CoronaVirus (COVID -19) Policy

Introduction

This policy applies to all employees, students and anyone professional visiting the pre-school, as well as service users; parents and children. At Little Lambs Pre-school we cannot control what happens outside, nor can we control children social distancing, but we can put in place safety measures to mitigate this.

• Avoiding contact with anyone with symptoms

• Frequent hand cleaning and good respiratory hygiene practices

• Regular cleaning of setting

• Minimising contact and mixing

Purpose of the policy

 Protect all employees and service users including parents and children from coming into contact with Coronavirus (COVID-19)

 To maintain the minimum level of staff to continue to provide the welfare needs of children in our care.

 To prevent the spread of CoronaVirus (COVID-19)

Symptoms

• If any staff, child or any of either’s household displays symptoms they can now be tested.

• New, continuous cough- this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours

• High temperature – if you feel hot to touch on your chest or back

• Anosmia (loss or change of sense of smell or taste) - this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal.

We are going to be very strict with children’s illnesses, and will be asking you before the child enters each day if they or any member of their household has had symptoms prior to coming in.  If they have, the child will not be permitted. NB: Failure to disclose this information could lead to your child’s place being withdrawn.

Monitoring

 Parents/ carers have a duty of care to inform staff at Little Lambs Pre-school if their child or anyone in their household is displaying symptoms.  The pre-school is closely monitoring and gathering information from the Department of Health on the spread of CoronaVirus (COVID-19) and keeping staff informed.

 As part of NHS’s Test and Trace programme, if a cluster of cases are detected, a rapid investigation will be conducted and will advise settings on the most appropriate course of action; which maybe to close for a period of time.

 Parents must ensure the emergency contact details are up to date

 A record of children/staffing groupings will be kept

 This policy will be regularly updated in line with government guidance

Pre-school closure

The pre-school may need to close if advised by Public Health England due to a local/ regional outbreak or if more than one child or adult tests positive and we will all need to self-isolate for 10 days (their households do not need to self-isolate until they develop symptoms).

 If two or more staff have to self isolate due to their family members developing symptoms, then one of the rooms will need to close due to lack of staff to operate. This will mean children from that room children of keyworkers and vulnerable children will be given priority. After that the order of children allowed to come in will go down from oldest to youngest until we can maintain adequate ratios.

 If we have reduced staff due to school closures and lack of staff childcare, the preschool will be open to vulnerable children and keyworker’s children only.

Changes to Operation

Little Lambs Pre-school will remain open during Lockdown.

Hygiene precautions - During this time of closure the pre-school has undergone a deep clean, both the premises and resources.

Further cleaning measures will occur; regular washing of toys used, extra cleaning of frequently used surfaces; door handles, taps, toilet handles, light switches etc.

A cleaning schedule will be followed.

Hand washing will take place at regular intervals throughout the session.

Children will be accompanied to the toilet to ensure adequate hand washing.

Staff  are testing themselves at home twice weekly with Lateral Flow Devices. They have to inform the manager of their results and this is recorded. If a staff member tests positive, they will have to self isolate and take a PCR test as soon as possible. In the meantime while we are waiting for the the test results, the pre-school will close and all staff and children will be contacted to self isolate for either 10 days or 48 hours after the PCR results come back negative.

Staff who have been told by NHS to shield will be able to return when advised it is safe for them to do so.

Staff who are pregnant, shielding, or breast feeding will not have contact with parents at the door at pick up or collection times nor will they handle bodily fluid, therefore will not be changing nappies.

Session times -We will be operating in smaller groups, therefore to accommodate all children wishing to return, session times may be reduced and subject to change.

Bubbles-Although there is no need for bubbles from 20th July 2020, we have taken the decision to make two separate spaces within the hall. Children will therefore remain in the same play area for the rest of the term. It will be difficult for children at this age to social distance therefore by reducing the number in their bubble at any one time will reduce contact.

The use of digital technology can be used for hand overs, alternatively parents can call and speak to a member of staff.

Attending other settings- At this moment in time we will be unable to accept children who attend two settings as this causes the level of risk to staff and children to rise slightly. This is because the government guidelines is to keep children in small groups and ideally the same and not mixing groups.

Arrivals and departures- Non-essential adults except staff will be permitted on the premises. Parents will be required to drop their child at the door, Children will be required to wash their hands on entry and before leaving to go home.

We ask parents to observe a strict 2 metre gap between other parents while waiting outside. We will operate a one way system; therefore dropping off and queueing down the alley and leaving by their stairs, thus avoiding crowding in the car park. This will reduce contact with others. This will be the same when collecting. Please wear a face covering when dropping your child off. Staff will also wear a face covering and/or visor when opening the door to parents.

