Coronavirus Strategy

Coronavirus Nursery Info**Updated 6th December 2021 to reflect changes in travel requirements**

We are available to offer full childcare services to all families of all children.

We have removed our limits on Nursery & Out of School Places.

  • Bright Kids Evesham (Worcestershire) – 52 children nursery 
  • Bright Kids Matchborough (Redditch) – 20 children
  • Bright Kids Crabbs Cross (Redditch) – 54 children nursery ~ 24 Out of School Children
  • Bright Kids Studley (Warwickshire) – 52 children nursery ~ 26 Out of School Children
  • Bright Kids Coughton (Warwickshire) – 50 children nursery 
  • Bright Kids Northfield (Birmingham) – 66 children nursery 
  • Bright Kids Barley Lea (Coventry) – 52 children
  • Bright Kids Wigwam (Birmingham) – 20 Out of School Children

Updated National Guidance is in place from 13th April 2021

We have also set out our approach to Parents Fees during this time and there is a link to our Covid-19 Fees Policy.  If you have further queries on this then please email us at help@bright-kids.co.uk

Our Out of School Clubs are now open to all children.

We have an updated Out of School Guidance from the government to cover the return to school from 8th March. We recognise that challenges still exist but we wish to re-assure our parents that we have taken every precaution and followed the guidance where we can and so we will manage the risk of the children’s groupings and have completed a separate Out of School Risk Assessment on this.

We have updated our Nursery Risk Assessment based on the recent guidance changes and set out the following guidance to assist staff and parents at Bright Kids to feel supported and informed about our approach to the Covid-19 outbreak moving forward. For the very latest information then speak to your nursery direct about updates and individual site procedures. We will update this page as often as we can and when we have new information to share.

Current Situation

Bright Kids has remained open throughout all the lock-downs in order to serve the our families in the best way we have been allowed to by government. During this period we have had just a few positive cases and none in some nurseries and we are happy that our measures in place are effective. Since the introduction of workplace testing for nurseries we have issued lateral flow tests to all staff and these are carried out twice weekly by all staff.  90% of staff have also now had 2 vaccines. These measures will all help to reduce the overall spread of the virus. We do still expect all staff and parents to follow the Government Guidelines on Household Isolation.

Should any parent, child or member of their household show symptoms then they need to follow the self-isolation guidance and inform the nursery as soon as possible. We also need to be advised if anyone in the household, including your attending child, has had a positive PCR or LFT test. When we have a positive test within the nursery then we are also bound to following the Test & Trace  process which may involve children and staff being asked to isolated at home (see further information below and Covid-Fees Policy above).

We are aware that as the road map rolls out then the chances of the coronavirus spreading increases and so all of our current measures will remain in place for the forseeable future.  We will review this again at each milestone date in the road map.

What else are we doing

Bright Kids has in place serious rigorous infection control measures that has reduced the exposure for staff and children whilst in the setting, including:

  • good basic hygiene practices, including very regular hand-washing (practitioners, children and visitors)
  • handwashing for staff and children before and after any shared activities that involve their group of children
  • restricting exposure to the children’s environments from parents and visitors
  • regular sanitising of the restricted areas where parents hand over children
  • staff covering any existing wounds or lesions with waterproof dressings
  • personal protective equipment (PPE) such as aprons, gloves are used as needed
  • there are procedures in place for rigorous cleaning of equipment and the environment, especially the ‘touchpoints’ such as door handles and table surfaces
  • awareness of infection control guidance, including the management of infections
  • twice-weekly testing using home LFT tests
  • wearing masks as appropriate and asking visitors to wear masks

Parents are not currently allowed into the setting and hand overs occur at the door. Other visitors are limited to essential personnel only. Other visits are held out of hours. We are looking to start up day time visits, being socially distanced and with a negative test confrmation in place from June 2021.

We will also remind children to wash their hands:

  • when they arrive at the setting
  • after outside breaks
  • before meals and snack times
  • after using the toilet
  • at the end of the day before they go home

Where we do not have immediate access to soap and hot water to hand at the time, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer will be used instead. These products will have at least 60% alcohol and will be kept out of the reach of children. We will minimise use of these with children themselves.

We discourage and raise awareness of everyone touching their eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands and we will not allow sharing of any items that come into contact with mouths such as cups and bottles.

Additional Control Measures

With the increase in children numbers that is occurring at all sites we have now reviewed our current measures and our full considerations and control  measures are outlined in our updated Risk Assessment. An overview of the measures we have put in place to minimise the risk of transmission of the coronavirus Covid-19 is included on this page.

Parents

We ask parents to ensure they are distancing from each other when outside the building. This means to stay 2 metres apart and to not linger and talk to others. Where possible we will introduce a one-way in-out drop off to minimise contact. When this is not possible then we ask you to ensure that you give enough space to others at all times. Where we have more than one entrance we will look to use these. Due to the increase incidence of cases we are asking parents to wear masks at the door.

We have found the systems we have put in place are currently working. However we will continue to monitor this. We are now asking parents to wear face masks, havig reviewed the current government guidance.

We would ask that you update us with any new emergency contacts and their numbers if your existing ones are not available due to shielding. Your Manager will ask you about this and you can download a form for this here.

Children should not be dropped off at our setting by anyone who is suspected of currently having the virus.

