Policy of the Month

The nursery is open five days a week, 52 weeks of the year, excluding Bank Holidays. Sometimes however to may be necessary to close the nursery due to an emergency of some kind.

Below is important information about the procedure that will be undertaken in the aforementioned conditions. Please read carefully and if you have any questions or are unsure or any details, be sure to speak to a senior member of staff.

EMERGENCY CLOSURE POLICY

Emergency closure policy

In the event of unforeseen circumstances, including adverse weather conditions, it may be necessary to close the Nursery without prior notice.

Possible reasons for closure could be (but not limited to): 
• Weather – heavy snow, flooding etc. resulting in staff not being able to get to work

• Outbreak of illness leading to not enough staff being able to maintain the staff-child ratio in nursery

• Structural problem with building or surrounding area resulting in the nursery being unable to provide a safe and healthy environment for both children and staff;

• Outbreak of contagious disease leading to closure of the nursery to stop cross- contamination;

• Gas leak or power cut leading to lack of heat/light to the nursery setting.

Bad Weather

In the event of heavy snowfall, which would make it hazardous for both staff and parents to travel to the nursery building, the Nursery Manager will make the decision to close the nursery. If you wake up to heavy snowfall or heavy snowfall occurs before the start of the nursery session, the Nursery Manager and staff will use our endeavours to inform you of the nursery closure by text or email. Should severe weather occur during a session, the staff will contact parents/carers by telephone and request they come and collect their child within the hour or as soon as feasibly/safely possible.

If parents cannot be reached then the emergency contacts from the registration form will be contacted. It is VITAL that correct contact numbers are kept up to date. If severe weather continues the staff and committee will make an assessment, based on local weather forecasts, whether to close the setting for an extended period. Parents would be informed by staff of such extended closures by email or telephone.

If the setting can safely open in adverse weather conditions, a limited service may be offered due to limited staffing, if staff cannot get to the nursery. The setting will work to ratios set out in Ofsted’s staff ratio criteria. The oldest children will be invited to attend nursery and thereafter on a sliding scale through the age groups.  We will ask part time staff to work fulltime, and staff who work close to the nursery to do more hours so as to cause as little inconvenience to parents as possible.If the nursery closes due to circumstances such as these which are beyond our control, fees will still be due for the session

Other reasons for emergency closure 

Should there be a need to close the nursery prior to the session starting (due to unforeseen circumstances) the Nursery Manager and staff will endeavour to contact all parents as early as possible to advise them of the closure and give an idea of when the nursery will re-open. If staff are unable to make contact with all the parents/carers, they will arrange for a notice to be displayed outside the premises or arrange for a representative to be at the premises at the time the setting is due to begin, to inform and explain the situation to parents/carers who turn up.

In the case of an emergency closure during a nursery session the staff will ensure the complete safety of the children either in the main building or outdoor area or follow the evacuation procedure, which is the same as the fire drill, and evacuate them all to the back garden.  The registers, a pen and first aid kit must be taken to the garden, together with drink bottles for the children.  The Nursery Manager will  also ensure that a mobile phone and the blue box from the Main Office, containing all the parents telephone numbers, is taken to the garden.Staff will contact parents/carers by telephone and request they come and collect their child within the hour.

If parents/carers cannot be reached then the emergency contacts from the child’s registration form will be contacted. It is VITAL that correct contact numbers are kept up to date. At least two members of staff will stay with the children until they have all been collected.

In the event of closure all staff will be awarded full pay, as is the legal requirement.

Please note that if we have reason to believe that any child is suffering from a notifiable disease we would inform OFSTED and act on any advice given by the Health Protection Agency (HPA) http://www.hpa.org.uk .

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