Policy Documents 2019

 

All policies were adopted and signed at a meeting of Great Chart and Singleton Preschool

Date to be reviewed: September 2020

 

Admissions policy

It is our intention to make our pre-school accessible to children and families from all sections of the local community.

Our Aim

We aim to ensure that all sections of our community have access to the pre-school through open, fair and clearly communicated procedures.

Methods

In order to achieve this aim, we operate the following admissions policy.
• We ensure that the existence of the pre-school is widely advertised in places accessible to all sections of the community.
• We ensure that information about our pre-school is accessible – in written and spoken form – and, where necessary, we try to provide information in Braille, or through signing or an interpreter.
• We allocate sessions in strict waiting list order according to age. In addition, our policy may take into account siblings already attending the pre-school.
• We describe our pre-school and its practices in terms of how it treats individuals, regardless of their gender, special educational needs, disabilities, background, religion, ethnicity or competence in spoken English.
• We describe our pre-school and its practices in terms of how it enables children with disabilities to take part in the life of the pre-school.
• We make our equal opportunities policy widely known.
• We are flexible about attendance patterns to accommodate the needs of individual children and families. Children in receipt of Free Early Education for 2, 3 and 4 year olds have the same choice of sessions as those paying for sessions.

Enrolment

Children can be placed on our waiting list by phoning the enrolment officer on 07784 915943 or e-mailing greatchartsingletonpreschool@gmail.com. We will then answer any questions you may have and send out written confirmation that your child is on our waiting list and a copy of our prospectus. Please refer to our prospectus for latest information regarding fees and delivery patterns.

 

Settling in pre-school policy

We want children to feel safe, stimulated and happy in the pre-school and to feel secure and comfortable with staff. We also want parents to have confidence in both their children’s well being and their role as active partners with the pre-school.

Aim

We aim to make the pre-school a welcome place where children settle quickly and easily because consideration has been given to the individual needs and circumstances of children and their families.

Methods

• Before a child starts to attend the pre-school, we use a variety of ways to provide his/her parents with information. These include written information (including our prospectus and policies)
• When a child starts to attend, we work with his/her parents to decide on the best way to help the child to settle into the pre-school.
• We allocate a key person to each child and his/her family, before they start.
• We use pre-start visits and the first session at which a child attends to explain and complete with his/her parents the child’s registration records and the key person will complete a getting to know you form with the parents/main carer
• We also use these visits to explain how the Early Years Foundation Curriculum works within our setting
• If the child does not settle it may be necessary to delay or adapt their start. The manager and key person will discuss options and aim to meet both the child's and parents needs

 

Parental involvement policy

We believe that children benefit most from pre-school education and care when parents and pre-schools work together in partnership.

Aim
• To support parents as their children’s first and most important educators.
• To involve parents in the life of the pre-school and their children’s education.
• To support parents in their own continuing education and personal development.

Method

In order to fulfil these aims:

• We are committed to ongoing dialogue with parents to improve our knowledge of the needs of their children and to support their families.
• We provide written information and regular informal communication to inform all parents about how the group is run. We regularly talk to our parents to ensure they are aware of what is going on in our setting.
• Parents have access to all our policies and procedures and we can provide time to go through these with parents to ensure that all parents understand these documents. We can also provide a hard copy if they wish
• We encourage and support parents to play an active part in the governance and management of the pre-school.
• We involve parents in the shared record keeping about their children – either formally or informally – and ensure parents have access to their children’s written records. This ensures parents are informed of their child's progress.
• We provide opportunities for parents to contribute their own skills, knowledge and interests to the activities of the group.
• We hold meetings in venues which are accessible and appropriate for all.
• We welcome the contributions of parents, in whatever form these may take.

 

Complaints procedure

Our pre-school believes that children and parents are entitled to expect courtesy and prompt, careful attention to their needs and wishes. We welcome suggestions on how to improve our pre-school and will give prompt and serious attention to any concerns about the running of the pre-school. 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

Methods
To achieve this, we operate the following complaints procedure.

How to complain

Stage 1
• Any parent who is uneasy about an aspect of the pre-school’s provision talks over, first of all, his/her worries and anxieties with the pre-school Manager/Deputy Manager.
• 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 moves to Stage 2 of the procedure by putting the concerns or complaint in writing to the pre-school manager and the chair person of the management committee. We undertake to respond to a complaint within 28 days.
• Most complaints should be able to be resolved informally at Stage 1 or at Stage 2.
Stage 3
• The parent requests a meeting with pre-school manager and the chair person of the management committee. Both the parent and the manager should have a friend/partner or colleague present if required. An agreed written record of the discussion is made. 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.
Stage 4
• If at the Stage 3 meeting the parent and pre-school 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 are appropriate persons to be invited to act as mediators.
• The mediator keeps all discussion confidential. She/he can hold separate meetings with the pre-school personnel (pre-school manager and chair person of the management committee) and the parent, if this is decided to be helpful. The mediator keeps an agreed written record of any meetings that are held and of any advice she/he gives.

Stage 5
• When the mediator has concluded her/his investigations, a final meeting between the parent, the pre-school manager, and the chair person of the management committee is held. 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 Area Child Protection Committee.

Parents may approach Ofsted directly at any stage of this complaints procedure. In addition, where there seems to be a possible breach of our registration requirements it is essential to involve Ofsted as the registering and inspection body with a duty to ensure the National Standards for Day Care are adhered to.

Ofsted Early Years address: Ofsted
Piccadilly Street
Store Street
Manchester, M1 2WD

Ofsted Helpline telephone No. 0300 123 1231

These details are displayed on our pre-school’s notice board.
If a child appears to be at risk, our pre-school follows the procedures of the Area Child Protection Committee in our local authority.

In these cases, both the parent and pre-school are informed and the pre-school leader works with Ofsted or the Area Child Protection Committee to ensure a proper investigation of the complaint followed by appropriate action

Records

A record of complaints against our pre-school and/or the children and/or the adults working in our pre-school is kept, including the date, the circumstances of the complaint and how the complaint was managed. All records are kept for 3 years.

 

Confidentiality policy

It is our intention to respect the privacy of children and their parents and carers, while ensuring that they access high quality pre-school care and education.

Aim

We aim to ensure that all parents and carers can share their information in the confidence that it will only be used to enhance the welfare of their children.

Methods

To ensure that all those using – and working in – the pre-school can do so with confidence, we respect confidentiality in the following ways.

• Parents have ready access to the files and records of their own children but do not have access to information about any other child.
• Staff will not discuss personal information given by parents with other members of staff, except where it affects the child's well being and involvement or planning for the child’s needs, the manager should be informed and will make the decision on whether the information needs to be cascaded to all staff. The staff induction includes an awareness of the importance of confidentiality in the role of the key person.
• Any concerns/evidence relating to a child’s personal safety are kept in a secure, confidential file and are shared with as few people as possible on a “need-to-know” basis.
• Personal information about children, families and staff is kept securely in a lockable file whilst remaining as accessible as possible.
• Issues to do with the employment of staff, whether paid or unpaid, remain confidential to the people directly involved with making personnel decisions.
• Students on recognised qualifications and training, when they are observing in the pre-school, are advised of our confidentiality policy and required to respect it.

All the undertakings above are subject to the paramount commitment of the pre–school, which is to the safety and well-being of the child. Please see also our policy on child protection.

GDPR and Data Protection Policy

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and The Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) is the law that protects personal privacy and upholds individual’s rights. It applies to anyone who handles or has access to people’s personal data.

This policy is intended to ensure that personal information is dealt with properly and securely and in accordance with the legislation. It will apply to personal information regardless of the way it is used, recorded and stored and whether it is held in paper files or electronically.

Policy Objectives
The preschool as the Data Controller will comply with its obligations under the GDPR and DPA. The preschool is committed to being concise, clear and transparent about how it obtains and uses personal information and will ensure data subjects are aware of their rights under the legislation.

All staff must have a general understanding of the law and understand how it may affect their decisions in order to make an informed judgement about how information is gathered, used and ultimately deleted. All staff must read, understand and comply with this policy.

The Information Commissioner as the Regulator can impose fines of up to 20 million Euros (approximately £17 million) for serious breaches of the GDPR, therefore it is imperative that the preschool and all staff comply with the legislation.

Scope of the Policy
Personal data is any information that relates to an identified or identifiable living individual who can be identified directly or indirectly from the information . The information includes factors specific to the physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity of a living individual. This includes any expression of opinion about an individual and intentions towards an individual. Under the GDPR personal information also includes an identifier such as a name, an identification number, location data or an online identifier.

The prechool collects a large amount of personal data every year including: pupil records, staff records, names and addresses of those requesting prospectuses, examination marks, references, fee collection as well as the many different types of research data used by the School. In addition, it may be required by law to collect and use certain types of information to comply with statutory obligations of Local Authorities (LAs), government agencies and other bodies.

