* A description of the factors to take into account when planning health and safe indoor and outdoor environments and services. There are many factors you should take into account when planning healthy and safe indoor and outdoor environments. These Factors are
Age and ability of the children- Must make sure the room is age appropriate and the equipment you are using. A room where babies are cared for will need to be warmer than the rest of the rooms, and must have facilities for changing nappies hygienically and the safe-provision of bottle feeds. Outdoor play for the older ones will need to be planned to allow physical play with minimum risks.
Individual needs of the children- One to one support with the children to help build up their confidence in the setting.
Sensory impairments- Children and young people with specific needs, such as a physical disability or a sensory impairment should have full access to the available activities.
Needs of families and carers- Planning should always recognise the needs of families for example, a child in a setting might have head lice. It is important for the practitioners to inform the parent so they can maintain their own and their family’s health
The duty of care- All practitioners who work with children and young people have a duty of care towards them. This means that children and young people’s health and safety should be the overriding principle when planning.
Desired outcomes for children and young people- Every setting must use the desired outcomes relevant to the age group of children provided for. Two desired outcomes in the EYFS are to be healthy by doing physical activities outdoors and indoors and also practitioners must make sure it is safe for the child. If the children are on a climbing frame it is good idea to have a soft ground e.g. bark in case the children fall.
Lines of responsibility and accountability – Each person working within a setting has a responsibility for the health and safety of children, young people and of staff. There should be a clear ‘line of responsibility’ so that each worker or practitioner knows to whom they should report to be accountable.
* An explanation of how health and safety is monitored and Maintained and how people in the work setting are made aware of risks and hazards and encourage to work safely
One of the main reasons for maintaining a safe environment is accident prevention. The likelihood of different types of accidents occurring depends on the following factors
The age and development capabilities of the child and young person. For example, bicycle accidents are more likely for the older children. To be aware of this hazard you could have 4 bikes out at a time so the children can take it on turns on bikes. This way there will be fewer accidents because there are less children riding bikes outside. Another way from preventing this hazard is keep the children on bikes one side of the garden and the children who are not should be at the other end of the garden.
Accidents can involve things like choking and poisoning are more common in younger children. To prevent this from happening the nursery should have age appropriate toys for the babies to play with. Also practitioners should always pick up little bits of the floor to stop babies from picking them up and eating it.
The environment: In a nursery setting, you should always have a safe environment by keeping cleaning products out of reach and making sure that the room is appropriate for the age of the child. When the children go outside it is important to also make sure the environment is safe for them to use (gates locked, rubbish off floor, sharp objects put away from child’s reach and also make sure the environment is by a safe road instead of a busy road.) When children visit a house in which no children live, are more likely to find hazards (unsecured rugs and loose cables) than in a household with children.
The degree of supervision- In a nursery staff are going to be looking after up to 25 children a day in each room. It is important that staff is in ratio with the number of children involved, the age of those involved and the type of activity that the children are doing. It is important that children are supervised all the time especially when playing outdoors. The children must also always have at least two members of staff in the room with them at all times in case of accidents.
* An identification of sources of current guidance for planning healthy and safe environments and services
Every setting should have a copy of the latest legislation and guidance documents relevant to their service. The legislations relating to health and safety in child care settings are:
* Health and safety at work act 1974 Employers have a duty to make the workplace as safe as possible and they should display a health and safety low poster or supply employees with a leaflet with the same information. Every nursery setting also should decide how to manage health and safety; if the setting has five or more staff this must appear written on a health and safety policy.
* COSSH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health) 2002 Every setting must have a COSSH file which lists all the hazardous substances used in the setting. The file should detail where they are kept how they are labelled, their effects, the maximum amount of time it is safe to be exposed to them and how to deal with an emergency involving one of them.
* Electricity at work regulations 1989
* Fire Precautions at Work Regulations 1997 Evacuation procedures should always be in a place, known to all adults and practised regularly. Some exits may be locked to prevent children wandering away or intruders enter the building, adults must be able to open them quickly in case of an emergency.
* Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
* RIDDOR (Reporting of Injures, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations) 1995- You have a responsibility to report all accidents, incidents and even ‘ near misses, to your management. As you may be handling food, you should always report any personal incidences of sickness or diarrhoea.
* Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 -Lifting and carrying children and moving the equipment used in childcare settings could lead to manual handling injuries such as sprain and strains. You should always take measures to protect yourself when lifting children or equipment by following good practice. If a member of staff is pregnant, she and the manager/ teacher have a duty to re-assess any lifting of children and equipment, and to carry out risk assessments
Courtney from Study Moose
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