Health and Safety Policy
This policy was adopted on 30 August 2022 and is reviewed annually
At Natural Nurture we provide and maintain safe and healthy working conditions, equipment and systems of work for all our employees and a safe early learning environment in which children learn and are cared for. To develop and promote a strong health and safety culture within the nursery for the benefit of all staff, children, parents and any visitors, we provide information, training and supervision. We also accept our responsibility for the health and safety of other people who may be affected by our activities.
We follow all relevant legislation and associated guidance relating to health and safety within the nursery including:
- The requirements of the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) 2021
- The regulations of the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 and any other relevant legislation such as Control Of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulation (COSHH)
- Any guidance provided by Public Health England, the local health protection unit, the local authority environmental health department, fire authority or the Health and Safety Executive.
Aims and objectives
The aim of this policy statement is to ensure that all reasonably practical steps are taken to ensure the health, safety and welfare of all persons using the premises.
To achieve this, we will actively work towards the following objectives:
- Establish and maintain a safe and healthy environment throughout the nursery including outdoor spaces
- Establish and maintain safe working practices amongst staff and children
- Make arrangements for ensuring safety and the minimising of risks to health in connection with the use, handling, storage and transport of hazardous articles and substances
- Ensure the provision of sufficient information, instruction and supervision to enable all people working in or using the nursery to avoid hazards and contribute positively to their own health and safety and to ensure that staff have access to regular health and safety training
- Maintain a healthy and safe nursery with safe entry and exit routes
- Formulate effective procedures for use in case of fire and other emergencies and for evacuating the nursery premises. Practice this procedure on a regular basis to enable the safe and speedy evacuation of the nursery
- Maintain a safe working environment for pregnant workers or for workers who have recently given birth, including undertaking appropriate risk assessments
- Maintain a safe environment for those with special educational needs and disabilities and ensure all areas of the nursery are accessible (wherever practicable)
- Provide a safe environment for students or trainees to learn in
- Encourage all staff, visitors and parents to report any unsafe working practices or areas to ensure immediate response by the management.
We believe the risks in the nursery environment are low. To maintain the maximum protection for children, staff and parents the nursery:
- Ensures all entrances and exits from the building, including fire exits are clearly identifiable, free from obstruction and easily opened from the inside
- Regularly check the premises room by room for structural defects, worn fixtures and fittings or electrical equipment and take the necessary remedial action
- Ensures that all staff, visitors, parents and children are aware of the fire procedures and regular fire drills are carried out
- Has the appropriate fire detection and control equipment which is checked regularly to make sure it is in working order
- Ensures that all members of staff are aware of the procedure to follow in case of accidents for staff, visitors and children
- Ensures that all members of staff take all reasonable action to control the spread of infectious diseases and wear protective gloves and clothing where appropriate
- Ensures there are suitable hygienic changing facilities (see infection control policy)
- Prohibits smoking/vaping on the nursery premises
- Prohibits any contractor from working on the premises without prior discussion with the officer in charge
- Encourages children to manage risks safely and prohibits running inside the premises unless in designated areas
- Risk assesses all electrical sockets and take appropriate measures to reduce risks where necessary and ensure no trailing wires are left around the nursery
- Ensures all cleaning materials are placed out of the reach of children and kept in their original containers
- Ensures staff wear protective clothing when cooking or serving food
- Prohibits certain foods that may relate to children’s allergies, e.g. nuts are not allowed in the nursery
- Follows the EU Food Information for Food Consumers Regulations (EU FICby identifying the 14 allergens listed by EU Law that we use as ingredients in any of the dishes we provide to children and ensure that all parents are informed
- Familiarises all staff and visitors with the position of the first aid boxes and ensure all know who the appointed first aiders are
- Provides appropriately stocked first aid boxes and check their contents regularly
- Ensures children are supervised at all times
- Takes all reasonable steps to prevent unauthorised persons entering the premises and have an agreed procedure for checking the identity of visitors
- Ensures no student or volunteer is left unsupervised at any time
- Ensures staff paediatric first aid certificates or a list of staff who hold a current PFA certificate are on display (and/or made available to parents).
The designated Health and Safety Officer in the nursery is Tracey Poulton.
The employer has overall and final responsibility for this policy being carried out at:
Pear Tree Farm, West Chiltington Lane, Billingshurst, W.Sussex, RH14 9DP
The nursery manager and deputy nursery manager will be responsible in her absence.
All employees have the responsibility to cooperate with senior staff and the manager to achieve a healthy and safe nursery and to take reasonable care of themselves and others. Neglect of health and safety regulations/duties will be regarded as a disciplinary matter (see separate policy on disciplinary procedures).
Whenever a member of staff notices a health or safety issue or problem which they are not able to rectify, they must immediately report it to the appropriate person named above. Parents and visitors are requested to report any concerns they may have to the nursery manager or operations manager.
Daily contact, monthly staff meetings and health and safety meetings provide consultation between management and employees. These include health and safety matters.
Person responsible for monitoring staff training is Francesca Burcham
Health and safety is covered in all induction training for new staff.
At present at least one member of staff on the premises and available at times when children are present MUST hold a full paediatric first aid (PFA) certificate in the nursery and must accompany children on outings. The certificate must be for a full course consistent with the criteria set out in Annex A of the EYFS, 2021. This must be renewed every three years and the emergency PFA course is taken face to face.
In addition to this, all newly qualified entrants to the early years workforce who have completed a level 2 and/or level 3 qualification on or after 30 June 2016, must also have either a full PFA or an emergency PFA certificate within three months of starting work in order to be included in the required staff: child ratios at level 2 or level 3 in an early years setting
At nursery, we take in to account the number of children, staff, layout of premises to ensure that a paediatric first aider is able to respond to emergencies quickly.
- All staff are responsible for general health and safety in the nursery
- Risk assessments will be conducted on all areas of the nursery, including rooms, activities, outdoor areas, resources, cleaning equipment, legionella and lone working
- These are reviewed at regular intervals and when arrangements change
- All equipment, rooms and outdoor areas are checked thoroughly by staff before children access them or the area. These checks are recorded and initialled by the staff responsible. Unsafe areas are made safe where possible or the area is not used to promote the safety of children. In these cases the manager will be notified immediately
- We provide appropriate facilities for all children, staff, parents and visitors to receive a warm welcome and provide for their basic care needs, e.g. easy to access toilet area and fresh drinking water
- We adhere to the Control Of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulation (COSHH) to ensure all children, staff, parents and visitors are safe in relation to any chemicals we may use on the premises
- We identify and assess any water sources at risk of legionella, and manage these risks including avoiding stagnant water
- All staff and students receive appropriate training in all areas of health and safety which includes risk assessments, manual handling, fire safety and emergency evacuation procedures. We may also use benefit risk assessments for particular activities and resources for children
- We have a clear fire safety policy and procedure, which supports the prevention of fire and the safe evacuation of all persons in the nursery. This is shared with all staff, students, parents and visitors to the nursery
- We review accident and incident records to identify any patterns/hazardous areas
- All health and safety matters are reviewed informally on an ongoing basis and formally every six months or when something changes. Staff and parents receive these updates, as with all policy changes, as and when they happen
- We welcome feedback from staff and parents. They are able to contribute to any policy through informal discussions, the suggestion scheme and/or during regular meetings held at nursery.