The Principles
The principles set out in the GDPR must be adhered to when processing personal data:

1. Personal data must be processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner (lawfulness, fairness and transparency)
2. Personal data shall be collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes and not further processed in a manner that is incompatible with those purposes (purpose limitation)
3. Personal data shall be adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purpose(s) for which they are processed (data minimisation)
4. Personal data shall be accurate and where necessary kept up to date and every reasonable step must be taken to ensure that personal data that are inaccurate are erased or rectified without delay (accuracy).
5. Personal data shall be kept in a form which permits identification of data subjects for no longer than is necessary for the purpose for which the personal data is processed (storage limitation)
6. Appropriate technical and organisational measures shall be taken to safeguard the rights and freedoms of the data subject and to ensure that personal information are processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security of the personal data and protects against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data (integrity and confidentiality).

Transfer Limitation
In addition, personal data shall not be transferred to a country outside the EEA unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects in relation to the processing of personal data as determined by the European Commission or where the organisation receiving the data has provided adequate safeguards .

This means that individuals’ rights must be enforceable and effective legal remedies for individuals must be available following the transfer. It may also be possible to transfer data where the data subject has provided explicit consent or for other limited reasons. Staff should contact the DPO if they require further assistance with a proposed transfer of personal data outside of the EEA.

Lawful Basis for processing personal information
Before any processing activity starts for the first time, and then regularly afterwards, the purpose(s) for the processing activity and the most appropriate lawful basis (or bases) for that processing must be selected:

• Processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the school

• Processing is necessary for the performance of a contract to which the data subject is party, or in order to take steps at the request of the data subject prior to entering into a contract

• Processing is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation to which the data controller is subject

• Processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject or of another natural person

• Processing is necessary for the purposes of the legitimate interests pursued by the data controller or by a third party

• The data subject has given consent to the processing of his or her data for one or more specific purposes. Agreement must be indicated clearly either by a statement or positive action to the processing. Consent requires affirmative action so silence, pre-ticked boxes or inactivity are unlikely to be sufficient. If consent is given in a document which deals with other matters, the consent from be kept separate from those other matters

Data subjects must be easily able to withdraw consent to processing at any time and withdrawal must be promptly honoured. Consent may need to be refreshed if personal data is intended to be processed for a different and incompatible purpose which was not disclosed when the data subject first consented.

The decision as to which lawful basis applies must be documented, to demonstrate compliance with the data protection principles and include information about both the purposes of the processing and the lawful basis for it in the school’s relevant privacy notice(s).

When determining whether legitimate interests are the most appropriate basis for lawful processing (only where appropriate outside the school’s public tasks) a legitimate interests assessment must be carried out and recorded. Where a significant privacy impact is identified, a data protection impact assessment (DPIA) may also need to be conducted.

Sensitive Personal Information
Processing of sensitive personal information (known as ‘special categories of personal data’) is prohibited unless a lawful special condition for processing is identified.

Sensitive personal information is data which reveals racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, sex life or orientation or is genetic or biometric data which uniquely identifies a natural person.

Sensitive personal information will only be processed if:
• There is a lawful basis for doing so as identified on previous page
• One of the special conditions for processing sensitive personal information applies:
• the individual (‘data subject’) has given explicit consent (which has been clearly explained in a Privacy Notice)
• the processing is necessary for the purposes of exercising the employment law rights or obligations of the preschool or the data subject
• the processing is necessary to protect the data subject’s vital interests, and the data subject is physically incapable of giving consent
(a) the processing is carried out in the course of its legitimate activities with appropriate safeguards by a foundation, association or any other not-for-profit body with a political, philosophical, religious or trade-union aim
• the processing relates to personal data which are manifestly made public by the data subject
• the processing is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims
• the processing is necessary for reasons of substantial public interest
• the processing is necessary for purposes of preventative or occupational medicine, for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, the provision of social care and the management of social care systems or services
(b) the processing is necessary for reasons of public interest in the area of public health.

The preschool’s privacy notice(s) set out the types of sensitive personal information that it processes, what it is used for, the lawful basis for the processing and the special condition that applies.

Sensitive personal information will not be processed until an assessment has been made of the proposed processing as to whether it complies with the criteria above and the individual has been informed (by way of a privacy notice or consent) of the nature of the processing, the purposes for which it is being carried out and the legal basis for it.

Unless the preschool can rely on another legal basis of processing, explicit consent is usually required for processing sensitive personal data. Evidence of consent will need to be captured and recorded so that the preschool can demonstrate compliance with the GDPR.

Automated Decision Making
Where the preschool carries out automated decision making (including profiling) it must meet all the principles and have a lawful basis for the processing. Explicit consent will usually be required for automated decision making (unless it is authorised by law or it is necessary for the performance of or entering into a contract).

Additional safeguards and restrictions apply in the case of solely automated decision-making, including profiling. The preschool must as soon as reasonably possible notify the data subject in writing that a decision has been taken based on solely automated processing and that the data subject may request the preschool to reconsider or take a new decision. If such a request is received staff must contact the DPO as the school must reply within 21 days.

Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIA)
All data controllers are required to implement ‘Privacy by Design’ when processing personal data.

This means the School’s processes must embed privacy considerations and incorporate appropriate technical and organisational measures (like pseudonymisation) in an effective manner to ensure compliance with data privacy principles.

Where processing is likely to result in high risk to an individual’s data protection rights (for example where a new technology is being implemented) a DPIA must be carried out to assess:

• whether the processing is necessary and proportionate in relation to its purpose
• the risks to individuals
• what measures can be put in place to address those risks and protect personal information.

Staff should adhere to the Data Protection Toolkit for Schools from the DfE with reference to the DPIA template.

When carrying out a DPIA, staff should seek the advice of the DPO for support and guidance and once complete, refer the finalised document to the DPO for sign off.

Documentation and records
Written records of processing activities must be kept and recorded including:

• the name(s) and details of individuals or roles that carry out the processing
• the purposes of the processing
• a description of the categories of individuals and categories of personal data
• categories of recipients of personal data
• details of transfers to third parties, including documentation of the transfer mechanism safeguards in place
• retention schedules
• a description of technical and organisational security measures.

As part of the preschool’s record of processing activities the DPO will document, or link to documentation on:

• information required for privacy notices
• records of consent
• controller-processor contracts
• the location of personal information;
• DPIAs and
• Records of data breaches.

Records of processing of sensitive information are kept on the relevant purposes for which the processing takes place, including why it is necessary for that purpose, the lawful basis for our processing and whether the personal information is retained or erased in accordance with the Retention Schedule and, if not, the reasons for not following the policy.

The preschool should conduct regular reviews of the personal information it processes and update its documentation accordingly. This may include:

• Carrying out information audits to find out what personal information is held
• Talking to staff about their processing activities
• Reviewing policies, procedures, contracts and agreements to address retention, security and data sharing.

Privacy Notice
The preschool will issue privacy notices as required, informing data subjects (or their parents, depending on age of the pupil, if about pupil information) about the personal information that it collects and holds relating to individual data subjects, how individuals can expect their personal information to be used and for what purposes.

When information is collected directly from data subjects, including for HR or employment purposes, the data subject shall be given all the information required by the GDPR including the identity of the data controller and the DPO, how and why the preschool will use, process, disclose, protect and retain that personal data through a privacy notice (which must be presented when the data subject first provides the data).

When information is collected indirectly (for example from a third party or publicly available source) the data subject must be provided with all the information required by the GDPR as soon as possible after collecting or receiving the data. The preschool must also check that the data was collected by the third party in accordance with the GDPR and on a basis which is consistent with the proposed processing of the personal data.

The preschool will take appropriate measures to provide information in privacy notices in a concise, transparent, intelligible and easily accessible form, using clear and plain language.

The preschool will issue a minimum of two privacy notices, one for pupil information, and one for workforce information, and these will be reviewed in line with any statutory or contractual changes.

Purpose Limitation
Personal data must be collected only for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes. It must not be further processed in any manner incompatible with those purposes.

Personal data must not be used for new, different or incompatible purposes from that disclosed when it was first obtained unless the data subject has been informed of the new purposes and they have consented where necessary.

Data minimisation
Personal data must be adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which it is processed.

Staff may only process data when their role requires it. Staff must not process personal data for any reason unrelated to their role.

The preschool maintains a Retention Schedule to ensure personal data is deleted after a reasonable time for the purpose for which it was being held, unless a law requires such data to be kept for a minimum time. Staff must take all reasonable steps to destroy or delete all personal data that is held in its systems when it is no longer required in accordance with the Schedule. This includes requiring third parties to delete such data where applicable.

Staff must ensure that data subjects are informed of the period for which data is stored and how that period is determined in any applicable Privacy Notice.

