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‘TV nanny’ Claire Verity’s qualifications under scanner

2 November, 2007:

An investigation is under way in the United Kingdom into the qualifications of a controversial ‘TV nanny.’

The approach to childcare by Claire Verity, 42, the self-styled “Cruella de Vil of the baby world,” has triggered widespread, angry response from both parents and doctors.

Claire Verity, who featured as an expert on Channel 4’s recent series titled Bringing Up Baby, will be asked by the broadcaster to explain why various bodies have denied awarding her the qualifications which she had listed in her curriculum vitae (CV).

Claire’s controversial recommendations include limiting cuddling of babies to 10 minutes a day and leaving babies outside “to air.”

Her comments have angered both parents and children’s charities like the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) of Britain. In fact, the NSPCC has described her suggestions as “outdated and potentially harmful.”

Channel 4 has launched a full-scale investigation into Claire Verity’s qualifications after organizations from where she claimed to have obtained diplomas said they did not have any record of her.

British media reports said that the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health said that Claire Verity’s recommendation that babies sleep in a separate room from their parents went against the British Department of Health’s guidelines on reducing the risk of cot death.

Claire Verity has claimed that said she held diplomas in child daycare and pre-school practice from an organization called Aset.

However, a spokesman for Aset was reported as saying, “There is no trace whatsoever of this lady on our database.” He added that Aset did not even offer a diploma in pre-school practice.

Claire Verity had also claimed that she had qualifications in maternity practice, sleep training and pediatrics from Maternity Nurse Training. But, this claim too was rejected by a spokesman of Maternity Nurse Training, who said, “ this person has never enrolled on any of our courses and as such has never been trained by us.”

Yet another group, called Goal, from which Claire Verity claimed that she had obtained a diploma in childcare, also made it clear that it did not have any records of her and had never offered her a diploma.

A spokeswoman for Channel 4 remarked, “Unfortunately, very early on in the series, we discovered in talking to Claire that her CV contained some inaccuracies relating to her qualifications and we immediately took all possible measures to ensure the erroneous information was removed. Claire’s personal agent sent the channel’s press office a corrected list of training. We are now making further inquiries with both Claire and her personal agent about these. There could be a perfectly straightforward explanation, or it may be that she has been a naughty girl and has been exaggerating.”





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