Health and Safety Policy
Aims & Ethos
At Chingford House Nursery, we endeavour to identify and analyse all areas in the nursery which could cause potential harm, ill-health or injury. This information has been used to devise a whole nursery Risk Assessment; the document also includes what control measures have been put into place to mitigate risks and hazards and to limit accidents.
Through robust induction procedures, staff meetings and supervision, we consult the staff on matters affecting their health, as well as providing information in maintaining and using equipment safely and responsibly.
In providing the best working environment possible, we assess and ensure that staff are competent to carry out their tasks to a high standard, providing training to enable them to do so.
At Chingford House Nursery, we adhere to specific legal requirements such as the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (2021) as well as the Health & Safety Act 1974. Additionally, we seek guidance from the UK Health Security Agency (formerly Public Health England) and our Local Health Protection Team.
The overall and final responsibility for Health and Safety lies with Ms Zarkar Akhtar, Chingford House Nursery, 22 Marlborough Road, London E4 9AL.
Ms Akhtar is the Owner and is a trained Fire Safety and Fire Marshall (Level 2).
She is responsible for ensuring that an annual risk assessment is carried out and daily checklists are undertaken.
Yolande Farrell (Manager) assumes the day-to-day responsibility and as such her responsibilities include:
updating the Health & Safety policy in conjunction with the Owner
ensuring staff are conversant with policies and procedures and apply them accordingly
attending training and cascading the information down to staff
advising staff on good health & hygiene practices
ensuring that children, staff, parents and users help to maintain a healthy environment
discussing and resolving any issues raised
The staff are expected to:
co-operate and work within health and safety guidelines
not interfere with health and safety safeguards
take reasonable care of their own health and safety
report all health and safety concerns to the Owner or the Manager
report, and where possible remove, any hazards in the nursery
carry out their work responsibly both for themselves and others, ensuring that their rooms are safe
know where all fire extinguishers, fire points and first aid facilities are located and are familiar with the fire policy and emergency procedures
ensure that visitors are made aware of fire exits and assembly points
First Aid Qualified Staff:
We have a number of fully trained paediatric first-aid qualified staff and there is always at least one on duty in the nursery at all times. A first aider always accompanies children on outings. Training is renewed every three years.
Ms. Akhtar has a legal duty to ensure and promote the health and safety of her staff. Alongside the induction procedure, staff meetings, Room Leaders meetings and supervision are appropriate forums in which we discuss the health and safety issues which affect staff. It is important in supporting staff welfare that they are informed of any infectious illnesses in the setting, including what room and what measures have been put in place to prevent the spread of the infection, what their role is within this and how to keep themselves safe.
Regular training and reviewing of policies form part of our high-quality childcare practices.
Creating a child-safe environment:
Staff empower children to be responsible for their own hygiene; discussions during circle time take place to educate the children in washing their hands before and after eating, using the toilet and after playtime; songs, stories and posters are used to help the children to remember ‘hygiene rules’.
At Chingford House Nursery we ensure that staffing arrangements are in place, observing the correct child-staff ratio for each room. Staff are deployed to ensure that we meet the needs of the children and that they are well supervised. In line with the EYFS (2021), ‘children are usually within sight and hearing of staff and always within sight or hearing of staff’.
Our Hygiene and Infection Control policy states the importance of immunisations in preventing infections or death. As such, as an Employer, the Owner encourages staff to research information in order to make their own decisions whether they should be vaccinated against flu jabs for example, as they have to contend with coughs, colds & flu whilst working with children. Staff absences are mostly due to sickness and ill health, so it is crucial to think about ways in which immunisations and other control measures can mitigate these absences.
Similar to children who are unwell at nursery, staff will also be excluded if they present with a communicable illness such as a gastric bug or shingles etc., (see our Illness, Infection & Exclusion policy). Staff will be excluded for the required period of time for specific illnesses or infections.
Chingford House Nursery has an insurance policy through Morton Michel. The nursery is covered for public and employers’ liability; a copy of the certificate is displayed in the nursery entrance. The insurance is renewed annually.
Risk Assessment/daily checklists:
Alongside the whole nursery risk assessment, staff carry out daily checks to ensure that possible risks are negated, these include checks such as garden checks, clearing spillages and debris as well as ensuring that fire exits are not blocked. The risk assessment sheets are signed by staff, dated and kept in an accessible file in their rooms
Annual safety checks:
To ensure that we are fully compliant in maintaining a safe environment, the nursery complies with external safety checks: PAT tests, checks on our gas, boiler and fire alarms are conducted by external companies. All certificates for installation and servicing are kept in the appropriate Health and Safety folder.
Chingford House Nursery maintains a rigorous standard of hygiene particularly in the children’s rooms, toilets and kitchen. Deep cleans are carried out particularly where there is an outbreak of an infection.
One toilet for female and male adults is made available to staff which consists of a toilet and sink. There are facilities available for female staff to dispose of sanitary products. Posters are displayed in the adult toilet to ensure that sanitary products and paper towels are disposed of appropriately and safely.
Physical Environment and children’s health:
The nursery is cleaned daily, the rooms are well ventilated and are kept at a recommended temperature. The children are encouraged to play outside throughout the day to promote their physical health as well as ‘getting away’ from any germs inside the room. The rooms are ventilated whilst the children play outside.