Individual Rights
Staff as well as any other ‘data subjects’ have the following rights in relation to their personal information:

• To be informed about how, why and on what basis that information is processed (see the relevant privacy notice)

• To obtain confirmation that personal information is being processed and to obtain access to it and certain other information, by making a subject access request

• To have data corrected if it is inaccurate or incomplete

• To have data erased if it is no longer necessary for the purpose for which it was originally collected/processed, or if there are no overriding legitimate grounds for the processing (‘the right to be forgotten’)

• To restrict the processing of personal information where the accuracy of the information is contested, or the processing is unlawful (but you do not want the data to be erased) or where the school no longer need the personal information, but you require the data to establish, exercise or defend a legal claim

• To restrict the processing of personal information temporarily where you do not think it is accurate (and the school are verifying whether it is accurate), or where you have objected to the processing (and the school are considering whether the school’s legitimate grounds override your interests)

• In limited circumstances to receive or ask for their personal data to be transferred to a third party in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format

• To withdraw consent to processing at any time (if applicable)

• To request a copy of an agreement under which personal data is transferred outside of the EEA.

• To object to decisions based solely on automated processing, including profiling

• To be notified of a data breach which is likely to result in high risk to their rights and obligations

• To make a complaint to the ICO or a Court.

Individual Responsibilities
During their employment, staff may have access to the personal information of other members of staff, suppliers, clients or the public. The preschool expects staff to help meet its data protection obligations to those individuals.

If you have access to personal information, you must:

• only access the personal information that you have authority to access and only for authorised purposes
• only allow other staff to access personal information if they have appropriate authorisation
• only allow individuals who are not school staff to access personal information if you have specific authority to do so
• keep personal information secure (e.g. by complying with rules on access to premises, computer access, password protection and secure file storage and destruction in accordance with the school’s policies).
• not remove personal information, or devices containing personal information (or which can be used to access it) from the school’s premises unless appropriate security measures are in place (such as pseudonymisation, encryption or password protection) to secure the information and the device
• not store personal information on local drives or on personal devices that are used for work purposes.

Information Security
The preschool will use appropriate technical and organisational measures to keep personal information secure, to protect against unauthorised or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction or damage.

All staff are responsible for keeping information secure in accordance with the legislation and must follow their school’s acceptable usage policy.

The preschool will develop, implement and maintain safeguards appropriate to its size, scope and business, its available resources, the amount of personal data that it owns or maintains on behalf of others and identified risks (including use of encryption and pseudonymisation where applicable). It will regularly evaluate and test the effectiveness of those safeguards to ensure security of processing.

Staff must guard against unlawful or unauthorised processing of personal data and against the accidental loss of, or damage to, personal data. Staff must exercise particular care in protecting sensitive personal data from loss and unauthorised access, use or disclosure.

Staff must follow all procedures and technologies put in place to maintain the security of all personal data from the point of collection to the point of destruction. Staff may only transfer personal data to third-party service providers who agree in writing to comply with the required policies and procedures and who agree to put adequate measures in place, as requested.

Staff must maintain data security by protecting the confidentiality, integrity and availability of the personal data, defined as follows:

Confidentiality means that only people who have a need to know and are authorised to use the personal data can access it.

Integrity means that personal data is accurate and suitable for the purpose for which it is processed.

Availability means that authorised users can access the personal data when they need it for authorised purposes.

Staff must comply with and not attempt to circumvent the administrative, physical and technical safeguards the school has implemented and maintains in accordance with the GDPR and DPA.

Where the school uses external organisations to process personal information on its behalf, additional security arrangements need to be implemented in contracts with those organisations to safeguard the security of personal information. Contracts with external organisations must provide that:

• the organisation may only act on the written instructions of the school
• those processing data are subject to the duty of confidence
• appropriate measures are taken to ensure the security of processing
• sub-contractors are only engaged with the prior consent of the school and under a written contract
• the organisation will assist the school in providing subject access and allowing individuals to exercise their rights in relation to data protection
• the organisation will delete or return all personal information to the school as requested at the end of the contract
• the organisation will submit to audits and inspections, provide the school with whatever information it needs to ensure that they are both meeting their data protection obligations, and tell the school immediately if it does something infringing data protection law.

Before any new agreement involving the processing of personal information by an external organisation is entered into, or an existing agreement is altered, the relevant staff must seek approval from the DPO.

Storage and retention of personal information
Personal data will be kept securely in accordance with the school’s data protection obligations.

Personal data should not be retained for any longer than necessary. The length of time data should be retained will depend upon the circumstances, including the reasons why personal data was obtained.

Personal information that is no longer required will be deleted in accordance with the Schools Record Retention Schedule.

Data breaches
A data breach may take many different forms:

• Loss or theft of data or equipment on which personal information is stored
• Unauthorised access to or use of personal information either by a member of staff or third party
• Loss of data resulting from an equipment or systems (including hardware or software) failure
• Human error, such as accidental deletion or alteration of data
• Unforeseen circumstances, such as a fire or flood
• Deliberate attacks on IT systems, such as hacking, viruses or phishing scams
• Blagging offences where information is obtained by deceiving the organisation which holds it

The school must report a data breach to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) without undue delay and where possible within 72 hours, if the breach is likely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals. The school must also notify the affected individuals if the breach is likely to result in a high risk to their rights and freedoms.

Staff should ensure they inform their line manager/DPO/Head teacher immediately that a data breach is discovered and make all reasonable efforts to recover the information, following the school’s agreed breach reporting process.

Training
The school will ensure that staff are adequately trained regarding their data protection responsibilities.

Consequences of a failure to comply
The school takes compliance with this policy very seriously. Failure to comply puts data subjects whose personal information is being processed at risk and carries the risk of significant civil and criminal sanctions for the individual and the school and may in some circumstances amount to a criminal offence by the individual.

Any failure to comply with any part of this policy may lead to disciplinary action under the school’s procedures and this action may result in dismissal for gross misconduct. If a non-employee breaches this policy, they may have their contract terminated with immediate effect.

If you have any questions or concerns about this policy, you should contact your line manager or the school’s DPO.

 

Staffing and employment policy


We provide a high staffing ratio to ensure that children have sufficient individual attention and to guarantee care and education of a high quality. Our staff are appropriately qualified and have a relevant DBS Check in accordance with Ofsted’s requirements.

Aims – To ensure that children and their parents are offered high quality pre-school care and education.
Methods
• To meet this aim we use the following ratios of adult to child:
– Children aged two years of age: 1 adult: 4 children
– Children aged three – seven years of age: 1 adult: 8 children
• A minimum of two staff/adults are on duty at any one time.
• We use a key person system to ensure that each child and each family has a particular member of staff for discussion and consultation.
• We hold regular staff meetings to undertake curriculum planning and to discuss children’s progress, their achievements and any difficulties which may arise from time to time.
• 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 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 us imposing conditions or requirements which are not justifiable.
• Our pre-school manager and deputy manager hold a Level 4 qualification and a minimum of half our staff a level 3 qualification.
• We provide regular in-service training to all staff and staff are encouraged to attend courses. We have a training plan and encourage professional development for all staff.
• We provide staff induction training in the first week of employment. This induction includes our Health and Safety Policy and Procedures and Child Protection Policy and Procedures.
• All staff, parents and volunteers are made aware of our “No Smoking” policy. We display “No Smoking” signs. Staff may smoke on a break off the premises. Staff must not smoke where they may be visible to children. Staff must not be under the influence of alcohol or any substance which affects their care of the children.
• All staff have an annual appraisal and supervisions on a regular basis.
• We are committed to recruiting, appointing and employing staff in accordance with all relevant legislation and best practice.
• We use Ofsted guidance on obtaining references and criminal record checks through the DBS service for staff and volunteers who will have substantial access to children.

 

Special educational needs/disability policy

We provide an environment in which all children are supported to reach their full potential.
• We have regard for the DfES Special Educational Needs Code of Practice.
• We make provision for all children as and when they require it, irrespective of their special needs.
• We work in partnership with parents and other agencies in meeting individual children’s needs.
• We monitor and review our practice and provision and, if necessary, make adjustments where possible.

Methods
• We designate named staff to be Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators (SENCO) and give his/her name to parents. Our registered Senco is Nicola Perry.
• We have developed a screening process for all children to ensure that concerns and needs are identified and support given to both children and parents.
• We ensure that our physical environment is as far as possible suitable for children with disabilities.
• We work closely with parents of children with special educational needs/disabilities to create and maintain a positive partnership.
• We ensure that parents are informed at all stages of the assessment, planning, provision and review of their children’s education.
• We provide parents with information on sources of independent advice and support.
• We liaise with other professionals involved with children with special educational needs /disabilities and their families, including the transfer of all reports / paperwork to new settings. This is to ensure they are fully aware of the child’s ongoing needs and of the support that has been provided to date.
• We provide a differentiated curriculum to meet individual needs and abilities
• The implementation of a targeted or personalised plan lies with the Senco. These plans will be tailor made for each child, shared with the parent and reviewed and evaluated regularly by the keyperson and the Senco. Any child needing extra support will receive this by the keyperson / Senco and supported by all staff.
• We ensure the privacy of children with special educational needs /disabilities where extra support is being provided. (Please read our confidentiality policy.).
• The Senco attends courses to extend her knowledge of specialist needs and staff with an interest in special educational needs are provided with opportunities to attend courses to extend their knowledge.
• We ensure the effectiveness of our special educational needs /disability provision by collecting information from a range of sources e.g. staff and management meetings, parental and external agencies views, inspections and training.

