Before we set out these arrangements, we would like to take this opportunity to thank parents and carers for their understanding and cooperation since we had to close to the majority of children. I know that this period has been challenging for many families, in particular when you have had to juggle work commitments with managing childcare, if you have children with special educational needs or disability, or if you are a single parent.
We are pleased to let you know that, further to the government’s announcement that early years and childcare providers will open from 1 June, we have been working hard to take the necessary steps to be ready to welcome back all children.
Our Monday 1st June we will reopen at the later time of 9:30am, this is to enable the staff to prepare and adapt to any changes. After Monday we will resume normal opening times.
From the week beginning 1 June, Ashbourne Day Nurseries will welcome back all children. For the vast majority of children and young people, coronavirus is a mild illness. Some categories of children with specific serious health conditions should not attend their early years setting. If you are unsure whether your child should attend the setting due to a health condition that they or someone they live with has, please seek medical advice.
Children that attend more than one nursery must be limited to one setting in order to minimise cross-contamination. If this affects you please discuss your options with the nursery manager.
Protective measures we are taking in light of coronavirus (COVID-19)
First and foremost, it goes without saying that the safety of your child and of our staff is our top priority. We are working hard, following the latest government guidance, to develop and implement a number of new ways of operating. This will allow us to open as safely as possible, focusing on measures that will help limit the risk of coronavirus transmitting within our setting.
Some of the steps we are taking in readiness for reopening include:
- Asking that anyone who is displaying coronavirus symptoms, or who lives with someone who does, not to attend the setting. That includes children and staff who work here.
- Creating a new system for children to be dropped off and collected at the entrance.
- Reducing visitors to the building to an absolute minimum.
- Keeping our children in small groups with as much consistent staffing as possible, and minimising contact with other groups around the nursery.
- Cleaning our hands more often than usual. We have developed routines to ensure children understand when and how to wash their hands, making sure they wash them thoroughly for at least 20 seconds using running water and soap and dry them thoroughly, or use alcohol hand rub or sanitiser ensuring that all parts of the hands are covered.
- Ensuring our children understand good respiratory hygiene by promoting the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach and ensuring a good supply of tissues and bins throughout the nursery.
- Implementing an enhanced cleaning schedule, ensuring surfaces touched by children and staff are cleaned regularly and throughout the day, including table tops, door handles and play equipment.
- Asking parents and carers to physically distance from each other and from staff when dropping off and collecting their children and to limit drop off and collection to one parent or carer per household.
- Asking children not to bring toys or other items from home to the setting, unless this is essential to their health and wellbeing.
What can parents and carers do to help?
There are a number of things parents and carers can do to help us make these arrangements effective, in addition to the points listed above concerning arrival and departure and not bringing toys to the setting.
- Do not bring your child to nursery if they are poorly. If they have symptoms of covid 19 including a temperature or new continuous cough they must not return for 7 days unless a negative test is provided. For advice please contact NHS Direct 111.
- If a child displays any covid 19 symptoms while at nursery you will be contacted to arrange immediate collection. Please ensure we have up to date contact details.
- If your child is old enough to understand, explain and prepare them for being dropped off at the nursery entrance as this is a significant change to routine.
- In order to manage social distancing at the nursery entrance, arrive slightly later if possible or collect your child slightly earlier.
- If your child travels to nursery via public transport please provide a change of clothes to use upon arrival.
Once early years and childcare providers open to more children, all children who are attending a childcare setting will have access to a test if they display symptoms of coronavirus, and are encouraged to get tested in this scenario. The aim is to enable children to get back to childcare, and their parents or carers not to need to self-isolate any longer than is necessary, if the test proves to be negative. A positive test will ensure rapid action to protect other children and staff in the nursery.
We ask all parents and carers to ensure they organise a test for their child, in the event that they develop coronavirus symptoms, and notify us immediately of a positive test. If we are alerted that a child or adult from the nursery has Covid 19 we will inform all parents and take action to close the room the child or adult was based in.
I hope that this letter has given you the information you need to understand what arrangements we have made to enable children to return to us from 1 June. We are looking forward to welcoming you back and I hope that you are assured that we have taken all possible steps to ensure safety for all in our setting. If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact your nursery manager.