POLICIES

Policies and Procedures - 

Listed below - 


 HANDBOOK

1 – Forest School Ethos

3 – Forest School Code of Conduct and Behaviour

3 – Suggested Activities for Forest School

4 – Equipment for Forest School

5 – Using and Storing Tools

6 – Fire / Kelly Kettle – Sitting and Use Of

7 -  Health and Safety / First Aid Policies

8 – Safeguarding / Child Protection Policies

9 - Equal Opportunities / Inclusion / Behaviour Policies

10 – Confidentiality / Data Protection

11 – Hygiene Policy

12 – Disposal of Food, Litter and Waste Water

13 – Poor Weather Guidelines

14 – Risk Assessment Guidelines

15 – Designated Person Responsibilities / Tool talks

16 – Emergency Action Plan

17 – Lost or Missing child

18 – Insurance Requirements

 

 

 

 

Forms

   

    – Parent Agreement

    – Southwark Safeguarding Board Info

    – Photograph Form

    – Sign Off Form

    – Medical Info Form

    – Incident Log Form

-         Risk Assessment Form                 

    

1 – Ethos

 

Forest School supports holistic learning through play and exploration. Children learn about the environment, how to handle risks and to use their own initiative to solve problems and cooperate with others.

Forest School offers a learner led approach, where children can learn through self directed play and exploration, guided by the teacher.

It is about the process rather than the result, being immersed in learning new skills.

Forest schooling has been shown to promote confidence, social skills, communication, motivation, concentration, physical ability, knowledge and understanding  of oneself, others and the environment.

The benefits are new perspectives for all involved.

 

 

 

2 – Forest School Code of Conduct and Behaviour

 

Our three main rules are look after yourself, look after each other and look after the environment.

No leaving the boundary without an adult.

Children are involved making risk assessments of the site during the sessions.

 

3 – Activities

 

Activities depend on the ability of participants.

Examples of activities include –

-         Exploring the environment

-         Shelter building

-         Knots

-         Mud painting / sculptures

-         Forest art

-         Games

-         Imaginative play

-         Using tools

-         Fires and cooking

-         Reflection

 

 

 

 

 

4 – Equipment for Forest School

 

Registers, Personal details forms

First Aid kit

Blanket and Sleeping bag

Ground sheet

Fresh water / Water carrier

Litter bag

Spare clothes

Hand washing bucket

Mobile phone

String and rope

Tarpaulins

Tools

Gloves

 

5 – Using and Storing Tools

 

During the sessions a variety of tools may be used depending on the children’s ability.

These include potato peelers, sheath knives, bow saws, billhooks, loppers, secateurs, scissors, fire steels.

When tools are not in use they are stored away safely.

The Forest School leader is responsible in training the children in how to use the tools and equipment safely and appropriately, not only for the user but for those in the vicinity. 

Work is always supervised by a responsible adult.

Tools are to be used, with care, in one designated place at a time, for a particular project.

The tools and equipment are maintained and checked by the Forest School leader.

 

6 – Fire / Kelly Kettle -  Sitting and Use Of

 

The fire area will be established and children will be trained how to approach and leave before lighting.

 A safe area will be designated for Kelly Kettle with surround around Kettle.

There will be at least 1.5m between the fire surround and seating.

Seating will have emergency escape routes between them.

The fire will never be left unattended and will be managed by a responsible adult. Only two people will attend to the fire at any given time.

A bucket of water and heat proof gloves [Gauntlett] will always be close to the fire.

Children will only be able to light fires and Kelly Kettles under direct supervision of a trained leader using suitable materials and equipment.All fires are to be fully extinguished and all traces removed at the end of the session.

 

 

 

7 – Health and Safety / First Aid

 

We hope accidents or emergencies do not happen.

The Forest School leader is a qualified first aider and the person in charge.

First aid kit / emergency bag are taken to each session.

Medical information for each individual is required and medical sheets for completion are provided before the sessions.

In the case of an accident Accident and Incident forms are to be filled out and parents / carers informed.

The Emergency Action Plan is kept with the Emergency bag.

Safety of the rest of the group will be maintained by the remaining staff and adults if possible away from the scene of the incident.

The Forest school leader will review the risk assessments before each session.

The children will be prepared for the environment not the environment for the children.

 

 

8 – Safeguarding / Child Protection Policies

 

The Forest School leader and assistant are DBS [CRB] checked.

Leaders will listen to and value all children.

The Forest School leader will maintain a safe environment for all children by doing risk assessments.

The adult child ratio for general activities is 5:1

The Forest School leader and assistant will adhere to the correct procedure for referring concerns or allegations.

