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Nursery Policies

Contents


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All Weather

The Early Years Foundation Stage Non-Statutory guidelines stipulate that all children should have the opportunity to play outside all year round. Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool acknowledges that the weather is a great experience for children to learn and explore. From this the nursery promotes all weather play where children will be encouraged to play out in the rain, snow, wind and sun.

It is requested that parents provide appropriate clothing for their children to allow them to fulfil this, such as sunhats for the summer and wellington boots for rainy days, hats and warm coats for the winter.

Staff members are also encouraged to ensure that they are prepared with weather and appropriate clothing to join in with outdoor play experiences.

The nursery acknowledges on a very cold day children will access the outside are for shorter periods of time, in the time that children are outside physical activities will be encouraged and staff will be proactive in ensuring that a range of activities and experiences are available.

The garden risk assessment will be carried out daily but extra checks and staff awareness will be reinforced in wet and icy weather.

The nursery will remain open in all weathers, unless this poses a risk to employees and it service users. If Little Explorers Nursery has to close due to adverse weather, all parents/carers will be informed as soon as the decision has been made by the management team in advance where possible, or through telephone communication. Additionally all parents/carers will be notified as to the re-opening of the nursery. If the decision is made to close the nursery during opening hours, all parents/carers will be asked to collect their child/children.

If a member of staff cannot travel to work because of the weather conditions, it is asked that the individual follows the Adverse Weather Policy and speaks directly with a member of the management team.

In the Summer months we request you bring

  • Sun hat that covers the back of the neck.
  • Sun cream (50 factor +)
  • Labelled water bottle

In the Winter months we request you bring:

  • Wellington boots
  • Warm coat
  • Hat, gloves and scarf if required
  • Waterproofs
  • Labelled water bottle

Allergies and Dietary

Little Explorers acknowledges that allergies and dietary requirements are now a common concern for many parents of children who attend the Nursery. We are vigilant in ensuring that children are provided with foods which are acceptable and appropriate to both allergies and dietary requirements.

Allergies

In the event that a child attending the Nursery suffers with a specific allergy or dietary requirement this will be discussed in length at the Little Explorers Nursery induction with parents and carers of the child, at which point the child will be added to the Nurseries Allergy & Dietary Requirement Form detailing the specifics of the reaction and foods or products to avoid within the Nursery.

In the event of a child requiring specific arrangements for a dietary requirement or allergy this will be detailed on the Child Dietary Requirement Form which is displayed in the Nursery kitchen and eating area. It is the child’s Key Person’s responsibility to highlight updates of allergies to the management and other staff members so the paperwork is continually updated. If a child has an allergy, the Allergy and Dietary Requirements Form will be completed to detail the following:

  • The allergen (i.e. the substance, material or living creature the child is allergic to such as nuts, eggs, bee sting, cats etc).
  • The nature of the allergic reactions e.g. anaphylactic shock reaction, including rash, reddening of skin, swelling, breathing problems etc.
  • What to do in the case of allergic reactions, any medication used and how it is to be used (e.g. Epipen).
  • Emergency contact details
  • Medication Details and administration notes

This form is kept in the child’s personal file and a copy is displayed where staff can see it.

Medication for Allergies

In the event of a child requiring medication for their allergy it is requested that parents/carers train staff in how to administer special medication. However wherever possible additional external training will be sourced if this is deemed necessary for safety or insurance purposes.

Dietary Requirements

It is recognised that some children will suffer from specific dietary requirements that will be dealt with in the same manner as allergies. It is imperative that children’s dietary requirements are given due consideration at all times and staff are vigilant of children taking food off each other’s plates.

Meal times

It is the practitioner’s responsibility to ensure that the food being served to children is acceptable to their dietary or allergy requirements. This will ensure that a double safety check is performed between the staff members. If staff are unsure if a food product is suitable for a child with dietary requirements and the manager is not available this shouldn’t be served and an alternative will be provided. It is imperative that staff remain vigilant throughout meal times, including after food has been served to ensure that do not eat off one another’s plates or share dinking cups which may cause and allergy breach.

Little Explorers endeavours to provide children with allergy and dietary requirements with the same meals as their peer group made of alternative products. There may be occasions when this is not possible in which case the catering facility will do their upmost to offer a suitable alternative as close as reasonably possible to that of other children in Little Explorers.

Nuts

The Nursery operated a no nut policy and will endeavour to only ever purchase foods that do not contain nuts. Little Explorers Nursery cannot take responsibility for those foods which may have been produced in a factory producing nut products. Where this occurs and children suffer from nut allergies a complete alternative will be provided.

Breaches

In the event of a child being fed the wrong food which may result in an adverse effect after checking the child and removing the food the staff members are responsible for reporting this to a member of the management team immediately. Parents will be contacted to give pre-warning and for further advice. The child continually monitored. A full investigation will take place and if required the Nursery disciplinary procedure will be followed.

The Kitchen will also be informed if a child cannot have a certain food or product upon starting at the setting.

Arrivals and Departures

All parents/Guardians must use the door bell and entrance situated at the back of the Nursery (facing the play park) to gain entry to the setting. For security purposes it is important that everyone who enters the building uses this system and that no one is allowed access to the building without being acknowledged by a member of staff.

Parents/ Guardians are requested to record their child’s attendance on the register then to pass the care of their child to a member of staff who will ensure their safety and check the relevant register have been signed, locking the main door once the parent or carer has left.

During settling in visits parents/guardians will be asked to provide a security pass word for use in emergency situations as well as verbal confirmation that another adult will be picking the child/children up. This enables practitioners to verify the right of adults unknown to them to collect a child from the setting.

A prior phone call is also requested in this event or checks will be carried out before the child is able to leave the nursery.

Under no circumstance will a child be allowed to depart from the setting unless it is with a previously identified authorised person. For arrivals and departures of visitors the appropriate records must be completed for entry and exit e.g. in the visitors log. A member of staff must always acknowledge the departure of a child, giving feedback to the parent/guardian or adult picking the child up and recording their departure on the register immediately if the parent hasn’t already do so.

Parents and carers are reminded to close all doors and gates behind them securing the safety of others in the setting.

Should there be any concerns regarding the arrival or departure of a child for example there is reason to believe that the adult is incapable of driving or is over the limit through drink or substance abuse this will be immediately reported to the Manager Clare Peacock or Senior Management Team.

Best Practice

Should there be any concerns regarding the arrival or departure of a child for example there is reason to believe that the adult is incapable of driving or is over the limit through drink or substance abuse this will be immediately reported to the Manager Clare Peacock or Senior Management Team.

Communication with Children

  • It is imperative that children are offered opportunities continually throughout the day to communicate with their peer group and key persons.
  • In communicating with children key persons should ensure they listen to children’s interests, preferences and needs. Children should feel that their comments are valued and respected. Practitioners should be aware of their actions and ensure that they do not talk for the children or assume what is being said. And that all children have the time they need to respond.
  • Practitioners should take account for children’s individual words for items or significant people in their lives.
  • Practitioners need to be aware that it is important to discuss with the children transitions in the day and the concept of ‘what is happening next’ to support and prepare them for events and unexpected changes in routines to ensure no unnecessary distress in caused. This is supported with visual aids, reminders and time is managed according to the child’s needs.
  • When discussing activities or child led play opportunities practitioners should promote the children’s self-esteem by allowing them to lead play and ask questions. When Practitioners are interacting within the activity it is important to encourage the use of open questions, and created choices for the child.
  • Ethical considerations should be made for every child attending. Speaking to children at their level, making eye contact, waiting appropriately for responses i.e. can I put you name on this beautiful picture so we do not lose it? Or you are playing so well, would you mind if I watch you for a little while and did some writing?

Communication with Parents

  • Practitioners need to be aware that all parents have different needs and should be communicated with sensitively.
  • Practitioners should ensure that they provide parents with all relevant information about their child’s day and ensure that they highlight children’s achievements.
  • In the instance where practitioners need to discuss sensitive issues or challenging behaviour they should seek the support of senior staff members so that practitioners and parents can work together to resolve this
  • If a parent highlights any concerns or requires additional support practitioners should work with senior staff and the nursery SENCO alongside the parent to identify ways forward for resolution. Practitioners should ensure that they share these with senior staff and relevant key persons to ensure a consistent approach.

Daily Diaries / Early Learning Journals

  • Daily diaries for our under three years of age children are an important part of Nursery life, offering a unique opportunity to share information between staff and parents, particularly in the case of parents who do not regularly collect. This is a special opportunity to provide insight for the parents into their child’s life at nursery. Therefore diaries should reflect children’s individual personalities and may from time to time be supported with photographs of what their child has been doing.
  • The pages within the diaries should be written to individually reflect each child’s day. They should provide information about each child’s activities, meal times (meal and quantities eaten), sleeps, accidents (supported by an accident form), medication (supported by medication or seizure form) and any special or relevant information including positive reinforcement.
  • In the baby group practitioners need to additionally provide information about nappies, bottles etc
  • In the toddlers group staff are required to also comment about toileting (particularly in children who are currently toilet training)
  • In the Preschool group the ‘Parents Board, should be up dated daily, informative, fun and presentable, noting confidentiality within the setting.
  • It is important that daily diaries are legible, have correct spellings and are available and ready when parents collect.
  • Parents and carers are encouraged to contribute to the diary and are supported if they wish to. This supports our relations with families and secures firm relationships between key person and parents.

Communication with Colleagues

  • The nursery depends on clear communication and supportive staff relationships in order to meet the children and parent’s needs at all times.
  • It is imperative that staff speak to each other in respectful and constructive tones and are aware that some staff will require additional support and guidance in their roles.
  • Practitioners have a responsibility to ensure that messages and information are shared between relevant colleagues and a communication book is available for all staff to note any relevant details required. It is the staff member’s responsibility to check this and sign when entries have been logged.
  • Staff members need to be aware that they are role models to the children and each other and foster positive relationships where practitioners feel able to go to each other for support.
  • It is imperative that staff members communicate clearly with one another and that ideas are shared and evaluated before changes are implemented to ensure consistency and constructive relationships are maintained.
  • In events where staff are provided with constructive criticism it is imperative that the team work together to move forward from this to provide positive outcomes for children and the team.
  • It is imperative concerns regarding a child a shared immediately with the Manager in a sensitive manner.
  • To for fill their role of job description in conjunction with the nursery’s staff conduct policy.
  • To read the communication diary and sign before every shift.

Child-Led Activities

  • Practitioners will work with the children, following their lead to offer or support child led activities.
  • Practitioners will utilise child observations to plan extensions to child interests and requests to ensure that activities are relevant to children’s natural exploratory nature.
  • Practitioners are responsible for provision of resources and vocabulary to extend child led experiences but need to be sensitive in their interactions so as not to take over the play. In some instances practitioners may remain an observer to the play rather than being invited by the child to take part.

