For the past few weeks Back to the Garden Childcare day nursery in Altrincham has been working hard to take all safety measures in line with Government guidelines, to guarantee the highest possible safety standards and procedures are in place while we welcome children back to our nursery this month. We are introducing a phased return for children with a view to being able to ultimately fill the nursery spaces once again when it is safe to do so.
As you may be aware, we have remained open for the children of critical workers and vulnerable children and have been operating with smaller group sizes and additional hygiene and infection control measures. I would like to thank our fabulous staff team who have remained on site, and our staff working hard from home to support, they have done an amazing job in challenging times but have remained cheerful and enthusiastic. This gives us a really strong foundation to build on over the coming weeks as we welcome more children back.
Our staff are completely dedicated to making sure everyone in the nursery stay safe and well, and will of course observe social distancing measure between themselves whilst working with the children, parents and during break.
The actions we have taken are below:
We will use our knowledge of the children’s friendships to form ‘bubbles’ wherever possible, as we feel this is important to help them settle back into nursery. Each child will be put into a small group with only two key people so that we can reduce the number of adults and children they come into contact with. The bubble group will have their own ‘base’ room within the nursery, and their own resources, as well as access their own bathroom and nappy changing facility, where they will be able to wash their hands regularly!
Making the most of outdoors learning
We thrive on using our amazing outdoor space and ‘bubbles’ will be encouraged to spend as much time as possible outside, as the risk of transmission is lower outdoors. Our garden will be separated into three areas to allow groups to have their own space and practice social distancing! We have removed sand play and some other resources at this time as unfortunately it can’t be cleaned.
Temporary pauses on extra-curricular
Although we love our adventurous excursions, for the time being we will not be taking children out on trips into the community will temporarily stop visitors to the nursery, meaning our beloved Yoga and Eco-warriors will be paused momentarily. We have also made the decision to temporarily pause our before and after school club for the rest of the school year and will review this again in August.
Good practices and settling back in
Our focus will be supporting our children’s well -being and emotional needs and our curriculum will support this through sharing stories of lockdown experience, talking about feelings and ensure attachments with key adults are fostered.
We know that the children will need extra support when settling back in, so offer settling sessions for all the children, however unfortunately we cannot welcome parents/carers into the nursery building. We understand this may be hard, but we’ll support the children in new ways as much as we can, and when we have planned our ‘bubbles’ we will send a photo of the children’s key people, so they can see who it is before they re-join us and have some familiarity.
We will be making sure to put emphasis on making sure the children can learn, understand and practice the steps they can take to keep themselves safe while at nursery, including regular hand washing, sneezing into a tissue and coughing into their elbow, and will plan fun and engaging activities around this!
Parents Physical Distancing - Drop off and Collection
So that we can ensure everyone’s safety, we are having to temporarily prohibit parents or non-essential visitors from coming into the nursery building, and ask that parents and carers are physically distanced from each other and from staff when dropping off and collecting their children If you ring the nursery phone, an adult from the child’s ‘bubble’ will come to the door and collect the child, and similarly at the end of the day, we will bring children to the door to ensure we can stick to Government guidelines. On the ground outside the nursery we will have 2-metre markings to ensure that parents can stay safely apart if needing to wait for their child to be collected.
Hygiene and Health and Safety within the Nursery Environment.
We are putting as many safety precautions as possible in place to keep the nursery hygienic and a safe, healthy place!
Following government guidance, we have removed all cushions, rugs and soft toys.
We are advised by government guidance that our staff do not need to wear face masks, but some staff members may choose to wear a mask.
We have divided our garden into 3 zones to allow children to access the outdoors frequently.
When indoors, rooms will be well ventilated with windows open.
Staff and children will wash their hands regularly during the day, as well as at key times such as meal times and after using the toilet/garden.
All resources and rooms are thoroughly cleaned at the end of the day.
Communal areas will be wiped regularly - again focusing on high touch areas.
Each day when staff arrive we will check their temperature and if this is above 38.0 degrees they will be asked to return home and will follow the government guidance on self-isolating and getting tested.
If you have any questions or would like more information on any of our above measures then don’t hesitate to get in touch and we’ll be happy to help and chat to you!