At Kids College we have everyone’s health and hygiene at the forefront of our practices. We have stringent health and hygiene values. We have the very best health and hygiene practices, policies and procedures informed by recognised authorities guidelines. We also provide regular opportunities for children to explicitly learn about their health and wellbeing.
Abraham Maslow suggested that before individuals meet their full potential, they need to satisfy a series of needs, this led to his creation of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. At Kids College we use the first two levels of needs that children require to set the best base for their learning and wellbeing. A child’s physiological needs for water, warmth, rest and their safety needs for security and safe practices set the base for our program. If a child is not healthy and safe from harm they are not able to engage and fully enjoy the benefits of our early childhood education at Kids College.
ILLNESS MANAGEMENT AND HYGIENE PRACTICES
While it is not possible to prevent the spread of all infections and illnesses, effective illness management practices and maintaining high standards of hygiene significantly reduce the likelihood of children becoming ill.
Our high standards for hygiene are informed by recognised guidelines from the government’s Staying Healthy: Preventing infectious diseases in early childhood education and care services, 2013. https://www.nhmrc.gov.au/guidelines-publications/ch55
The three steps in the chain of infection
1. the germ has a source from an infected person or the environment.
2. the germ spreads from the source through droplets, contact with feaces, direct contact with other bodily secretions such as urine, saliva, discharges and blood.
3. the germ infects another person through the mouth, respiratory tract, eyes, genitals or broken skin.
You can break the chain of infection at any stage. The most important ways to break the chain of infection and stop the spread of diseases are:
• effective hand hygiene with soap and water or alcohol based hand rubs
• exclusion of ill children, educators and other staff based on how easily that infection can spread, infectious periods and how severe that disease could be.
• Immunization for children and adults according to the Australian Governments Department of health and Ageing National Immunization program schedule. More information can be obtained from the Australian Immunization Register. https://beta.health.gov.au/resources/publications/national-immunisation-program-schedule-portrait
Other strategies to prevent infection include:
• cough and sneeze etiquette by covering mouth when you cough by using your hand or preferably the crook of your arm and throwing away used tissues.
• appropriate use of gloves which create a protective barrier against germs. They are used in addition to hand washing and before touching anything that needs to stay clean and after touching anything that might contaminate your hands.
• effective environmental cleaning first by washing away germs and then using disinfectants to kills any germs.
We have stringent hygiene cleaning routines and have routine cleaning daily, weekly and monthly. We also hold two cleaning busy bees each year to get into those hard to get to tasks.
Example of our hygienic practices are our stringent hand washing procedures developed on the recognised advice of the Staying healthy resource which are displayed around the centre for adults and children, especially the pictorial depiction of routines so children can follow along, understand and implement the steps. This helps us actively support children to learn and implement hygiene practices. Placement of hand washing sinks throughout the centre and alcohol rub at our entrance for ease of use when entering or leaving, and outside in our playground for ease of use when hand washing is not an option.
Another great example of our hygiene and nutrition practices is how we have developed an easy way to celebrate each child’s birthday at Kids College making a special day for them without compromising hygiene or nutrition. For each child’s birthday we make them a special cupcake so only they have a treat and we allow them to blow out a birthday candle on their own personal little cupcake.
Educators also promote continuity of children’s personal health and hygiene by sharing ownership of routines and schedules with children, families and the community. We will work with each family to ensure we are meeting each child’s needs.
Working with children to keep to guidelines
In helping children to take growing responsibility for their own health and physical wellbeing, educators model and reinforce health and personal hygiene practices with children. We use a variety or resources to back you up at home and teach children the importance of hygiene. Books like the Toddler be good series which include titles and puppets help teach children hand washing, tidying up, toileting and manners. We have The Colgate-Palmolive Oral Health and Hand washing education program which we use to inspire and educate children on how to take care of their oral health and the importance of hand washing. http://palmolivecleanhands.com.au. The Bright Smiles Bright Futures™ program gives teachers, children and families the tools they need to make a good oral health a permanent part of their lives – focusing on building confidence to enable kids to take control of their own oral health. https://www.colgatebsbf.com.au
One of the most important aspects to hygiene is the little things we do everyday so we make a big effort to model good practices and to consistently share these messages with the children empowering them to understand the importance of hygiene and creating children’s agency to take increasing independence with these tasks.