Adult-Led Activities

  • Using observations of the children or current festivals practitioners may plan adult led activities in order to extend children’s knowledge and understanding or develop an interest. However it is imperative that these activities make up only a small proportion of the nursery week and that instead children are encouraged to develop the lead for planning.
  • Adult led activities may provide an inspiration or goal in the planning but should still allow children to establish their own outcomes. If a child changes the anticipated route or does not wish to go about the activity as the practitioner originally planned this should be evaluated on the planning but not stopped.
  • Children should not be told how to complete an activity, nor should their work be completed for them. It is important that all children are encouraged and their contributions positively reinforced as the process is as important as the outcome and all children will have their own individual goals which they have anticipated.
  • As children develop independence and fine motor skills they should be encouraged to cut out their own work, create their own templates and approach activities in their own way. Children should not be dictated to as to how they complete their activities and instead allowed opportunity to complete them in a way unique to themselves.
  • Ensure you are considering ethical considerations, i.e. Sally can I put your name on your work. Or Can I display this beautiful picture you have made?

Garden Play

  • The outside environment should reflect those workshop areas found indoors to allow children opportunities to meet all areas of learning.
  • Children should be encouraged to lead free flow play outdoors and explore the areas of interest to them.
  • Practitioners will plan activities for the garden but children are encouraged freedom of choice and alternative opportunities should they not wish to take part in these.
  • Practitioners are encouraged to be involved in the children’s play or offering opportunities in the garden, not to be bystanders. Whilst one practitioner may be taking observations the remaining practitioners should be engaging with children or building on interests.

Routine & Free Flow

  • Whilst the nursery has established opportunities in the day for practitioners to access certain areas with their key groups, these are flexible to children’s needs.
  • The nursery day is flexible to children’s needs and to any unplanned events which may occur. Should the children wish to complete a new set of activities, or a new purpose becomes apparent practitioners should follow children’s lead and change the outline.
  • Children are not to be stopped from completing their activity or play on the basis of resource availability, the child’s engagement is paramount and other opportunities can be offered at a later time.
  • Children additionally should not be made to pack away their creations because of an event (e.g. mealtimes) but instead allowed opportunity to save it for later on a resource table or where it is to return to. Remember, it may seem small to us, but to a child it is a massive achievement.
  • Children should be encouraged to take photos of their creations to display and show parents to recognise their achievements at nursery with the Ipad provided.
  • If a child wishes to join another group for their activity they should be encouraged to do so. Children are not required to remain with their peer group at all times and the activities another key person is completing may be of more interest to them.
  • Children are at no point to be forced to remain in a room or activity unless for Health & Safety reasons.
  • Open doors encourage children to investigate and explore their environment. Staff need to deploy themselves throughout the nursery to allow children opportunity to utilise all the resources available and quieter spaces where they may feel more comfortable. If it is identified that a group of children have shown an interest in a new activity or area practitioners should sensitively move themselves to supervise and ensure safety without removing the child’s focus.
  • If a day’s planned activities are altered due to changing child interest this should be evaluated on the planning to allow practitioner to consider next steps.

Mealtimes

  • Meal times are an important opportunity for social interactions and communication with children. It is important that practitioners are sensitive to children who may find meal times difficult and offer opportunities to foster independence, such as spread jam on their own toast, pouring own cereals and drinks, and where possible dishing up their own meals.
  • All children should be encouraged to wash hands prior to any meals and snacks alongside their key persons to foster a routine of independence and awareness of hygiene routines.
  • Practitioners should ensure that there is someone sat at the tables with children and where possible join in the meal with the children. However if this is the case practitioners should be sat at the table with plates on them like the children to develop positive role models for meal time expectations.
  • Older children should be encouraged to choose their own plates, bowls, cups and cutlery for meal times, or hand these out to friends allowing meal times to become a more independent opportunity and engage Personal, Social and Emotional milestones. Clearing their plates and assisting each other should also be encouraged to develop school readiness skills.
  • Children should be encouraged to eat the nursery meal but if they are upset or do not want to join in an alternative should be provided or their meal saved for later. Children should never and will never be forced to eat a meal or feel that it is a negative occurrence if they do not wish to take part in the meal, instead being offered alternative quiet activities whilst their friends eat.
  • Children should be encouraged to wash own faces after meals but may need some sensitive support from practitioners. Practitioners should be at child height and facing the child whose face is being cleaned. It is important that children are spoken to throughout the process in a calm and encouraging voice.
  • Ensure jugs of water are available to the older children of the group and beakers for the younger children. Families are encouraged to provide water bottles for their child to assist with keeping the children hydrated throughout their session. This also develops independence skills and a sense of belonging of their personal items.

Bump to the Head

It is acknowledged that children will sustain minor injuries and accidents whilst at Nursery due to the nature of their development, enthusiasm and social interactions. It is however acknowledged that at times a bump to the head may lead to a mild or slight concussion. Staff are vigilant to the potentials for the following signs which may indicate a more serious accident:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Change of behaviour or mood

All accidents are recorded on a daily accident form which is reported to parents and signed at the close of day.

Protocols

In the event of a child sustaining a bump to head during their nursery day the following procedures will be followed:

Minor Bumps

Minor bumps to the head will be recorded on an accident form and parents will be issued with a Bump to the Head Letter on collecting their child from the nursery.

More serious Bumps

In the case of a child sustaining a more serious bump to the head or where a noticeable bump can be seen then an accident form and Bump to the Head letter will be prepared but parents will also be notified in the first instance so that they are aware of the accident prior to collection.

Cameras, Photography and Filming

Working in partnership with parents with Camera and Phone technology.

Children and Phones

No child is permitted to have a mobile phone whilst at this setting. Any phone calls that a child wishes to make to their parents, guardians, carers or emergency contact can be made using the setting home phone or the manager's mobile.

Parents and Phones

Under no circumstance is a parent to take photos or videos of children whilst at the setting unless permission has been granted in writing from management at the nursery.

Parents should be asked politely not to take or make calls at my home, any call they wish to make or take should be taken outside of setting’s front door.

Cameras, Photography & Videoing

Whilst we accept that parents may wish to photograph their child during special events at the setting it is imperative that the safety and protection of children is considered at all times.

Consent for photographs

On joining the setting parents are asked to complete a PHOTOGRAPHY consent form allowing us to take photos of the children for internal and external advertising means. In addition these photographs will be placed in children’s daily diaries and learning journals for recording their development.

Photography and videos at special events

To ensure the safety of all children and to abide by data protection requirements the setting does not allow parents to take their own photos or videos of events held at the setting. We will take a selection of photographs at the event and these will be offered to parents or used in a review of the event.

Nursery Equipment

The nursery provides an IPad for the children to use and explore along with other ICT materials. Photos can be taken on this device by the practitioners and children if they wish. Only the manager or deputy manager has consent to develop these photos and photos are then deleted from the device.

The nursery onsite phone is a mobile with no camera setting. This phone is used daily within the setting.

The nursery manager/ owner has an IPhone device due to internet access required for nursery software etc, as no wifi is available in the pavilion.

Photos are not taken on this device.

Complaints

Policy statement

Our setting believes that children and parents/guardians are entitled to expect courtesy and prompt, careful attention to their needs and wishes. We welcome suggestions on how to improve our setting and will give prompt and serious attention to any concerns about the running of the setting. We anticipate that most concerns will be resolved quickly by an informal approach to the appropriate member of staff. If this does not achieve the desired result, we have a set of procedures for dealing with concerns. We aim to bring all concerns about the running of our setting to a satisfactory conclusion for all of the parties involved.

Procedures

All settings are required to keep a 'summary log' of all complaints that reach stage two or beyond. This is to be made available to parents/guardians as well as to Ofsted inspectors.

Making a Complaint

Stage 1

  • Any parent/guardian who has a concern about an aspect of the setting's provision talks over, first of all, his/her concerns with the nursery manager; Clare Peacock.
  • Most complaints should be resolved amicably and informally at this stage.

Stage 2

  • If this does not have a satisfactory outcome, or if the problem recurs, the parent/guardian moves to this stage of the procedure by putting the concerns or complaint in writing to the Nursery Manager; Clare Peacock.
  • The setting stores written complaints from parents/guardians in the child's personal file. However, if the complaint involves a detailed investigation, the nursery manager may wish to store all information relating to the investigation in a separate file designated for this complaint.
  • When the investigation into the complaint is completed, the Nursery Manager; Clare Peacock meets with the parent/Guardian to discuss the outcome.
  • Parents/guardians must be informed of the outcome of the investigation within 28 days of making the complaint.
  • When the complaint is resolved at this stage, the summative points are logged in the Complaints Summary Record.

Stage 3

  • If the parent/guardian is not satisfied with the outcome of the investigation, he or she requests a meeting with the Nursery Manager and the owner.
  • The parent/guardian should have a friend or partner present if required and the leader should have the support the proprietor/senior management team, present an agreed written record of the discussion is made as well as any decision or action to take as a result.
  • All of the parties present at the meeting sign the record and receive a copy of it.
  • This signed record signifies that the procedure has concluded. When the complaint is resolved at this stage, the summraitive points are logged in the Complaints Summary Record.

Stage 4

  • If at the stage three meeting the parent/guardian and setting cannot reach agreement, an external mediator is invited to help to settle the complaint. This person should be acceptable to both parties, listen to both sides and offer advice. A mediator has no legal powers but can help to define the problem, review the action so far and suggest further ways in which it might be resolved.
  • Staff or volunteers within the Pre-school Learning Alliance/ Legal representative are appropriate persons to be invited to act as mediators.
  • The mediator keeps all discussions confidential. He/she can hold separate meetings with the setting personnel Clare Peacock (Nursery Manager) and owner and the parent/guardian, if this is decided to be helpful. The mediator keeps an agreed written record of any meetings that are held and of any advice he/she gives.

Stage 5

  • When the mediator has concluded his/her investigations, a final meeting between the parent/guardian, the Nursery Manager Clare Peacock. The purpose of this meeting is to reach a decision on the action to be taken to deal with the complaint. The mediator's advice is used to reach this conclusion. The mediator is present at the meeting if all parties think this will help a decision to be reached.
  • A record of this meeting, including the decision on the action to be taken, is made. Everyone present at the meeting signs the record and receives a copy of it. This signed record signifies that the procedure has concluded.

The role of the Office for Standards in Education, Early Years Directorate (Ofsted) and the Local Safeguarding Children Board

  • Parents/guardians may approach Ofsted directly at any stage of this complaints procedure. In addition, where there seems to be a possible breach of the setting's registration requirements, it is essential to involve Ofsted as the registering and inspection body with a duty to ensure the Welfare Requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage are adhered to.
  • The number to call Ofsted with regard to a complaint is:
    0300 123 1231
  • These details are displayed on our setting's notice board.
  • If a child appears to be at risk, our setting follows the procedures of Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) in our local authority, Details can be obtained online or at the setting.
  • In these cases, both the parent/guardian and setting are informed and the Nursery Manager Clare Peacock works with Ofsted or the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) to ensure a proper investigation of the complaint, followed by appropriate action.

Records

  • A record of complaints against our setting and/or the children and/or the adults working in our setting is kept, including the date, the circumstances of the complaint and how the complaint was managed.
  • The outcome of all complaints is recorded in the Summary Complaints Record which is available for parents and Ofsted inspectors on request.

