Nursery continues to support parents to keep working

With the closure of schools to most pupils under the latest lockdown, there have been questions as to why a change in guidelines has allowed nurseries and childminders to remain out of step, open to all children to allow parents to continue working.

Child (stock photo) SUS-210115-110908001

With infection rates still rising, it is now being suggested that these places may too have to close to protect staff and prevent further spread of coronavirus.

Olwen Owen, manager of First Steps Nursery in Ruskington, said that with the early years sector being asked to stay open for all children, they have continued to operate in order to provide childcare support for their families.

She said: “We understand the need for our service for parents to continue working where they are required to.

“During the first lockdown last year we were only open to vulnerable children and the children of critical workers, but this time all children can access our facility.”

She said: “Working families need this support and children at this age thrive on the interaction and the stability of the routine that attending nurseries give them.”

Countering concerns she commented: “Just like everyone else we are concerned at the current rate of infection, but we feel that we have a very robust system of controls at our nursery to minimise the chances of infection. “We have put every measure in place that we can think of to keep the children and our staff safe, but we continue to review this on a daily basis and will not hesitate to introduce additional safety measures if needed. We have purchased all the additional cleaning and hygiene supplies required at a considerable cost to ourselves, unlike schools who have been given extra funding for this purpose. Given the enhanced and frequent cleaning that we practice currently to keep our nursery Covid secure this has resulted in a significant increase to our outgoings.”

She said it was necessary as the safety of children and staff was of utmost importance.