Children

Please send your child in fresh clothes every day. If you are sending in bags from home e.g. with spare clothes in then we would like these to stay at nursery for the week and go home on your last day for the week. We will advise if we need any extra clothes. Children’s drinks cups should also remain at nursery. All children must have a nursery lunch to minimise bringing in more items from home.

Children should not bring in any unnecessary items from home. We appreciate children do need comfort items, where these are of a fabric nature we would prefer these to be replaced fresh every day.

We cannot social distance children of nursery age and this is recognised with the planning guidance. For this reason children will be cared for in room bubbles. The numbers in these are no longer fixed. Staff themselves will social distance from each other as much as possible during their working hours. Children are grouped in this way to minimise the total amount of contacts they have during any one day.

All children will still have a key person. However, if staff are isolating, this may be a different staff member than they have had before. We will communicate to you any new key persons as we go and can arrange Zoom calls if you would like to talk to them direct.

All children and families attending nursery settings are now able to be tested, whatever their age and as noted in the Planning Guidance for early years and childcare settings, section 4 which says:

Once early years and childcare providers open to more children, all staff and 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. Where the child or staff member tests negative, they can return to their setting and the fellow household members can end their self-isolation. If the child or staff member tests positive, the rest of their immediate group within their setting should be sent home and advised to self-isolate for 10 days

Therefore, if anyone does have a positive test within the group your child is in then you will be asked to self-isolate at home for 10 days. However, if a child goes home with symptoms but does not have a test done, then the remainder of group will not be required to self-isolate. This is because children have coughs, and temperatures for a variety of reasons and a positive Covid-19 test is the only reason to self-isolate the rest of the group. This is the best practice government guidance that we will follow. Fees will remain payable for all periods of self- isolation in line with the policy.

We know that washing hands regularly with soap and water is THE best way we can prevent spread of the infection and so our risk assessment highlights that we will continue to be doing this frequently, as we have been over the last 10 weeks.

Staff

The health and safety of our staff is of great importance to us. All staff have been trained in our procedures and are expected to carry them out. Staff will wash their hands for 20 seconds, or sanitise them when they arrive to work every day. All staff will undertake regular handwashing throughout the day. Staff will wear fresh clothes every day, or change into work clothes on arrival.

Staff will not be required to wear additional PPE (personal protective equipment) other than they normally do for changing nappies or serving lunches. They may however choose to wear gloves during the handover periods. Staff should currently wear face masks to minimise possible transmission. Staff should wash their hands after sustained contact with any children, in order to reduce the risk to themselves from their own hands touching their face.

Staying Alert & Keeping Safe

Information for the public, and particularly for people aged over 70, people with certain health conditions and pregnant women can be found here

It is extremely important, as the national situation evolves, that we think about how we can best support the mental health and well-being of people affected by the outbreak – individuals, families, workplaces, schools, as well as people who are working hard to protect the health of our communities. The Mental Health foundation has some good advice here.

Useful guidance, resources and communications materials,

A helpful list of all national guidance has also been published here, and this contains guidance for a range of partners/sectors, including guidance for educational settings, adult social care settings (including guidance about returning health and care workers), the transport sector, guidance for employers and businesses as well as advice for professionals advising the public and NHS guidance.

Where we have two positives cases or more then we will report this to Public Health England – and we will need to report it to Ofsted. The new track and trace procedures are in place, so they will be in touch to trace all other possible contacts.

What is a Coronavirus?

COVID-19 spreads in a similar way to flu, where there is close contact (within 2 metres) with an infected person. It is likely that the risk increases the longer someone has contact with an infected person. The virus is not an airborne. It cannot be contracted through skin to skin contact.  When an infected person coughs or sneezes it is the droplets produced (respiratory secretion) that contain the virus and then the means of transmission occurs through other people then touching their own mouth, nose or eyes. It is also possible that someone may become infected by touching a surface or object that has been contaminated with respiratory secretions and then touching their own mouth, nose, or eyes (such as touching a door knob or shaking hands then touching face). It is for this reason that handwashing and continuous cleaning of touchpoints is the best form of reducing transmission.

Most people infected with the virus have mild symptoms and recover, but some experience more serious illness and may need hospital care.  People with weakened immune systems or underlying health conditions such as diabetes, heart and lung disease are more vulnerable.

Definition by Public Health England (PHE): Coronaviruses are a common type of virus. They typically cause fever and a cough, which may progress to more severe pneumonia, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties in some people

There is currently no specific cure for the new Coronavirus so treatment is aimed at relieving the symptoms.

What are the symptoms?

The NHS advises that symptoms of the Coronavirus usually include:

  • a high temperature
  • a persistent cough
  • Loss of sense of smell or taste

There are other symptoms that exist, however these are the ones that need to be responded to.

Children under the ages of 10 are least affected.

People most affected are people that have under-lying heath issues and the elderly.

Key information sources

Coronavirus nursery helpline

Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)

The Department for Education has a helpline for early years providers, schools and colleges – as well as parents, carers and young people – who have questions about Coronavirus.

If you have specific questions about the virus, you can contact the helpline on:

Call: 0800 046 8687 Email: DfE.Coronavirushelpline@education.gov.uk

The situation regarding Covid-19 in the UK is subject to change, though the current risk of catching the virus remains low.

These sites will have all the official information you will need and should ideally be the only source of information you refer to:

COVID 19 – Guidance for Educational Settings (DfE)

Coronavirus (2019-cCoV) (NHS)

Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) – what you need to know (Public Health England)