1.Understand how to plan and provide environments and services that support children and young people’s health and safety
1.1Describe the factors to take into account when planning healthy and safe indoor and outdoor environments and services The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 covers many health and safety legislations in England and Wales. These include, RIDDOR, COSHH, First Aid, Fire Regulations etc. All of these legislations need to be understood and adhered to when planning any activities.
I would ensure that that the participants age, needs and abilities are taken into consideration. These could be specific to one person, eg. pregnancy, sensory impairments, or specific to the group as a whole. Needs of carers would also need to be taken into consideration, for example, extra seating. If a disabled child was present, their individual needs would also need to be taken into consideration. These could be extra space required to accessibility, extra lighting if visually impaired.
We all have a duty of care, and I would ensure that children, carers and others were made aware of the fire evacuation procedures if they were not familiar with the surroundings.
Any physical hazards would need to be removed to eliminate potential risks. For example, trailing leads, ensuring that fire exits are clear at all times. I would ensure that any equipment that was to be used was in safe and good working condition before the activity started.
I would ensure that the space to be occupied was large enough to occupy the number of participants and also ensure that sufficient light was provided. Harsh lighting could become uncomfortable after a long period of time. I would also ensure that the area was not too noisy or too dark, as this could also have a health effect on the children. The space and height of desks/work area would need to be checked to ensure that it was suitable for the task to be carried out.
If the activity was to take place outside, I would ensure that the security of the area was sufficient. I would also check to ensure that there was not any debris, eg. litter, glass, animal mess, if there was, I would ensure that it was cleared away appropriately.
I would ensure that the children were made aware of how to use any equipment safely that was provided.
1.2Explain how Health and Safety is monitored and maintained and how people in the work setting are made aware of risks and hazards and encouraged to work safely
Health and safety can be monitored in various ways. At St. Mary’s school the governors have overall responsibility for the health and safety function determining the policy. They are responsible for ensuring that all statutory requirements are adhered to, and will review the policy continually. Statutory requirements can cover a multitude of services, for instance, legionella testing, electrical testing, fire evacuation procedures and fire extinguisher testing. The head teacher and staff oversee the day to day management of the health and safety policy. The head teacher will ensure that an annual risk assessment of the whole school is carried out, and updated/reviewed once a term. If during an inspection risks or hazards are identified, immediate and effective steps would be taken to rectify the situation. They will also ensure that all statutory registers and records are accurately kept, for instance PAT testing. The head teacher will also ensure that all staff are adequately trained and fully aware of any hazards in their work.
Staff are encouraged to work safely by making themselves familiar with and conform to the school’s health and safety policy. They should make themselves aware of any hazards associated with their work and ensure that they are familiar with emergency procedures. All accidents, damages, hazards and defects must be reported to the head teacher to ensure that immediate measures are taken to protect anyone from a risk.
First aid/medical supplies are regularly checked by an appointed person to ensure that it conforms to current health and safety regulations. There are numerous first aiders at St Mary’s, including all TA’s and office staff.
Children and young people are actively encouraged , when appropriate, to consider the risks involved in any activities that are to be carried out.
1.3Identify sources of current guidance for planning healthy and safe environments and services
There are many sources of current guidance for planning healthy and safe environments and services which include:
-Head teacher or H&S Manager/Rep within the school
-County Education Department/Grid for Leaning
-Posters within the school (HSAWA, Evacuation Procedures etc.)
-Local community talks by Fire Service/Police/Security company etc.
1.4Explain how current health and safety legislation, policies and procedures are implemented in your own work setting or service
The main piece of legislation is the HASAWA 1974, and the various components within in, for example; COSHH, RIDDOR, Fire Safety etc. Within our school policies and procedures with regards to health and safety are set out in the school’s Health & Safety Policy which is attached.
The are 5 main ways health and safety is implemented within a school for example;
-People should report hazards, which can include faulty/dangerous pieces of furniture/equipment, or report a stranger within the school who was not wearing any identification -The school’s safety policy should be followed and new staff trained appropriately. I have read my own school’s health and safety policy which is attached. -I would make sure that my own actions do not harm myself of others. I ensure this by tidying and putting things away when a task is complete. An example is when we tidy up hot meal equipment at the end of the lunch period. -I also ensure that PPE is used by myself and others if required. For example, as a Midday Meals Supervisor, if we are tasked with serving the hot meals, we ensure that aprons and gloves are worn. -Equipment would need to safe. This would be checked visually and also ensure that relevant kite marks or (EC) European Conformity logos are apparent.