Our play equipment and resources conform to BSEN safety standards or toy (safety) regulation (1995). We ensure that any unsafe, worn out or damaged equipment is either repaired or disposed of. All equipment is cleaned and sanitised on a daily or weekly basis (as appropriate).
To ensure and maintain the safety of the children we are careful who we permit entry to the nursery to. Visitors have to sign in and should not be left unattended (see full Security policy
Chingford House Nursery has procedures in place to safely evacuate children, staff, and users in the event of a fire (see main Fire Prevention, Maintenance and Evacuation policy)
We understand how harmful the sun can be and that some children (especially the younger ones) are vulnerable due to their delicate skin in the summer; precautions are taken to limit the risks of sunburn and skin cancer later on in life (see full Sun Safety policy).
Parents must detail any dietary needs that their child has on the nursery’s registration form. Staff are aware of the dangers of peanuts, so they are not used in any form at the nursery. Any other known foods which promote allergic reactions for any of the children are excluded for them and an alternative is provided. We have a list of children’s dietary needs and allergies which is displayed in all the rooms. All children have table mats, but the children who have identified allergies have a red mat, indicating caution when serving food (see full Food, Nutrition & Allergy policy).
Although we do not have any pets on the premises, we understand that they can carry diseases. There may be occasions where some animals visit the nursery due to particular themes and topics, i.e., life cycles. In these instances, we will only go to reputable organisations that can vouch for the health and safety of their animals. If the children go on any trips to farms or other places where they have the opportunity to handle animals, a risk assessment will be carried out to ensure that the children are kept as safe as possible. All hygiene protocols will be followed.
Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH)
Ms Akhtar complies with the COSHH regulations 2002 and is responsible for:
identifying all substances which need a COSHH assessment
undertaking COSHH assessments
ensuring that all relevant employees are informed about COSHH assessment
checking that new substances can be used safely before they are purchased
ensuring that equipment is stored safely and securely
checking that all cleaning products are stored in an out-of-reach of children cupboard.
Notifying relevant organisations of infectious diseases outbreaks
Chingford House Nursery is legally required to notify certain agencies of specified infectious diseases under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 and the Public Health (Infectious Diseases) Regulations 1988. We are required to inform the Local Authority’s Health Protection Team, Ofsted, or UK Health Security Agency of certain illnesses, as soon as possible or within 14 days of the illness, under the EYFS (2021). Some of the diseases which have to be notified include:
Escherichia coli 9VTEC) (E.coli 0157)
Hepatitis A, B or C
Infectious bloody diarrhoea
UK Health Security Agency defines an outbreak as:
an incident in which two or more people experiencing a similar illness are linked in time or place
a greater than expected rate of infection compared with the usual background rate for the place and time where the outbreak has occurred.
The Manager or Owner will call the local Health Protection Team (HPT) if they believe there is a possible outbreak. The information that the Manager should gather in preparation of the call is:
Total number of affected children/staff
Dates when the symptoms started
Number of rooms affected
The HPT may then suggest that an action plan should be put in place.
In line with our Illness, Infection & Exclusion policy, parents are informed of any infectious incidences at the nursery. Confidentiality is maintained and parents are only informed of the infection and in which room it is located. There may be occasions where the Health Protection Team or Ofsted will need the child’s details, so we will seek consent before sharing information with outside agencies.
Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR):
Chingford House Nursery is not required to report all accidents which result in an injury. RIDDOR stipulates that serious injuries must be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), these include:
injuries & ill health involving employees
injuries involving children
Injuries and ill health involving employees:
Under RIDDOR, Ms Akhtar must report the following work-related accidents, including those caused by physical violence or if an employee is injured:
accidents which result in death or a specified injury
accidents which prevent the injured person from continuing their normal work for more than seven days (not counting the day of the accident, but including weekends and other rest days)
Reportable specified injuries include, for example, fractures, amputations, serious burns, assault of a teacher by a pupil on school premises. Reportable occupational diseases: when we receive a written diagnosis from a Doctor that a staff member has a reportable disease linked to occupational exposure such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis or work-related dermatitis.
Injuries to children and visitors who are involved in an accident at Chingford House Nursery, or on an activity organised by the nursery, are only reportable under RIDDOR if the accident results in:
the death of the person, and arose out of or in connection with a work activity
an injury that arose out of or in connection with a work activity and the person is taken directly from the scene of the accident to hospital for treatment (examinations and diagnostic tests do not constitute treatment).
If a child injured in an incident remains at nursery, is taken home or is simply absent from nursery for a number of days, the incident is not reportable.
A full copy of the HSE guidelines are available at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/edis1.htm
We are required to inform Waltham Forest (our Local Authority) of particular incidents on the premises to children, staff or visitors.
There are further policies in place that help contribute towards creating a healthy environment for all the users at the nursery such as:
Accident & Incident Policy
No Smoking Policy
Fire Safety Policy
Copies of the above and all policies are shared with parents and are available on our website and in a folder in the nursery’s entrance.
Policy revised by: Yolande Farrell Manager
Signed off by: Zarkar Akhtar Owner
Date: August 2023