 

Safeguarding Policy

Statement of intent

Our pre-school wants to work with children, parents and the community to ensure the safety of children and to give them the very best start in life. Our designated safeguarding leads are Michelle Beerensson (Manager) and Nicola Perry (Deputy)

Aims

• Create an environment in our pre-school which encourages children to develop a positive self image, regardless of race, language, religion, culture or home background.
• Help children to establish and sustain satisfying relationships within their families, with peers and with other adults.
• Encourage children to develop a sense of autonomy and independence;
• Enable children to have the self confidence and the vocabulary to resist inappropriate approaches; and
• Work with parents to build their understanding of and commitment to the welfare of all our children.

The legal framework for this work is:

• The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act
• The Children Act 1989
• Human Rights Act 1998
• Data Protection Act 1984
• The Protection of Children Act 1999
• The Children (NI) Order
• The Children (Scotland) Order

Liaison with other bodies

• We work within the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board guidelines
• We notify the registration authority (Ofsted) of any incident or accident and any changes in our arrangements which affect the well-being of children within 14 days.
• We have procedures for contacting the local authority on child protection issues, to ensure that it is easy, in any emergency, for the pre-school and social services to work well together.
• If a report is to be made to the authorities, we act within the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board guidance in deciding whether we must inform the child’s parents at the same time.
• If any member of staff feels that a member of the management team has not dealt with a concern correctly they must contact the local child protection office to seek advice.
• If a parent/main carer has concerns about any child regardless of if they attend our pre-school or not we would encourage them to speak our designated person for advice or contact the NSPCC helpline.

Methods

Staffing and volunteering

• Our named persons (designated safeguarding lead) who coordinates child protection issues are Michelle Beerensson (Manager) and Nicola Perry (Deputy)
• We provide adequate and appropriate staffing resources to meet the needs of children.
• Applicants for posts within the pre-school are clearly informed that the positions are exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Candidates are informed of the need to carry out checks before posts can be confirmed. Where applications are rejected because of information that has been disclosed, applicants have the right to know and to challenge incorrect information.
• We abide by Ofsted requirements in respect of references and DBS for staff and volunteers, to ensure that no disqualified person or unfit person works at the pre-school or has access to the children.
• Volunteers do not work unsupervised.
• We abide by the Protection of Children Act requirements in respect of any person who is dismissed from our employment or resigns in circumstances that would otherwise lead to dismissal for reasons of child protection concern.
• We have procedures for recording the details of visitors to the pre-school.
• We take security steps to ensure that we have control over who comes into the pre-school so that no unauthorised person has unsupervised access to the children.

Disciplinary Action

Where a member of staff or a volunteer is dismissed from the pre-school or internally disciplined because of misconduct relating to a child, we notify the relevant bodies (in line with current legislation)

Training

We seek out training opportunities for all adults involved in the pre-school to ensure they are able to recognise the signs and symptoms of possible physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse and neglect and so that they are aware of the local authority guidelines for making referrals. We ensure that all staff know the procedures for reporting and recording their concerns in the pre-school.

Planning

The layout of the room allows for constant supervision.

Curriculum

• We introduce key elements of child protection into our foundation stage curriculum, so that children can develop understanding of why and how to keep safe.
• We create within the pre-school a culture of value and respect for the individual.
• We ensure that this is carried out in a way that is appropriate for the ages and developmental stage of our children.


Complaints

• We ensure that all parents know how to complain about staff or volunteer action within the pre-school, which may include an allegation of abuse.
• We follow the guidance of the Area Child Protection Committee when investigating any complaint that a member of staff or volunteer has abused a child.
• We follow all the disclosure and recording procedures when investigating an allegation that a member of staff or volunteer has abused a child as if it were any allegation of abuse by any other person.
• In responding to suspicions of abuse we acknowledge that abuse of children can take different forms – physical, emotional, sexual and neglect.
• When children are suffering form physical, sexual or emotional abuse, this may be demonstrated through changes in their behaviour, or in their play. Where such changes in behaviour occur, or where children’s play gives cause for concern, the pre-school investigates.
• We allow investigations to be carried out with sensitivity. Staff in the pre-school take care not to influence the outcome either through the way they speak to children or ask questions of children.
• Where a child shows signs and symptoms of ‘failure to thrive’ or neglect, we make appropriate referrals.
• If an allegation is made against any member of staff advice will be taken form the local child protection office and Ofsted as to whether the staff member should be suspended pending investigations or put on gardening leave following further investigations

Disclosures

Where a child makes a disclosure to a member of staff, that member of staff:
• Offers reassurance to the child;
• Listens to the child; and
• Gives reassurance that she or he will take action.
The member of staff does not question the child.

Recording suspicions of abuse and disclosures

Staff make a record of:
• The child’s name
• The age of the child;
• The date and time of the observation or the disclosure;
• An objective record of the observation or disclosure;
• The exact words spoken by the child;
• The name of the person to whom the concern was reported, with date and time; and the names of any other person present at the time.

These records are signed and dated and kept in a separate confidential file.

All members of staff know the procedures for recording and reporting.

Informing Parents

Parents are normally the first point of contact. If a suspicion of abuse is recorded, parents are informed at the same time as the report is made, except where the guidance of the local Area Child Protection Committee does not allow this. This will usually be the case where the parent is the likely abuser. In these cases, the investigating officers will inform parents.

Confidentiality

All suspicions and investigations are kept confidential and shared only with those who need to know. Any information is shared under the guidance of the Area Child Protection officer.

Support to families

• The pre-school takes every step in its power to build up trusting and supportive relations among families, staff and volunteers in the group.
• The pre-school continues to welcome the child and the family whilst investigations are being made in relation to abuse in the home situation.
• Confidential records kept on a child are shared with the child’s parents or those who have parental responsibility for the child only if appropriate under the guidance of the Area Child Protection Committee.
• With the proviso that the care and safety of the child is paramount, we do all in our power to support and work with the child’s family.

Staff Whistle Blowing Policy.

If a member of staff suspects another member of staff is abusing a child or children from the setting, they should – in the first instance- report their suspicions to the Manager, Mrs Michelle Beerensson (Designated Safeguarding Lead)
If the suspicion is against the Manager, staff should report their suspicions to the Deputy Manager, Mrs Nicola Perry (Designated Safeguarding Lead).
If suspicions are against either or both the Manager and/or the Deputy, staff should contact the Committee Chairperson who will report it to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). Staff can also contact LADO directly or the NSPCC Whistleblowing helpline if they do not feel they can raise concerns regarding child protection internally.
All staff are given relevant information and up to date contact details on a regular basis and can follow the advice given.
Any alleged incident must also be reported to Ofsted, along with the measures that have been taken as it is an offence not to do this.

 

Supervision of children on outings and visits.

Policy statement.

Children benefit from being taken out of the setting to go on visits or trips to local suitable venues for activities which enhance their learning experiences. Staff in our setting ensure that there are procedures to keep children safe on outings: all staff and volunteers are aware of and follow the procedures below-

Procedures.

1. Parents sign a general consent on registration for their children to be taken out as a part of the daily activities of the pre-school.

2. There is a risk assessment for each venue carried out which is reviewed annually

3. All venue risk assessments are made available for parents to see.

4. We use the current legislation for ratios when out of the setting on local walks with older pre-school children but we would increase this ratio if our risk assessment indicated a need for more staff.

5. Outings are recorded in an outings record book kept in the setting stating:

– The date.
– The venue
– Names of children and staff.

6. Staff take a register and a mini first aid pack if these are not available at the venue. The amount of equipment will vary and be consistent with the venue and the number of children as well as how long they will be out for

7. A minimum of three staff should accompany children on outings and a minimum of three should remain behind with the rest of the children. (if not all children will be going on the outing)

 

Outdoor Area Policy

It is a statutory requirement that children have access to the outdoor environment on a daily basis.

We plan to go out in all but the severest of weathers to enable us to do this please ensure your child has appropriate clothing.

Coat or rain coat

Suitable foot wear such as shoes, canvas shoes or trainers. No crocs, flip flops, open toed or sling backed shoes should be worn.

In spring/summer months

Sun hat

Sun cream applied before coming to pre-school. We will re-apply if necessary.

In the outdoor and indoor area children access a wide range of activities including wet and messy play, climbing activities and exploring the natural areas. Please ensure the clothing they wear is comfortable and does not restrict movement and the type of play they can engage in.

 

Achieving Positive Behaviour policy

Our pre-school believes that children flourish best when they know how they are expected to behave and should be free to play and learn without fear of being hurt or unfairly restricted by anyone else.

Aim – to provide an environment in which there is acceptable behaviour and where children learn to respect themselves, other people and their environment.

Methods

• Our Manager Michelle Beerensson and Deputy Manager Nicola Perry have overall responsibility for issues concerning behaviour.
• We require the Manager/Deputy to:
o Keep up-to-date with legislation and research and thinking on handling children’s behaviour.
o Access relevant sources of expertise on handling children’s behaviour: and
o Check that all staff have relevant in-service training on handling children’s behaviour. We keep a record of staff attendance at this training.
• We require all staff, volunteers and students to provide a positive model of behaviour by treating children, parents and one another with friendliness, care and courtesy.
• We require all staff, volunteers and students to use positive strategies for handling any conflict by helping children find solutions in ways which are appropriate for the children’s ages and stages of development – for example distraction, praise and reward.
• We familiarise new staff and volunteers with the pre-school’s behaviour policy and its rules for behaviour.
• We expect all members of the pre-school – children, parents, staff, volunteers and students – to keep to the rules, requiring these to be applied consistently.
• We praise and endorse desirable behaviour such as kindness and willingness to share.
• We avoid creating situations in which children receive adult attention only in return for undesirable behaviour.
• We recognise that codes for interacting with other people vary between cultures and require staff to be aware of – and respect – those used by members of the pre-school.
• When children behave in unacceptable ways, we help them to see what was wrong and how to cope more appropriately.
• We never send children out of the room by themselves.
• We use “time out” strategies to calm an undesirable situation.
• We never use physical punishment, such as smacking or shaking. Children are never threatened with these.
• We do not use techniques intended to single out and humiliate individual children.
• We only use physical restraint, such as holding, to prevent physical injury to children or adults and/or serious damage to property. Details of such an event (what happened, what action was taken and by whom, and the names of witnesses) are brought to the attention of our pre-school manager and are recorded in our Incident Book. A parent is informed on the same day and signs the incident book to indicate that he/she has been informed.
• In cases of serious misbehaviour, such as racial or other abuse, we make clear immediately the unacceptability of the behaviour and attitudes, by means of explanations rather than personal blame.
• We do not shout or raise our voices in a threatening way to respond to children’s behaviour.
• We handle children’s unacceptable behaviour in ways which are appropriate to their ages and stages of development – for example by distraction, discussion or by withdrawing the child from the situation.
• We work in partnership with children’s parents. Parents are regularly informed about their children’s behaviour by their key person. We work with parents to address recurring unacceptable behaviour, using objective observation records to help us to understand the cause and to decide jointly how to respond appropriately.

Aim to Promote British Values


We encourage the children to follow our golden rules which are displayed in the setting. We remind the children daily of the importance of:
1. Being kind to others
2. Listening ears
3. Helping hands
4. Walking feet
5. Helping to tidy up

Bullying

Bullying involves the persistent physical or verbal abuse of another child or children. We would like to reaffirm that bullying at a young age is very rare but will be taken seriously if it occurs.
We take bullying very seriously.

If a child bullies another child or children:
• We intervene to stop the child harming the other child or children;
• We explain to the child doing the bullying why her/his behaviour is inappropriate;
• We give reassurance to the child or children who have been bullied;
• We make sure that children who bully receive praise when they display acceptable behaviour;
• We do not label children who bully;
• When children bully, we discuss what has happened with their parents and work out with them a plan for handling the child’s behaviour; and
• When children have been bullied, we share what has happened with their parents, explaining that the child who did the bullying is being helped to adopt more acceptable ways of behaving.

 

Equality and diversity policy

Our pre-school is committed to providing equality of opportunity and anti-discriminatory practice for all children and families.

Aim

We aim to:

• Provide a secure environment in which all our children can flourish and in which all contributions are valued.
• Include and value the contribution of all families to our understanding of equality and diversity;
• Provide positive non-stereotyping information about different ethnic groups and people with disabilities;
• Continue to extend our knowledge and understanding of issues of equality and diversity.

The legal framework for this policy is:

• Race Relations Act 1976
• Race Relations Amendment Act 2000
• Sex Discrimination Act 1986
• Children Act 1989; and
• Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001

Methods

Admissions

Our pre-school is open to all members of the community.

• We advertise our service widely.
• We provide information in clear, concise language, whether in spoken or written form.
• We can provide information in as many languages as possible.
• We base our admissions policy on a fair system.
• We do not discriminate against a child with a disability or refuse a child entry to our pre-school because of any disability.
• We ensure that all parents are made aware of our equal opportunities policy.
• We develop an action plan to ensure that people with disabilities can participate successfully in the services offered by the pre-school and in the curriculum offered. (See our SEN Policy)

Employment

• Posts are advertised and all applicants are judged against explicit and fair criteria.
• The applicant who best meets the criteria is offered the post, subject to references and checks via the DBS system. This ensures fairness in the selection process. All job descriptions include a commitment to equality and diversity as part of their specifications.
• We monitor our application process to ensure that it is fair and accessible.

Training

• We seek out training opportunities for staff and volunteers to enable them to develop practices which enable all children to flourish.
• We review our practices to ensure that we are fully implementing our policy for equality and diversity.

Curriculum

The curriculum offered in the pre-school encourages children to develop positive attitudes to people who are different from themselves. It encourages children to empathise with others and to begin to develop the skills of critical thinking.

We do this by:

• Making children feel valued and good about themselves;
• Ensuring that children have equality of access to learning;
• Reflecting the widest possible range of communities in the choice of resources;
• Avoiding stereotypes or derogatory images in the selection of materials;
• Celebrating a wide range of festivals;
• Creating an environment of mutual respect and tolerance;
• Helping children to understand that discriminatory behaviour and remarks are unacceptable;
• Ensuring that the curriculum offered is inclusive of children with special educational needs and children with disabilities; and
• Ensuring that children whose first language is not English have full access to the curriculum and are supported in their learning.

Valuing Diversity in Families

• We welcome the diversity of family life and work with all families;
• We encourage children to contribute stories of their everyday life into the pre-school.
• We encourage parents/carers to take part in the life of the pre-school and to contribute fully.
• For families who have a first language other than English, we value the contribution their culture and language offer.
• We offer a flexible payment system for families of differing means.

Food

• We work in partnership with parents to ensure that the medical, cultural and dietary needs of children are met.
• We help children to learn about a range of food, cultural approaches to mealtimes and eating and to respect the differences among them.

Meetings

• Meetings are arranged to ensure that all families who wish to may be involved in the running of the pre-school.
• Information about meetings is communicated in a variety of ways – written, verbal and if needed, in translation – to ensure that all parents have information about access to meetings.

 

Equipment and resources policy

We believe that high quality care and education is promoted by providing children with safe, clean, attractive, age and stage appropriate resources, toys and equipment.

Methods

In order to achieve this;

• We provide play equipment and resources which are safe and –where applicable – conform to the BSEN safety standards or Toys (Safety) Regulations (1995);
• We provide a sufficient quantity of equipment and resources for the number of children;
• We provide resources which promote all areas of children’s learning and development, which may be child – or adult – led;
• We select books, equipment and resources which promote positive images of people of all races, cultures and abilities, are non-discriminatory and avoid racial and gender stereotyping;
• We provide play equipment and resources which promote continuity and progression, provide sufficient challenge and meet the needs and interests of all children;
• We provide natural and recycled materials which are clean, in good condition and safe for the children to use;
• We provide furniture which is suitable for children and furniture which is suitable for adults;
• We check all resources and equipment regularly as they are set out at the beginning of each session and put away at the end of each session. We repair and clean, or replace any unsafe, worn out, dirty or damaged equipment;
• We provide adequate insurance cover for the pre-school’s resources and equipment;
• We plan the provision of activities and appropriate resources so that a balance of familiar equipment and resources and new exciting challenges is offered.

 

Food and drink policy

This pre-school regards snack as an important part of the pre-school’s session. Eating represents a social time for children and adults and helps children to learn about healthy eating.

At snack times, we aim to provide nutritious food, which meets the children’s individual dietary needs. We aim to meet the full requirements of Ofsted’s Care Standards on Food and Drink (Standard 8).

Methods
• Before a child starts to attend the pre-school, we find out from parents their children’s dietary needs, including any allergies.
• We record information about each child’s dietary needs in her/his registration record and parents sign the record to signify that it is correct.
• We display current information about individual children’s dietary needs so that all staff and volunteers are fully informed about them.
• We implement systems to ensure that children receive only food and drink which is consistent with their dietary needs and their parents’ wishes.
• If they prefer parents can supply their own snack in a clearly labelled box for their child to eat at snack time.
• We organise meal and snack times so that they are social occasions in which children and staff participate.
• We use snack times to help children to develop independence through making choices, serving food and drink and feeding themselves.
• We provide children with utensils which are appropriate for their ages and stages of development and which take into account the eating practices in their cultures.
• We have fresh drinking water constantly available for the children. We inform the children about how to obtain the water and that they can ask for water at any time during the session/day.
• We inform parents who provide food for their children about the storage facilities available in pre-school.
• We have rules about children sharing and swapping their food with one another in order to protect children with food allergies.
• We provide milk for those that drink milk
• At least one member of staff has a Food Hygiene Certificate and all other staff are trained to follow our guidelines in the preparation and handling of food.

