Kea Preschool believes that the health and safety of all staff is of paramount importance and that all staff have the right to work in a safe environment. We support safe working both on and off the premises, acknowledging the needs and diversity of children and their family.
- All staff in the building early in the morning, or late in the evening, ensure doors and windows are locked.
- Where possible, at least the first two members of staff to arrive in the building arrive together, and the last two members of staff in the building leave together.
- Visitors are generally only allowed access with prior appointments and only admitted once their identity has been verified.
- Minimal petty cash is kept on the premises.
- When taking cash to the bank, members of staff are aware of personal safety. Managers carry out a risk assessment and develop an agreed procedure appropriate to the setting, staff and location.
- Members of staff make a note in the diary of meetings they are attending, who they are meeting and when they are expected back.
- Managers have good liaison with local police and ask for advice on safe practice where there are issues or concerns.
Where staff members conduct home visits, this is done at the manager’s discretion and the following health and safety considerations apply:
- Prior to a home visit the key person and manager undertake a risk assessment that is specific to the visit being undertaken.
- Members of staff normally do home visits in pairs – usually the manager/deputy manager with the key person.
- Each home visit is recorded in the diary with the name and address of the family being visited, prior to the visit taking place.
- Staff alert an agreed contact person in the setting when they are leaving to do the home visit and advise on their expected time of return.
- If there is any reason for staff to feel concerned about entering premises, they do not do so, for example, if a parent appears drunk.
- Members of staff carry a mobile phone when going out on a home visit.
- Staff identify an emergency word/phrase, which is made known to all staff in the setting, so that if they feel extremely threatened or in danger on a home visit they can covertly alert other members of staff via a telephone call to the situation. Use of the agreed word/phrase will initiate an immediate 999 call to be made.
- If staff do not return from the home visit at the designated time, the contact person attempts to phone them and continues to do so until they make contact.
- If no contact is made after a reasonable amount of time has passed, the contact person rings the police.
Dealing with agitated parents in the setting
- If a parent appears to be angry, mentally agitated or possibly hostile, two members of staff will lead the parent away from the children to a less open area, but will not shut the door behind them.
- If the person is standing, staff will remain standing.
- Members of staff will try to empathise and ensure that the language they use can be easily understood.
- Staff will speak in low, even tones, below the voice level of the parent.
- Members of staff will make it clear that they want to listen and seek solutions.
- If the person makes threats and continues to be angry, members of staff make it clear that they will be unable to discuss the issue until the person stops shouting or being abusive, while avoiding potentially inflammatory expressions such as ‘calm down’ or ‘be reasonable’.
- If threats or abuse continues, members of staff will explain that the police will be called and emphasise the inappropriateness of such behaviour in front of children.
- After the event, details are recorded in the child’s personal file together with any decisions made with the parents to rectify the situation and any correspondence regarding the incident.
Members of staff are deployed to meet the care and learning needs of children and to ensure their safety and well-being at all times.
- Two members of staff are on the premises before children are admitted in the morning and the end of the day; one of which should be the manager, assistant manager or Senior Practitioners.
- Only those staff aged 17 or over are included in ratios. Staff working as apprentices (aged 16 or over) may be included in the ratios if the setting manager is satisfied that they are competent and responsible.
- At least one Paediatric First Aider must be on site at all times when children are present
- The setting manager deploys staff to give adequate supervision of indoor and outdoor areas, ensuring that children are usually within sight and hearing of staff and always within sight or hearing of staff at all times.
- All staff are deployed according to the needs of the setting and the children attending.
- Staff are responsible for ensuring that equipment in their area is used appropriately and that the area is tidy at the end of the session.
- Staff inform colleagues if they have to leave the room for any reason.
- There are generally two members of staff outside in the garden when it is being used, one of whom supervises climbing equipment that has been put out.
- The setting manager may direct other members of staff to join those outside, if the numbers of children warrant additional staff.
- Staff focus their attention on the children at all times whilst having a wider awareness of what is happening around them.
- Staff do not spend working time in social conversation with colleagues.
- Staff allow time for colleagues to engage in ‘sustained shared interaction’ with children and do not interrupt activities led by colleagues.
- Sufficient staff are available at story times to engage children.
- Key persons spend time with key groups daily; these times are not for focussed activities but for promoting shared times and friendship.
- Where members of staff have their own children with them at the setting, the age of the child must fall within the stipulated ages of the setting’s Ofsted registration.
- Where members of staff are likely to be working directly with their own children, this is subject to discussion before commencement with the setting manager.
- Where it is agreed that a member of staff’s child attends the setting, it is subject to the following:
- the child is treated by the parent and all staff as any other child would be
- the child will not be in the parent’s key group of children
- the key person and parent will work towards helping the child to make a comfortable separation from the parent to allow the parent to fully undertake their role as a staff member of the setting
- the key person will take responsibility for the child’s needs throughout the day, unless the child is sick or severely distressed
- time and space are made for the parent to breastfeed during the day, if that is their chosen method of feeding
- the situation is reviewed as required, to ensure that the needs of the child are being met, and that the parent is able to fulfil his/her role as a member of staff
If it is the setting manager’s child, then their line manager ensures the criteria above is met