Health and safety

Table of Contents

Early years settings must follow common sense as well as the law on safety matters, this is important to both children at home and children who attend nurseries. A child should always be in a safe environment at all times and should not be put at any risks. Within the setting it is also important that there are plug socket protectors over on any open plug socketsIf a child appeared to nursery with a straightener’s burn, a cause for concern sheet would be filled out, this would then be reported to a safeguarding officer where they would follow it up as child shouldn’t be round straighteners.Child exploitation- is a type of sexual abuse. Children in both exploitative situations and relationships receive things for the actions they complete, such as money, gifts, presents or affection as a result of performing sexual activities or others performing sexual activities on them. Signs for a child who has been through CE could use sexual language or make you aware of information that wouldn’t be expected.

Other ways of CE to be spotted is unexplained bruising, mood swings, using drugs

If any of these signs are spotted it’s important that they are reported straight away to a safeguarding officer who can then follow the correct policies and procedures. Risk Assessment- In order to make risk assessments we have to recognise hazards and risks. A hazard is defined as anything that is likely to cause harm. A hazard could be a substance, a piece of equipment or a work technique or, in the childcare sector, a child’s condition. Health and safety risk assessment aims to recognise and manage hazards that may pose a threat to the health, safety and welfare of children and young people or the delivery of child care. In our setting if we are planning an outing somewhere that will require transport then the RA is needed to be filled out by the health safety department in the college, this needs to be checked before the trip is made, in order for the trip to successfully happen.As well as this, a RA can be done if you feel the nursery is at risk or could potentially harm the child. This assessment should be taken straight to your line manager to be dealt with an immediate effect.

Diet – a child’s diet is very significant, ensuring they are getting the correct amount of fruit, veg, fats, protein and nutrients a day. A child is usually weighed by their doctors or health visitor. This is where a doctor or health specialist will inform you on whether your child is at the recommended weigh, overweight or underweight. Practitioners make it one of their duties to ensure the nursery are providing healthy options. All children are offered milk at snack times and are given water throughout the day and upon request. If a child isn’t provided with a healthy diet or provided with food, this can be seen as neglect. If you think a child is not getting correct daily intake of the food they should be then this is a cause for concern and a safeguarding officer should be notifiedMutilation- to injure, disfigure or make imperfections by removing or irreparably damaging parts. This becoming more common in all ages of children. This can sometimes be done by the child themselves or by an adult. A child being mutilated can include cigarette burns to cuts and removal of body parts.

When children get older, they might do it there selves which also now as self-harming. If any of these signs of mutilation are noticed it is important that it is reported to a safeguarding officers where they are able to follow the correct polices and procedures. Female Genital Mutilation / FGM- is the procedure where the female genitals are deliberately injured, cut or changed, but where there is no medical reason for this to be dome. This procedure is none medical and is usually carried out on very young girls up to the age of 15. FGM is often seen as a cultural or religious belief to reduce a woman’s libido (person’s overall sexual drive) and therefore believed to help her resist extramarital sexual acts. This procedure is carried out in a lot African countries and can sometimes happen in the UK which is illegal.Practitioners need to be aware of all sign and symptoms relating to FGM, a long absence from the nursery to visit family abroad, or even a family member coming to visit from abroad. If the child is complaining of belly ache or pain down below, this could be another sign. If the child comes into nursery talking about a ‘special occasion’ this could be an indicator to the child having this surgery. Or if a child mentions that a female relative is being cut. Members of staff should also look out for if they think a child may have had FGM if they are have difficulty sitting or talking, appear to be withdrawn, have unusual behaviour.

If a member of staff suspect that FGM has be done or think it is, going to be then they must report it immediately to the Safeguarding Officer or report it to MASH (multi agency safeguarding hub). The safeguarding officer should then follow the procedures in line with the safeguarding and child protection policies.Exorcism- there is a rising in the number of parents and careers who believe that spirits are possessing their children. When parents or carer’s believe that their child has been possessed they will try to perform an exorcism on them. Types of indicators to look out for are unusual behavior, bedwetting, illnesses and nightmares. It is significant that members of staff and all agencies are aware of all the signs to identify that the child is at risk or in danger. It important they make sure that they intervene in order to prevent the abuse from happening. This can be done by ensuring the correct procedures are carried out. It is important that there are meetings with safeguarding officers. Extremism and radicalization- in today’s society it is getting more common. Therefore schools and nurseries have now got a policy in play which is known as ‘prevent duty’.

This policy prevents people being drawn into terrorism. In order to safeguard children within your care, you must be alert at all times and aware of any reason for concern in the child’s life at home or elsewhere. This also consist of awareness of the expression of extremist views.It is essential to make sure that staff have training that gives them the knowledge, understanding and confidence to identify children at risk of being drawn into terrorism, and to challenge extremist thoughts which can be used to legitimise terrorism.This policy allows us to know what to do if a child was to tell a practitioner that someone at home is making a bomb, or making gun signs and explaining that ‘someone at home has one’. If this was to happen then this would raise alarms and would needed to be reported immediately straight to safeguarding officer as well as the place.

There are also safeguarding organisations which include working together to safeguard children 2015.Ref 2.4 A Serious Case Review (SCR) is when local multi-agencies review cases in surroundings where a child has been abused or neglected, which has unfortunately resulted in serious harm or death. There is cause for concern in the way which the relevant expert or people have worked together to safeguard the child. They involve the local authority children’s service, the police, health specialists, education practitioners and other agencies as needed in cases like this.Public inquiries are usually made by the government to investigate events which have or could potentially cause public concern. The main aim of a public inquiry is to determine exactly what happened, then put in to place possible resolutions to stop this from happening again. At the end of the process, the inquiry will provide a report clarifying the key factual findings and any recommendations.Once they have their findings the report is first given to the government and shortly after published to the public.

The report usually makes recommendations to improve the management of public organisations for the future.This differs from a serious case review as they are called by the Local Safeguarding Children’s board (LSCB) if abuse or neglect is detected, if a child is in critical conditions, death. Each service involved in the case review conducts their own individual management review of its practices so they can identify any changes that have to be made.

A SCR has a serious impact on all stakeholders involved within safeguarding children.

All different agencies and individuals hold different roles and responsibilities when it comes to safeguarding children.

Role of the local authority:

– Ensure the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel and the safeguarding partners within the area are aware.

Inform the Secretary of State and Ofsted when a looked after child has died, whether or not abuse or neglect is known or alleged.

All child safeguarding practice reviews should:

Reflect the child’s viewpoint and the family background

Concentration on potential learning

Be balanced to the circumstances of the case

Establish and enlighten the reasons why the events occurred as they did

.The final report should include:

A summary of recommended improvements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children

An analysis of any systemic or basic reasons why actions were taken or not taken.

When dealing with the importance of serious case reviews, children who have died makes the people involved in the process understand what went wrong and where those people themselves went wrong too. As a result of these failings the serious case review will include recommendations on how to improve practices to make sure that serious case reviews aren’t to happen again. Different agencies including schools and nurseries have to update their policies and procedures regularly as a result of these case reviews which helps guard against situations like deaths from happening again. Serious case review have caused innocent deaths, for example many different things have been missed with the death of both Victoria Climbié and the death of Daniel Pelkea, “The police were called to 26 separate events at the family household, many which involved domestic violence and alcohol abuse” this was a huge mistake authorities missed with this review. The government then initiated the Every Child Matters 2003 act, this came about after a serious case review was failed by people who could have helped. This act helped make those changes to help safeguard children as it put more responsibility on different agencies and the local authorities to make sure the safeguarding of these children was happening and that changes were being implemented.


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