Emergency Closure

Little Explorers Nursery will make every effort to remain open, but in exceptional circumstances we may need to close at short notice.

The following are possible reasons for emergency closure:

  • Serious weather conditions
  • Heating system failure
  • Burst water pipes
  • Fire or bomb scare/explosion
  • Death of a member of staff or child
  • Assault on a staff member or child
  • Serious accident or illness

Procedure

If it is necessary to evacuate the nursery, the following steps will be taken:

  • If appropriate the manager or session supervisor will contact the emergency services
  • All children will be escorted from the building to the assembly point using the nearest safe exit
  • No attempt will be made to collect personal belongings or to re-enter the building after evacuation
  • A nominated member of staff will check the premises and will collect the register (including emergency contact details) providing that this does not put anyone at risk
  • Before leaving the building the designated person will close all accessible doors and windows
  • The register will be taken and all children and staff accounted for
  • If any person is missing from the register, the emergency services will be informed immediately
  • The Management Team will contact parents to collect their children.
  • All children will be supervised until they are safely collected
  • If after every attempt a child’s parent/carer or emergency contact cannot be contacted, The nursery will follow its Uncollected Child procedure

Should the nursery have to close, even temporarily, or operate from alternative premises, as a result of the emergency, we will notify Ofsted.

Telephone: 0300 123 1231

Employment and Staffing

Policy Statement

We provide a staffing ratio in line with the Welfare requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage to ensure that children have sufficient individual attention and to guarantee care and education of a high quality. Our staff are appropriately qualified and we carry out checks for criminal and other records through the Criminal Records Bureau in accordance with statutory requirements.

Procedures

Ratios

  • To meet this aim we use the following ratios of adult to children:
    • Children under two years of age: 1 adult: 3 children
    • Children aged two years of age: 1 adult: 4 children
    • Children aged three to five years of age: 1 adult: 8 children
  • If needed, Clare Peacock the nursery manager is on call as she is out of ratio on a usual basis.
  • A minimum of two staff/adults are on duty at any one time.
  • We use a key person approach to ensure that each child has a named member of staff with whom to form a relationship and who plans with parents/guardians for the child's well-being and development in the setting. The key person meets regularly with the family for discussion and consultation on their child's progress (usually termly).
  • We hold regular staff meetings to undertake curriculum planning and to discuss children's progress, their achievements and any difficulties that may arise from time to time.

Vetting and staff selection

  • We work towards offering equality of opportunity by using non-discriminatory procedures for staff recruitment and selection.
  • All staff have job descriptions which set out their staff roles and responsibilities.
  • We welcome applications from all sections of the community. Applicants will be considered on the basis of their suitability for the post, regardless of marital status, age, gender, culture, religious belief, ethnic origin or sexual orientation. Applicants will not be placed at a disadvantage by our imposing conditions or requirements that are not justifiable.
  • We use Ofsted guidance on obtaining references and enhanced criminal record checks through the Criminal Records Bureau for staff and volunteers who will have unsupervised access to children. This is in accordance with requirements under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 for the vetting and barring scheme.
  • We keep all records relating to employment of staff and volunteers, in particular those demonstrating that checks have been done, including the date and number of the enhanced DBS check.

Changes to staff

  • We inform Ofsted of any changes in the person responsible for our setting.

Training and staff development

  • Well over fifty percent of our staff team hold a level 3 or equivalent, including bank and lunch staff.
  • Our setting budget allocates resources to training.
  • All of our staff have a full induction in the first week of employment. This induction includes our Health and Safety Policy and Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Policy. Other policies and procedures will be introduced within an induction plan.
  • We support the work of our staff by holding regular supervision meetings and appraisals, including initial probation review meetings.
  • We are committed to recruiting, appointing and employing staff in accordance with all relevant legislation and best practice.

Managing staff absences and contingency plans for emergencies

  • At Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool, Clare Peacock (Nursery Manager) will organise staff annual leave so that ratios are not compromised.
  • Where staff are unwell and take sick leave in accordance with their contract of employment, we organise cover to ensure ratios are maintained.
  • Sick leave is monitored and action is taken where necessary in accordance with the contract of employment. Staff will be expected to complete a back to work form on returning.
  • We have contingency plans to cover staff absences, as follows: When possible we use Bank Staff, also as the manager is super numary she may on occasion be used, agency staff may also need to be used and if this is the case they will go through a brief induction process on arrival.

Equal Opportunities

Equal access and opportunities

The importance of equal opportunity is recognised throughout Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool. Our equal opportunities policy is monitored closely to ensure everyone has access to the services they need, and training is provided for all members of staff through EduCare’s; An Introduction to Equality and Diversity.

The Children Act 1989 states (updated 2004):

Children from a very young age learn about different races and cultures, and will be capable of assigning different values to them. The same applies to gender, and making distinctions between male and female roles. It is important that people working with young children are aware of this so that their practice enables children to develop positive attitudes for differences of race, culture, language, and gender.
Children Act standards require all staff to treat the children, provide care with equal concern, and in doing so, acknowledge and respect their specific needs with regard to their religious persuasion, racial origin, cultural and linguistic background, as well as gender or disability.

The nursery recognises that in our society certain groups and individuals are discriminated against for many reasons including their ethnic origin, gender, disability, age, social class, religious or political belief, sexuality, or state of health. Accordingly, we are strongly committed to work towards eliminating any such discrimination in all aspects of our work.

In addition to the human values underlying the need to avoid unfair discrimination, there is also further legislation which covers other particular areas:

The Chronically sick and disabled Act 1970, and amendments of 1976

Impose obligations on employers to provide facilities for people with disabilities regarding means of access to and within the building, and appropriate parking and sanitary arrangements.

Equal Pay Act 1970 and amendments of 1983

Provide that women should be treated equally as far as pay; fringe benefits etc., and are concerned with men who are employed on work of equal value, and that women should be given equal treatment.

Sex discrimination Acts 1975 and 1986

Make it unlawful to discriminate against any person, directly or indirectly, in fields such as recruitment, promotions, training, and conditions of employment, or dismissal on the grounds of gender or marital status.

Race Relations Act 1976 amendments of 2000

Which deals with discrimination on racial grounds (i.e. on grounds of colour, race, nationality, ethnic or national origins). It makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person directly, or indirectly, in the field of employment. (See the Commission for racial equality’s code of practice for the elimination of racial discrimination for more details).

Employment Act 1990

Makes it unlawful for an employer to refuse a person employment because he/she is not a trade union member, or because a person refuses to accept a requirement to become, or resign as, a trade union member.

It is our policy to ensure that Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool is available to all children between the ages of 0-5 years, where numbers permit and that no child be excluded or disadvantaged on any of the above grounds.

Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool Objectives

  • To ensure the composition of staff teams reflects that of users.
  • To examine premises and equipment and make any necessary adaptations, to ensure access is available to all potential users.
  • To increase awareness within our organisation of the needs of minority groups.
  • To ensure that racism in all its forms is challenged, and that food, festivals, images, games and other play opportunities reflect the diversity of the setting.
  • To enable all children have equal status, and rights to appropriate access, with each child being included, and given encouragement to fulfil their individual potential.
  • To ensure that no child /staff /parents/carer are unfairly discriminated, and to act decisively on any such incidents in accordance with employment procedures /rules on behaviour etc.

The Implementation of Equal Opportunities Service Provision

In implementing Little Explorers Nursery Equal Opportunity Policy, we have regard to the following:

  • Ensuring that all potential users have access to information, and that all leaflets, and publicity materials are easy to read, and understandable.
  • Ensuring that Little Explorers Nursery communicates regularly with children, parents/carers to evaluate the service provided, and looks at ways of enhancing it.
  • Ensuring that we have information about the local community with which to compare its monitoring records.

Child-Care Issues

Racism and child-care:

The council for racial equality states:

“It is possible to analyse differences in the learning experiences available in different settings, and to infer that some ethnic minority children might begin their statutory schooling at a disadvantage because of the quality of their pre-school experiences. Young children are influenced by ideas and attitudes which perpetuate prejudices.”

Every precaution must be taken to ensure anti-racist child-care, so all children are not damaged by their experience. Children of multi-cultural background may feel excluded, rejected, angry, ashamed of their colour, language their way of life. Being constantly presented with a white world, they may find it more difficult to establish their identity and self-esteem.

If white children see that racist remarks and attitudes go unchallenged, they are more likely to develop insensitive, uncaring attitudes themselves, thus perpetuating the spiral of children learning racism.

Thought is therefore given, and action taken, to ensure that Play work, games, activities, events, puzzles, books and other materials contribute to an anti-racist approach, and that themes and art/ craft work reflect the ethnicity of the community.

Practitioners should also take care to give positive responses to other languages.

Our food policy ensures that our meals/snacks prepared for children include food from different cultures and countries.

Celebrating and learning about different festivals are essential because the more we know about each other’s culture and race, the less we will be divided by racism. Racism must be recognised, challenged and eliminated. Each child’s motivation must be encouraged by ensuring they feel fully included, personally, racially, and culturally.

Please see Prevent Duty for the protection of children at Little Explorers.

Children with Special Needs

Please see our separate policy for Equal Opportunities SEN and Local Offer document.

Sexism and Childcare

As with anti-racism, care must be taken to ensure that activities, events, games, toys and other materials do not reflect society’s stereotyping of gender roles. For example, books and puzzles should not exclusively show Mummy in the home, and Daddy working outside the home. It is better to have fewer books and puzzles which are non-sexist than to have a larger amount which provide stereotypical images.

Team games and Sports should also be anti-sexist. Thought must continually be given, for example, to ways in which girls will not feel excluded from computer games, football etc., and boys from cooking.

We will not discriminate against any child, on any basis apart from medical grounds. Time should be taken to explain our reasoning to any parents who are concerned about their child’s gender role.

Little Explorers staff are also encouraged to ensure that they show affection and comfort to boys as well as girls, and to be aware of the messages we might be transmitting.

General Issues

It is essential that positive images should be given to children. For examples, pictures, posters, photos etc. should reflect positive images of minority groups living happy and successful lives. Children should see men in caring roles and women in career situations. Care should be taken to make sure that people with disabilities are included, and so on. Questions about physical/cultural differences must be answered honestly, not ignored or side-stepped. Little Explorers Nursery staff should be aware of what children perceive and understand.

Discussions regarding bullying should be investigated by the Nursery staff in a “safe situation”, where adults and children are enabled to be honest, thus facilitating children developing skills to combat and deal with prejudice and the abuse of power.

Selection Procedures

In order to avoid indirect/direct discrimination, selection criteria should be regularly examined to ensure that they are related to fair person specifications. For example, consideration should be given to what is acceptable literacy/numeracy standard for Little Explorers Nursery staff positions.

