Health and Safety for Children, parents and Carers

Children learn best when they are healthy, safe and secure, when their individual needs are met, and when they have positive relationships with the adults caring for them. This page looks at different ways you can ensure the safety of children in your care. 

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) sets the standards that all early years providers must meet to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe.

Paragraphs 3.44 to 3.51 of the guidance set out the requirements around health, with respect to:

  • Medicines
  • Food and Drink
  • Accident or Injury

For further information around Health and Safety click on the blocks below. 

Public Health England

Did you know Schools and nurseries are common sites for transmission of infections? This is because children are particularly susceptible to infections because:

  • they have immature immune systems
  • have close contact with other children
  • sometimes have no or incomplete vaccinations
  • have a poor understanding of hygiene practice

To assist you in effectively minimising the spread of infection in your setting, and complying with section 3.2 EYFS, 2017, you will find guidance on infection control on the most recent poster from Public Health England.

Read more details on Public Health Englands's guidance.

First Aid Certificates

At least one person who has a current paediatric first aid certificate must be on the premises at all times when children are present, and must accompany children on outings. First aid training must be relevant for workers caring for young children. Childminders, and any assistant who might be in sole charge of the children for any period of time, must hold a current paediatric first aid certificate. For settings, we recommend implementing an electronic reminder procedure to ensure renewals are booked as appropriate and are included in the annual review of staff’s training needs. 

There are many paediatric first aid courses available on the market. Whichever course a childcare professional chooses it must meet the requirements of the EYFS and Ofsted.

Behaviour

Detailed support on behaviour can be found on the BACME pages

Providers are responsible for managing children's behaviour in an appropriate way.

We recommend that they have and implement a behaviour management policy, and procedures:

  • A named practitioner should be responsible for behaviour management in every setting. They must have the necessary skills to advise other staff on behaviour issues and to access expert advice if necessary.
  • In a childminding setting, the childminder is responsible for behaviour management.

Punishing a child

Providers must not give corporal punishment to a child, nor threaten it.

Providers must take all reasonable steps to ensure that corporal punishment is not given by any person who cares for or is in regular contact with a child, or by any person living or working in the premises where care is provided.

Any early years provider who fails to meet these requirements commits an offence.

A person will not be taken to have used corporal punishment (and therefore will not have committed an offence), where physical intervention was taken for the purposes of averting immediate danger of personal injury to any person (including the child) or to manage a child’s behaviour if absolutely necessary.

Providers, including childminders, must keep a record of any occasion where physical intervention is used, and parents and/or carers must be informed on the same day, or as soon as reasonably practicable.

The PACEY Accident, Incident and Medication Book has a section where physical intervention can be recorded.

Supporting parents to deal with the challenges of raising children

Raising children is tough especially when it comes to discipline it can be difficult to know how best to react when a child is misbehaving. Increasingly, families want to adopt ‘positive parenting' techniques for disciplining children such as encouragement, rewarding good behaviour and setting clear boundaries and to move away from aggressive reactions like shouting or smacking.

To help parents, NSPCC Wales is launching its own positive parenting campaign, Take 5. It urges parents of children aged between one and four to stop - breathe - and react calmly when dealing with tantrums, difficult behaviour and other challenging parenting situations.

Further information

Childcare providers can also refer to the Schools Behaviour policy and guidance section, where there is advice about how schools can develop their behaviour policy, so the same principles could be applied to childcare providers.

Last update: Friday 13th of September 2019 10:09:10 AM