 

Health and Safety policy

This pre-school believes that the health and safety of children is of paramount importance. We make our pre-school a safe and healthy place for children, parents, staff and volunteers.
We aim to make children, parents and staff aware of health and safety issues and to minimise the hazards and risks to enable the children to thrive in a healthy and safe environment.

Methods

The member of staff responsible for health and safety is Michelle Beerensson. If Michelle is not available, Nicola Perry takes responsibility for health and safety. Michelle Beerensson has undertaken health and safety training and regularly updates her knowledge and understanding. We display the required health and safety poster on the display board behind the registration desk.

Risk assessment

Our risk assessment process includes:
• Checking for hazards and risks indoors and outside and in our activities and procedures. Our assessment covers adults and children.
• Deciding which areas need attention: and
• Developing an action plan which specifies the action required, the time scales for action, the person responsible for the action and any funding required.

All resources are checked daily as they are put out. A full risk assessment is carried out annually unless there are any major changes.

Insurance cover

We have public liability insurance and employers’ liability insurance. The certificate is displayed on the display board in the main hall.

Awareness raising

• Our induction training for staff and volunteers includes a clear explanation of health and safety issues so that all adults are able to adhere to our policy and understand their shared responsibility for health and safety. The induction training covers matters
of employee well-being, including safe lifting and storage of potentially dangerous substances.
• Records are kept of these induction training sessions and new staff and volunteers are asked to sign the records to confirm that they have taken part.
• Health and safety issues are explained to the parents of new children so that they understand the part they play in the daily life of the pre-school.
• As necessary, health and safety training is included in the annual training plans of staff and health and safety is discussed regularly at staff meetings.
• We have a no smoking policy.
• Children are made aware of health and safety issues through discussions planned activities and routines.
Children’s safety

• Only persons who have been checked for criminal records via the DBS system have access to our children. New staff have to complete 3 months probation before helping children with toileting.
• Adults do not supervise children on their own.
• All children are supervised by adults at all times.
• Whenever children are on the premises at least two adults are present.

Security

• Systems are in place for the safe arrival and departure of children. Children’s arrivals are registered in a register and if a child is more that 10 minutes late that time is noted in the register. If children of committee members are in before registration, they must be marked in the register at that time.
• The arrival and departure times of adults – staff, volunteers and visitors – are recorded.
• Our systems prevent unauthorised access to our premises.
• Our systems prevent children from leaving our premises unnoticed.
• The personal possessions of staff and volunteers are securely stored during pre-school sessions.
• Children being collected before 2.55pm must have time recorded in the register.

Floors

All surfaces are checked daily to ensure they are clean and safe. A wet floor sign will be used where necessary.

Kitchen

• Children do not have access to the kitchen.
• All surfaces are clean and non-porous.
• There are separate facilities for hand-washing and for washing up.
• Cleaning materials and other dangerous materials are stored out of children’s reach.

Electrical equipment

• All electrical items conform to safety requirements and are checked regularly. (Pat tested when appropriate)
• Our electrical switchgear/meter cupboard is not accessible to the children.
• Heaters are guarded and electric sockets, wires and leads all meet requirements.
• There are sufficient sockets to prevent overloading.
• The temperature of hot water is controlled to prevent scalds.
• Lighting and ventilation is adequate in all areas including storage areas.

Storage

• All resources and materials which children select are stored safely.
• All equipment and resources are stored or stacked safely to prevent them accidentally falling or collapsing.

Outdoor area

• Our outdoor area is securely fenced.
• Our outdoor area is checked for safety and cleared of rubbish before it is used.
• Adults and children are alerted to the dangers of poisonous plants, herbicides and pesticides.
• Where water can form a pool on equipment, it is emptied before children start playing outside.
• All outdoor activities are supervised at all times.

Hygiene

• We regularly seek information from the Environmental Health Department and the Health Authority to ensure that we keep up-to-date with the latest recommendations.
• Our daily routines encourage the children to learn about personal hygiene.
• We have a daily cleaning routine for the pre-school.
• We clean resources and equipment, dressing up clothes and furnishings on a regular basis.
• The toilet area has a high standard of hygiene including hand washing and drying facilities.
• We implement good hygiene practices by:
– cleaning tables between activities
– checking toilets regularly;
– wearing protective clothing – such as aprons and disposable gloves – as appropriate;
– providing sets of clean clothes;
– Providing tissues and wipes; and paper towels.

Activities
• Before purchase or loan, equipment and resources are checked to ensure that they are safe for the ages and stages of the children currently attending the pre-school.
• The layout of play equipment allows adults and children to move safely and freely between activities.
• All equipment is regularly checked for cleanliness and safety and any dangerous items are repaired or discarded.
• All materials – including paint and glue – are non-toxic.
• Physical play is constantly supervised.
• Children are taught to handle and store tools safely.
• Children who are sleeping are checked regularly.
• Children learn about health, safety and personal hygiene through the activities we provide and routines we follow.

Food and drink

• Staff that prepare and handle food receive appropriate training and understand and comply with food safety and hygiene regulations.
• All food and drink is stored appropriately.
• Adults do not carry hot drinks through the play area(s) and do not place hot drinks within reach of children.
• Snack and meal times are appropriately supervised and children do not walk about with food and drinks.
• Fresh drinking water is available to the children at all times.
• We operate systems to ensure that children do not have access to food/drinks to which they are allergic.

Outings and visits

• We have agreed procedures for safe conduct of outings.
• Procedures to be following on outings are within outings policy and procedure

Animals

• We do our best to ensure that animals visiting the pre-school are free from disease, safe to be with children and do not pose a health risk. We use a recognised educational organisation (Jaws and Claws)

Fire Safety

• Fire doors are clearly marked, never obstructed and can be opened using a push bar system opened from the inside.
• Smoke detectors/alarms and fire fighting appliances confirm to BSEN standards, are fitted in appropriate high risk areas of the building and are checked as specified by the manufacturer. Singleton Village Hall (our landlord) organise this.
• Our emergency evacuation procedures are:
– clearly displayed in the premises
– Explained to new members of staff, volunteers and parents; and practised regularly.

• Records are kept of fire drills.

First aid and Medication

Currently all of our staff hold a first aid training certificate (relevant to infants and young children) and is updated when required.

Our fist aid kit:

• Complies with the Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981;
• Is regularly checked by a designated member of staff and re-stocked as necessary;
• Is easily accessible to adults and is kept out of the reach of children.

At the time of admission to the pre-school, parents’ written permission for emergency medical advice or treatment is sought. Parents sign and date their written approval

Our Accident Book:

• Is kept safely and accessibly’
• All staff and volunteers know where it is kept and how to complete it; and
• Is reviewed at least half termly to identify any potential or actual hazards.

Ofsted and the local child protection agencies are notified of any serious accident or injury to, or serious illness of, or the death of, any child whilst in our care and we will act upon any advice given. Failure to do so, without reasonable excuse, is to commit an offence.

Any injury requiring General Practitioner or hospital treatment to a child, parent, volunteer or visitor is reported to the local office of the Health and Safety Executive and the local Child Protection Agency.

We meet our legal requirements for the safety of our employees by complying with RIDDOR (the Reporting of Injury, Disease and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations). We report to the local office of the Health and Safety Executive:

• Any dangerous occurrences (i.e. an event which does not cause an accident but could have done).

It is our policy not to administer any medication with the exception of inhalers or epi pens. Parents of children that may require an inhaler or epi pen will be required to sign our medication form that list various information including date, time, strength, dosage, name of medicine and any other relevant information. If a child requires any medication for a long term illness we will seek advice from the Local Health Authority or the relevant body as to how to proceed or if any training is required.

Children’s prescribed drugs will be stored in their original containers and are clearly labelled and are inaccessible to children.

The preschool does not administer antibiotics but it is important that we know if a child is taking them. If this is the case, we ask that the parent completes an antibiotic record form which will be stored with the child's confidential records.

Sickness

Our policy for the exclusion of ill or infectious children is discussed with parents. This includes procedures for contacting parents – or other authorised adults – if a child becomes ill at pre-school. We will contact parent(s) in the first instance, but if we are unable to contact them, the emergency contact given by parent(s) on the enrolment form will be contacted.

Children suffering from diarrhoea or sickness should stay away from pre-school for 48 hours after the last episode. For other infectious/contagious illnesses, the exclusion period will be as advised by the current health authority guidelines.

Ofsted is notified of any infectious diseases which a qualified medical person considers notifiable.

Ofsted will be notified of any food poisoning affecting two or more children looked after on the premises or any child having a serious disease on the premises.