Staff working within the school have a responsibility under the Children’s Act 1989 to ensure that children are cared for and are safe.
Children that require on-going medical treatment each have a care plan and are kept by the school. Any medication that is prescribed for a particular medical problem, will be given by the appropriate person (normally a trained first aider). Strict records are kept as to exact time medication is administered, and this information is kept within the school office. At least two members of staff at St. Mary’s have attended a Managing Medicine Course.
2.Be able to recognise and manage risks to health , safety and security in a work setting or off site visits
This task is assessed within the school environment.
3.Understand how to support children and young people to assess and manage risks themselves
3.1Explain why it is important to take a balanced approach to risk management It is important to take a balanced approach to risk management to ensure that children and young people are able to explore and understand risks themselves. When a balanced approach is taken children are more likely to grow confident in tasks they undertake. It is also an idea to encourage the children to think of any risks that they may encounter whilst carrying out a task, for example, if taking a cooking club, asking the children what risks are associated with cutting vegetables etc.
3.2Explain the dilemma between the rights and choices of children and young people and health and safety requirements
All children and young people have the right to play, however, during playtime at St Mary’s a rota is adopted to ensure that only one year group plays on a particular piece of equipment at any one time. Another example would be that during snowy conditions, and particular areas of the playground are icy, children and others would be warned of the icy conditions are asked to play safely or avoid them.
When risk assessments are carried out, hazards are identified and can therefore be avoided.
3.3Give an example from own practice of supporting children or young people to assess and manage risk I would initially discuss with the group/child what risks they thought they would encounter by carrying out a particular activity. When playing in the playground I noticed Year 1’s on a piece of play equipment that was unsafe due to the wet weather. I asked them to come off of the play equipment, and then asked them why they think I asked. They all responded with the same answer, thus understanding the potential risk of slipping. They all then went on to play somewhere else. I then monitored the equipment to ensure that no others started playing on it.
4.Understand appropriate responses to accidents, incidents, emergencies and illness in work settings and off site visits
4.1Explain the policies and procedures of the setting or service in response to accidents, incidents, emergencies and illness St. Mary’s school has set policies for various health and safety issues. These include Health & Safety Policy, Behaviour Policy, Lone Working Policy, Child Protection Policy, Smoking Policy, Off-site and Educational Visits policy etc.
For instance in the event of an accident (dependent of the nature of the accident), the child would be comforted as best as possible and the injury treated possibly in location or they child would be taken to the school office. The accident book would be completed. If the accident was of a serious nature, an ambulance or the parents would be called dependent upon the nature of the accident. RIDDOR legislation would have to be followed in certain instances. Before every playground duty, we ensure that our carryout first aid bags are checked to ensure that they are complete with specific minor first aid items.
COSHH data sheets are kept by the Premises Manager to ensure anything that is harmful that comes into contact with children, is dealt with in the correct manner.
When considering an off-site visit, the EVC (Educational Visits Co-Ordinator) ensures that all off-site activities follow correct procedures. They will approve the group leader and monitor the written risk assessments to ensure good practice.
In the event of a fire, the person discovering the fire will raise the alarm (break glass or dialling the emergency services). On hearing the fire signal if the children/young people are in class the order to clear will be given by the teacher and they will indicate the route to be followed. When not in class the children will form single file in year groups and move by the most direct route to the place of assembly. At all times they must act quietly. The place of assembly at St. Mary’s is the infant playground.
4.2Identify the correct procedures for recording and reporting accidents, incidents, injuries and illness and other emergencies Recording and reporting of accidents documentation is kept in the school office. Information is kept in the accident book. If required a first aider would attend to the injury. If also necessary, a form would be sent home to the parents, for example, if the child sustained a bump to the head. If a major accident then RIDDOR would be followed, but this would normally be carried out by a Doctor.
If a child started showing physical signs of being seriously unwell for example the child develops a rash, fever or becomes unconscious, they would be taken immediately (if possible) to the school office. This would also be recorded in the accident/incident book and set procedures followed. This could be by contacting the emergency services immediately, or calling the parent/carer to collect the child to take to the family doctor or to the hospital.
If an incident occurred, for example a bomb warning, the fire evacuation process is followed. In addition, office staff would ensure that the emergency brief case in the office is taken by a member of staff which holds the disaster recovery plan and its associated instructions in that instance. The briefcase contains such information as parent/carers contact information etc.