The Health And Safety Are The Primary Factors Of The Early Childhood Environment
By Julia Yaremchuk, M.S.
The two most crucial factors of having a successful early childhood are health and safety. The health of a child enrolled in a school setting will reflect the attendance rate and the way that a child will interact with others in that setting. For a setting to maintain a healthy environment several large factors must be accomplished. First, a record of immunization and a statement of good health are to be brought into the school setting showing the well-being of the child and if that child is immune to most infectious diseases and/or maybe have some sort of medical disability that the school administration must know about. The second factor is for the child to be examined by administration or the teacher upon entering the school environment to see if any risk factors exist which may deter success in school for that day. For example, a child may have pigmentation on his or her skin, a child may have a swollen/pink eye, mucus from an opening, and many other factors that may cause concern and further infection in the school setting,. Thus the teacher or administration must inform the parents of the health situation that the child has and ask the guardians to pick up the child and bring him or her to the pediatrician for a formal diagnosis. Regulating the way children feel in school is a vital factor in how the health environment will be in the entire school setting because as the medical law shows, if one child is sick, he or she may infect the entire group of children in his or her class as well.
Another great factor to keeping a healthy environment is constant sanitation and proper disposal of all items that may cause the spread of diseases. For example, teachers should help children wash their hand and themselves constantly wash hands as well. Surfaces where children play, sit, eat and interact must be disinfection after each encounter so that a spread of infection does not go child to child, if one of the children places a toy in his/her mouth as part of the developmental process. Cleaning and keeping a sanitary school is very important in protecting the overall health of all those people who are in that environment.
Safety comes into parallel importance with health. Safety must be properly addressed with all the members of the institution. The way children are dropped off and picked up from a certain setting is very important and takes technological instrument such as buzzers, cameras and computers, along with manpower which is physically handing student to their appropriate guardians.
In my school inspection of the following are the degrees of health and safety maintenance:
- All students have immunization forms
- All students are assessed for health upon arrival
- All students are assessed for health mid-day
- All students are reminded to wash hands
- All surfaces and objects are disinfected after usage and on a daily basis
- All members of the institution know the safe-guards for entering and leaving the facility
- All members have a code during pick-up and drop-off
- All members of the institution are required to show proof of identification
- Cameras, locks, buzzers and physical checks are done on a daily basis
Frost, J. L., Wortham, S.C., & Reifel, S. (2008). Play and Child Development (3rd ed.).
Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill.