“Children play in a very secure environment where they can move around safely. The childminder has given high priority to their personal safety. She takes precautions to prevent accidents. High priority is given to helping children understand how to keep themselves safe. Safety issues are regularly discussed and explained to the children according to their level of understanding. Children are very well protected by the childminder who has an excellent understanding of child protection policies and procedures and gives top priority to promote children’s welfare. All of these measures greatly contribute to the safety and welfare of the children.” Ofsted.
We accept sole responsibility for the children whilst they are in our care and believe their welfare and needs to be paramount at all times. In regard to child protection we adhere to the Ealing Safeguarding Children’s Board (ESCB).
As registered childminders we have been both police and medically checked by OFSTED to assess that we are suitable to care for children. We also ensure that anybody who comes into contact with the children from this setting, such as our families have also been police checked. Any person visiting us or our setting (for example prospective clients) that we are unsure about, in terms of whether or not they are likely to have been police checked, will not be left unattended with the children at this setting.
It is our duty as caring childcare practitioners and in accordance with the Children Act 2004, the Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 document and the London Child Protection Procedures 2019, that we report any suspicions of a child being abused to Social care health department, or the police who, in turn, have a duty to investigate such concerns. As always we strive to work in partnership with parents/guardians/carers to provide optimal care, protection, and learning opportunities for the children of our setting. Therefore the following procedures have been formulated, and are adhered to, in order for us to protect children:
• We are aware of the signs and symptoms of abuse and of the ages and stages of child development and use this knowledge, combined with effective communication with parents/guardians/carers about their individual child, and records of observations and assessment to either confirm, or allay, child protection concerns.
• Accidents happen both at home and away from home; it is paramount that we as responsible adults fulfil our duty to protect children by effective communication, in which we highlight to each other accidents or incidents that have occurred, either before, or, during the time that the child was left in our care.
• If a child sustains an injury whilst in our care it is recorded in the child’s documentation folder and brought to the attention of the adult who collects the child. This person will be asked to read and sign the record and will receive a copy for their information.
• If a child arrives with an existing injury it should be brought to our attention for protection of the child and for us, again this will be recorded in the child’s documentation folder. The person who has brought the child will be asked to read and sign the report and will receive a copy for parental information.
• Incidents which arouse suspicion are recorded on a record of concerns sheet and filed in the child’s individual documentation folder.
• All details recorded about the above mentioned accidents or incidents are treated as highly confidential, and the completed records are securely filed away in the child’s individual documentation folder and are kept locked in a filing box . Parents can ask to view their child’s individual documentation folder if they wish.
• In the event of a disclosure from a child, or, if an injury, bruise, or mark, noticed by us or anybody else, causes us to suspect abuse we will make a referral to the local social care and health office where the child lives. Whenever possible we will communicate my concerns with the person who has parental responsibility for the child before the social care and health office is contacted, and before the social care and health office discusses the referral with any other agency.
• The only time that we would not discuss concerns with a child’s parents/guardians/carers would be if we felt that in doing so we would put the child at risk of significant harm, or prejudice police enquiries/investigations.
• In the event of allegations of abuse being made by a child, or his/her parents, against anybody that the child may have come into contact with whilst in our care, it is our duty to inform OFSTED and the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO).
We also have regards for our responsibilities under The Prevent Duty Act to help protect the children we look after from being drawn into extremism and terrorism. At La Nounou, we actively promote British Values of democracy, rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance to help build the children’s resistance to radicalisation.
Mobile phones and cameras: The use of cameras from mobile phones and other cameras in the setting is only permitted after being given permission from the manager. This is to prevent abusive use of pictures whilst allowing practitioners to record and document children’s development. We have a photograph permission form, which enables parents to detail the situations La Nounou’s staff are allowed to take pictures of their children and the use of those pictures.