Health and Safety Policy

A Little Dramatic is open to parents/carers aged 18+ and their children under 5 years of age. The object of the class is to develop the five “C” skills, communication, creativity, control, cooperation and confidence.

It is A Little Dramatic’s policy to safeguard the health, safety and welfare of all its members, by ensuring that the activities are carried out in healthy and safe conditions.

Our objectives are-
1. To promote standards of health, safety and welfare for the entire class, its supporters and others who have contact with it that comply with the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and all other relevant statutory provisions and codes of practice
2. To ensure that there are safe means of access to all places where the class takes place
3. To provide and maintain safe and healthy working environments, equipment and procedures for the choir members and others, and to provide such information, training and supervision as they need for this purpose.
4. To adhere to any specific H&S policy requirements of each individual location where the class takes place concerning Fire Procedures

Overall responsibility for health and safety of the class rests with The Director (Deborah Mears), who will ensure the effective implementation of the policy and may delegate as appropriate, provided clear roles and responsibilities are established. Health and safety is also a responsibility for everyone at all levels. To achieve a good standard of health and safety all members of the class (carers and children) must take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves and of other class members and others who may be affected by their actions. Any member of the child or carer who breaks this code of conduct may be asked not to attend further sessions.

Where any risk is identified appropriate action will be taken to control, eliminate or reduce that risk. We must take a positive interest in our health and safety and exercise a common duty of care to others. We also have a special duty of care to those who may have particular requirements through, for example, disability or inexperience (please see separate Safeguarding Document).

Policy review date: June 2020

Safeguarding Policy

A Little Dramatic values young people and children and aims to see them grow, mature and be challenged in a healthy and safe environment. The name of the child protection officer for the group is Deborah Mears, and a copy of this safeguarding policy will be kept with the relevant parties at each regular venue as well as being available online at www.alittledramatic.co.uk

Purpose
The purpose of A Little Dramatic is to offer children aged 3-5 a safe and welcoming environment with Drama and play-based activities, where the participants can socialise, learn and have fun.

Aims
• To provide safe and exciting Drama activities for children.
• To enable the children to communicate effectively and express themselves creatively
• To assist the children in building relationships by working on confidence, control and cooperation skills
• To help children to benefit from the positive influence of Drama.

Organisation
Each adult and child must be formally registered within the group. Attendance register: a register should be kept for each session. To ensure privacy only names and ages will be on show.

Child Protection Representative
A Little Dramatic has appointed a child protection representative; Deborah Mears. If any person has any child safety concerns, they should discuss them with her. She will take on the following responsibilities:
• Ensuring that the law is being put into practice;
• Being the first point of contact for child protection issues;
• Keeping a record of any concerns expressed about child protection issues;
• Bringing any child protection concerns to the notice of the relevant body i.e. contacting the Local Authority if appropriate;
• Ensuring that everyone involved with the organisation is aware of the identity of the Child Protection Representative.

Personal/Personnel Safety
• Any group of children or young people under sixteen will not be left unattended at any time.
• The class leader will avoid being alone with an individual child or young person. If there is a need to be alone with a child or young person (e.g. first aid or he/she is distressed) they must ensure that another adult knows where they are and why.
• At no time should an adult arrange to meet a young person away from the activity without someone else being there.

Child Safety
1. We aim to make sure that the area we are using for activities is fit for the purpose, e.g. remove furniture, which could cause injury in energetic games.
2. We will make sure that all workers and assistants know:
a. where the emergency phone is and how to operate it
b. Where the first aid kit is and how to record accidents or injuries in the incident book
c. What to do in the event of a fire or other emergency

3. We will never let a child go with another adult unless the parent has informed you that this will happen.

Equal Opportunities
All children and young people have the same protection regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity. A Little Dramatic is committed to anti-discriminatory practice and explicitly recognises the additional needs of children from minority ethnic groups and disabled children and the barriers they may face, especially around communication (see NSPCC guidelines here https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/safeguarding/deaf-disabled-children/)

What is Child Protection?
Child Protection is the response to the different ways in which a young person’s or child’s physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual health are damaged by the actions of another person. A Little Dramatic will follow the Local Safeguarding Children Board’s procedures in every aspect of Child Protection. The Department for Education published an updated version of the key statutory guidance for anyone working with children in England in March 2015 and information has been taken from such policies to complete this document. https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/child-protection-system/england/legislation-policy-guidance

What those working for A Little Dramatic will do
1. Listen to the child/young person.
2. Look at them directly and do not promise to keep any secrets before you know what they are, but always let the child/young person know if, and why, you are going to tell anyone.
3. Take whatever is said to you seriously and help the child/young person to trust his/her own feelings. Take notes of exactly what is said to you avoiding assumptions and conjecture.
4. It is not the role of the worker to investigate any allegations (this would contaminate evidence if a situation went to court). Any disclosure by a child/young person must be reported to the named child protection officer.
5. Speak immediately to the Local Authority or NSPCC for further advice and guidance.

