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Managing Extreme Weather Policy

Managing Extreme Weather Policy

At Rabbit Patch Day Nursery, we have an extreme weather policy in place to ensure our nursery is prepared for all weather conditions that might affect the running of the nursery such as floods, snow and heat waves.

If any of these impact on the ability of the nursery to open or operate, we will contact parents via phone or email/Blossom.

We will not take children outdoors where we judge that weather conditions make it unsafe to do so.


In the case of a flood, we will follow our Critical incident policy to enable all children and staff to be safe and plan for continuity of care.

Snow or other severe weather

If high snowfall, or another severe weather condition such as dense fog, is threatened during a nursery day then the manager will decide whether to close the nursery. This decision will take into account the safety of the children, their parents and the staff team. In the event of a planned closure during the nursery day, we will contact all parents to arrange for collection of their child.

In the event of staff shortages due to snow or other severe weather, we will contact all available off duty staff and/or agency staff and group the children differently until they are able to arrive. If we are unable to maintain statutory ratio requirements after all options have been explored, we will contact Ofsted to inform them of this issue, recording all details in our incident file. If we feel the safety, health or welfare of the children is compromised then we will take the decision to close the nursery.

Heat wave

We are committed to ensuring that all children are fully protected from the dangers of too much sun and UV rays as severe sunburn in childhood can lead to the development of malignant melanoma (the most dangerous type of skin cancer) in later life.

Staff will make day-to-day decisions about the length of time spent outside depending on the strength of the sun and find the right balance to protect children from sunburn by following the NHS guidance.  The benefits are discussed with parents and their wishes followed with regard to clothing, hats and sun cream.

We follow guidance from the weather and UV level reports and use the following procedures to keep children safe and healthy in the sun:

  • Children must have a clearly labelled sun hat which will be worn at all times whilst outside in sunny weather. This hat will preferably be of legionnaires design to provide additional protection i.e. with an extended back and side to shield children’s neck and ears from the sun
  • Children must have their own labelled high factor sun cream with prior written consent for staff to apply. This enables children to have sun cream suitable for their own individual needs. Staff must be aware of the expiry date and discard sunscreen after this date. Sun cream containing nut-based ingredients will not be allowed in the setting
  • Parents are requested to supply light-weight cotton clothing for their children suitable for the sun, with long sleeves and long legs
  • Children’s safety and welfare in hot weather is the nursery’s prime objective so staff will work closely with parents to ensure all appropriate cream and clothing is provided
  • Staff will make day-to-day decisions about the length of time spent outside depending on the strength of the sun (UV levels); children will not be allowed in direct sunlight between 11.00am – 3.00pm on hot days from March to October, following NHS sun safety advice
  • Shaded areas are provided to ensure children are able to go out in hot weather, cool down or escape the sun should they wish to or need to
  • Children will always have sun cream applied before going outside in the hot weather and at frequent intervals during the day
  • Children are encouraged to drink cooled water more frequently throughout sunny or warm days and this will be accessible both indoors and out
  • Children are made aware of the need for sun hats, sun cream and the need to drink more fluids during their time in the sun
  • Key persons also work with the parents of their key children to decide and agree on suitable precautions to protect children from burning, including those with more sensitive skin types and those that may be more tolerant to the sunshine, e.g. Black and/or Asian colouring.

Vitamin D

Sunlight is important for the body to receive vitamin D. We need vitamin D to help the body absorb calcium and phosphate from our diet. These minerals are important for healthy bones, teeth and muscles. Our bodies create vitamin D from direct sunlight on our skin when we are outdoors. Most people can make enough vitamin D from being out in the sun daily for short periods with their hands or other body parts uncovered.

We also promote the NHS recommendation to parents that all children aged under 5 years should be given vitamin D supplements even if they do get out in the sun.

This policy was adopted on Signed on behalf of the nursery Date for review
31/10/2023 Chevelle White October 2024


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