The person specification is based upon the following six point grading system drawn from guidelines from the Commission for Racial Equality:

  1. Impact on others: Appropriate appearance, communication skills, manner, ability to work within a team.
  2. Attainments: education, qualifications, vocational training, work/voluntary experience.
  3. Innate abilities: ability to carry out physical tasks as required by the Nursery, quickness of comprehension, aptitude for learning.
  4. Special aptitudes; abilities with children, patience, understanding, manual dexterity, abilities regarding use of words, and figures, practical, constructional, creative.
  5. Disposition: dependability, self-reliance, enthusiasm, motivation,
  6. Initiative, emotional stability, ability to withstand stress ability to relate to children and adults
  7. Interests: practical, constructional, physical activities, intellectual, artistic, dramatic, musical, social.
  • Candidates are sent a person specification with their application form, and job description.
  • A selection panel involving a minimum two members of the Nursery management team will read all application forms.
  • All unsuccessful candidates receive a letter indicating that they did not meet sufficient requirements.
  • Interviews are conducted over two weeks, depending upon the number of candidates.
  • All candidates are received warmly, and every effort is made to establish a rapport.
  • All candidates are required to complete a DBS application form at interview stage. The selection process and interview procedure are explained to each candidate, and that the candidate’s success in meeting all the required criteria will result in their details being entered into Nursery Candidates File. Each candidate is informed that although inclusion on the Candidates File does not guarantee them a job. If they are successful they will be informed when a suitable vacancy arises.
  • Each candidate is asked if they accept that their details will be kept on the Candidates File, and contacted if and when a post requiring their particular abilities and skills becomes available.
  • The same questions are asked of each candidate, and marks apportioned to their responses. Where possible open questions are used to maximise the candidate’s scope for answering.
  • Records of all interviews are signed dated and kept on the Candidates File.
  • Each member of the selection panel totals their marks for each candidate, and shares their figures with the others. Each is then able to challenge one another in a non-judgemental way, about any discrepancies in the marking, and any adjustments made accordingly.
  • Decisions are made in relation to the job requirements and person specification already set, and not comparison with other candidates.
  • All successful candidates are notified in writing within two weeks of the final interview.

Monitoring and Reviewing Equal Opportunities

The Equal Opportunities policy is monitored annually to ensure that its aims and objectives are being achieved, and/or to address any problems in achieving those aims and objectives.

Areas of monitoring are:

  • Recruitment: In terms of: gender, race, ethnicity, disability, age
  • Religious/cultural needs
  • Retention: As above, with length of/periods of service, rate of pay
  • Training and Development: As above, with qualifications, training, etc.
  • Discrimination and harassment: Through staff appraisal, disciplinary, grievance and complaints procedures.
  • The Nursery recognises and encourages the involvement of employees in the wider community. Little Explorers Nursery also aims to reach all sections of the local community, in terms of users.
  • The Nursery seeks to recruit practitioners that reflect the diversity of our community.
  • Little Explorers Nursery holds regular staff meetings to ensure consultation, feedback, ideas, and suggestions for the Nursery’s improvement, and staff development.
  • The Nursery also conducts similar exercises in consultation with children and parents who use the provision.
  • Training is offered to all staff, with the opportunity to obtain nationally recognised qualifications in Childcare.
  • These standards recognise in full, the need for anti-discriminatory practice covering culture, race, gender, disability, sexual orientation and social background.

Complaints

All grievances and complaints linked to equal opportunities issues which are brought to the attention of the Nursery will be, so far as possible, resolved directly and informally with those concerned in a manner that provides full satisfaction to complainants. Where this is not possible, such matters will be dealt with in line with our Grievance & Disciplinary or Complaints procedures. All such incidents, however resolved, will be reported to Ofsted.

Equality of Opportunity (SEN)

Policy statement

We provide an environment in which all children, including those with special educational needs, are supported to reach their full potential.

  • • We have regard for the DFES Special Educational Needs Code of Practice (2001), Special Education Needs (SEN) Code of practice in 2014 linked to the Children and Families Act.
  • We ensure our provision is inclusive to all children with special educational needs.
  • We support parents/guardians and children with special educational needs (SEN).
  • We identify the specific needs of children with special educational needs and meet those needs through a range of SEN strategies.
  • We work in partnership with parents/guardians and other agencies in meeting individual children's needs.
  • We monitor and review our policy, practice and provision and, if necessary, make adjustments including our Local Offer document.

Procedures

  • We designate a member of staff to be the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) and give his/her name to parents. Our SENCO is Sandra Hutchinson.
  • We ensure that the provision for children with special educational needs is the responsibility of all members of the setting.
  • We ensure that our inclusive admissions practice ensures equality of access and opportunity.
  • We use the graduated response system for identifying, assessing and responding to children's special educational needs.
  • We work closely with parents/guardians of children with special educational needs to create and maintain a positive partnership.
  • We ensure that parents/guardians are informed at all stages of the assessment, planning, provision and review of their children's education.
  • We provide parents/guardians with information on sources of independent advice and support.
  • We liaise with other professionals involved with children with special educational needs and their families, including transfer arrangements to other settings and schools.
  • We provide a broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum for all children with special educational needs.
  • We use a system of planning, implementing, monitoring, evaluating and reviewing individual educational plans (Play Plans) for children with special educational needs.
  • We ensure that children with special educational needs are appropriately involved at all stages of the graduated response, taking into account their levels of ability.
  • We have systems in place for supporting children during through the referral process and work alongside families to ensure a consistent approach that is suitable for the child’s needs.
  • We use a system for keeping records of the assessment, planning, provision and review for children with special educational needs, which includes, regular meetings with families, communication books, onsite SENCO support and access to multi-agency support.
  • We provide resources (human and financial) to implement our Special Educational Needs Policy.
  • We provide in-service training for parents/guardians, practitioners and volunteers.
  • We raise awareness of any specialist the setting has to offer, e.g. Makaton trained staff.
  • We ensure the effectiveness of our special educational needs provision by collecting information from a range of sources e.g. Play Plans, staff and management meetings, parental and external agency's views, inspections and complaints. This information is collated, evaluated and reviewed annually.
  • We provide a complaints procedure.
  • We monitor and review our policy annually.

Please see our Local Offer Document for detailed information on how we support children and families.

FGM

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a form of physical abuse against children. FGM is also known as female circumcision or female genital cutting. FGM has no health benefits, and it harms girls and women in many ways. It involves removing and damaging healthy and normal female genital tissue, and interferes with the natural functions of girls’ and women’s bodies. FGM is defined by the World Health Organisation as “all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons”. FGM has no health benefits for girls and women and procedures can cause severe bleeding and problems urinating, and later cysts, infections, infertility as well as complications in childbirth.

The Female Genital Mutilation Act was introduced in 2003 and came into effect in March 2004. It was made illegal to: practice FGM in the UK; take girls who are British nationals or permanent residents of the UK abroad for FGM whether or not it is lawful in that country; and aid, abet, counsel or procure the carrying out of FGM abroad.

The Mandatory Reporting of Female Genital Mutilation – Procedural Information is used for guidance in a case of a report or disclosure.

The age at which girls undergo FGM varies enormously according to the community. The procedure may be carried out when the girl is newborn, during childhood, adolescence, at marriage or during the first pregnancy. However, in the majority of cases FGM takes place between the ages of 5-8 and therefore girls within that age bracket are at a higher risk.

In the South East we have a number of affected communities that come from areas where FGM is practiced, these include; Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Eritrea and Gambia, this is not an exhaustive list but highlights the affected communities that have been working with professionals in the South East to eradicate FGM and raise awareness of the health risk to those who have had FGM or may be considering it.

The sign that children may be at risk of FGM are as follows: Child is female, from a culture where FGM is practised, and parents request an extended summer holiday to the country of origin.

If staff are concerned that a child is at risk of FGM, they must tell the safeguarding officer, Clare Peacock. The safeguarding officer must request to meet parents in private, and ask them directly if they are seeking to take their daughter abroad to have FGM carried out on her. If the safeguarding officer is dissatisfied with their response and has real concerns that FGM may be imminent, they should refer the matter to Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH), or to the Police. The parents should be told about the referral only if it is felt that it will not bring further risk to the child.

Appendices

Key contacts

  • Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) - Email: cap@westsussex.gcsx.gov.uk - please include your address and phone number
  • Phone: 01403 229900
  • OUT OF HOURS TEAM – 0330 222 6664
  • FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION HELPLINE – 0800 028 3550
  • POLICE 101 or in an emergency 999
  • If you would prefer to write to us, our address is: Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH), 4th Floor, County Hall North (Parkside), Chart Way, Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 1XH

Fire Safety and Risk Assessment

Policy

This policy has been written in accordance with the Early Years Foundation Stage welfare requirement: Suitable premises, environment and equipment. Little Explorers Nursery understands the importance of vigilance to fire safety hazards.

The nursery will ensure the following:

  • The nursery staff are aware of the location of all fire exits, the fire assembly point and where fire safety equipment is stored
  • Children will be introduced to the fire safety procedures during their settling in period and through regular fire drills
  • Fire drills will be conducted every month at different times of the day to ensure all children are familiarly with the procedure and whenever new staff or children join the nursery
  • Every member of staff will lead a fire evacuation
  • All children will be made aware of the location of fire exits and the fire assembly point
  • Fire doors and fire exits are clearly marked, are not obstructed at any time and are easily opened from the inside
  • Fire doors are kept closed at all times but never locked
  • Fire extinguishers and alarms are regularly tested in accordance with manufacturer’s guidance.
  • All fire drills are recorded in the Fire Drill Log
  • The nursery has notices explaining the fire procedures which are positioned next to every fire exit

Fire prevention

The nursery will take all steps possible to prevent fires occurring by:

  • Ensuring that power points are not overloaded with adaptors
  • Ensuring that the nursery’s No Smoking policy is always observed
  • PAT tests are carried out annually on all electrical equipment
  • Checking for frayed or trailing wires
  • Checking that fuses are replaced safely
  • Storing any potentially flammable materials safely

Procedure

In the event of a fire

  • A member of staff will raise the alarm and call the emergency services
  • Children will immediately be escorted out of the building to the assembly point using the nearest marked exit
  • No attempt will be made to collect personal belongings, or to re-enter the building after evacuation
  • The premises will be checked by the Fire Safety Officer / Manager and the register will be collected, providing that it is safe to do so
  • The Manager will close all doors and windows to prevent the spread of fire when they leave the building
  • The manager or senior will collect the fire evacuation bag, contact cards, register, visitors log and first aid box to the fire evacuation point where all children and staff accounted for
  • If anyone is missing from the register, the emergency services will be informed
  • If the initial meeting point becomes unsafe the staff and children will make their way to the play park or to Manorfield Primary School if the park becomes unsafe.
  • If the Fire Safety Officer is not present at the time of the incident, the Management Team will assume responsibility or nominate a replacement member of staff

Responsibilities of the Fire Safety Officer

The nursery’s Designated Fire Safety Officer is Amber Wickham. The Fire Safety Officers are responsible for carrying out the fire safety risk assessment and for ensuring that all staff are made aware of fire safety procedures during their Induction period.