The Forest School leader and assistant will work in partnership with parents / carers and outside agencies [Southwark Safeguarding Board] to share information with them.

 

9 – Equal Opportunities / Inclusion and Behaviour

 

Appropriate clothing must be worn to ensure children are able to take part in all activities and protected from adverse weather conditions.

The Forest School is for all, irrespective of ethnicity, language, disability, gender or background.

Information is requested about any children with medical requirements.

Everyone in the sessions, including leaders and helpers, have a responsibility to protect their own and others health and safety and well being.

The Forest School wants to encourage positive behaviour with an open unbiased viewpoint with regards to behaviour and abilities.

 

10 – Confidentiality / Data Protection

 

Details of children discussed amongst Forest School leader and assistants are to be kept confidential. Details of discussions of children during the sessions are to be kept confidential.Evaluation forms done by the Forest School leader are to be kept confidential.  Permission forms are to be signed by parents / carers for use of photos.          

 

10 – Hygiene

 

We ask children to use the toilet before starting the session. If they do need the toilet they are to ask the Forest School leader or assistant to go with them to DKHAP building.

There are hand washing facilities in the DKHAP building.

 

 

 

 

 

11 – Risk Assessment Guidelines

 

The Forest School Leader carries out Risk Assessments before each session. Risk assessments are also done with the children during the sessions.

General activities have a 5:1 Adult / Child ratio. Saws 2:1, Whittling / Fire 1:1.

 

12 – Disposal of Food, Litter and Waste Water  

 

A bag is always to be taken for the removal of food and litter, to be taken off site and disposed of appropriately by Forest School leader.

Waste water is to be poured around plants without causing a slipping slipping hazard.

 

13 – Poor weather procedures

 

Forest school sessions will take place in most weather conditions. Exposure to the elements is part of the experience and if dressed suitably should not be a problem.

Where necessary we will erect tarps and temporary shelters to protect from rain or sun.

 

14 – Risk Assessment Guidelines

 

The site shall be checked regularly and before each session. Forms completed.

 

15 – Designated Person Responsibilities

 

The Forest School leader is trained at Level 3 and a qualified first aider.

Both the leader and assistant are DBS [CRB] checked.

 

HOW TO SAFELY USE AND CARE FOR  A RANGE OF HAND TOOLS

 

Bow Saw

To cut anything bigger than a 2 pence piece.

 

For greenwood use a rankers blade – a V every 3rd/4th notch.

It has a handle and a blade cover. The cover is taken off to show the blade.

The cutting edge is shown and when not in use the cover is put back on the blade.

You stand holding the handle in the center with covered blade facing down and walk with it the same way.                                                                                                                              

When passing the saw it is held by one side of the handle and the other side of the handle is held by the other person.                                                                    

When it is being used there must be a distance of two arm lengths and the tool length away from anyone else apart from the partner.                                          

 A glove is worn on the helper hand by both people.                                                          

When not holding the bow saw it is put down on the ground with the handle facing out and the blade facing in.                                                                       

When it is not being used it is put back in the designated place or toolbox provided.

 

Maintenance and care

Look for signs of blade loosing temper.

Only use taught blade.

Check for chips and fractures.

Dry with a cloth and keep clean.                                                          

Replace blade if faulty.

 

 

Loppers

To cut anything smaller than a 2 pence piece.

 

They have a two handles with open and close like scissors.                                

There are two blades with cutting edges. When standing they are held by the handles with the blades pointing down. When  walking they are held to the side of the body with the blades facing forwards and the hand grips the lower handle with the other handle resting above between the body and arm.     

They are passed held with both hands with handles facing the receiving person.                                                                                                                        When they are being used there must be a distance of two arm lengths and the tool length away from anyone else except for the partner.                                   

Bare hands are used to work with them.                                                                                 

When not working with them they are placed on the ground with the handles facing forwards and blades facing behind.                                                                    

When they are not being used they are put back in the designated place or toolbox provided.                     

 

Maintenance and care

Examine handles and hinges.

Look for signs of rusting.

Use a cloth to wipe blade and oil.                             

Sharpen with a carbon stone or take to hardware store to sharpen. 

 

Knife

For whittling, a power cut and cutting string

 

It has a handle and a sheath which covers the blade. When the sheath is removed you show the blade and cutting edge. When it is not in use the sheath is carefully replaced.                                                                                                       When standing it is held by the handle with sheath facing downwards.

When walking it is carried in the same way.