If a parent does need to come into the premises, eg; to collect a sick child or to settle a new child, only one adult will be permitted inside and will be required to wear a face covering.  Please do not bring any items to pre-school from home. 

Outdoor play - As we have shared outdoor spaces, from September 2020 we have access to the garden only. We endeavour to use the playground when it is safe to do so, however will use the garden as much as possible. Whilst indoors, we will have windows open to ensure ventilation.

Payment of fees - Parents will be asked to use bank transfer only.

Travelling - Children returning from travel with AMBER or RED restrictions must self isolate for 10 days before returning to pre-school.

Visitors -The setting is currently closed to visitors whilst children are on the premises. Meetings with professionals will be conducted via zoom/telephone. If it essential for a visitor/professional to come into the pre-school, every effort must be made to ensure social distancing is maintained, wearing of PPE is required and must not be displaying any Covid -19 symptoms.

Prospective parent and child are invited to visit when there are no children are on the premises. Toys and surfaces will be cleaned before anyone else enters the building.

We recognise that a blanket statement cannot be made, as the emotional wellbeing of the children is as important as their health and safety, therefore to settle children whether new or returning, a settling in plan will be agreed with parents to minimise the amount of time parents spend on the premises. The garden will be used for both; all children and visiting parents or whilst all children are outside, a child and parent can enter the premises to familiarise themselves with the building. If parents do need to come on the premises, a face covering must be worn and they are asked to remain in the corridor between to the two play areas.

New children starting-Paperwork will be completed and policies will be available to read online prior to the child starting. Settling in for children may take longer than usual, as parents will only have the opportunity to stay with their child for a short amount of time, in the corridor between the two play areas. The parent may be invited in to settle the child at the beginning of the session, different times may be allocated initially to avoid the main drop off time. Again not going into the play spaces but remaining in the corridor until the child is happy to leave them at the door or restrictions on parents entering the building are lifted. (This is under review while in a National Lockdown)

PPE is not required in pre-school apart from the usual intimate care (nappy changing) and dealing with bodily fluid. It will also be worn if a child becomes unwell whilst at preschool. However staff while be wearing a face covering and/or visor when opening the door to parents.

Children will pre-existing medical needs  will have their care plans reviewed prior to returning, to ensure the child only attends when they are well enough to do so. If a child is teething, a temperature is not an associated symptom according to NHS guidance. However if a child has had a recent vaccination, a mild temperature can be a side effect.

If a child becomes ill whilst at pre-school, they will be taken away from the main group and will remain with an adult while waiting to be collected. The isolation space will be the foyer by the front door. At this time, staff in contact with the child is permitted to wear PPE (face mask, gloves and apron). The child should self isolate for at least 10 days from the onset of symptoms or from testing positive. If siblings are also at the setting, they too must be sent home and self isolate.

All staff members must be tested if they come into contact with someone displaying symptoms regardless of whether they are tested positive.

If the child needs to use the toilet whilst waiting for their parent, no one else will use the toilet until it has been disinfected. The hall and resources will all be cleaned thoroughly.

If a child/staff displays symptoms

NO-ONE (STAFF OR CHILD) WITH SYMPTOMS SHOULD ATTEND FOR ANY REASON. If a child/staff displays symptoms, they can now receive a test along with everyone else in their household. Do not use the home testing kits as this are for those who are asymptomatic, they need to be tested using a PCR test. Tests can be booked online through the NHS website or by calling NHS 119

If they are tested negative, they can return to pre-school after 48 hours of testing.

If a member of the group tested positive  (Regardless to whether they have symptoms or not), they must stay at home for 10 days from the onset of the symptoms or when they no longer have symptoms. Their household must self-isolate for 10 days. The rest of the group must be sent home and self-isolate for 10 days or until they have had the test and it proves negative. Other household members do not need to self-isolate.

If a test is negative and they feel well and no longer have symptoms they can stop self- isolating and return to pre-school after 48 hours. They may have another cold or virus – if this is the case it is best to avoid contact with others until they are better.

If a member of your household has symptoms- the child needs to self-isolate for 10 days or until they have been tested and proven negative.

Little Lambs Pre-school will inform the local Health Protection team if we have more than two confirmed cases within 14 days who will advise on the next course of action.

Any confirmed cases or if we have been advised to close as a result of Covid-19 will be reported to Ofsted.

As a pre-school, you are placing trust in us to maintain a safe environment for your children, however we are also placing our trust in you to not send in your child if they or anyone in your household is displaying symptoms.

Let’s remember: We are all in this together.

Reviewed: 14/6/21