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 requires that a fire safety risk assessment is undertaken for the workplace based on The Department of Communities and Local Government’s 5 step guide: www.communities.gov.uk/documents/fire/pdf/151102.pdf

Little Explorers risk assessments cover the following:

  • Identifying potential fire risks
  • Identifying people at risk
  • Evaluating the risks arising from the hazards identified and the means of minimising those risks
  • Recording the hazards, preparing a fire prevention plan and sharing these with other members of staff
  • Reviewing the fire safety risk assessment on a regular basis

The Fire Safety Officer liaises with the local Fire and Rescue Service for further advice and ensures that Emergency Contact details are recorded at the front of the register and a copy stored off premises.

The nursery prioritises child and staff safety in its highest regard. It is the responsibility of all staff within the nursery to identify any risks to children, staff and visitors on or in the areas surrounding the premises. The nursery has allocated a trained Health & Safety Officer who is responsible for the weekly checking of the risk assessments form and logging any faults or requirements for attention and addressing these to the Management Team for resolution. In the event of staff members identifying an emergency situation or issue for resolution this should be immediately addressed to the Health & Safety Officer or Management in their absence.

Daily Risk Assessments

Each day the following risk assessments will take place:

  • Nursery Daily Risk Assessment
  • Garden Risk Assessment
  • Kitchen Risk Assessment
  • Park Risk Assessment (If visiting)

The Risk assessment will be conducted prior to the opening of the setting to ensure the environment is safe at all times. It is however the staff responsibility to identify any changes to this to the Health & Safety Officer or Management in the nursery day.

Food

We believe all children should have a well-balanced healthy diet.

We also recognise that children could have many different food requirements with this the nursery strives to cater for all dietary requirements as well as we can. The Manager will discuss this with Parents on enrolment to see which provider is the best one for the child, i.e. that Parent’s may want to prepare their child’s food or for the nursery to cater for the child’s eating requirements.

Allergies will also be catered for and managed within the setting to ensure the child’s safety.

We provide fruit and healthy snacks and milk / water for the children with occasional treats, i.e. cakes and biscuits throughout the day. Please inform the nursery if there are any foods that you would prefer your child not to have while attending the setting.

Please provide a labelled drinking bottle of water each day that we can take out on outings etc. This will be refilled throughout the day as the children will be encouraged to drink on a regular basis.

Regular meals throughout the day are Breakfast (served until 8.30am), Lunch and if your child attends on a fulltime basis, an afternoon tea will also be provided at 4.00pm.

There are snacks served throughout the day, served at approximately 10am and 2pm.

Please speak with Manager for the Menu details. Please keep the nursery informed of any special requirements or habits your child may have.

Health and Safety

Policy

Little Explorers considers health and safety to be of utmost importance. The nursery complies with The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 at all times. The setting works according to the latest Welfare requirements, providing a safe environment for all.

The nursery has appropriate insurance cover, including employer’s liability insurance and public liability insurance.

Each member of staff follows the policy and is responsible for:

  • Maintaining a safe environment
  • Taking reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves and others attending Little Explorers Nursery
  • Reporting all accidents and incidents which have caused injury or damage or may do so in the future
  • Undertaking relevant health and safety training when required to do so by the management team
  • All staff members are Pediatric First Aid or are awaiting a training date.

Any member of staff who disregards safety instructions or recognised safe practices will be subject to disciplinary procedures.

Responsibilities of the registered person

The registered person for Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool holds ultimate responsibility and liability for the safe operation of the nursery.

The registered person will ensure that:

  • The nursery has a designated health and safety officer – Amber Wickham
  • All staff receive information on health and safety matters, and receive training where necessary
  • The nursery Health and Safety policy and procedures are reviewed regularly
  • Staff at the nursery understand and follow health and safety procedures
  • Resources are provided to meet Little Explorers Nursery’s health and safety responsibilities
  • All accidents, incidents and dangerous occurrences are properly reported and recorded. This includes informing Ofsted, child protection agencies and the Health and Safety Executive under RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995) where appropriate
  • All reported accidents, incidents and dangerous occurrences are reviewed, so that preventative measures can be taken

Responsibilities of the Management Team

The nursery Management Team is responsible for ensuring that at each session:

  • Premises are clean, well lit, adequately ventilated and maintained at an appropriate temperature
  • All nursery equipment is safely and securely stored
  • Children are only allowed in the kitchen if properly supervised (e.g. for a cooking activity)
  • A working telephone is available on the premises at all times
  • Chemicals and cleaning materials are stored appropriately, and in accordance with CoSSH data sheets
  • External pathways are cleared in severe weather
  • Daily environment checks are carried out in accordance with the nursery Risk Assessment policy

Security

Children are not allowed to leave the nursery premises during the session unless prior permission has been given by the parents (for example, to attend other extra-curricular activities).

During nursery sessions all external doors are kept locked, with the exception of fire doors which are alarmed. Staff monitor the entrances and exits to the premises throughout the session.

All visitors at the nursery must sign the visitor’s book and give the reason for their visit. Visitors will never be left alone with the children. If a visitor has no reason to be on the nursery’s premises they will be escort from the premises. If the visitor refuses to leave, The nursery will call the police. In such an event an Incident Record will be completed and the manager will be immediately notified.

Security procedures will be regularly reviewed by the manager, in consultation with staff and parents.

Toys and equipment

All furniture, toys and equipment are kept clean, well maintained and in good repair. The nursery select toys, equipment and resources with care, and carry out visual risk assessments before children are allowed to use them. Broken toys and equipment are disposed of promptly.

Little Explorers Nursery ensures any flammable equipment is stored safely.

Food and personal hygiene

Staff at the nursery maintain high standards of personal hygiene, and take all practicable steps to prevent and control the spread of infection.

  • A generally clean environment is maintained at all times
  • Toilets are cleaned daily and soap and hand drying facilities are always available
  • Staff are trained in food hygiene and follow appropriate guidelines
  • Waste is disposed of safely and all bins containing food waste and recyclable containers are kept covered
  • Staff ensure that children wash their hands before handling food or drink and after using the toilet
  • Cuts and abrasions (whether on children or staff) are kept covered

Dealing with body fluids

Spillages of blood, vomit, urine and faeces will be cleaned up immediately.

Staffing levels

Staff ratios and levels of supervision are always appropriate to the number, ages and abilities of the children present, and to the risks associated with the activities being undertaken. A minimum of two members of nursery staff are on duty at any time.

Health and safety is a priority for Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool and is monitored closely adapting the setting and policy when required to make the setting the safest it can be.

Key Person

Health and safety is a priority for Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool and is monitored closely adapting the setting and policy when required to make the setting the safest it can be.

Aims of the key person policy for parents/carers

  • To enable the parent/carer to feel confident that they have, in view of their personal and family situation, made the right decision in putting their child into a nursery.
  • To help the parents/carers know who to ask about their child, and enable them to receive regular and detailed information about their child’s progress – reducing, to some extent, their feeling of ‘having lost’ and ‘missed out’ on being with their baby.
  • To work in partnership to promote shared learning experiences and work together to meet the needs of the child.
  • To extend experiences for the child and safeguard them within their early years.

Aims for the child

  • To offer a child a reliable relationship with the key person so that s/he can sense (at the moment of handing over) it is approved of by parent/carer – aiming to reduce inexplicable (to the child) feelings of abandonment in being left in the hands of others.
  • In receiving personal care (feeding, changing and being put to sleep) by their key person whenever possible, the child is assured of regular contact with him/her on a one to one basis just as s/he is from parents/carer at home. The aim is to reduce the number of different handlings (in touch, smell, and voice) by different people, and so limit the number of people a child has to get used to during the day.

Aims for the key person

  • To create meaningful relationships with a consistent group of children.
  • To reduce stress levels caused by relating equally to large numbers of children at once.
  • To enable sensitive observation and developmental record keeping of a small number of children over a period of time.
  • To encourage good relationships with parents/carers of key children.

The first visit to the setting is conducted by a senior staff member who will explain any paperwork that needs to be completed. The key person will then spend time with the new child and their parent/carer during subsequent visits, so that they will get to know each other in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere. The key person will find out children’s routines, feeding, sleeping patterns, likes and dislikes etc. and explain nursery routines and procedures (e.g. medicine forms etc.) They will settle in their new child, in partnership with parents/carers, and review their progress with parents/carers at regular intervals.

Missing Child

Policy

This policy has been written in accordance with the Early Years Foundation Stage welfare requirement: Safeguarding and promoting children’s welfare and Inspecting safeguarding in early years, education and skills settings. To minimise the risk of a missing child Little Explorers Nursery staff carry out periodic head counts, particularly when transporting children between locations e.g. garden to Nursery building.

Procedure

If a child cannot be located, the following steps will be taken:

  • All staff will be informed that the child is missing
  • Staff will conduct a thorough search of the premises and surrounding area
  • After 10 minutes of the child’s absence the police will be informed.
  • The manager will contact the child’s parents or carers 10 minutes after the child’s absence
  • Staff will continue to search for child whilst waiting for the police and parents to arrive
  • The Nursery will maintain as normal a routine as possible for the rest of the children
  • The manager will liaise with the police and the child’s parent or carer

The incident will be recorded in the Incident Log. A review will be conducted regarding this and any other related incidents along with relevant policies and procedures. We will identify and implement any changes as necessary.

We will also inform Ofsted.

Useful numbers

Ofsted: 0300 123 1231

Police - 999

Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH): 01403 229900

Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) (out of hours): 01903 694422

The helpline is available weekdays between 9am -5pm

Weekends and bank holidays are covered 24 hours a day until 9.00am the next working day

Health

Medicines, Illnesses and Injuries

Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool promotes the good health of children and takes positive steps to prevent the spread of infection and appropriate measures when they are ill.

Unwell children

If a child becomes unwell in our care the nursery will notify the parents/carers. If the illness requires the child to be collected from nursery he/she will be allowed to rest away from other children but within contact of an adult until the child’s parent/carer collects the child. It is the role of the team to ensure that no child is admitted to the setting suffering from an illness that requires exclusion. Symptoms and illnesses that require a child’s exclusion can be found in the Communicable Diseases table in the nursery’s Policies and Procedures file. If a child has a communicable disease confirmed by the doctor, we will inform other parents/carers of this situation.

First Aid

All staff members hold a Pediatric First Aid qualification or are waiting to renew their qualification and we keep these up to date (every three years) by attending external training. There is a first aid box located in the kitchen of the nursery, and minor accidents are dealt with accordingly. First aid is administered in a quiet area, away from children whose curiosity might lead to distraction from the main issue. The staff member will remain calm, as distress could be harmful to the child. We will ensure all documentation is completed efficiently and in the correct manner. Incident and Accident reports – for recording injuries to children are required by law and we are aware of their location and ensure they are accessible and available along with the First Aid Kit.

Medicines policy

Medicines will be administered to children if prescribed by a medical practitioner, and the child’s parent/carer has given the setting written permission to administer. Children’s Paracetamol/Ibuprofen will be administered by management with a staff member witnessing the dose given, using the policy on administering Paracetamol/Ibuprofen medicines, either when prescribed by a G.P., or in an emergency, with prior written consent from the parents/carers. Paracetamol/Ibuprofen is not given without the support of antibiotics when a child is feeling under the weather?

