What policies should a childcare setting have?

Please note that this list of policies and procedures should only be used as a guide and is not definitive. It is the responsibility of each setting to decide its own policies and procedures.

Health and Safety

  • Child protection and reporting procedures
  • Anti-bullying
  • Equal opportunities
  • Illness
  • Immunisation
  • Medication
  • Exclusions
  • Food/nutrition
  • Resting
  • Outings
  • Child collection
  • Security
  • Areas to which the child/children have access
  • Sun protection
  • Accidents, incidents and injuries
  • Hygiene
  • Critical incident plan
  • First Aid
  • Manual handling
  • Smoking
  • Visits to setting by medical staff
  • Safe work environment
  • Spillages
  • Changing nappies/toilet time
  • Head lice
  • Food hygiene/health and safety/kitchen
  • Waste disposal
  • Furniture/fittings/equipment
  • Premises
  • Outside space
  • Violence
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Hepatitis

Child Welfare

  • Key person
  • Children's rights
  • Children's participation
  • Planning programmes
  • Admissions
  • Equal opportunities and social justice
  • Special needs
  • Language
  • Positive approaches to behaviour
  • Settling in/distressed children
  • Clothing
  • Items from home
  • Biting
  • Television/Video/DVD/Internet
  • Staff ratios
  • Childcare principles of good practice
  • Spiritual, cultural, moral and social values

Curriculum

  • Principles of curriculum quality
  • Planning programmes
  • Daily planning
  • Adult/child interaction
  • Greetings and departures
  • Transitions
  • Tidy up time
  • Small and large group time
  • Outside time
  • Planning for observation
  • Principles of assessment
  • Effective record keeping/report writing

Partnership with Families and Liaison

  • Home links/key person
  • Confidentiality
  • Parental/guardian involvement
  • Community links
  • Statutory links
  • Voluntary links
  • Consultation
  • Grievance procedure

Human Resources

  • Recruitment
  • Qualifications
  • Equal opportunities
  • Training
  • Staff illness
  • Staff meetings
  • Staff leave
  • Support and supervision
  • Appraisals
  • Induction procedure
  • Students'/volunteers' guidelines
  • Equal employment opportunity
  • Grievance and disciplinary procedure
  • Working hours
  • Accidents and injuries
  • Garda vetting

Administration

  • Admissions
  • Attendance
  • Fees
  • Comments/complaints
  • Record keeping
  • Withdrawing children
  • Committee meetings
  • Advisory Committee composition
  • Advisory Committee Terms of Reference
  • Insurance
  • Financial procedures

References

Willoughby, M. “ A Practical Guide to Developing Childcare Policies”. Barnardos, 2008.

Willoughby, M. “ A Practical Guide to Developing Childcare Policies”. Barnardos, 2010.

Area Development Management Ltd. “A Guide to Developing policies & Procedures in a childcare setting” 2003.