Sick children will be comforted and looked after by one member of staff away from the other children until they can be collected by an authorised person.

Safety of adults

• Adults are provided with guidance about the safe storage, movement, lifting and erection of large pieces of equipment.
• All warning signs are clear and in appropriate languages.
• Adults do not remain in the building on their own or leave on their own after dark.
• Staff accidents are recorded. The records are reviewed termly to identify any issues which need to be addressed.

Records
In accordance with the Welfare Standards, we keep records of:

• Adults authorised to collect children from pre-school’;
• The names, addresses and telephone numbers of emergency contacts in case of children’s illness or accident;
• The allergies, dietary requirements and illnesses of individual children;
• The times of attendance of children, staff, volunteers and visitors;
• Accidents; and
• Incidents.

In addition, the following policies and documentation in relation to health and safety are in place.
• Risk assessment
• Record of visitors
• Fire safety procedures
• Administration of medication
• Record of the administration of medicines
• Prior parental consent for emergency treatment.
• Accident record
• Sick children
• No smoking

 

Student Placement policy

Statement of intent

This pre-school recognises that qualifications and training make an important contribution to the quality of the care and education provided by pre-school settings. As part of our commitment to quality, we offer placements to students undertaking early years’ qualifications and training, and work experience students from local schools
We aim to provide for students on placement with us, experiences which contribute to the successful completion of their studies and which provide examples of quality practice in early years care and education.

Methods

• We require students to meet the ‘suitable person ‘requirements of Ofsted.
• We require schools placing students under the age of 17 years with the pre-school to vouch for their good character.
• We supervise students under the age of 17 years at all times and do not allow them to have unsupervised access to children’
• Students who are placed in our pre-school on a short term basis are not counted in our staffing ratios. Students who are placed for longer periods – for example, a year – may be counted in our staffing ratios provided we consider them to be competent.
• We take out employers’ liability insurance and public liability insurance which covers both trainees and voluntary helpers.
• We require students to keep to our confidentiality policy.
• We co-operate with students’ tutors in order to help students to fulfil the requirements of their course of study.
• We provide students, at the first session of their placement, with a short induction on how our pre-school is managed, how our sessions are organised and our policies and procedures.
• We communicate a positive message to students about the value of qualifications and training.
• We make the needs of the children paramount by not admitting students in numbers which hinder the essential work of the pre-school.
• We ensure that students placed with us are engaged in early years’ training which provides the necessary background understanding of children’s development and activities.

 

The non-collection of children policy

In the event that a child is not collected by an authorised adult, we will ensure that the child receives a high standard of care in order to cause as little distress as possible. We inform parents/carers of our procedures so that, if they are unavoidably delayed, they will be reassured that their children will be properly cared for.

Procedures

1. Parents of children starting at the pre-school are asked to provide specific information which is recorded on our Registration Form, including;

• Home address and telephone number – if the parents do not have a telephone, an alternative number must be given, perhaps a neighbour’s.
• Place of work, address and telephone number (if applicable);
• Mobile telephone number (if applicable);
• Names and telephone numbers of adults who are authorised by the parents to collect their child from pre-school, for example a child minder or grandparent; and
• Information about any person who does not have legal access to the child.

2. On occasions when parents or the persons normally authorised to collect the child are not able to collect the child, parents/s must inform us verbally (either in person or by phone) the details of the person who will be collecting their child. We agree with parents how the identification of the person who is to collect their child will be verified.

3. Parents are informed that if they are not able to collect the child as planned, they must inform us so that we can begin to take back-up procedures. We provide parents with our contact telephone number. If the parent is going to be late collecting their children and arrangements have not been made for an authorised adult to do so, Great Chart & Singleton Pre-school reserves the right to make a charge of £10 per quarter hour or part of, to cover excess costs.

4. If a child is not collected at the end of the session/day, we follow the following procedures;

• Staff are asked to see if they have been notified of any information about changes to the normal collection routines.
• If no information is available, parents/carers are contacted at home or at work;
• If this is unsuccessful, the adults who are authorised by the parents to collect their child from pre-school – and whose telephone numbers are recorded on the Registration form – are contacted.
• All reasonable attempts are made to contact the parents/carers, for example a neighbour is contacted or another member of staff visits the child’s home;
• The child stays at pre-school in the care of the two staff until the child is safely collected;
• The child does not leave the premises with anyone other than those named on the Registration Form or by separate verbal notification
• If no-one collects the child and the premises are closing or staff are no longer available to care for the child, we contact the local children’s safe guarding services for assistance.
• A full written report of the incident is recorded; and
• Depending on circumstances, we reserve the right to charge parents for the additional hours worked by our staff.

 

Lost child policy

It is our intention that all children, whilst in our care, will be supervised by an adult at all times. In the unlikely event of a child going missing the following procedure has been adopted, not only to ensure the safety of the missing child, but also to ensure the safety of the other children attending the session.

Aim

We aim to ensure that whilst in our care, a child will not be given an opportunity to go missing. In the unlikely event that this does happen the following procedure has been adopted to ensure the safety of all children.

Method

• Upon discovering that a child may be missing, 2 members of staff will start an immediate search of the area where the child was last seen.
• Whilst this search is taking place the other children will be taken into the small hall where a register will be taken to ensure:
– that the child is indeed missing.
– that no other children are missing.

• Once the register has been taken, 2 staff will remain in the room with children. The remaining staff will help with the search, if it has been identified that the child is missing.
• After a period of not longer that 5 minutes has elapsed, from when the search starts, if the child has not been found, a member of staff will call the police and the parents and inform them of the situation.
• All staff will remain searching until the police arrive when they will take over the managing of the situation.
• The incident will be reported to Ofsted.

 

Volunteer Policy.

Statement of intent.

This pre-school recognises the important contribution volunteers can bring to the setting either by sharing different skills or becoming involved as parents/carers.

Method.

1. We will ensure that all volunteers will not have unsupervised access to children.

2. Volunteers will not be counted in staff ratios.

3. We take out employer’s liability insurance and public liability insurance which covers both trainees and voluntary helpers.

4. We require volunteers to keep to our confidentiality policy.

5. We provide volunteers with a short induction covering fire procedures, health and safety and our policies and procedures.

 

Mobile Phone Policy.

Statement of Intent.

To ensure the safety of the children from, or allegations against staff, parents and main carers about, the use of mobile phones to take photographs of the children which may be used for purposes other than within the pre-school.

Methods.

1. Staff shall not carry mobile phones on their person whilst at the setting. This safeguards the individuals concerned and the pre-school as a whole.

2. Mobile phones should be kept in bags (or the labelled phone box) and bags left in the kitchen. Phones may be checked at break or lunchtime only.

3. Anyone who may need to contact a member of staff while they are at work should use the hall number (01233 640551)

4. Parents/main carers/committee members and visitors to our setting should not use mobile phones at the setting this includes when arriving and collecting children. The only exception is parents/carers using phones to retrieve numbers of people whose numbers need to be added to confidential records. A member of staff will monitor the situation.

 

Pricing/Fees Policy

Please refer to our prospectus for the latest information on prices.

Morning sessions are available to all children from the age of 2 ½. Afternoon sessions are only available to children the year prior to starting school. All sessions are allocated subject to availability.

Children in receipt of Free Early Education for 3 and 4year olds can access any of these sessions but children in receipt of Free Early Education for 2year olds must take their sessions in the mornings only.

Our fee structure is fully inclusive of all drinks and snacks but children attending the afternoon sessions should bring a packed lunch. We are open for 38 weeks per year, closing on Bank Holidays and our ccurrent term dates can be found on our website.
Our fees do not include any outings, celebrations or entertainment that is in addition to our usual session activities.
Fees are payable half termly in advance, in accordance with the rates in force at the time. Fees are reviewed annually and any changes to current rates will be advised in writing, at least one half term in advance.
When the bills are issued at the beginning of each half term, payment is requested within 2 weeks but parents’ may, if they wish, split payments in two with a second payment by post dated cheque due approx 3/4 weeks after the first payment.

Payment methods Invoices can be settled by cheques made payable to Great Chart and Singleton Preschool, BACS using the bank details on the bottom of the invoice or through childcare vouchers. If planning to use childcare vouchers please contact Tracy Gorham-Brown to ensure we are registered with the company you plan to use.

Illness / Absence No refund will be given in the event of a child’s absence due to illness, holiday or any other reason.
Closures Should the pre-school/nursery be unable to open due to bad weather or any other unforeseen circumstances, parents will be refunded for a chargeable session or have it discounted from their next invoice. Should closure need to take place part way through a session, a refund will not be given in this instance.
Deposits Once a place has been offered and accepted, we require a £50 deposit. This will either be refunded in full after headcount week if only claiming Free Early Education or deducted from your final bill prior to commencement of FEE or your child leaving the preschool. If you fall into arrears, you may lose your deposit. Deposits are non-refundable if you withdraw your child without giving 4 weeks notice, have an outstanding balance or if your child does not take up the allocated place at the start of term without 4 weeks notice. Children accessing the Free For 2 funding are exempt from the deposit scheme.

