TRULY SCRUMPTIOUS NURSERY Epidemic and Pandemic Policy (COVID-19)
Epidemic and Pandemic Policy
Statement of Intent
Truly Scrumptious intend to use this policy to provide precautionary measures to minimize transmission risks of disease in the setting during an epidemic or pandemic.
Legislation and leading authorities which have guided and influenced this policy are:
Coronavirus Act 2020, Health and Safety at Work Act (1974), Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Government Briefings, Public Health England (PHE) and World Health Organization (WHO). Advice from but not limited to, The Secretary of State, The Chief Medical Officer, Local Authority (LA) and Department for Education (DfE). The policy also has regard to Ofsted and Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) guidance where appropriate.
Aim of Policy
This Policy defines and assists the operating arrangements in place within the setting that assures compliance to the Government and leading bodies requirements with relation to the outbreak of a pandemic such as Covid19 or other infectious illnesses and diseases. This policy will be reviewed regularly in line with the government guidelines.
As early years providers we ensure to offer a continuum of extremely high standards of practice of childcare and education.
The fundamental principles to be outlined in this policy are set out to ensure good hygiene practices as best as possible to ensure the risk of transmission is reduced. We will continue to follow our other policies if they do not conflict with this policy.
The main areas we will be considering are:
- Maintaining personal and respiratory hygiene (handwashing, catch it, kill it, bin it)
- Ensuring cleanliness of the environment (especially frequently touched surfaces and resources)
Focus/ Areas of Consideration / Recommendations
- Children who test positive will continue to be advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for at least 3 days from the test date. This is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our vulnerable staff, children and families.
- Care routines including provision of meals, nappy changing, and toileting should be within the space allocated and thoroughly deep cleaned after every use.
- Sunscreen should be applied by the parents / carers before the child arrives at the setting.
Wellbeing and education
- Children should be supported in age-appropriate ways to understand the steps they can take to keep themselves safe including regular hand washing on entry and continuously throughout the day, coughing / sneezing using a tissue and adopting a catch it, kill it, bin it regime.
- EYFS framework will continue to be delivered through play and adult led activities as normal.
- Children will have access of fresh drinks of water throughout the day if they are thirsty, staff will monitor this to ensure no cross contamination of beakers or cups.
- Staff who test positive will continue to be advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 3 days. This is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our vulnerable staff, children and families.
Physical distancing/ grouping /safety
- Staff to be informed of measures in place and any new or updated policies and procedures.
- All PPE should be removed and disposed of following current government guidelines, the staff member should wash their hands for at least 20 seconds.
- Staff will be responsible to ensure appropriate cleaning takes place and enough ventilation is in the room such as opening windows. If doors are open, staff will ensure the safety of the children is maintained through continuous risk assessments.
- Staff to wear fresh, clean clothes for each session.
- If staff wish to continue to wear PPE this will no longer be supplied by the setting, however this will be down to individual staff preferences.
- All staff members must receive appropriate instruction and training in infection control and the standard operating procedure and risk assessments within which they will be operating.
- Online training may be available to allow their training levels to be maintained if appropriate.
- Although there are no longer social distant requirements, drop offs and collections will be at the doors – Toddler entrance- located through the side gate down by the garden gate, Babies entrance – Located the first door at the side gate by the office and pre-school entrance – located at the front of the building, as this has had a positive effect on children separating from their main careers with ease and minimising congestion with the corridors.
- Parents, careers and other adults will be able to enter the setting for show arounds, settling in periods and staff/ career meetings.
- Parents should receive clear communication regarding the role they play in the safe operating procedure and all measures being taken to ensure the safety of their children and themselves.
- Parents should inform the setting of their circumstances and if they plan to keep their child away.
- Although handovers are kept to minimum, we encourage parents and staff to have continuous communication via the Famly APP or phone calls throughout the day.
Hygiene and Health & Safety
- All children and staff must wash their hands upon arrival at the nursery for at least 20 seconds.
- Hand washing stations are located outside the front and side entrance. In Ongar they are located inside the front door.
- Children and staff members should be encouraged to wash their hands frequently, this includes before and after eating food, after visiting the toilet or playing outdoors, after sneezing, blowing their nose or coughing into their hand and dealing with unwell individuals.
- Bodily fluid spills should follow the correct procedures as normal.
- An enhanced cleaning schedule must be implemented that includes furniture, surfaces and children’s toys and equipment and all staff are responsible in their area of work.
- Communal area, touch points and hand washing facilities must be cleaned and sanitised regularly and cleaned thoroughly every night.
- A deep clean may be needed after a child has become ill in the area they were waiting.
- A professional cleaner will come into the setting daily once all children and staff have left the building and complete a vigorous deep clean.
- Every Friday evening once all children and staff have left the cleaner will use the disinfectant fogger to disinfect each room to ensure walls floors and all other surfaces are completely germ free.
- All waste must be disposed of in a hygienic and safe manner following government guidelines.
- Tissues must be immediately disposed of and placed in a bin with a bag.
- Bodily fluids must be double bagged and disposed of in a bin with a bag, lid, and foot pedal.
- All items within the setting requiring laundering must be washed in line with NHS laundry guidelines.
- Items such as towels, flannels and bedding must not be shared by children. These will be washed weekly or after each use if a child becomes unwell.
- The setting and all activity should be risk assessed before opening or going ahead to address the risks from virus’ and due consideration given to any adaptations to usual practice. Sensible measures should be put in place and policies and procedures followed.
- Government guidance is that PPE is not required for general use in early years settings to protect against COVID- 19 transmission. However this will be down to individual staff member preference if they wish to continue to use PPE.
- PPE should continue to be worn and disposed of as normal for nappy changing, one to one care and the administration of first aid.
- Keep windows open where possible to ensure good levels of ventilation. If doors are opened ensure the children safety is maintained with locked gates.
- All resources required for play and learning experiences of children should be regularly washed and/or sterilized.
- Equipment used by staff such as stationary, tablets etc. should be allocated to individual staff members where possible and cleaned regularly.
Responding to a suspected case
- In the event of a child developing suspected coronavirus symptoms whilst attending the setting, they should be collected as soon as possible and isolate at home. If possible, a window should be opened for ventilation.
- The area should be thoroughly cleaned, immediately.
- In the event of a staff member developing suspected coronavirus symptoms whilst working at the nursery, they should return home immediately and isolate at home.
In the event of an outbreak, or closure.
- Additional cleaning will be arranged for the setting to ensure minimal spread of the virus.
- Staff will continue to contact the parents and families via the Famly app with activities, videos, progress reports and wellbeing checks or to answer any questions and offer support.
- The manager will notify HPA (environmental health) and the local authority as well as gain advice from DFE (department for education).
Policy written by Brittany V – Nursery Manager – 07/04/2022
Any parent / career failing to inform the setting of anyone living in the household with symptoms, a positive result or being exposed to COVID-19 and has been advised to isolate from track and trace but continues to attend will risk immediate termination of their contract with Truly Scrumptious Early Years Nursery for putting other children, staff and families at risk.
Policy written by Brittany V – Nursery Manager – 08/12/2020