A child’s health and safety has always been a top priority in childcare and even more so during the pandemic. With businesses re-opening and schools starting back up this fall, you want to feel comfortable knowing your childcare facility is applying the health guidelines necessary to slow the spread of the virus. To help you do this, first know what your childcare facility’s health guidelines are, ask how certain activities will be performed throughout the week, and finally, check in with your pediatrician. Taking these steps is vital to the health and well-being of not only your children, but for your household as well.
Knowing Your Childcare Facility’s Health Guidelines
It is essential that your childcare facility is following the CDC guidelines to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. This is to ensure that your children along with the other children at the facility are safe when interacting with each other and staying home if they are ill or experiencing symptoms.
- Cleaning and Disinfecting – Ask how the facility is cleaning and disinfecting all high touched surface areas including toys, mats and food containers and utensils.
- Screening – Ask if children and staff will have their temperatures checked and check for other possible symptoms before letting them enter the facility on a daily basis.
- Testing and Isolation – Ask if someone does get sick, do they need to get tested for COVID-19? And if they test positive, how long should they stay home? If they are negative for the virus, how long should they stay home for, even though they don’t have the virus?
The Facilities’ Daily Routines
It’s always good to know what routines your child will be doing while at the facility. During the pandemic, knowing these routines will help you to keep track of your child’s health safety and well-being including the following:
- Social Distancing Procedures – What children will your child be in contact with? Is the facility requiring masks for children of certain ages? Will children stay in their classrooms and not mix with other classes? Will groups remain small staying in step with CDC guidelines?
- Meal, Snack and Nap Safety – Is social distancing going to be enforced during meal, snack and nap time? Social distancing may not be necessary if children stay in small groups during meals and snacks. For their naps, they won’t have to wear masks and their mats can be positioned head to foot.
Check in with Your Pediatrician
We at Bard & Didriksen Pediatrics are here to answer any and all questions you may have regarding childcare safety during the pandemic. You’re not alone in the decisions you make to either send your child to childcare or keep them home, and we will help you every step of the way. Even during the pandemic, your child’s wellness visits are essential to ensure required immunizations are up-to-date and to check that the growth and development of your child are on track.
We want to help you stay in the know on how the pandemic is affecting your community, remain updated on the health department recommendations to help you with your own daily routines, and to make sure your child will be safe upon returning to their childcare facility. To take the survey to see how you feel about the safety steps your childcare is taking, visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/decision-tool.html. For more information regarding updates on the coronavirus and other school safety resources, visit the CDC at www.cdc.gov or contact us.