It is passed by  holding the sheath in both hands and taken by holding the handle with both hands.                                      

When they are being used there must be a distance of two arm lengths and the tool length away from anyone else.                                                                               

It is used on the outside of the body and away from the body.                                        

When used a glove on the helper hand is worn.                                                             

When not in use it is placed on the ground with the handle facing forwards and the blade facing in.                                                                                                           

When it is finished with it is put in the designated place or in the toolbox provided.

 

Maintenance and care

Check there are no cracks in the sheath. Look for signs of denting and rust. Clean with a rag.                                                                                                                          

Sharpen with a hardware carbon stone.

 

 

Billhook

To cleave [split] wood

 

It has a handle and a cover for the blade. The cover is carefully removed and the blade and cutting edge are shown. When it is not in use the cover is carefully replaced.                                                                                                         When standing it is held by the handle with the blade facing downwards, when walking it is carried in the same way.                                                                               

It is passed with both hands by holding the cover to the other person who takes the handle with both hands.                                                                              

 When it is being used there must be a distance of two arm lengths and the tool length away from anyone else, except for the partner.                                                   

Bare hands are used by the person using the tool.                                                      

When it is not being used it is placed down with the handle facing forwards and the blade facing in.                                                                                                               

When it is finished with it is put in the designated place or in the tool box provided.                                          

 

Maintenance and care

Check handle for cracks.

Look for signs of blade head shifting.

Check blade for chips and fractures.  

Clean with a cloth, fine wool and oil [linseed for handle]

Sharpen with a cigar stone.

 

 

16 – Insurance - Forest School Insurance

17 – Emergency Action Procudure            Emergency number 999 / 112

Leader - Kate Hathway    07973 345513



In the case of an injured child

 

  • Secure area and make safe
  • Forest school leader to carry out first aid A,B,C and monitor casualty.
  • Forest school assistant helper or call emergency services and give location and details of injury.
  • Forest school assistant or helper to gather children, do head count and keep children calm.
  • Forest school assistant or helper to open gate for easy access for emergency services.
  • Forest school assistant or helper to call parent / carer to inform of situation.
  • If necessary shelter and warmth to be provided for the children by assistant.
  • Both adults to pack up all necessary equipment [tools] and wait for parent / carers to collect children. 

 

In the case of an injured adult

 

  • Secure area and make safe
  • Forest School leader to carry out first aid A,B,C and monitor casualty
  • Forest school leader or other adult to call emergency services and give location and details of injury.
  • Head count of the children to be done and children to be kept calm
  • Forest school leader or other adult to open gate for easy access for emergency services.
  • Forest school leader or another adult to call parents / carers to inform of situation.
  • If necessary warmth and shelter to be provided by the children by adult.
  • Wait for arrival of parents / carer and pack up necessary equipment [tools]. 

 

In the case of an injured Forest School leader

 

  • Assistant to secure area and make safe.
  • Assistant to carry out first aid A,B,C and monitor casualty.
  • Assistant or helper to call emergency services and give location and details of injury.
  • Assistant or helper to do head count of the children  and children to be kept calm.
  • Assistant or helper to open gate for easy access for emergency services.
  • Assistant or helper to call parents/ carers to collect children.
  • If necessary warmth and shelter provided to children by assistant or helper.
  • Upon arrival of parents / carers pack up necessary equipment [tools]. 

 

In the case of an injured member of the public

 

  • Forest School leader to secure area and make safe.
  • Forest School leader to carry out first aid A,B,C and monitor casualty.
  • Assistant or helper to call emergency services and give location and details of injury.
  • Assistant or helper to do head count of the children and children to be kept calm.
  • Assistant or helper to open gate for easy access for emergency services.
  • Assistant or helper to call parents / carers to collect children.
  • If necessary warmth and shelter provided to children by assistant or helper.
  • Upon arrival of parents / carers pack up necessary equipment [tools].

 

 

 

Nearest Hospital

 

Kings College Hospital

Denmark Hill

London SE5 9RS

Tel 020 32999000020 32999000

  

17 – Lost or Missing child Procedure

Classes are run in gated areas, but members of the public have access.

Although it is a small area there is a chance that a child could stray from the boundary set for the class.

They are advised to return to the base camp.

 

In the Event of a Missing Child

 

The entire group will be called back to base camp, by an adult blowing the whistle and calling 123 base camp.

The leader will ensure that 2 adults stay with the group.

1 adult should immediately start searching for the missing child.

If the missing child is not found within 5 minutes the Forest School leader should call parent / carer and the police by calling 999.

Adults must write down a description of the child, what they were wearing and any distinguishing features, any medical or other needs. This information is to be given to the police.