Covid19 Safety

Important Safety Information for New Parents and returning children from lockdown September 2020.

Dear Parents we are delighted to welcome new children to Blyth, Bedlington and Cramlington but we are still very much working around safety as paramount so we have recommended guidelines in place that we would encourage parents to read carefully.

  • Only children who are symptom free or have completed the required isolation period should attend the setting.
  • We may consider taking temperatures of children on arrival and risk assessing with regular health questionnaires for returning children.
  • The nursery day will be shortened to 8.00pm-5.00pm to allow staff organisation and daily deep cleans.
  • Children will be organised into small groups in their age group rooms where possible.
  • Children at Bedlington will be placed downstairs close to dining areas and outdoor areas.
  • Splitting the room groups will avoid contact and mixing of children throughout the day.
  • Staff will remain in their allocated rooms and avoid unnecessary contact with other staff members in other rooms throughout the day.
  • Care routines including provision of meals, nappy changing and toileting will be within the space allocated, wherever possible.
  • Hand sanitising stations will be available at each entrance.
  • The use of communal internal spaces will be restricted as much as possible.
  • Staff rest breaks will be spread over the day to allow minimum contact.
  • Outdoor spaces will be used safely and in small groups.
  • Distancing of beds and cots and buggies will be facilitated wherever possible.
  • Children will be supported in age appropriate ways to understand the steps they can take to keep themselves safe including regular hand washing and sneezing into a tissue.
  • Drop off and pick up times will be planned and to avoid parents entering the nursery unnecessarily.
  • When parents are waiting to drop off or collect their child, physical distancing will be maintained in a safe area.
  • Safe distancing signs will be clearly displayed outside each collection and drop off point.
  • We will consider allowing parents to enter the nursery for the purpose of settling in sessions if not doing so would cause a child distress.
  • We will minimise contact between the parent and other children and staff members.
  • Parents will receive clear communication regarding the role they play in the safe operating procedure and all measures being taken to ensure the safety of their children and themselves.
  • Visits will be available for new children after hours when children are not attending.
  • Registrations for new children will be completed over the telephone before the child attends.
  • Staff will only attend the nursery if they are symptom free, have completed the required isolation period or achieved a negative test result.
  • The nursery Manager will take temperatures of staff where appropriate and risk assessing with regular health questionnaires for returning staff.
  • Consideration will be given to limiting the number of staff in the nursery at any one time to only those required to care for the expected occupancy levels on any given day.
  • Wherever possible staff will remain with their small group of children, children who they are allocated to and not come into contact with other groups.
  • Emergency revisions to the EYFS have been implemented which provides some flexibility on ratios and qualifications to make this feasible although due to low numbers of children returning in June this will not be an issue.
  • Ratios and quality care will remain in place throughout.
  • Social distancing will be maintained during rest breaks. This may be achieved through a range of strategies including the staggering of breaks and subdivision of spaces allocated to team breaks where possible.
  • Staff members will avoid physical contact with each other including handshakes, hugs etc.
  • Where possible, meetings and training sessions will be conducted through virtual conferencing.
  • Staff members will receive appropriate instruction and training in infection control and the standard operating procedure and risk assessments within which they will be operating.
  • Only parents who are symptom free and or have completed the required isolation periods will be able to drop off or collect their child.
  • Drop off and pick up will be limited to 1 parent per family and timings will be staggered where possible.
  • We will arrange drop off and pick up at the nursery entrances to avoid parents entering the nursery unnecessarily.
  • When parents are waiting to drop off or collect their child, physical distancing will be maintained in a safe area.
  • Safety signs will be in place for parents to follow.

Parents will receive clear communication regarding the role they play in the safe operating procedure and all measures being taken to ensure the safety of their children and themselves.

  • Wherever possible staff and parents should travel to the nursery alone, using their own transport If public transport is necessary, current guidance on the use of public transport must be followed. Parents should be encouraged to ensure they do not leave travel accessories including buggies, car seats, scooters in the setting premises, but rather in external buggy areas if necessary.
  • Outings from the setting into the local community will be restricted.
  • All children and staff must wash their hands upon arrival at the nursery.
  • Children and staff members should be encouraged to wash their hands frequently throughout the day.

An enhanced cleaning schedule will be implemented that includes furniture, surfaces and children’s toys and equipment. Communal area, touch points and hand washing facilities will be cleaned and sanitised regularly.

  • All waste will be disposed of in a hygienic and safe manner.
  • Tissues will be immediately disposed of in the appropriate bins and hands washed thoroughly after handling tissues.
  • Items such as towels, flannels and bedding must not be shared by children and washed daily.
  • All activity will be risk assessed and due consideration given to any adaptations to usual practice.
  • This will include, but not be limited, to the suspension of learning experiences involving materials which are not easily washable such as malleable materials and the suspension of the sharing of food and utensils.
  • Government guidance is that PPE is not (as yet) required for general use in early years settings to protect against COVID- 19 transmission.
  • PPE will continue to be worn as normal for nappy changing/meal times and the administration of first aid.
  • Children will not be permitted to bring items from home into the setting unless absolutely essential for their wellbeing.
  • Where this is the case items should be appropriately cleaned upon arrival.
  • All resources required for play and learning experiences of children will be regularly washed and/or sterilised.
  • Equipment used by staff such as stationary, tablets etc. should be allocated to individual staff members where possible and cleaned regularly.
  • Computer screens, keyboards and telephones to be cleaned at regular intervals.
  • In the event of a child developing suspected coronavirus symptoms whilst attending the setting, they should be collected as soon as possible and isolate at home in line with the NHS guidance.
  • Whilst waiting for the child to be collected they should be isolated from others in a previously identified room or area. If possible, a window should be opened for ventilation.
  • The staff member responsible for the child during this time should be a staff member from their group. We will consider suitable PPE for this staff member.
  • The area will be thoroughly cleaned, immediately if the area cannot be left unvisited, and if the area can be left unvisited then cleaned after 72 hours.
  • The person responsible for cleaning the area should wear appropriate PPE.
  • In the event of a staff member developing suspected coronavirus symptoms whilst working at the nursery, they will return home immediately and isolate at home in line with the NHS guidance.
  • If we do have any child or staff member who has been tested positive with the virus all parents will be contacted at the appropriate time.