What we will not do
1. Workers should not begin investigating the matter themselves.
2. Do not discuss the matter with anyone except the correct people in authority.
3. Do not form your own opinions and decide to do nothing.

Things to say or do:
• ‘What you are telling me is very important’
• This is not your fault’
• ‘I am sorry that this has happened/is happening’
• ‘You were right to tell someone’
• What you are telling me should not be happening to you and I will find out the best way to help you’
• Make notes soon after the event. Try to write down exactly what the young person or child said. Avoid assumptions or conjecture.

Things not to say or do:
• Do not ask leading questions – Why? How? What?
• Do not say ‘Are you sure?’
• Do not show your own emotions e.g. shock/disbelief
• Do not make false promises

This policy was adopted by A Little Dramatic on 21st June 2019 and will be reviewed annually

Risk Assessments

Venue Risks

HazardWhat could happen?Who could be hurt?Action taken to minimise risk
Hard smooth floorCould be slippery when wet. Somebody could fall over and injure themselves. This could lead to bruises / broken bones / sprains / head injuries / back injuries.Teacher, carers, children, siblings.Put out a sign warning people when the floor has just been cleaned or something has been spilled. Where possible, clean the floor at the end of the day when there are fewer people around.
ChairsThese can cause clutter and people could trip over or bump into them.  They could also fall onto people if they are stacked incorrectly.Teacher, carers, children, siblings.Clear chairs to the side before starting class. Ensure chairs are stacked safely before allowing people inside
Electrical appliancesFaulty appliances can cause electrocution, which can cause serious injury and death.Teacher, carers, children, siblings.The centres will ensure all appliances are checked regularly (at least once a year). Teacher to give a quick inspection to electrical equipment before each use.
FirePeople could become trapped during a fire, which can be fatal.Teacher, carers, children, siblings.The venues will have correct smoke alarms and extinguishers to hand. Teacher must know where these are and be aware of evacuation procedure.

Equipment Risks

HazardWhat could happen?Who could be hurt?Action taken to minimise risk
Props may contain allergy inducing materialsSomeone could suffer an allergic reaction if the contact any materials that are hazardousChildren.Any props which may contain risk (such as latex masks) will be announced before the session starts so carers can decide if their child should keep away from these props.
Damaged props could cause injuryWooden materials could splinter, plastic items could become sharp if broken. Children could cut themselvesChildren.Props must be checked before the class begins and should any mishaps occur the teacher should be vigilant to check safety immediately.
Damage to electric power cableAnybody who touches the damaged cable could be electrocuted.Teacher, carers, children, siblings.The caretakers of each venue will check the full length of the cable, plus plugs and sockets, once a week. This should be noted in the caretaker’s records.

Activity Risks

HazardWhat could happen?Who could be hurt?Action taken to minimise risk
ParachuteSuffocation if pulled too tightly, risk of children colliding if they feel claustrophobicChildren.Every game will consider how the parachute is held, by whom, and children will have the opportunity to not take part if they are anxious.
Children behaving in dangerous waysToddlers may push or hit out if they disagree. The may fall to the floor and become physically hurt.Children.The terms and conditions will allow the teacher to prohibit children from attending the class if their behaviour becomes serious or dangerous. Due to the children’s age respect to their emotions must be paid and the teacher must look to deal with conflict, particularly in the ‘group work’ areas of the lesson plan. Teacher may ask carers to allow their child to have some time out if they see emotional anxiety occurring.
AbductionUnknown adults could come into the venue if it is unsecuredChildren.Doors will be kept shut except for at the beginning and end of the activity. At these times, children will be closely supervised by the carers who brought them in and the teacher. No child will be allowed to leave with an adult who is unknown to the teacher, without checking with the child’s parent/carer.
CollisionsChildren could collide with one another when moving around, causing them to fall over and injure themselves.Children.Children will be supervised and teacher will ensure that they do not move too fast. Children will be reminded to watch out for those around them before every movement activity. Movement activities should not happen after bubbles have been used.

The risk assessments were written on 21st June 2019 by Deborah Mears and will be reviewed on 21st December 2019.