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Duty of care outside of operational hours


ShellBell
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We've just had a meeting with our improvement advisor and have been told we need to add a bit to our safeguarding policy about duty of care outside of operational hours.

Does anyone have this in their policy? And if so would you be willing to share it?

 

I'm having a mind blank (can tell this is going to be a long week!!)

Any ideas would be much appreciated! :)

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This is what we have - is that the sort of thing you mean??

Caring for children outside session time

It is our policy that children are not left with staff until after the start of the session unless prior arrangement has been made.

Please ensure that your child remains under your supervision while awaiting the start of the session.

Please be aware that supervision is needed in the toilets due to the hot water not having a thermostat – because of this the water gets extremely hot.

Please be aware that other groups use the hall as well as parents leaving cars to go to the school, because of this is of utmost importance that children are accompanied in the car park at all times.

Children should be supervised at all times in the little room and should not be allowed to enter the kitchen.

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Hi Mrsbat.....to be honest I'm not really sure.

I think she meant more like if we saw something going on with one of our children whilst we were out and about. Her example was whilst we were shopping in sainsburys!

 

I just can't seem to get it into the right words though!

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Yea we have a bit in that says about how staff have a duty of care for children not only within the setting but at other places eg home or local community and also for any child regardless of whether they attend the setting or not. I can check exact wording tomorrow for you!x

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Right remembered I had policy on emails so this is bit about child not in setting which is near start of policy:

 

It is our duty to respond promptly and appropriately to all concerns, incidents or allegations of abuse or neglect regardless of whether or not the child concerned attends our setting and make a referral where necessary without delay.

 

Then the bit about place which comes under staffing part of policy:

 

All staff are made aware of their individual roles in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, not only within the setting but with relation to any issues for concern with regards to the childs home or elsewhere. As part of the induction process, given copies of the procedures they must follow if they suspect abuse or neglect and are able to put these procedures into practice, Training is made available to all staff on an on-going basis..

 

Hope that helps!

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Right remembered I had policy on emails so this is bit about child not in setting which is near start of policy:

 

It is our duty to respond promptly and appropriately to all concerns, incidents or allegations of abuse or neglect regardless of whether or not the child concerned attends our setting and make a referral where necessary without delay.

 

Then the bit about place which comes under staffing part of policy:

 

All staff are made aware of their individual roles in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, not only within the setting but with relation to any issues for concern with regards to the childs home or elsewhere. As part of the induction process, given copies of the procedures they must follow if they suspect abuse or neglect and are able to put these procedures into practice, Training is made available to all staff on an on-going basis..

 

Hope that helps!

 

That was a massive help. Thank you so much.

I've updated my safeguarding policy now. One more thing ticked off my list! Yay :)

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  • 2 months later...

Hi,

May I please ask a question too? I'm also updating my safeguarding policy and would like to include a section regarding the 'handover' process i.e. mornings and hometime.

At which point do you consider your staff to be accountable and responsible for the children? We are having trouble with parents picking up their children from the playroom at hometime, leaving the room with their child, but then allowing their children to run ahead down the corridor to the main reception, sometimes pressing the electronic button on the door and letting themselves out (!!!) leaving our poor receptionist to be jumping up and stopping them. However, she is not always there and we are all concerned about what is going to happen one day when she isn't.

I have spoken to parents several times but it seems to be falling on deaf ears and I want to include a paragraph in our policy stating when that responsibility begins with staff and ends. Technically, the children have been handed over to parents, left the playroom, but are still on our premises - who would be blamed if a child got out at that time of the day once they had been handed over to parents? (I cant have the button moved as it is low for disabled access)

Obviously, our staff are responsible and have a duty of care outside school hours, within the community etc and I will certainly mention this in the policy, but I just wondered how I can word it where I state when the 'supervision' ends - or does it? Am I being too harsh? This is certainly a safeguarding issue either way, I'm sure you will agree

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We say when they are handed over too. We have a similar thing in them letting them run round outside, going out of gate etc. We try and educate the children as much as possible with safety outside with cars etc and I do think this has helped. Making a point of praising the ones we see leaving sensibly the next time they come!

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We say when they are handed over too. We have a similar thing in them letting them run round outside, going out of gate etc. We try and educate the children as much as possible with safety outside with cars etc and I do think this has helped. Making a point of praising the ones we see leaving sensibly the next time they come!

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We had a problem with children letting themselves out using a button that was low for disabled access. We did a risk assessment and it was decided that the need for security well outweighed the need for accessibility for disabled people. We therefore moved the button higher. We do obviously now have to help a wheelchair user to get out

I don't know what your situation is (school, hired hall??), so obviously don't know if this would be an option for you. Just thought I would mention it in case it helps.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We had the register next to the entrance of the room and the first thing I do when the parent comes in, is make them sign out the child. Then if an accident happens 10 minutes later because parent wasn't looking they are signed out of our care already.

We were lucky as we were previously located in a park and the gate buttons were placed high up, however parents would let children run in the garden without checking while they stand and chat, a couple of times they then couldn't find their child (very large premises with huge garden) I would send someone out to help find them if I was in ratio and could do so, if not I would tell them that once the child is signed out they are your responsibility.

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  • 3 months later...

Policy Statement

 

At XXXXX Pre-school we exercises precautions in employing staff as set

out in our recruitment policy to ensure to the best of our abilities that staff members are suitable to be employed to work with children. However, we are unable to provide assurances to parents and carers as to a staff member’s suitability to look after their child unsupervised in a babysitting situation.

 

Procedure

 

• If a staff member is going to babysit a child or has involvement with a child/family who attends Little Acorns, we require the staff member and the parent or carer to sign a form to say they have read and understood the contents of this policy, this also acknowledges that the arrangement is wholly personal and that they understand that insurance etc which applies to XXXXX does not extend to any personal arrangements.

• The pre-school is not responsible for any private arrangements or agreements made between individual staff members and families.

• Parents should make their own checks as to the suitability of a member of staff for babysitting.

• If a staff member is to collect the child from XXXXX to take them home to babysit, the parent or carer must notify the manager. The duty of care of the pre-school in this condition stops at the end of the child’s registered time, so if the child is signed for a full day from 8.30 to 14.30, the duty of pre-school’s care stops at 14.30.

• In the case of a regular arrangement (e.g. every Wednesday), the parent or carer will be asked to write one letter authorising this pattern.

• The pre-school will not be held responsible for any health and safety, damage/theft or any other issues that may arise from these private arrangements.

• Out of hours work/ babysitting arrangements must not interfere with staff members’ working hours and will be made out of hours.

• All staff are bound by contract of the confidentiality policy and data protection act that they are unable to discuss any issues regarding XXXXX Pre-school, other staff members, parents or other children.

• Should it be found that any staff member has discussed anything relating to the matters above, this will result in gross misconduct and the disciplinary procedure will take place.

 

Acknowledgement of reading Out of Hours Babysitting Policy

 

Name

Date

Signature

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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