Epidemic and Pandemic Policy

Ladybird Pre School Nursery intend to use this policy to provide precautionary measures to minimise the risk of disease transmission in the setting during an epidemic or pandemic.

The aim of this policy is to assist with continual operation of the nursery whilst complying with and fulfilling the Government and leading bodies requirements with relation to the outbreak of an epidemic or pandemic, such as COVID-19.  This policy builds on our current policies and procedures for areas such as Safeguarding, Child Protection and Health and Safety, however new practices may emerge as the situation continues. Considerations may evolve and be built upon as the situation deepens and new precautionary measures and requirements have been introduced. We will continue to follow all our other policies as long as they do not conflict with this policy.  We will continue to be guided by the EYFS Statutory Framework and the legal requirements it contains.  Latest Government guidelines will influence and possibly amend this policy. A record of any changes or amendments will be recorded at the back of this policy.

Focus and areas of consideration.

Children

Attendance

  • Only children who are symptom free or have completed the required isolation period may attend the nursery.
  • Children’s temperature will need to be taken at home before arriving at the nursery and before being allowed to enter. If it is not possible for the child’s temperature to be taken at home then the child’s temperature will be taken on arrival by a member of staff. 
  • Any child who has been administered paracetamol on the day of attendance will not be permitted to attend  the nursery on that day, as paracetamol can mask a high temperature.  An alternative session will be offered if possible and at the manager’s discretion.
  • Children will be required to sanitise their hands before entering the nursery.

Social distancing and ‘Bubble’s’

  • Smaller amounts of children in the setting may be advised or preferable, this can be achieved by, but not limited to:
  1. A temporary cap on the number of children attending the setting
  2. Making alterations to children’s days or sessions.
  3. Prioritising children as outlined in Department of Education guidelines.
  4. Making alterations to the nursery opening days and hours.
  • To minimise contact, children will be arranged into small groups  (maximum of 10 children) known as ‘Bubble’s’
  • Children will only mix with the other children within their ‘Bubble’ while they are at nursery.
  • Children will have the same staff caring for them each day in their ‘Bubble’.
  • The use of communal internal and external space will be restricted as much as possible.

Wellbeing and Education

  • Children will eat their snack and lunch with the other children and staff in their ‘Bubble’.
  • Staff will support children in an age appropriate way to understand the steps they can take to help to keep themselves safe, including regular handwashing and using a tissue and discarding of it appropriately.
  • Staff to ensure they are aware of the children’s attachments and their need for emotional support at this time.
  • EYFS framework learning and development requirements will continue to be delivered across all 7 areas of learning.
  • Staff will continue to provide an inviting environment for the children encouraging curiosity, excitement and engagement, taking into consideration the latest government guidelines.

Workforce

Attendance

  • Only staff who are symptom free or have completed the required isolation period may attend the nursery.
  • Staff will be required to have their temperature taken on arrival and before being allowed to enter the nursery.
  • Staff will be required to sanitise their hands before entering the nursery.

Social distancing,  ‘Bubbles’ and safety.

  • Staff will complete a risk assessment before opening the nursery to identify potential risks from the virus and to ensure measures are in place and implemented to minimise these risks.
  • Staff must adhere to social distancing when taking breaks.
  • To minimise contact staff will be arranged into small groups known as  ‘Bubbles’.
  • Staff will only mix with the other staff within their ‘Bubble’.
  • The use of communal internal and external space will be restricted as much as possible.
  • Staff will adhere to social distancing rules when speaking to all parents and to staff members from a different ‘Bubble’.
  • When social distancing is not possible or they are in close proximity inside of the building staff will wear a face mask.
  • Staff will wear regular PPE when providing intimate care i.e. nappy changing.
  • When dealing with a child with symptoms, staff will wear PPE including disposable gloves, a disposable apron, a fluid-resistant face mask and a face visor.
  • After dealing with a child displaying symptoms the staff member will continue to wear PPE and clean and disinfect the area following Public Health guidance.
  • PPE will be removed and disposed off following Public Health guidance.
  • The Nursery will follow government guidelines in the case of a child or staff member testing positive.

Wellbeing

  • Staff will be supported by the nursery manager and their colleagues throughout the day.
  • Staff will be made aware of how to contact the Trustees for additional support.
  • Conversations will be held regularly between the manager and staff to discuss staff’s wellbeing and if appropriate a wellbeing questionnaire will be available for staff to complete.