Administration of prescribed medicines

All prescribed medicines must display the child’s name, the dosage and the date. Parents/carers must sign a consent form at the start of each course of medicine for staff to administer the prescribed medicines. Medicines must be stored out of the child’s reach, in a separate container in the fridge/ locked cupboard. The parent/carer must sign the medicine form upon collection of the child.

All medicine must be handed over to the parent/carer to take home at the end of each day/ session. Medicines only needing to be administered twice daily will be discouraged from being administered at my setting. We will ensure we are familiar with the administration of certain medication (e.g. Nebulizers and inhalers for asthma). Parents/carers or medical practitioners will be asked to show the staff member how to use them and so we can reduce the stress to the child.

The Administration of Calpol (equivalent) and/or Ibuprofen Medicine

Under normal circumstances*, the above medications can only be administered at the setting, for reasons other than a high temperature, providing the following conditions are in place and adhered to:

  • The medication must have been prescribed by a G.P., and bear a pharmacy prescription label on the bottle. The label must clearly show the name of the child, and the required dosage, it should not cover the expiry date of the medicine.
  • If the doctor has not issued a prescription they must instead provide a letter on headed surgery paper, confirming the date, the dosage, the period over which the medicine can be given and the times it is to be administered. The letter must bear a practice stamp and be signed by the G.P.
  • Parent’s consent form must be completed by the parent/carer and signed.
  • A maximum of two doses may be given to the child in the setting and these must be a minimum of four hours apart
  • If more than one medicine has been prescribed, the doctor’s letter or pro forma must clearly state whether these medicines can be given at the same time or whether they should be administered separately and in any specific order.
  • Prior to management administering medication at the setting a minimum of two doses must be given at home, to ensure that there is no allergic reaction.

When administering the medication, we will follow the procedure for giving medication.

* If a child becomes ill with a high temperature/fever whilst at the setting, we can administer Paracetamol, provided that parents/carers are en route to collect the child and the relevant documentation has been completed in advance giving consent.

Caring for children with Asthma

We welcome children with Asthma into my setting using the following policy to ensure that the children’s needs are properly met in a caring, safe and sensitive way. We firmly believe in working in partnership with parents/carers and other healthcare professionals to meet the children’s needs and ensure we have training to enable them to administer the children’s medication properly and deal with this serious condition in an appropriate and accepting way. Prior to a child with this condition starting the setting or immediately after diagnosis the parent must provide written information detailing the following –

  • What asthma medication the child takes and when
  • What triggers the child’s asthma
  • What action to take if the child’s asthma gets worse

The parent must also complete a medication form with all the relevant information and ensure there is an adequate supply of the medication and any other equipment necessary. We will also follow the administration of prescribed medications policy.

Exclusion Due To Medical Reasons

We try to keep any risk of infections to a minimum, and so we exclude children from time to time, using the Health Protection Agency’s Guidance on infection control in schools and other childcare settings. However, this is just guidance and we reserve the right to review the exclusion periods as we feel necessary to minimise cross infection, taking advice from the Health Protection Agency if necessary. A child who is taking medication can attend the setting, providing they are well enough to do so and pose little or no risk of cross infection to the other children and staff. We will administer medication providing all relevant documentation has been completed and all other points on the policy have been adhered to. The following points provide helpful detail regarding the circumstances in which children will be re-admitted to the setting following illness or, the occasions on which we will require children to be collected and any interim measures that may be appropriate.

Diarrhoea and Vomiting

Any child who is suffering from diarrhoea and/ or vomiting will strictly not be allowed to come back to the setting for a period of 48 hours after the last loose stool or bout of vomiting. This is a directive from Environmental Health.

Fever or high temperatures

If a child develops a temperature of 101f/38c whilst at the setting, We will ask parents/carers to collect the child. We can administer Calpol providing the parents/carers have been contacted and are on their way to collect the child, and the correct documentation authorising us to administer Calpol under these circumstances has been signed, in advance, and is retained on file. The child may not return to the setting for 8 hours after a dose of either Paracetamol or Ibuprofen. This is to ensure that the medication does not mask other more serious symptoms, and also, to ensure that that the original symptoms do not return once the medication has worn off, resulting in a child becoming unwell again part way through the day.

Unidentified rashes

If a child has an unidentified rash and, in our opinion is obviously unwell, the parents/carers will be contacted immediately and asked to collect the child. The child will not be re-admitted to the setting until, either the rash has gone, or a doctor has confirmed in writing that the rash is not contagious to others.

Childhood Illnesses

Any childhood illnesses must be reported to the setting in order that other parents/carers can be notified so that they may monitor their children for any symptoms. Whenever an outbreak of a childhood disease occurs, a notice is displayed at my setting explaining any relevant information about the illness to aid parents/carers to make informed decisions.

Fees Payable during Periods of Absence Due To Sickness

The nursery fees are still payable during periods of absence due to sickness (or holidays) as the ongoing costs of the nursery remain the same. Our fee structure operates on an average cost per child, building in an allowance for absence. In cases of prolonged absence, due to hospitalisation, or other serious illness, parents should be informed that we would be happy to work with them to seek temporary arrangements which would take up child places until they are required again.

Illness whilst in the setting

If a child becomes unwell whilst in our care we will notify the parent/carer as soon as possible, and ask them to collect their child. We will make every effort to make the child as comfortable as possible, away from the other children until collected. If Paracetamol medicine is to be administered during this interim period, prior to collection, We will follow the procedure outlined under fever or high temperature.

Pandemic response

In response to a pandemic, we will follow the guidelines provided by Government, Local Authorities, and the Infection Control Nurse and we will seek advice from Environmental Services.

We will be expected to follow any guidance issued by the regulatory bodies regarding exclusion of children from the setting exhibiting symptoms of the pandemic illness, or having had contact with those with the illness. In the situation where we or the children become affected whilst at the setting, it may have to close. This decision will be made in partnership with the regulatory bodies, and will be taken by the Managing Director in consultation with senior management. The decision to re-open subsequently will follow the recommended guidelines. Parents will be notified as soon as possible. Ofsted will be informed.

We would endeavour to find emergency childcare for parents to cover periods we are unable to care for the children.

Protecting children from the sun

Whilst encouraging children to have fresh air and play outside there is an increasing awareness of the harm direct sun can do, as well as being the primary source of vitamin D. It is also dangerous to allow too much exposure to ultraviolet rays which can cause damage to the skin, eyes and immune system. Long exposure to the sun can cause irritability and tiredness as well as sunburn. We will avoid where possible taking children out into direct hot sun between 11am and 3pm, where this cannot be avoided exposure will be for a limited time unless shelter can be provided. Children may not be taken outside without the proper protection. Children must wear a sun hat, preferably with a wide brim all round but as a minimum at the front to protect the child’s eyes; a thorough application of sun cream must be applied (reapplied if they have been playing in water); areas of shade should be provided; drinking water must be readily available and activities provided must be a mixture of energetic and calm. Even if it is cloudy the children will still need all the above precautions. A consent form must be signed by the parent/carer authorizing its application by staff members.

Children’s Rest Needs

We offer all the children the opportunity to rest at any time during the day. The individual needs of the child are discussed with the parents/carers during the initial visits when the staff member and parents/carers complete the child profile form. As the child progresses there are many meetings with parents/carers and key worker where alterations in the child’s needs can be discussed. At all times the requests of parents/carers are taken into account and met whenever possible. If a parent wishes for the child to be woken up – this must be put in writing from them. The children are monitored every 10 minutes during their rest period. Children are settled with any comforter they may bring to the setting. We will settle the children individually and ensure that the room has a calm atmosphere and the appropriate bedding facilities are available. Bedding is stored hygienically, and mattresses are disinfected weekly. The length of time the child has slept for is kept on the child’s records and is reported to his/her parents/carers at the end of each session.

No smoking policy

Smoking is not allowed within the boundaries of my setting. In order to ensure a healthy atmosphere for children, parents/carers, staff and visitors to the setting to adhere to the no smoking policy and this will also apply at social events held.

Outdoor shoe policy

In the interests of hygiene I ask all visitors including the children to remove their outdoor shoes before entering the baby area.

Policy on pets in the setting

Pets within the childcare setting can significantly enhance children’s education. However, animals can pose a risk of infection even if they are apparently healthy and may introduce infection into the setting environment. Sensible precautions, such as high standards of hygiene, can help to reduce the risk of infection to an acceptable level. However, consideration should be given to children’s religious beliefs, allergies or anxieties before introducing animals and written consent should be obtained from parents/carers. Any animals must be safe to be in the vicinity of children and not pose a health risk.

Visiting Animals in our setting

Animals are not permitted into the setting unless by prior arrangement with all parties visiting. Organised visits by e.g. Guide Dogs for the Blind, Zoolab are planned in advance and a full risk assessment is carried out. Parents are advised in advance of any visit and written consent obtained. Parents or Visitors bringing animals onto the premises without a prior arrangement being made will be asked to leave immediately.

The nursery currently has three African Snails living at the setting, of whom the children love. Risk Assessments have taken place and are renewed regularly to protect all within the setting.

Nappy Changing and Intimate Care

Intimate care routines are essential throughout the day to ensure children’s basic needs are met. This may include nappy changing, supporting children with toileting, changing clothes where required, first aid treatment and specialist medical support.

In order to maintain the child’s privacy, the majority of these actions will take place on a one to one basis and wherever possible, with the exception of first aid treatment that will be conducted by the child’s key worker and if it is not possible to do this on a one to one basis, the staff member will get support that they feel is necessary and appropriate.

We will ensure the safety and welfare of the children involved in intimate care routines and safeguard against potential harm as well as ensuring any ‘outsiders/other carers around’ have minimal interaction with any routines carried out, i.e., We will change nappies in private or change a child’s clothes in private, however safeguarding the practitioner with an 'open door' policy.

We will –

  • Promote consistent and caring relationships through the key person system in the setting and ensure all parents understand how this works.
  • Use appropriate methods for intimate care routines and access specialist training when required. I.e. first aid training, specialist medical support.
  • Ensure that if a child needs specific support that we will arrange a meeting with the parents to discover all the relevant information relating to this to enable us to care for the child fully and meet their individual needs.

Additional measures to safeguard children

  • We have an up to date understanding of child protection and Safeguarding of children, and how to protect children from harm. This includes identifying signs and symptoms of abuse and how to raise these concerns in the most appropriate manner, following legislation guidelines.
  • We regularly conduct and evaluate our working practice on all aspects of my operations to ensure that procedures are working in practice and all children are supported fully. This includes intimate care routines.
  • We are trained in behavior management (Understanding Behaviour) techniques which includes using restraint techniques where required e.g. if a child is likely to hurt themselves or others. Please see Understanding Behaviour Policy.
  • Appropriate lengths are taken to support and comfort a child which will including hugging, embracing, holding, carrying (when required), holding hands etc

Outings

When taking the children out of the nursery grounds staff ensure their safety at all times. It is the Manager’s responsibility to give permission for the outing to take place, having first checked all arrangements and approved the formal risk assessment.

It is important that parents and carers are aware of the policy on outings as reproduced below and that all safety and learning points are assessed fully.

