Intimate Care Policy SM
Intimate Care Policy 2022-23
Shared with staff November 2022
Shared with AGC November 2022
At Co-op Academy Smithies Moor we recognise that all children have different rates of development and differing needs during their time at school. Most children achieve continence before starting full-time school, however, there are many children in mainstream education who are not fully independent. Some children may require and depend on long-term support for personal care, while others progress slowly towards independence.
Children with toileting problems who receive support and understanding from those who are working closely with them are more likely to achieve their full potential. The achievement of continence can be seen as the most important single self-help skill, improving the person’s quality of life, independence and self-esteem. We are committed to ensuring that all pupils are able to access the whole curriculum and are able to be included in all aspects of school life. This includes providing suitable changes of clothing and attending to the continence needs of our pupils where necessary.
All children have the right to be safe, to be treated with courtesy, dignity and respect and to be able to access all aspects of the educational curriculum. Staff at Co-op Academy Smithies Moor will work:
- To ensure that pupils with continence difficulties are not discriminated against in line with the Equalities Act 2010
- To provide help and support to pupils in becoming fully independent in personal hygiene
- To treat continence issues sensitively so as to maintain the self-esteem of the child
- With parents in delivering a suitable care plan where necessary
- To ensure that staff dealing with continence issues work within guidelines that protect themselves and the pupils involved (Health and Safety and Safeguarding Children Policy).
The staff at Co-op Academy Smithies Moor work hard to build effective relationships with the parents and carers of all our children. Any particular needs that a child may have will be dealt with sensitively and appropriately, working with parents/carers to ensure that each child can access the curriculum. Any child who has personal care or continence needs will be attended to in a designated area within school. Parents will only be contacted in extreme cases where soiling is severe and/or linked to illness eg. sickness and diarrhoea, or when a child refuses to let a member of staff help change their clothing.
Where a pupil has particular needs (for example, wearing nappies or pull-ups regularly, or has continence difficulties which are more frequent than the odd ‘accident’), staff will work with parents/carers (health visitors/school nurse and other professionals if appropriate) to set out a care plan to ensure that the child is able to attend daily. The written care plan (Appendix A) will include:
- Who will change the child including back-up arrangements
- Where changing will take place
- What resources and equipment will be used (cleansing agents used or cream to be applied?)
- Clarification of who is responsible (parent or school) for the provision of the resources and equipment.
- How the product, if used, will be disposed of, or how wet or soiled clothes will be kept until they can be returned to the parent/carer
- What infection control measures are in place
- What the staff member will do if the child is unduly distressed by the experience or if the staff member notices marks or injuries
- Additional information such as training requirements, school trips etc.
- Care plan review arrangements
Care Plan Agreements
In these circumstances it may be appropriate for the school to set up an agreement that defines the responsibilities that each partner has, and the expectations each has for the other (see Appendix B). This will include:
- agreeing to ensure that the child is changed at the latest possible time before being brought to the setting/school
- providing the setting/school with spare nappies or pull ups and a change of clothing understanding and agreeing the procedures that will be followed when their child is changed at school
- including the use of any cleanser or wipes
- agreeing to inform the setting/school should the child have any marks/rash
- agreeing to a ‘minimum change’ policy i.e. the setting/school would not undertake to change the child more frequently than if s/he were at home.
- agreeing to review arrangements should this be necessary
- agreeing to change the child during a single session should the child soil themselves or become uncomfortably wet
- agreeing how often the child would be changed should the child be staying for the full day
- agreeing to monitor the number of times the child is changed in order to identify progress made
- agreeing to report should the child be distressed, or if marks/rashes are seen
- agreeing to review arrangements should this be necessary.
This kind of agreement should help to avoid misunderstandings that might otherwise arise, and help parents feel confident that the setting/school is taking a holistic view of the child’s needs. Should a child with complex continence needs be admitted, the school will consider the possibility of special circumstances and/or provision being made. In such circumstances, an appropriate health care professional (School Nurse or Family Health Visitor) will be closely involved in forward planning.