Parents/carers

Attendance

  • Only parents/carers who are symptom free or have completed the required isolation period can drop off/pick up their child from the nursery.
  • On arrival all parents/carers will be asked if themselves or any member of their household have symptoms, if they answer ‘yes’ they will not be allowed to leave their child or enter the nursery.
  • Drop off and collection will be limited to 1 adult per family at all times. Where possible this should be the same adult each day.

Social distancing

  • When parent/carers are waiting to drop off/pick up their child they must adhere to social distancing rules.
  • Parents/carers will be required to follow a one way system to enter and exit the nursery grounds.
  • Parents/carers will not be allowed to enter the nursery building at drop off/pick up.
  • Consideration will be given to allow parents/carers to enter the nursery for the purpose of settling their child, should their child arrive upset or distressed.
  • Parents are to adhere to social distancing rules both inside and outside of the building.

Communication

  • Parents/carers will receive clear communication regarding new requirements and rules implemented by Ladybird Pre School Nursery prior to their child attending and the measures being taken to ensure all risks have been minimalised for the safety of themselves and their children.
  • Parents/carers will receive clear guidance on the alternative and recommended ways to communicate with the staff.

Visitors

  • During the nursery opening hours attendance to the nursery should be restricted to only staff and children as far as practically possible. 
  • Visitors will not be permitted to enter the nursery during the nursery opening hours unless in exceptional circumstances or to provide a vital service.
  • All visitors (except in exceptional circumstances or to provide a vital service) will be required to make an appointment outside of the nursery opening hours.
  • Any visitor permitted entry to the nursery will be required to wear a facemask (provided by the nursery) and will be accompanied by a member of staff at all times.

Travel

  • Wherever possible staff should avoid travelling to work by public transport.
  • If a staff member uses public transport they should follow the national guidelines when doing so.
  • Wherever possible parents/carers and children should avoid travelling to the nursery by public transport.
  • If parents/carers and children use public transport they should follow the national guidelines when doing so.

Hygiene and Health and Safety

       Handwashing/hand sanitiser

  • Anybody entering the nursery will be required to use hand sanitiser provided by the nursery.
  • All staff members will be required to wash their hands for 20 seconds using soap and warm water after using the toilet, changing a nappy, before and after handling food, before and after eating, blowing their nose, sneezing, coughing, administering first aid and before they leave the nursery.  Regular hand washing in addition to this as required.
  • All children will be required to, with adult support, wash their hands for 20 seconds using soap and warm water after using the toilet, before and after eating, blowing their nose, sneezing, coughing and before they leave the nursery. Regular hand washing in addition as required.

Cleaning

  • An enhanced cleaning schedule will be implemented that will include furniture, resources and equipment, touch points, toilets and hand washing facilities  This enhanced cleaning schedule will take place periodically throughout the day and will follow Public Health England guidelines.
  • Thorough and correct cleaning of resources and setting following Public Health England guidelines will take place at the end of each day. Staff will be responsible for the cleaning of their own area of work.
  • Thorough and correct cleaning of resources and setting following Public Health England guidelines will take place after a suspected case.

Waste disposal

  • All waste from a suspected case must be disposed of and stored following Public Health England guidelines.

PPE

  • Staff will follow their normal practice when changing nappies or administering first aid.
  • Staff will wear a face mask when social distancing is not possible or when in close proximity to all parents or staff members from another ‘bubble’.
  • When dealing with an individual displaying symptoms staff will be required to wear disposable gloves, a disposable apron, a fluid retention face mask and a face visor.  PPE will be disposed of following Public Health England guidelines.

Resources

  • Resources that are difficult to clean will be removed.
  • Resources will be cleaned regularly following Public Health England guidelines
  • Resources that have been deemed by Public Health England to enhance the spread of the virus will removed.

Supplies and equipment

  • To ensure the nursery has an adequate supply of essential equipment a monitoring system will be implemented.
  • The nursery will not be able to operate without essential supplies required for ensuring infection control.

Premises

  • If the nursery has to temporary close during a lockdown period, where possible Health and Safety checks should be carried out weekly. These checks should include a visual check of both inside and outside of the building, temperature check of the building and measures to reduce the risk of legionnaires.
  • Prior to re-opening a full Health and Safety check will be conducted.

Risk Assessment

  • A full risk assessment will be conducted prior to opening the nursery during an epidemic or pandemic.

Guidance documents and legislation which have guided and influenced this policy.

Public Health England

Local Authority

Department of Education

EYFS Statutory Framework

This policy was adopted by the Ladybird Pre School Nursery Management Committee on

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