Visits (local trips within a 5 mile radius)

When registering the child in the nursery the parent/carer will be asked to sign a visit consent form. This form covers visits that meet all the following criteria:

  • Public transport may be used provided a full risk assessment has been carried out, NB this needs to be signed off by the Nursery Manager prior to the outing.
  • If using public transport the ratios to be adhered to will be 1 adult : 2 children on buses and 1:1 on tube trains.
  • For visits on foot, the minimum staff ratio will be as the welfare requirements state for all children. Note that the risk assessment must identify if wrist straps/harnesses will be used.
  • A minimum of two staff will be present
  • Parents/Carers will have given authority via the short trip permission form
  • The visit will mean that children are away from the nursery for no longer than three hours
  • Children will return before the usual collection time
  • If the visit involves very young children, the Manager/Deputy must consider the implication of buggy usage, particularly conducting a risk assessment around the children’s safety whilst these are being folded/carried onto transport etc.
  • Staff will carry with them a first aid kit, tissues, wipes, nappies and other daily essentials and the Nursery Mobile phone. Staff may not take their personal mobile phone unless previously agreed with the Nursery Manager.

Outings (trips outside of a 5mile radius, and those lasting for most/all of the day).

A separate consent must be sought for any outings that have any of the following criteria:

  • A coach or a mini bus
  • Children will be away from the nursery for a period of more than three hours.
  • The children will not return within normal collection times

If any of the above forms of transport is to be used, the following best practice rules should be adhered to. The Nursery Manager must undertake a risk assessment exercise as appropriate, prior to making any booking or commitment to parents. The insurance company must also be made aware of the details in case they require any further safety measures.

  • Every seat must have a three point seat belt and children must remain secured for the whole journey
  • All children under 3 years of age must be secured in a car seat
  • Where parents provide the car seat, they must either install them themselves or when instructing Little Explorers staff to do so, must give full/clear instructions and accept all associated risks
  • If possible provide the makers instruction leaflet
  • All children over three years old and under 1.5 meters in height must be seated on an approved booster seat
  • Children boarding and leaving the bus /coach etc. must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
  • Staff must ensure that the driver is not distracted by the children, this is of particular importance when using a mini bus when noise levels will impact.

In circumstances where the above procedures are not possible for any reason it may be appropriate for parents/ carers to meet nursery staff at the chosen destination.

Additional requirements for outings

  • Separate consent forms must be gained for each trip, signed by each parent, clearly demonstrating that they have full knowledge of the destination, times, method of transport and the learning objectives
  • Nappy changing kits, toilet rolls, tissues, bucket, latex gloves, sun cream and hats, refreshments may also need to be taken
  • The ratio that must be implemented for any outing is as the welfare requirements states as a minimum, unless public transport is being used then the ratio is 1:2.

The following guidelines are adhered to for both visits and outings:

  • Staff will be sensitive to children’s religion/beliefs in selecting places to visit
  • Children must be carefully supervised at all times
  • Any volunteers or staff who are not police checked as yet must remain with permanent nursery staff
  • A First Aid kit must be taken
  • The nursery mobile phone will be taken to ensure ease of contact in an emergency
  • A risk assessment must identify whether safety harnesses or walking straps will be used on the outings or visits .
  • A register must be taken on the trip. This must include all emergency contact details
  • An experienced and qualified senior member of staff must always accompany the children and staff and be nominated as being ‘in charge’
  • One of the staff on the outing or visit must hold their First Aid certificate
  • If there is an opportunity to pet animals, strict rules of safety and hygiene must be enforced
  • If visiting a farm or other venue where animals are present advance checking of each child’s profile form must be undertaken so that any allergies are noted and due action taken.
  • Children should be identified by bracelet or other suitable method bearing the nursery name and contact number of nominated staff member on the trip.

The identity method should never include the child’s name and needs to be secured in such a way that the child may not remove it themselves.

In case of breakdown

If the transport being used breaks down the Nursery Manager needs to be notified immediately. The police will be notified depending on the location and the steps which need to be taken to rectify the situation e.g. on a fast road such as a motorway, or with a blind corner. The children’s safety and security are the prime considerations at all times.

When considering the method of transport, it must be taken into consideration as to whether the children are able to cope with the method of transport. Staff, apart from the Managers cars may not be used under

Safeguarding and Child Protection

This policy and procedure has been written in accordance with the EYFS welfare requirements: Safeguarding and promoting children’s welfare and Suitable people and Inspecting Safeguarding in early years, education and skills settings (August 2016).

Little Explorers is committed to building a ‘culture of safety’ in which the children in our care are protected from abuse and harm.

We will respond promptly and appropriately to all incidents or concerns of abuse that may occur. Our child protection procedures comply with all relevant legislation and with guidance issued by the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH).

Little Explorers Nursery’s designated Child Protection Officer (CPO) is Clare Peacock. The CPO coordinates child protection issues and liaises with external agencies (e.g. Social Care, MASH, the LSCB and Ofsted).

Amber Wickham is the onsite Deputy and will cover Clare Peacock in any form of absence to for-fill this role.

The legal framework for this policy is –

  • • Inspecting Safeguarding in early years, education and skills settings (August 2016).
  • • Children Act 2006/04/1989
  • • Working together to Safeguard children 2006/15
  • • Safeguarding Vunerable Groups Act 2006
  • • Children and Families Act 2014
  • • Special Education Needs (SEN) Code of practice in 2014

Forms of child abuse and neglect

Child abuse is any form of physical, neglectful, emotional or sexual mistreatment or lack of care that leads to injury or harm. An individual may abuse or neglect a child directly, or by failing to protect a child from harm. The following are some signs often associated with particular types of child abuse and neglect. These types of abuse are more often found in combination than alone.

  • Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child so as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve making the child feel that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.
  • Physical abuse can involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may be also caused when a parent or carer feigns the symptoms of, or deliberately causes, ill health to a child.
  • Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. This can involve physical contact, including penetrative or non-penetrative acts, or non-contact activities such as showing children pornographic materials, sexual activities, or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways.
  • Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and emotional needs. Neglect can involve a failure to
    • Provide adequate food, clothing and shelter
    • Protect a child from physical and emotional harm
    • Ensure adequate supervision
    • lAllow access to medical treatmentist

Other forms of abuse may include:

Safeguarding action may be needed to protect children and learners from:

  • neglect
  • physical abuse
  • sexual abuse
  • emotional abuse
  • bullying, including online bullying and prejudice-based bullying
  • racist, disability and homophobic or transphobic abuse
  • gender-based violence/violence against women and girls
  • radicalisation and/or extremist behaviour
  • child sexual exploitation and trafficking
  • the impact of new technologies on sexual behaviour, for example ‘sexting’ and accessing pornography
  • teenage relationship abuse
  • substance misuse
  • issues that may be specific to a local area or population, for example gang activity and youth violence
  • domestic violence
  • female genital mutilation
  • forced marriage
  • fabricated or induced illness
  • poor parenting, particularly in relation to babies and young children
  • other issues not listed here but that pose a risk to children, young people and vulnerable adults.

Safeguarding is not just about protecting children, learners and vulnerable adults.

Procedure

If abuse is suspected or disclosed

When a child makes a disclosure to a member of staff, that member of staff will:

  • Reassure the child that they were not to blame and were right to talk to them
  • Listen to the child but not question them
  • Give reassurance that the staff member will take action
  • Record the incident as soon as possible (see below)
  • If a member of staff witnesses or suspects abuse, they will record the incident straightaway. If a third party expresses concern that a child is being abused, we will encourage them to contact Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH), directly. If they will not do so, we will explain that Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool is obliged to and the incident will be logged accordingly

Logging an incident

All information about the suspected abuse or disclosure will be recorded as soon as possible after the event.

The record will include:

  • Date of the disclosure or of the incident causing concern
  • Date and time at which the record was made
  • Name and date of birth of the child involved
  • A factual report of what happened. If recording a disclosure, it is essential to use the child’s own words
  • Name, signature and job title of the person making the record

The record will be given to Clare Peacock who will decide whether they need to contact Ofsted or make a referral to the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH). If other staff member feels the incident has not been adequately followed up, they may contact SAP themselves.

Allegations against staff

If anyone makes an allegation of child abuse against a member of staff:

  • The allegation will be recorded in an Incident Report. Any witnesses to the incident should sign and date the entry to confirm it
  • The allegation must be reported to Ofsted
  • Ofsted will advise if other agencies (e.g. police) should be informed, and The Nursery will act upon the advice
  • Following advice from Ofsted, it may be necessary to suspend the member of staff pending full investigation of the allegation

Promoting awareness among staff

Little Explorers Nursery will promote awareness of child abuse issues throughout its staff training.

The Nursery will ensure that:

  • The designated CPO has relevant experience and receives appropriate training
  • Safe recruitment practices are followed for all staff
  • All staff have a copy of the Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy, understand its contents and are vigilant to signs of abuse or neglect
  • All staff are aware of their statutory requirements with regard to the disclosure or discovery of child abuse
  • Staff are familiar with the ‘What To Do If You’re Worried A Child Is Being Abused’ flowchart and the location of this (Nursery Office).

Please note any legislation used or information obtained from the Safeguarding board in West Sussex, is only relevant for the 72 hours from the time it is printed.

British Values within the setting

At Little Explorers we promote British Values is many ways throughout our practice and routines within the nursery and pre-school, such as:

  • Democracy: making decisions together, for example giving opportunities to develop enquiring minds in an atmosphere where questions are valued.
  • Rule of law: understanding rules matter as cited in Personal Social and Emotional development for example collaborating with children to create rules and codes of behaviour.
  • Individual liberty: freedom for all, for example reflecting on their differences and understanding we are free to have different opinions
  • Mutual respect and tolerance: treat others as you want to be treated, for example sharing and respecting other’s opinions.

We are a setting that promotes inclusion for all and tailors care and education to the need of the child.

Prevent Duty

Prevent Duty means accessing and observing children within their play to see if they have been exposed to any form of radicalisation.

If any signs of radicalisation or behavior suggesting exposure to this is observed or disclosed, this is dealt with as would signs of abuse observed or disclosed. If you are worried about a child, practitioner, parent, carer or visitor please record your findings on a ‘concerned about a child’ form or incident log and speak with the Safeguarding officer; Clare Peacock without delay. The officer will then contact MASH and the police if concerns are found.

In order to protect children in our care, we must be alert to any reason for concern in a child’s life at home or elsewhere. This includes awareness of the expression of extremist views for anyone involved with or visiting the setting.

Contact numbers

Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH): 01403 229900

Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) (out of hours): 01903 694422

The helpline is available weekdays between 9am -5pm

Weekends and bank holidays are covered 24 hours a day until 9.00am the next working day

LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer): Derek Hayes 07710 859233

LSCB (Local Safeguarding Children Board): 01243 642969

Ofsted: 0300 123 1231

Police: 0845 6070999

NSPCC: 0808 800 500

Sleep

The Nursery acknowledges that the day can be very tiring for children and encourages children to maintain their home routines. On joining the nursery key persons will complete an induction with parents in which any sleep patterns will be identified for the child.

