A daycare teacher who held a struggling toddler on her lap when she refused to sleep has been censured for "serious misconduct".
That's despite the parents of the child requesting that the child sleep while she was at daycare.
The woman - whose name and place of work are suppressed - has been teaching since 2008. On May 2 2016 she was the head teacher in charge of a room full of toddlers, most of whom were napping.
But one little girl refused to take her nap - despite a request from the child's mum that she have a nap during the day "otherwise she became too tired".
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With a one-hour window of opportunity for nap time, she brought all the tools in her arsenal into the sleep room, including stickers, books and a blanket.
But the little girl struggled and wouldn't settle on a bed, so the teacher put her on her lap.
At times she held on to the child and would not let her leave, which distressed the toddler enough to disturb the other children, according to a decision published today by the Education Council of New Zealand's disciplinary tribunal.
"After around half an hour the teacher let go of the child - who ran to the other adult in the room, climbed into her lap and went to sleep," the tribunal's decision said.
The child was then put in a bed and slept for 45 minutes.
The tribunal said holding on to the little girl against her will amounted to "immobilisation" which is prohibited under the Education (Early Childhood Serivces) Regulations 2008.
It found the woman's actions reflected badly on her fitness to teach and brought the profession into disrepute.
But her offending was at the "lower end of the seriousness spectrum" and the child's distress "appears to have been transitory", the tribunal said.
The council also said there were mitigating factors, including the fact that the woman was pregnant and was later diagnosed with gestational diabetes which "makes it safe to assume that she was suffering effects from that condition" on the day.
The worker was required to undergo professional learning and development, including mentoring, and was censured for one year.