How it can protect you and those in your care with CCTV
CCTV is now becoming much more than protecting your business in respect of theft. It is important for nurseries to consider the benefits in protecting the children in their care, their staff and safeguard their business.
Placing cameras outside a property may seem obvious, in so much that their presence can help prevent burglaries and acts of vandalism. However, there are many reasons why it’s just as important to fit CCTV inside a nursery, as Jackie Hyde explains.
In one incident where a child managed to leave a nursery without the knowledge of the nursery staff, CCTV footage helped to establish that distracted parents did not notice a child totally unrelated to them, had tagged along. The group of individuals managed to pass through a number of security doors including the final exit door and into the car park. Fortunately, the child was quickly discovered and returned into nursery unharmed. Without CCTV it would have been impossible to understand how this incident had occurred despite the nursery’s best efforts to prevent it. It also prompted a change in policy, so now people can only enter the premises individually to reduce parental distraction. The parents of the child in question were shown the footage and with the changes undertaken, they were happy for their child to remain with the nursery.
At another nursery, a child was playing with an object in a treasure basket. The child fell injuring their mouth. CCTV showed that at the time, standard policies and procedures were not being adhered to and therefore the child wasn’t being suitably supervised. Changes were made straightaway and staff retrained to prevent similar incidents in the future. Because the nursery was able to explain how the accident occurred and took immediate action, the parents did not make a claim, despite the child needing a stay in a hospital. Managing incidents is vitally important and CCTV is a fantastic aid in respect of incidents such as these.
Validating or invalidating injury claims or safeguarding issues
While it goes without saying that a nursery’s key priority is to protect those in its care, at the same time they need to protect their business. One example of this was when a parent claimed their child had dislocated an arm while at nursery. Although the CCTV did show the child falling, they got up and appeared OK. At home time, the CCTV showed the child bending their arm to put on a coat, proving it could not have been dislocated in the fall.
Training staff and improving procedures
CCTV footage can be an invaluable resource when training staff; allowing you to view and analyse real-life incidents. This can also be useful when reviewing and updating health and safety procedures, where recorded footage can be used to test the practical effectiveness of written plans and policies.
Finally, while all these examples clearly demonstrate the importance of CCTV, owners and managers must know how to correctly operate and maintain their system. As well as being able to access recordings as and when required, all footage must be regularly backed up to ensure you always have the necessary supporting evidence to hand should an incident occur or a claim be made against you.