What You Should Know About Day Nurseries?
Listed below are some questions you might like to ask us: -
• Does the Nursery Manager hold any childcare or teaching qualifications?
• What qualifications do the staff have?
• Are there any untrained or unqualified staff employed?
• What is the staff ratio? The 1989 Children Act requires the following: for children aged o - 2 years to have a ratio of 1:3, 2 to 3 years a ratio of 1 to 4, and for children aged 3 to 5 years a ratio of l to 8. Do you think this is enough?
• How are staff ratios maintained during staff breaks and over lunchtime?
• Is the Officer-in-Charge or her Deputy on the premises at all times?
• Is the Officer-in-Charge supernumerary? (She should be if there are more than 20 places).
• Are there students on placement? Are they counted in the ratio? (They should not be).
• How many of the staff are First Aiders?
• How many of the staff have the Food and Hygiene certificate?
Food and Hygiene
• Who decides on the menus for snacks and main meals?
• What if a child does not eat at lunch time?
• Are the dietary needs (religious/medical) of individual children taken into account?
• How does the nursery dispose of nappies?
• How do you ensure that your premises and toys are kept clean and germ free?
Safety And Security
• Are Fire Drills practised? Ask to see the logbook.
• Is there a Health and Safety Policy? Where is it displayed?
• How do you ensure that all children are safe on the premises?
• How do you ensure that no unauthorised person collects a child?
• How do you ensure that children cannot gain access to hazardous materials?
• What is the medication procedure?
• What is the procedure for recording accidents?
• How many children is the nursery registered to take?
• Is the Registration Certificate displayed?
• What policies and procedures are held and are they available for parents to read?
• What records does the Nursery Manager keep?
• Has there ever been a complaint made about the nursery to the Social Services?
• There are many more questions to ask - please do not hesitate to query any aspect of nursery care.
Layla Twinn, Nursery Manager