Ellingham House: COVID-19 - Infection Control Notice

Naturally, parents will harbour concerns regarding the possible transmission at nursery of the Covid-19 infection

Here at Ellingham House, we have fully implemented the recommendations of the Early Years COVID-19 Response Group’s advice contained in their ‘Early Years Settings COVID-19 Site Operating Procedures’ document. The document is a most comprehensive collation of the current guidance provided by Public Health England and the Department for Education.

Copies can be requested from the office if required and will be on display throughout the nursery

In essence, in addition to implementing high levels of hygiene practices, each group of children and staff will be in self-isolating ‘bubbles’ – as far as is reasonably possible – to ensure the best possible physical distancing between groups. Effectively, Baby-Unit, Toddlers, Conservatory and Pre-School will have their own staff and play areas and will not mix. Unlike most settings, we have structurally separated areas for our children.

Parents will be required to take the temperature of their children just prior to setting off for nursery and we will implement a zero tolerance policy towards any symptomatic presentation. I appreciate that this approach will no doubt prove to create inconveniences for parents but, at this juncture, it is absolutely necessary. Parents must ensure that they are contactable at ALL TIMES whilst their child is at nursery.

Obviously, social distancing between children and children, and between children and staff, is not possible for ‘Under Fives’. Also, as children would be frightened, it is not desired or required by guidance, for staff to be wearing masks. Children should also not wear a face covering – as with the staff, face coverings are not required, are impractical and can be scary!

Social distancing for parents will be important and we will restrict the number of parents within the house at drop off and collection times – you may be asked to wait in your cars at these times. Whilst the wearing of face coverings by parents is at your discretion, you MUST sanitise your hands and your children’s hands immediately upon entry of the nursery.

Children often bring in soft cuddly toys, muzzies, or some such security item. It is important to the children that they are still able to bring with them their precious ‘comforters’. However, it is most important to us that these ‘support’ items are freshly laundered, sweet smelling and
disease free. Please kindly ensure this to be the case.

Fortunately, all current medical and scientific knowledge indicates that young children are the least affected by Covid-19 and that indeed, some countries are suggesting that they are highly unlikely to be able to transmit the virus. This is encouraging but it is very early stages in our collective understanding of the virus and its transmission.

It is to our wonderful ‘Pink Ladies’ that I take my hat off. They are key workers and are aware that they themselves are not immune – and yet, they have enthusiastically and professionally met with the challenges of the pandemic, consistently providing “the finest care, the greatest fun and the most encouragement” to all who join us each day.

Please do not hesitate to speak with me for further reassurance as required.

Kind regards

Ellingham House: COVID RETURN

Dear Parent,

27 May 2020

Welcoming The ‘Ellingham Family’ Back!

It is with enormous pleasure that we are anticipating the return of ‘non Key-Worker’ children on Monday 1st June.

Over the past two months we have developed our practice in full compliance to Public Health England and Department for Education guidance and requirements.

As we now increase in numbers of both staff and children, those practices that we have become used to will be further developed and expanded to enable us to continue to safeguard our parents, children and staff from Covid-19 transmission. We cannot guarantee that we will not suffer some cases, we are simply doing all that we can and is practical to achieve a healthy environment. To date there have been no cases of child to child or child to adult onward transmission at Ellingham.

To assist us please could all parents follow the following Covid-19 practices:

  • Upon arrival please look to be directed by Hugh and Helen who will be managing safe access to the nursery.
  • Baby-Unit and Toddler children should access the nursery via the main Front Door.
  • Conservatory children should make access via Pre-School archway and then the main house Kitchen Door.
  • Pre-School children should access as normal.
  • Naturally, children may be unsettled at drop off after the break in their attendance. The staff all appreciate that extra hugs, cuddles, reassurance and ‘one-to-one time will be required to re-settle some of our children. To assist any natural reluctance at first, PARENTS SHOULD MAKE THE DROP OFF AS SWEET AND SWIFT AS POSSIBLE. Rest assured, we will do the rest!!!! As always, please do not hesitate to then phone us to find out how ‘junior’ has settled. At collection times as well, feed-back may have to be briefer than normal to assist ‘social distancing’ practicalities.
  • Hands of both parents and children MUST be sanitised at the ‘sanitising stations’ as you make access to the house.
  • Security blankets and Comfort toys – Naturally, such ‘supportive aids’ to the children’s reassurance are always welcome. However, unwashed items are the most splendid germ carriers!

            Please ensure that all such items are freshly laundered, sweet smelling and clean.

  • SOCIAL DISTANCING: Children in Early Years settings are not required to ‘social distance’ for the obvious reasons that it would be undesired, unpleasant and frankly impossible to practice. The children will continue to receive all the natural love and affection from the staff that they are used to and will interact with their peers as normal. However, PARENTAL SOCIAL DISTANCING must be complied with. Please follow our guidance, take responsibility for your own actions and use old fashioned ‘common sense’ whilst within the curtilage of the house and grounds. When dropping off and collecting your children, all adults please remain as much as is absolutely possible 2 meters apart at all times!

9) Unless otherwise discussed with Helen, children should return to the rooms that they were in before the ‘lock-down’ period. Over the next few weeks, we will be fast-tracking onward movement as is suitable to both individuals and the nursery.

        10) “Bubbles” – is a term for self contained, non-mixing groups of children and staff. We       will have four such ‘bubbles’ – Baby-Unit, Toddlers, Conservatory, and Pre-School.  

The 1st June ‘Ellingham Pink Ladies’ team:

Baby-Unit: Hannah Cave and Maddie

Toddlers – Younger: Emma Gilham, Beth and Keely.

                    Older: Lauren Dickinson, Megan, Carlie (pt-time)

Conservatory: Zoe Knight, Maggie, Gemma (pt-time)

Pre-School: Amy Thorne, Jessica and Lizzie 

If any parents have any concern or query, please do not hesitate to speak to Hugh or Helen. With much pleasure we look forward to beginning to welcome back ‘The Ellingham Family’.