Arrival and departure from the Centre
On accepting a position for your child at the Centre you will undertake an extensive induction program, designed by the Centre. The child’s primary carer at the Centre will explain to you each point listed on the Centre's 'Induction checklist'.
This document is then signed by both Centre personnel and yourself. This process ensures an understanding of the regulatory requirements governing arrival and departure times, such as signing in and out; completing and updating enrolment information; medication details; custodial details; and late fines and procedures.
The Centre opens at 8.15am Monday to Friday. Security Access cards issued to families as part of the enrolment process provides access to the Centre at 8.10am. Families are requested not to leave the Centre until 8.15am. On arrival families must ensure that their child/children are signed in. This is done in the child’s playroom and includes the arrival time. Families must ensure that medication details are completed by authorised persons; they sign for variance to the menu provided forms; contact details if changed for day are recorded and/or departure details are communicated to the teacher with appropriate authorisation given; and any other messages to teachers are completed if required.
The Centre closes at 6.15pm Monday to Friday. On arrival families must ensure that they sign out the child, this includes the departure time. This is done in the child’s playroom. Families are to check the 'messages to Family' section of the sign in/out document for any details of the child’s day. Families must ensure that they check medication details were completed throughout the day according to instruction; and that any other report requiring parent signature has been completed. Families must advise teachers that they are leaving the Centre and families must ensure children remain with them at all times.
Teachers are to ensure that a child is only given into care of a parent of the child or an authorised person by parent/guardian.
Late/non collection of children
Families on enrolment of children receive an induction package that clearly states the Centre’s closing time (6.15pm). The Late fines fee applies after this time.
The Education and Care Services National Regulations (2011) indicate best practice is a minimum of two staff persons to be in attendance at the Centre when children are in care.
A child(ren) not collected after 6.15pm
- The Manager or the certified supervisor are to remain at the Centre and attempt to contact parent/guardian/emergency to ensure collection of the child.
- A late fines fee as per the fees policy will be applied.
If a child(ren) has not been collected by 6.30pm
- The Manager will be contacted by the certified supervisor and advised of the situation, e.g. has contact been made with a member of the family? Is an authorised nominee, if not the parent, on the way to the Centre to collect child?
- If contact has been made, the Manager or certified supervisor will remain at the Centre until such time as the child has left the Centre.
- Educators must ensure that the child is signed out by the authorised person at the actual time of departure from the Centre and advise the person that a late fine will apply.
If a child has not been collected or no contact made with an appropriate person by 7pm
- The Manager or her nominee will notify Police.
- The Police will be advised the child has not been collected.
- The Police will be asked to assist by helping to locate the parents/guardians or emergency contacts.
If a child has not been collected or contact made with an appropriate person by 7.30pm
- The Manager or her nominee will contact the Northern Region Community Care Division by phone (1300 360 408), explaining there is a child in 'need of care', requesting that he/she be collected from the Centre and taken into temporary custody.
- Community Care will be advised that the Police have been alerted and are assisting.
- The Manager or her nominee will advise the Police that Community Care will be collecting the child/ren from the Centre.
- When the child/ren have been collected by Community Care a note will be taped to the Centre door indicating to what address and phone number the child has been taken. The note will also include the Manager’s phone number.
- An incident report will be completed and forwarded to the Centre’s Regulatory Authority.
Note: Where a family contacts the Centre and advises they will be collecting the child/ren late, the late fee will still apply. Families are reminded that this late fine is not subject to Child Care Benefit.
If late collection of a child/ren occurs more than once, Parents/Guardians will be advised that a further incident could jeopardise their enrolment.
If a Centre Educator becomes aware of any change in the delivery and collection arrangements of a child (which have not been authorised), she/he must notify the Director immediately.
If a minor attempts to deliver/collect a child (regardless of parental permission) the Manager must be informed immediately. This will enable immediate follow up with the parents, re: safety and legal concerns, and related signing in/out issues.
If a Court Order, Parenting Order or Parenting Plan from the Family Court exists in relation to resident or contact (custody/access) arrangements for a particular child, the parent must supply a copy of this document attached to the child's enrolment form.
If an unauthorised person attempts to collect a child/ren
- The Manager must be informed immediately.
- Staff will discourage the person from removing the child until the Manager is available to assist.
- The Manager or in her absence the Assistant Manager will advise that police will be contacted if the child is taken.
- Under no circumstances are Centre Personnel to put themselves or the children in their care at risk of being injured, whilst negotiations are taking place.
If a child/ren is taken away by an unauthorised person
- The child’s parents/primary caregivers will be contacted (if they cannot be reached an emergency contact person will be notified).
- The Manager must contact the Police.
- The Manager will complete an Incident Report for our Regulatory Authority.
References: Children’s Services Regulations (2009) Somerville Community Services Inc.