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Emergency Closure Policy
This policy was adopted on 30 August 2022 and is reviewed annually
There are certain rare circumstances, which could result in Natural Nurture Nursery having to be closed. In these cases, we aim to rectify the closure as soon as possible and keep all parents/carers informed of the situation.
An emergency is defined as: a serious, unexpected and often dangerous situation requiring immediate action.
We operate the following Emergency Closure procedures:
- Should we have heavy snowfall, which would make it hazardous for both staff and parents to travel to the nursery, the nursery will be closed. Best efforts will be made to keep the nursery open if enough staff can travel in safely to run the nursery as normal.
- Initially the Operations Manager will contact the setting to find out about the level of snowfall. Staff members will contact the Operations Manager and/or setting to say whether they are able to travel in to work safely. On the basis of staffing and safety at the setting, the Operations Manager and the Management Team decide whether it is safe to open or not. If not, they will contact all other staff members before 8am to let them know.
- If parents/carers wake up to heavy snowfall, instructions are as follows: log onto Famly where we will endeavour to post current information of any closures on the newsfeed. Alternatively please telephone after 8am.
- Should severe weather occur during a session, staff will contact parents/carers to come and collect their children.
- Should the heating system break down the Operations Manager will make a decision whether it is warm enough and safe to continue without it. Usually it will be possible to relocate children to another building where a different heating system should still be in operation. Should it be too cold, parents/carers will be contacted to collect their children.
- Two members of staff will remain with the children until all of them have been collected.
As both of the above situations are beyond our control refunds for ‘closed’ or ‘partial’ sessions cannot be given.
- The local Health Protection Unit and Environmental Health Officer will be informed and their advice sought as to whether or not the nursery needs to close.
- Ofsted will be informed if there is an outbreak of sickness resulting from the setting, affecting three or more children.
- If there is an outbreak of infectious disease amongst the animals at the setting, all parents/carers are informed and infection control procedures carried out.
- The Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA) will be informed using the following contact details: Liberty House 105 Bell Street Reigate Surrey RH2 7JB Telephone: 01284 778150
- AHVLA will provide advice on whether or not the nursery needs to close.
- If there is a nationwide or regional outbreak of an infectious disease amongst animals (e.g. foot and mouth/ swine flu), then parents will be informed and the nursery will follow nationwide/regional procedures for dealing with this type of infection.
Should there be any other need for the nursery to close. The following procedure will be followed:
- If we need to close during a session, the Operations Manager and staff will contact the parents/carers of children present and at least two members of staff will remain on the premises with the children until they have all been collected.
- Should it not be safe, all children and staff will relocate to another building or shelter in a different area of the premises from which children can safely be collected.
- A mobile phone, contact details of parents/carers and the register of all children attending are brought to the assembly point/new location to enable checks to be carried out as quickly as possible.
- Radios are used for staff to communicate with each other and with the office.
- Everything necessary to ensure the children’s safety and comfort should either be located in the designated emergency premises.
- Fire assembly points will be used to gather and count the children and staff members ready to leave the premises.
- Staff members count their key children, and/or the children in the group they are responsible for, at the point the emergency was recognised
- If we need to make the decision to close before a session has begun, the Nursery Manager will endeavour to contact the parents/carers of all children due to attend that day. If he/she is unable to make contact with all those parents/carers he/she will arrange for a notice to be displayed outside the premises or arrange for a representative to be at the premises to inform parents/carers at the time a session is due to begin.
- Depending on the exact circumstances of the above need for closure, refunds for ‘closed’ or ‘partial’ sessions will only be given at the discretion of the Management Team.
- It is VITAL we have up to date contact numbers.
- For each child the Nursery requires a list of alternative emergency contacts. These should all be people well-known to the child and their numbers should be current.
- If a parent is going to be unavailable, out of signal on their mobile phone, contactable on a different number on a particular day or needs to designate another emergency contact for the nursery to call, they should advise the Nursery Manager, who will update the emergency contacts list or the parent can update their contact information on the Famly app.