The nursery will provide sleep spaces on both mats and travel cots, or if preferable in cosy corners for children in our care. Children are encouraged to bring any special sleep comforters to nursery if this will support a more comforting routine.

Each child will be allocated bedding which is stored in their own sleep bag or tray alongside their comforters (if kept at the nursery).

Staff will promote quiet and relaxed sleep opportunities after lunch when quiet music will be played, lights dimmed and sleep areas created. Staff will support children in their sleep routines and remain with them whilst they drift off.

Shoes and restrictive clothing will be removed and children will be provided with a blanket or cot (dependent on sleep preferences).

Children’s sleeps are recorded on a sleep check and all children are checked on every 10 minutes. A member of staff will remain in the room completing paperwork or small jobs whilst children are sleeping.

As children wake up they will be comforted until ready to join their peer group for quiet activities. Those children with specified lengths of time for which they sleep will be gently stirred and comforted until ready to rejoin the group.

Babies sleeping in travel cots will be placed at the foot of the cot on their backs with bed clothes tucked in (to armpits). Babies, as with all children will be monitored throughout their sleep times. Babies falling asleep in bouncing chairs will be gently placed in their allocated cots.

Smoking, alcohol and drugs (staff)

Smoking

No smoking is permitted within the nursery grounds.

If you decide to smoke on your break, please do away from the building and place the used cigarette in a bin and not on the floor or grounds of the park area.

No staff members can smoke wearing the nursery’s uniform so this must be taken off if you plan to smoke on your break.

Alcohol

If any employee of Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool are believed to be under the influence of alcohol, the nursery sees this as an act of ‘Gross mis-conduct’. The employee will be suspended, and disciplinary procedures will commence to investigate if this is the case.

The same procedure will commence if someone makes a complaint or disclosure.

The nursery has a right to test employees when asked. Failure to comply with this request will mean instant dismissal from their post.

Please remember you work with children. If you consume alcohol through the week and working the following day be sensible and drink in moderation, so you are suitable and no longer under the influence the following day.

Drugs

If any employee of Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool are believed to be under the influence of drugs, the nursery sees this as an act of ‘Gross mis-conduct’. The employee will be suspended, and disciplinary procedures will commence to investigate if this is the case.

The same procedure will commence if someone makes a complaint or disclosure.

The nursery has a right to test employees when asked. Failure to comply with this request will mean instant dismissal from their post.

If practitioners are concerned about a child's family member they will alert the manager immediately of which they will act in the best interest of the child.

This means refusal of the child can be considered if they suspect the adult is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Any suspicious activity will be reported to the police and MASH. Please see Safeguarding policy.

Understanding Behaviour

The nursery ensures that all children are treated with respect and consistency at all times. Children will, by nature, challenge routines as part of their natural development and staff appreciate that this is part of their journey for developing personality traits and accepting routines, boundaries and social skills. However it is also identified that there are times when interceptions are required to ensure that children’s safety is always paramount and to support children in gaining understanding of social skills.

The Nursery ensures that all staff attend Behaviour Management training via a rolling programme offered through the Local Authority. All staff are, as part of their induction, expected to complete the Behaviour Management Induction as part of their in-house training to support and ensure that processes and behaviour management in the setting are consistent and relevant. A training programme through Educare is continually updated with new knowledge, legislation, and support guidance. Practitioners are expected to complete training as this is reviewed as part of their development within their roles.

Challenging Behaviour

The nursery appreciates, that particularly in times of change, children may demonstrate behaviour which is not part of their usual behaviour. This tends to be a demonstration from the child that they are having difficulty dealing with a certain situation or life event. The nursery will endeavour to work with the child and family to provide strategies to support them in this event and allow them to continue in their nursery routines. Behaviours that may be demonstrated include:

  • Biting
  • Pushing
  • Kicking
  • Shouting
  • Not wanting to share
  • Attention seeking behaviours (including temper tantrums)
  • Crying
  • Regression (e.g. a toilet trained child wetting themselves)
  • Resistance to separate from primary carers

Strategies to challenge behaviour

The nursery strives to ensure that we focus on children’s positive behaviour and achievements as a means to develop confidence and self-esteem. In many circumstances this will additionally provide a means to reduce challenging behaviour. Practitioners strive to ensure that all achievements are recognised, no matter how small, this is particularly important for children who may demonstrate challenging behaviour to allow them recognition for positive achievements.

Under no circumstances will children be chastised or physically punished for challenging behaviour.

Sometimes it may be beneficial to ignore some behaviours and focus on positive behaviours rather than accentuate the behaviours that are not accepted. This may be beneficial in the case of children calling over each other by instead focussing on a child who has spoken nicely. Tactical ignoring avoids drawing attention to the unwanted behaviour and allows positive reinforcement to take precedence.

Using the word ‘No’ additionally tends to accentuate attention drawing behaviour in a negative way. By instead asking a child to stop doing something by distracting or guiding them to another activity allows them to be praised for more positive behaviours. It is imperative that it is understood that the word ‘No’ can lead to confrontation.

In the case of a child demonstrating a behaviour that may place themselves or others at risk it is important that they are removed from the situation to prevent the environment becoming dangerous to them or others. However it is imperative that children are provided with clear explanations as to why they are being asked to move to another area of the setting and are not physically removed without any explanation or in an inappropriate manner. If it is clear that a child is distressed by offering them an option to go to a safe place where they will be happier will allow them to leave on a clear expectation and willingly. It is important that children are provided with an age appropriate explanation of why their behaviour is not accepted but that they are not made to feel that it is them that is not accepted. Once engaged with another activity and safe children should be praised for their achievements to allow them to feel secure and accepted.

Giving guidance

It is recognised that children learn best if they are given clear guidance and role models. Practitioners endeavour to ensure that children are given clear instruction, for instance ‘let’s put the crayons in the blue box’ so they understand what is being asked and have a clear goal which can be praised on achievement. By encouraging clear instructions and boundaries children are secure in the expectations and can then support other children in meeting these as well. I.e. at tidy up time, ask the children polity and clearly to find 3 toys/ items they would like to clear away. Ask two children to work as team. Phrase the children during the task and acknowledge what they have achieved.

Giving choices

It is important that in providing opportunities for children they are given choices. However it is equally important that there are not so many choices they cannot focus or end up ‘flitting’ between them. In tidying up offering children choices of which activity they would like to clear up also allows them choice and to be part of the process.

Rewards

Rewards and Positive Reinforcement are an important part of acknowledging and reinforcing behaviour in the nursery and at home. Children strive to gain attention of role models and it is important that children are recognised for their positive achievements as this will additionally encourage them to talk about the positive things they do to build confidence and self-esteem.

Rewards in the nursery include:

  • Acknowledgement
  • Stickers and sticker charts
  • Praise
  • Hugs
  • Smiles
  • Ipad time
  • Special jobs in the nursery
  • Being the helper in activities
  • Certificates

Rewarding behaviour:

In the circumstances where a child may be struggling or working towards a particular behaviour or goal (for instance potty training or kind hands) the nursery is willing to work with parents to ensure consistent rewards between home and setting. This may take the form of sticker charts where children are acknowledged for each small achievement to build a consistent behaviour. It is important that children understand the concept and can stick their own stickers on charts and that parents and carers are all rewarding for the same achievements to promote consistency.

It is important that children are always treated consistently and fairly. It is imperative that children are assured by consistent boundaries and that these are not suddenly changed. Children are happiest in secure, consistent surroundings and the nursery strives to ensure that children are thoroughly prepared for any changes that might occur.

In dealing with challenging behaviour staff will endeavour to:

  • Remain calm, clear and consistent
  • To give understandable, age-relevant explanations as to why a behaviour is not acceptable
  • To explain that it is the behaviour, not the child, which is not appropriate
  • To highlight the positive things the child has been doing
  • To establish clear boundaries
  • To explain when there will be changes to prepare children e.g. visitors, meal times

Sanctions

Sanctions are not a principle advocated by the setting as they can be counter-productive to children and effect self-esteem and confidence. It is preferred that children are given clear explanations and guided to take part in activities where they can be allowed to show positive behaviour which can be reinforced. By offering reward systems for positive behaviours children can learn that positive behaviour such as ‘kind hands’ or ‘walking feet’ are accepted behaviours and encourage social relationships. By identifying the good behaviours in many circumstances we can prevent the challenges.

In situations where another child or themselves have been in danger and depending on the severity of the incident then ‘time out’ (not in any one area of the setting) may be asked by the senior of the setting. Children are given clear timescales with a visual aid and reasons for them ‘not playing’ and having ‘thinking time’ with the adult. Parents and families are fed back to on collection and continually concerning behaviour is recorded and shared with families and other professionals if required.

Referrals

Where a behaviour is persistent and the nursery and parents are finding that a cause of the change cannot be found or that strategies are not working to support the child the setting will, with the parent’s authorisation, contact the local Early Help team to access additional support. This network is provided to offer additional support to children, families and settings to ensure that children can gain all the benefits from the setting and ensure that all strategies required are in place.

Whistle Blowing

There are existing procedures in place to enable staff to raise a grievance relating to their employment and procedures to ensure the working environment is free from harassment and bullying.

This Policy is intended to cover major concerns that fall outside the scope of these procedures. These include:

  • Conduct which a member of staff may consider to be a criminal offence;
  • Disclosure relating to miscarriages of justice;
  • Health and safety risks, including risks to the public as well as other staff;
  • Possible fraud or corruption;
  • Breaches of procedures;
  • Environmental risks;
  • Failure to comply with legal obligations;
  • Sexual, physical or verbal abuse of children, parents, staff or any other behaviour which a member of staff genuinely finds unacceptable or inappropriate;
  • Other unethical conduct;
  • The deliberate concealing of information relating to any of the above matters.

In short, any serious concerns that a member of staff has about any aspect of their employment can be reported under this Policy.

These procedures are in addition to any other statutory reporting procedures that may be applicable.

Protection

This Policy makes it clear that staff can speak up without fear of harassment, victimisation (including informal pressure), discrimination or disadvantage.

Any investigation into allegations of potential malpractice will not influence or be influenced by any disciplinary or other procedures that already affect the member of staff. There will be no ‘come back’ if a member of staff reasonably believes that they have made a disclosure in good faith.

Roles and responsibilities

The Nursery accepts that the decision to report a concern can be very difficult and uncomfortable.

The Nursery is committed to supporting individuals through the process and protecting them from any ‘come back’, victimisation or harassment. Concerns reported will be taken seriously and treated sensitively. Staff who genuinely believe that people they work with are behaving in a way that seems wrong or have a serious concern about an aspect of service will be doing their duty and acting in the public interest by speaking out.

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Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool

MKM Childcare Limited, Trading as Little Explorers Nursery and Preschool

Registered Company Number: 9857721

Opening Hours

Monday - Friday 07:30 - 17:30
Weekends Closed

Worlds End Pavilion
Janes Lane
Burgess Hill
RH15 0QJ

07771 638660

You can come and visit us on any day that the nursery is open, to see our fantastic location for yourself!



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