Personal Care and Health and Safety Procedures
The staff at Co-op Academy Smithies Moor will follow agreed procedures (see Appendix C) when attending to the care or continence needs of any pupil within the setting, whether this be a child with a care plan agreement or a child who has had an occasional ‘accident’. When dealing with personal care and continence issues, staff will follow agreed health and safety procedures (see Appendix D) to protect both the child and the member of staff.
The usual process of changing a child should not raise child protection concerns and there are no regulations that indicate that a second member of staff must be available to supervise the changing process to ensure that abuse does not take place. Few settings/schools will have the staffing resources to provide two members of staff for changing and DBS checks are carried out to ensure the safety of children with staff employed in our school. If there is a known risk of false allegation by a child then a single practitioner will not undertake changing. A student on placement will not change a child unsupervised. Where ever possible, the same member of staff will be allowed to change named children. A Personal Care Log (Appendix E) will be used to log occasions when changing is necessary. This reduces the risk to the child and promotes their dignity. The care plan will outline back-up or contingency measures in the event that the named member of staff is not available. If a staff member notices any physical or behavioural concerns when carrying out intimate care, they must follow the school’s safeguarding procedures.
Links to other policies
This policy runs alongside the following school policies:
- Health and Safety.
- Monitoring and Review
The early years leader will take responsibility for monitoring that agreed procedures are being followed and are meeting the needs of children and families. It is the early years leader’s responsibility to ensure that all practitioners follow the school policy. Any concerns that staff have about child protection issues will be reported to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) and subsequently the Head Teacher for further referral if appropriate.
Approved by: AGC Date:
Last reviewed on: November 2022 Next review due by: November 2023
Personal care plan
In place Yes/no
Person(s) to change child
Person(s) to change if main adult unavailable:
Where changing will take place:
Time when checks are carried to check whether changing is needed:
What resources and equipment will be used Who will provide the resources used:
Disposal of product in:
Infection control measures:
Additional Information: School trips/ Forest School, etc.
If the child is unduly distressed, a member of staff will contact the parent/carer. *If the above named member of staff is not available due to illness or staff training, then another person, familiar to the child will attend to the child’s needs.
Signed by parent: _________________________ Early Years lead: _____________________
Planned Review Date: _____________________
Home/School Agreement to support staff involvement in Intimate Care
We aim to work closely with you and your child to ensure that they feel confident, secure and respected in our school. Our parents/carers will help support us by:
● changing your child/young person at the latest possible time before coming to school
● provide spare pull ups, wet wipes and sufficient changes of clothes
● wash and return any clothing provided by the school as soon as possible.
● a mutual agreement to the procedures to be followed during changing at school
● assist us by informing our staff if your child/young person has any marks/rashes
● encourage your child/young person’s self help in intimate care procedures wherever possible.
● discuss any concerns regarding your child/young person's intimate care progress with our staff.
Our staff will support you by:
● changing your child/young person should s/he require it.
● informing you if your child/young person has any marks/rash and take further action as appropriate
● encouraging your child/young person in their participation in their intimate care procedures wherever this is possible
● respect cultural practices through discussion with you, the parents/carer.
Personal Care Procedures
The staff at Co-op Academy Smithies Moor will follow agreed procedures:
- Change the child’s clothing as appropriate, as soon as possible
- Use appropriate cleaning products and adhere to health and safety procedures (see Appendix D)
- Record that the child has been changed (see Appendix E)
- Report any marks or rashes or other concerns to parents and/or DSL if appropriate.
- Inform parent/carer that a continence issue has arisen during the session
- Contact a parent/carer only where soiling is severe and/or linked to illness eg. sickness and diarrhoea, or when a child refuses to let a member of staff help change their clothing.
Health and Safety Procedures
When dealing with personal care and continence issues, staff will follow agreed health and safety procedures:
- Staff to wear disposable gloves while dealing with the incident
- Soiled continence products used to be double wrapped, or placed in a hygienic disposal unit (identified bin in disabled toilet) if the number produced each week exceeds that allowed by Health and Safety Executive’s limit.
- Changing area to be cleaned after use
- Hot water and liquid soap available to wash hands as soon as the task is completed
- Paper towels available for drying hands.
Nappy changing record