Educator - Safety
In Home Care is designed to support the provision of early childhood education and care in the home.
It is a condition of approval that an IHC Service only provides care in a safe home environment.
Families will be asked to take steps to ensure the physical environment is safe for the child/children and the IHC Educator.
The IHC Service must:
- Conduct home safety assessments, with the consent of the family, to be satisfied that the physical environment is safe for the children and the IHC Educator.
- Raise concerns with the family if the Service believes the physical environment may not be safe, and provide advice on ways to address the safety issues.
- Monitor the situation and assess the physical environment once the situation has been resolved.
- Provide reports of the home safety assessment to the Department upon request.
- Ensure the safety of children is always taken into consideration, including when transporting children as per arrangements in Family Management Plans.
The IHC Educator is required to maintain the necessary checks, seeking the necessary support from the IHC Service, particularly where working conditions are not satisfactory or there are concerns about child safety and personal safety.
Should the IHC Educator have any concerns about the safety of the physical environment, the educator must:
- Advise the family of these concerns, in the first instance.
- Notify the Service of these concerns and provide an update to the Service once these concerns have been addressed.
The service will act as an intermediary where there is a dispute between the IHC Educator and the family about the safety of the physical environment.
Other aspects of Safety for Educators to consider:
For the best protection use all five forms of sun protection – clothing, sunscreen, a broad-brim hat, shade and sunglasses – when the UV is 3 and above.
Safe Sleeping Practices
A safe sleeping environment means that all potential dangers have been removed and the baby is sleeping in a safe place.
What is a Safe Sleeping Environment?
Why should you sleep your baby on their back?
NeuRA and Kidsafe want to see all children as safe as possible when travelling in cars. Ensuring that parents receive straightforward, consistent advice from all sources on how to keep children safe in cars is an important step in making this happen.
See: Car Seat Safety
Each week in Australia a child is hit by a slow moving vehicle around the home. In most cases, the vehicle involved is driven by a parent or someone who knows the child and is reversing at the time. The consequences can be fatal. Fitzy and his son Hewie provide some safety tips to prevent these tragedies.
See: Driveway Safety
These guidelines can help you choose a safe trampoline and set it up so that your child can use it safely.
See: Trampoline Safety
In Australia, around 20 children per week are admitted to hospital because they have ingested a button battery and children aged 0-5 years are particularly vulnerable.
See: Button Batteries
Kidsafe have a PDF booklet that helps guide parents and carers through the common injuries that occur in homes.
It includes the common injuries seen including falls, drowning, burns & scalds, choking & suffocation, backyard injuries and farm-related injuries.
It also includes the Kidsafe Home Safety Checklist which provides guidance for every room in the house.
See: Home Safety
Safety Around Dogs
Any dog can and might bite a baby or child. Even friendly dogs might bite.
Dog bites to children often happen in or around the home. Usually, it’s the family dog or a friend’s dog that bites.
The most dangerous times are when a child is playing alone with a dog or when a child is trying to play with a dog that’s eating or sleeping.
You can reduce the risk of dog bites and other injuries by closely supervising children and dogs when they’re together and especially during play. Close supervision means staying within arm’s reach and being ready to step in straight away if you need to.
Close supervision also means staying alert and avoiding distractions like phones or loud noises.
See: Dog Safety
Animals and Child Safety
Child safety and dogs, cats, birds, snakes and insects.
Many children love animals, enjoy close relationships and learn life lessons from their own pets. However, there are responsibilities and risks involved when children and animals are together.
It is important that children are taught the skills to behave safely around animals, and to prevent and recognise any problems that may arise. You should:
- Teach children to always treat animals gently and calmly. Never hurt, tease, frighten, surprise or corner an animal.
- Always closely supervise children near animals, including pets. If this is not possible, then separate them.
- Separate children and animals including pets during noisy high-energy play, when food is present, and when the animal or child is sleeping. Never disturb an animal that is eating or sleeping.
- Ask friends and relatives to do the same.
- Keep your pet healthy.
- Always wash your hands after touching animals, their food bowls, toys, bedding, etc.
Babies and children in hot cars
- Never leave children unattended in cars. Temperatures can rise to dangerous levels very quickly.
- Children left in hot cars are at risk of life-threatening heatstroke, dehydration, suffocation, organ damage and death.
- Make sure your child is cool, safe and comfortable when you’re driving in hot conditions.
- Take precautions to avoid unintentionally locking your child in the car.
See: Children in Hot Cars
Cats make great pets and should be treated gently and responsibly. However:
- Injuries from cats are mainly bites or scratches commonly on the head, neck or upper extremity, commonly causing puncture wounds that may become infected. Cats have a lot of nasty bacteria on their teeth and claws. These teeth and claws are quite sharp.
- Any cat bites or scratches must be thoroughly washed and disinfected.
- Keep good hygiene by not allowing children access to litter trays or playing in garden beds that the cat uses for toileting.
- Keep cats out of a child’s nursery so that they do not have access to the cot.
Staying Healthy: Preventing infectious diseases in early childhood education and care services
Staying Healthy – includes downloadable content on:
- Preventing infectious diseases in early childhood education and care services
- Breaking the chain of infection + The chain of infection – poster
- Croup Factsheet
- Warts Factsheet
- Changing a nappy without spreading germs – poster
- How to wash hands – poster
- How to use alcohol-based hand rub – poster
- The role of hands in the spread of infection – poster
- Recommended minimum exclusion periods – poster
- What Causes infections – information for families
- Exclusion periods explained – information for families