The giving of medication to children will be strictly monitored to ensure the child’s safety and welfare. Wherever possible, medication should be administered by parents/guardians at home. However, we are aware that this is not always feasible. Parents/guardians should consider whether the child who requires medication is well enough to be at the centre and to keep the child home if they are unwell.
Medication will only be administered by Centre staff if:
1. It is prescribed by a doctor and has the original pharmaceutical label detailing the child’s name, the name of the medication, the required dosage, the date of dispensing and the expiry date; OR
2. It is still in the original pharmaceutical packaging (i.e. Non-prescription medication), indicating the name of the medication, the dosage, age appropriateness and the expiry date; AND
3. The parent has completed and signed an authority to give medication form on the day that it is to be administered.
If a child is receiving medication at home but not at the centre, the centre should still be notified of the purpose of the medication, its nature and the possible side effects it may have on the child while they are in care.
Exclusion of children with infectious diseases
No child will be admitted with obvious signs of any highly contagious infection or illness. Our policy states the incubation period, symptoms and exclusion periods of such diseases. Examples include children with gastro like symptoms, vomiting and diarrhoea are excluded from centre for 24-48 hours after their last incident of vomiting or diarrhoea. Children should have their full immunisation status however children who are not immunized will be required to be exempt from the Centre for their own safety in case of exposure to a contagious disease.
As a protection for all children and staff the following exclusion policy applies to all children enrolled in the Centre. Children with infectious diseases will be excluded from the Centre in accordance with the National Health & Medical Research Council exclusion guidelines as stated in the Staying Healthy resource. A clearance certificate from your child’s doctor, might be required to pronounce the child fit for child care, before your child can return to the Centre.
If your child is unwell at home please do not bring him/her to the Centre. Children who have more than a slight cold should not be brought to the Centre and may not be accepted at the Kids College discretion. Fevers, vomiting, diarrhoea or unexplained rashes are some of the indications that a child should not be brought to the Centre.
Whilst we do need to know family’s medical information this information will be kept in accordance with our confidentiality policy and not divulged to anyone unauthorised to have it. Only the direct contacts who need this information will be informed.
Any medical needs that relate to a serious health concern, such as anaphylaxis, allergy or asthma will be displayed in the kitchen where we make the food and in the children’s rooms where we serve the meals to ensure all of our staffing team have this very important medical information close at hand and are able to deal with any medical emergency appropriately according to our training and the doctors orders on the children’s medical plans. https://anaphylaxis.ascia.org.au/
Example of our practices around special needs include how we research any special needs that have been brought to our attention. We speak with the family, gain advice from a doctor and ensure all our staffing team are appraised of what needs to occur, collecting medications and doctors plans, considering our plan of management for this need, displaying information and keeping medications needed easy to find and easy to use in one central location to all. Being reprepared with information and equipment and taking time to arm ourselves with the knowledge needed allows us to feel confident we can deal with any special needs in the manner needed without any confusion or panic setting in.
We recently had a child diagnosed with anaphylaxis so we discussed with family, gained doctors orders on the anaphylaxis emergency plan from ASCIA and a personal use Epipen, met with our chef’s, updated our staffing training on the ASCIA site as there has been slight changes to anaphylaxis management in June 2018 and have completed the practical component of administering Epipen with our Kids College Epipen trainer pen with Jennifer in office who is authorised and trained to conduct this aspect of training. We discussed our management plan in a staff meeting to ensure everyone knows and is able to manage this child’s anaphylaxis. Kids College goes above and beyond expectations and we actually purchase a spare asthma Ventolin and spacer and we have purchased a spare EPIPEN too. We also brought anaphylaxis to the attention of the children themselves in a respectful way talking about how we are all have needs and how to keep each other safe.
The national health and Medical Research Council (nhMRC) recommends that all educators and other staff are immunized against:
• pertussis—this is especially important for educators and other staff caring for the youngest children who are not fully vaccinated. even if the adult was vaccinated in childhood, booster vaccination may be necessary because immunity to pertussis decreases over time
• measles–mumps–rubella (MMR) for educators and other staff born during or since 1966 who do not have vaccination records of two doses of MMR, or do not have antibodies against rubella
• varicella for educators and other staff who have not previously had varicella (a blood test is required to prove previous infection)
• hepatitis A, because young children can be infectious even if they are not showing any symptoms.
