Assignment 5-Introduce a new policy
I shall be reflecting on how I introduced a new policy to my setting, the policy I have chosen to discuss is the mobile phone policy. The rationale behind my decision to implement this policy and procedure was in light of recent media attention on how child abuse had taken place in nursery settings using mobile phones or cameras. Whitehead, Savill & Bunyan (2009) report in the Telegraph how a mother called for a ban on mobiles around children in nurseries, the mother launched the campaign after it had emerged that Vanessa George a nursery nurse at Little Ted’s nursery had used her camera phone to record her sickening images. It also goes onto say how The National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA) has demanded clearer policies for staff to ensure that mobiles should be kept in lockers and away from children. However, this contrasts greatly with the view of Dame Clare Tickell (1st April 2011) the Chief Executive of Action for Children who during her review of the Early Years Foundation Stage recommend’s that mobile phones are not banned from settings.
I believe that before any policy is written it needs to be discussed with the people it effects, which is why I arranged a meeting to discuss sanctioning the policy with my staff. Daly, Byers & Taylor (2004:56) highlight the need to review the organisational systems and practice in order to identify achievements and areas for development, enabling the setting to progress and meet the ever-changing needs of parents and children. During the meeting I explained my concerns and reasoning of why mobile phones should not be used in the setting, protecting the children against possible abuse and the staff from accusations which could be made against them. Pritchard ( 2009:6) backs up this view by stating how a mobile-free zone would protect children, prevent accusations against staff and reassure parents, many of whom had their confidence shattered by recent high profile events involving mobile phone cameras. One staff member asked when it would be appropriate for them to use their phones. I explained that if they were worried about missing important telephone, e.g their children’s school ringing to inform them of that there child is ill then they should give out the pre-school direct number for emergencies only. I highlighted the need for their bags and phones to be locked away in the staff toilet cupboard. Rodd (1998:128) states how overemphasis on the traditional ways of doing things can result in the failure to perceive the need for change, lack of action can come too late. Sometimes, organisations continue with the same policies and procedures as this is what they were used to in the past, which is why we need to be innovated to respond to the environmental demands.
A staff member asked what would happen if they were found using their phone whilst on duty, I explained how this would be a disciplinary offence and they could lose their job, as we should...