food, water, or even bathroom breaks, as a form of punishment. Depriving little ones of these necessities is a dangerous tactic that does not address a child’s behavior. Instead, it can lead to health issues like rapid heartbeats, lethargy, and lightheadedness. 

Serious Injuries Children Can Sustain When Daycare Centers Use Inappropriate Discipline Tactics

The inappropriate discipline tactics and practices we described above can lead to children being seriously hurt and sustaining serious physical injuries including:

  • Brain injuries: When children are forcefully pushed, they can hit their heads on the floor or a hard surface and suffer a concussion or cracked skull; 
  • Broken bones and bruises: Children can sustain these injuries when untrained daycare workers hit, push, slap, or spank them;
  • Nursemaid elbow: Also known as a pulled elbow, children younger than seven years old can experience these injuries when daycare workers grab or yank a child by a single arm.

In addition, cruel treatment by a daycare worker who is supposed to keep a child safe can be traumatizing for little ones. Young children who are not able to properly communicate their feelings can regress in their developmental milestones—potty training, soundly sleeping, and trusting authority figures, etc.—as a coping mechanism to internalize and process complex emotions following an inappropriate discipline incident.  

Suing a Texas Daycare Center for Improper Discipline Methods

Texas families have a right to file a lawsuit to hold a negligent daycare center and, if necessary, its caregivers accountable for improperly disciplining a child. The lawsuit also provides an opportunity to seek compensation, also known as damages, for any monetary, physical, emotional, or psychological impacts that resulted from punishment. The lawsuit may help your family get justice for the harm your child suffered, as well as protect other children from experiencing the same injuries. It is important to note that a lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date when the improper discipline method occurred.

Parents may be eligible for compensation to cover: 

  • Emotional damages such as pain and suffering
  • Medical expenses to treat a child’s physical injuries and any long-term care or treatments
  • Mental anguish
  • Resources to help a child heal and process emotions in a healthy way

If you suspect that your child’s daycare center is using unapproved disciplinary tactics or if you have questions about these troubling issues in a daycare center, contact our experienced daycare injuries attorneys by calling us at 214-699-4409, emailing us at [email protected], or filling out a contact form. We will listen to you and advise you and your family on the best path forward. 

More Free Resources About Improper Punishment Tactics at Texas Daycare Centers

Our Texas daycare injury lawyers have created free resources to help you and your family overcome incidents of improper discipline at a childcare facility and its subsequent injuries:

Get Justice After Your Child Was Hurt by Inappropriate Disciplinary Tactics at a Daycare Center

Our team of experienced and compassionate daycare injury attorneys at The Button Law Firm is dedicated to advocating for you and your family if your child was physically or emotionally injured by a daycare center that used inappropriate or harsh disciplinary methods. We are ready to listen and fight for your family to get justice and move forward. Our attorneys at The Button Law Firm are recognized on the prestigious Texas Super Lawyers list, and we can help guide you after a traumatizing incident involving your child. We work on contingency, meaning we don’t charge you or collect any upfront fees to get started on your case. Get a free case evaluation by calling us at 214-699-4409, emailing us at [email protected], or filling out a contact form.

Russell Button
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Dallas, Houston, and Midland Texas trial and personal injury lawyer dedicated to securing justice for clients.