• All staff are encouraged to have having yearly influenza vaccinations.
Education and care services must prepare and provide food in a way that is safe for the children in their care, to reduce the risk of spreading infectious diseases through food. Standard 3.3.1 of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code states that education and care services must have a documented food safety program. Food safety is monitored by the health department in each state and territory; check your health department’s website for the specific requirements for food safety.
Food is an excellent place for germs to grow in the right conditions, the number of bacteria in food can double every 30 minutes. Germs that do not grow in food can still be passed from person to person in food. Germs that are common on our skin and in the environment can cause food poisoning if they grow to large numbers in food.
For these reasons, food safety is an important part of infection control at Kids College. The best ways to prevent diseases spreading through food are hand hygiene; not sharing food, plates or utensils; preparing and storing food properly; and keeping food preparation areas clean.
Examples at Kids College include our Food Safety program and work to the highest food safety standards Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HAACP) which is a preventative and systematic approach to managing food safety risks and is endorsed by the Australian Institute of Environmental Health and supported by local government.
We are independently audited against Standard FSANZ3.3.1 WA Health Act 2008, Regulations 2009 each year by Global Food Safety Auditing. We have attained high standard of no non-compliance issues, this means each and every aspect was perfect and we met each and every indicator each year for the nine years we have been open.
Our two chefs are highly trained in nutrition and food safety. Natasha has her CHCECE004 Promote and provide healthy food and drinks and Patricia has her CHCCN303A Contribute to the provision of nutritionally balanced food in a safe and hygienic manner. Our whole staffing team are trained and successfully completed the Australian Institute of Environmental Health Foodsafe Food Handler Training Program every year.
Example of how we go above and beyond is how Jennifer has undergone additional training to become a Food Safety Supervisor. Applied retail food safety practices (SIRRFSA001A), Participate in safe food handling practices (SITXFSA201), Use hygienic practices for food safety (SITXFSA101), Implement the food safety program and procedures (FDFFS2001A), Follow basic food safety practices (HLTFS207B), Oversee the day-to-day implementation of food safety in the workplace (HLTFS309B), Apply and monitor food safety requirements (HLTFS310B)
We also undergo checks from the City of Joondalup council assessing us against their food business Risk assessments. We have obtained the highest rating of A, Low risk hazard on each check for the nine years we have been open.
At Kids College we have a strong injury management processes, including risk identification and conducting risk benefit and risk assessments to minimise risk. We aim to support children in risky play to be enjoyable and safe for them. We are organised and thoughtful in our approach to ensure effective supervision. Previous incidents and concerns are analysed and any changes to our policies and procedures are understood and implemented.
When we consider our actions and environments we are proactive, responsive and flexible in using professional judgements to keep children safe from injury. We create enjoyable play spaces where children can have fun safely.
Examples include we have had a few children getting splinters. We have sanded down the wood outside and sealed the wood. We are a Sunsmart centre, Asthma friendly centre and adhere to SIDS guidelines.
Our safety equipment includes a comprehensive medical first aid kit, general use asthma medication and anaphylaxis Epipens, AED, and well stocked evacuation bags. We also have fire safety equipment such as fire extinguishers and fire blankets and personal protective equipment such as gloves.
Examples of Kids College dedication include that although our childcare regulations state only one person needs to have first aid training, at Kids College all our members of our staffing team have full first aid training HLTAID004, which includes general first aid, cardio pulmonary resuscitation, anaphylaxis management and asthma management.
Jennifer and Craig have furthered their first aid skills and attained HLTAID006, This course extends on Provide First Aid (HLTAID003) to include additional skills and uses a range of equipment to provide advanced first aid response, life support and management of a casualty until the arrival of medical assistance including advanced scenario training. Craig and Jennifer have also attended training to become qualified Resuscitation trainers. We have our children’s safety at Kids College is our utmost priority.
‘We have stringent hygiene, health, nutrition, maintenance, safety and protection standards. We take our duty of care very seriously and will safeguard the safety and wellbeing of our children at all times as a matter of utmost priority.’
2.1.2 Health practices and procedures. Effective illness and injury management and hygiene practices are promoted and implemented.
Kids College family
At Kids College we work each day embedding our values and philosophy into each facet of what we do. We continually improve our practices by critically reflecting and engaging in meaningful relationships with our community and for this we need your support and input. Please let us know if you have any comments, queries or recommendations.
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