Day cares, early childhood centres continue to be allowed to open

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Day cares, early childhood centres continue to be allowed to open

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica - Day care centres and early childhood institutions continue to be permitted to open subject to the provisions of the current Disaster Risk Management Order, the Ministry of Education has reminded.

Day care centres may operate during regular business hours. Operators are required to ensure, among other things, that signage, appropriately customised for children and adults, advising of all the applicable health protocols for the centre, are conspicuously placed throughout the centre, including at each entrance.

“The staff members of the centre are to be trained in, and sensitised to, all the health protocols and at the start of each day of operation. The children at the centre are to be instructed about health protocols and safe practices (such as properly covering the nose and mouth while coughing or sneezing) to minimise the transmission of flu-like viruses,” the ministry said.

“Prior to reporting for work for the first time during the period, each person employed for work at the centre is required to be tested for COVID-19, and shall not be permitted at the centre unless cleared as healthy for work.

“It is expected that during the hours of operation, there will be sufficient staff to ensure proper supervision of children at all times.”

The order advises of permitted ratios of one adult to five children for each group of children aged under 13 months; one adult to eight children for each group of children aged over 13 months but younger than three years; and one adult to 10 children for each group of children aged over three years but younger than five years.

Each person, other than a child aged five years or younger, at the centre, must wear a mask covering their nose and mouth.

The ministry said temperature checks are to be conducted on each person entering the centre, and no one with a temperature of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or 38 degrees Celsius (or higher) shall be permitted to enter the centre.

“Anyone at the centre who develops a fever, other flu-like symptoms or gastrointestinal symptoms must be sent home. The Disaster Risk Management Order also stipulates guidelines for temperature checks, sanitising equipment and toys and disposal of garbage.”

The ministry said exercise and play shall only take place outdoors, with appropriate supervision to ensure adherence to social distancing requirements and applicable health protocols, including the washing of hands with soap and water before and after such exercise or play.

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