Ready for an emergency?
Education and care services are being reminded that they must have emergency and evacuation plans and procedures clearly displayed in a prominent position near each exit. Recent visits by the Education Standards Board have shown this is not always occurring.
Some services have also not been practising their procedures at least once every three months and detailing these rehearsals.
Plans and procedures must also be relevant. For example, if an out-of-school-hours-care service is located at a school, the service must have plans and procedures that reflect what happens for the service. It may not be suitable to simply adopt the school’s emergency plan because it may not be relevant when the school is closed.
Also services should try to ensure all children are familiar with the procedures, even children who only attend certain days and may not be present for all practices.
Approved providers must also ensure that generic plans and procedures used across many services reflect the uniqueness of each service.
Please also start considering your service’s bushfire plan for the next bushfire season. Bushfire seasons have been starting earlier in recent years, and you need to be ready.
Approved providers must also ensure a risk assessment is conducted to identify potential emergencies relevant to the service. These could include lockdowns if an unauthorised person tries to enter the service.
For more information about emergency and evacuation procedures, please refer to Regulation 97 in the Education and Care Services National Regulations 2011.