FREE EARLY EDUCATION (FEE) The following information details how your child can access their FEE hours at this pre-school. All children become eligible for 15 hours per week (term time) of Free Early Education the term after they become 3. Some 2year olds may also be eligible for funding (Free for Two). An additional 15 hours of FEE may be available to 3 and 4year old children whose parents fulfil certain criteria. Parents/carers are asked to check with the preschool to find out if their child qualifies.
A child is eligible for FEE at the start of the term after their second (if eligible), or third birthday in line with the Department for Education table below:
A CHILD BORN ON OR BETWEEN WILL BECOME ELIGIBLE FOR A FREE PLACE FROM
1st April and 31st August Start of term 1, in September, following their 2nd/3rd birthday
1st September and 31st December Start of term 3, in January, following their 2nd/3rd birthday
1st January and 31st March Start of term 5, in April, following their 2nd/3rd birthday

For all 2year old children accessing their FEE hours only, the sessions accessible are Monday to Friday 9am – 12pm. Sessions are allocated subject to availability.
For all 3 and 4year old children accessing their FEE hours only, the sessions accessible are Monday to Friday 9am – 12pm or Monday to Thursday 12pm – 3pm or Monday to Thursday 9am – 3pm. Sessions are allocated subject to availability.

Children attending non-funded days/sessions in addition to their FEE will be charged at our current rates as shown on our prospectus. You will be invoiced in the usual way showing how many free hours your child is receiving in that period and what the additional charges are.
Please note that the preschool is open for 27 hours and we may not be able to offer your child their full quota of FEE hours but the FEE can be split between 2 providers up to a maximum of 15 hours (30 where eligible).

Late Payments Fees are to be paid within 2 weeks of the invoice date. If you are experiencing financial hardship please speak, in confidence, to Tracy Gorham-Brown so that alternative payment arrangements can be made. If without negotiation, fees are not settled, we are left with no alternative but to withdraw your child’s place and if necessary take legal action to recover the amount owed. Children in receipt of Free Early Education will be unable to access any additional fee paying hours until outstanding fees are settled.

Non-Payment of Fees Policy

1. Should fees be 14 days overdue and no payment plan been discussed and put into place, a letter will be written to the parents/carers asking them for payment. It will be pointed out to parents’ that they agreed to pay fees “in the amounts and at the time specified by the pre-school” in the Parental Contract that they signed when their child joined the pre-school.
2. If there is no payment – or plan for payment agreed – after a further seven days, a letter will be written giving 7 days notice of the pre-school’s intention to withdraw the child’s fee paying sessions unless an agreed payment is made.
3. If there is no payment (or agreed payment plan) in place 4 weeks’ after the payment is first due, the child’s fee paying sessions will be terminated immediately.
4. If the parent then offers to pay the full amount owed in order to reinstate their child's fee paying sessions at pre-school, it shall be at the discretion of the Committee whether to accept such an offer. Advance payment for the next week/month/term (as considered appropriate by the Committee) should also be paid before the child recommences fee paying sessions. However, the Committee may decide to allocate the fee paying sessions to another child and the sessions will be lost.
5. If there is still no payment, the Committee must decide whether to pursue the monies though the Courts or whether this would be an unwise use of the charity’s funds. If the Committee decides not to pursue the monies legally, they should still try and agree a payment plan with the parent(s).
6. If the Committee agrees the sum should be pursued legally, they should write a further letter to the parent(s) headed “Letter Before Action”. In this letter the Committee should state that they have sought legal advice, offer a final opportunity to agree a payment plan and ask for their proposals for paying the monies within 7 days. They should point out that legal proceedings will be instigated if no payment is forthcoming within 7 days. It should also be pointed out that – should the parent(s) be unsuccessful in their defence, they will be liable for Costs and receive a County Court Judgement (CCJ). This could adversely affect their ability to obtain credit in the future.
7. Should monies still not be forthcoming, after 7 days the pre-school are entitled to initiate action through the Small Claims Court immediately with no further notice. The Committee should seek legal advice before taking this step and satisfy themselves that the legal standpoint remains the same as at the point of writing.

It is hoped that by only giving parent(s) 4 weeks in which to pay – or agree a payment plan to pay- that no substantial debts will be allowed to build up, making it easier for both the parent(s) to pay what they owe and minimising losses for the pre-school. Therefore Court action is unlikely but this policy provides a framework for what should happen if it is necessary.

 

Stress Policy

We are committed to protecting the health, safety and welfare of our employees. We recognise that workplace stress is a health and safety issue and acknowledge the importance of identifying and reducing workplace stress. This policy will apply to everyone in the pre-school. The committee and Manager are responsible for the implementation and provision of any necessary resources.

Definition of Stress.

The Health and Safety Executive define stress as “the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressure or other types of demands placed on them”. This makes an important distinction between pressure, which can be positive if managed correctly, and stress which can be detrimental to health. The pre-school will provide confidential counselling for staff affected by stress caused by either work or external factors.

The pre-school will provide adequate resources to enable the implementation of an agreed stress management strategy.

Responsibilities.
Committee and Manager.

– Conduct and implement the recommendations of risk assessments.
– Ensure good communication between management and staff, particularly during periods of change.
– Ensure staff are fully trained to discharge their duties.
– Ensure staff are provided with meaningful developmental opportunities.
– Monitor workloads to ensure people are not overloaded.
– Monitor working hours and overtime to ensure that staff are not overworking.
– Ensure that bullying and harassment are not tolerated.
– Be vigilant and offer additional support to a member of staff who is experiencing stress outside work e.g. bereavement or separation.
Employees.

– Raise issues of concern with your Manager or the Committee.
– Accept opportunities for counselling if recommended.

 

Policy for Physical Restraint.

Great Chart and Singleton Pre School operate a positive behaviour policy. It is our aim to establish good behaviour from our children in a caring and supportive environment where the welfare of the children is paramount.

The purpose of this policy is to outline the procedures to be followed in the rare case of a restrictive physical intervention being used by a member of staff towards a child.

The use of physical intervention/restraint is wherever possible avoided. However, where necessary and appropriate, reasonable force will be used to control or restrain children.

Definition.

Physical Intervention: Is any method of physically intervening to resolve a difficult or dangerous situation and is not necessarily physical restraint.

Physical Restraint: Is defined as when a member of staff uses reasonable force with the intention of restricting a child’s movement against their will.

Physical intervention and restraint should be used as a last resort and the degree of force should be the minimum to achieve the desired result. Physical restraint should only be considered as an option if:

·         Calming and defusing strategies have failed to de-escalate the situation.

·         The response is in the paramount interests of the child.

·         Not intervening is likely to result in more dangerous consequences than intervening.

·         The behaviour is causing disruption or danger to other children in the setting.  

Using Force.

Before using force, staff should, wherever practicable, tell the child to stop misbehaving and communicate in a calm and measured manner throughout the incident, Staff should never give the impression of acting out of anger or frustration or to punish a child, and should make clear that physical contact or restraint will stop as soon as it ceases to be necessary.

Certain types of physical contact to “punish a child or cause pain, injury or humiliation” is explicitly forbidden (Education Act 1996).  Examples of this contact would be as follows:

·         Kicking, slapping, punching.

·         Tripping.

·         Holding a child face down to the ground.

·         Any contact/ hold that may restrict breathing/ airways.

·         Forcing limbs against their joint.

In all incidents where physical restraint has been used, the following actions must be taken:

·         The manager/ deputy must be informed as soon as possible.

·         The manger/ deputy is responsible for ensuring parents are informed as soon as possible.

·         Staff involved must complete a written record as soon as possible and always within 12 hours of the incident taking place.

Risk Management

Any child who has needed to be restrained or who has challenging behaviour which might make this necessary should have a risk assessment and a targeted plan specifying situations most likely to trigger difficult behaviour. Any strategies or de-fusing techniques most likely to help, agreed with parents/carers and communicated to all staff who work with the child must be reviewed every half term.

Health and Safety

The child’s health and safety must always be considered first and monitored at all times. Any restraint must be ceased immediately if significant signs of physical distress are seen such as, sudden changes in colour, difficulties in breathing, vomiting.

Staff are not under a duty to run the risk of personal injury, by intervening where it is not safe to do so. If the situation is assessed as being too dangerous, staff should remove other children, retire to a safe distance and call for a member of staff to help.

If a child and his/ her parents/ carers wish to make a complaint about physical restraint used by a member of staff, they will complain to the manager/deputy in the first instance. If the managers are the subject of the complaint, the chairperson should be contacted. The incident will then be investigated under the relevant disciplinary procedure.

Legalities/ context and framework

Section 93 of the Education and Inspection Act 2006 stipulates that reasonable force may be used to prevent a child:

Where there is a risk of injury to others or to the child.

Where there is a risk of significant damage to property.

Where good order and discipline is compromised.

 

 

 

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