Balham Community Centre

Covid-19 Policy


Balham Community Centre recognises that careful planning is essential in order to keep our staff members, users/children safe, and to limit the spread of coronavirus/Covid-19, within our settings. Accordingly, we have conducted a thorough Covid-19 risk assessment and will review it on a monthly basis and whenever Government guidance changes.


Covid-19 symptoms

Covid-19 is a viral, respiratory disease, which is spread from person to person by close contact. It typically causes fever and a dry cough, and in some cases may progress to viral pneumonia which cannot be treated by antibiotics. Symptoms of


Covid-19 can include:

Continuous dry cough

Sore throat

Fever (high temperature)


Difficulty breathing

Loss of taste and smell


The initial symptoms are similar to colds and flu-type illnesses, but the combination of a recent onset of fever and a new continuous cough seem to be present in many cases of Covid-19. However, it is important to be aware that in some cases the symptoms may be very mild or even non-existent, especially in children.


Procedure for infection or suspected infection

Any staff member, user/child who becomes ill with symptoms which could be Covid-19 while attending will be isolated from the other staff members, users/children by at least two metres until arrangements can be made for them to be collected. If they become seriously ill, we will call 999.

We will temperature check all staff users/children on arrival. If they have suspected symptoms of Covid-19, they will not be allowed to enter and will be sent home and must follow the Government guidance for households with possible Covid-19 infection. This includes self-isolation and taking a Covid-19 test. See:

Most suspected cases of Covid-19 turn out to be negative, so the Centre/Club will remain open unless or until advised otherwise by the local Health Protection Team, but parents and staff will be informed, especially those in high risk groups.

If a staff member user/child experiences any symptoms of Covid-19 they must not attend until all symptoms have passed and the government guidelines have been followed. Staff must show proof that they have attended a doctor and a covid-19 test has been carried out.


Infection control:

Like the common cold and flu viruses, Covid-19 is spread by:

·Infected people passing the virus to others through large droplets when coughing, sneezing, or even talking within a close distance.

  • Direct contact with an infected person: for example, if you shake or hold their hand, and then touch your own mouth, eyes or nose without first washing your hands.

  • Touching objects (e.g. door handles, light switches) that have previously been touched by an infected person, then touching your own mouth, eyes or nose without first washing your hands. Viruses can survive longer on hard surfaces than on soft or absorbent surfaces.

We will take the following steps to reduce the risk of catching or spreading Covid-19 at the Centre/Club:



  • Staff  members within the centre will wear a face mask when dealing with all visitors.

  • Staff and children will wash their hands as soon as they arrive at the Club, and children will be reminded to wash their hands regularly throughout the session, especially after using the toilet, before eating food and after coughing or sneezing.

  • Hand sanitiser will be available in convenient locations throughout the centre/club.

  • We will have tissues readily available for use when sneezing and coughing, and these will be disposed of, in a bin, immediately after use.

  • If they don’t have a tissue to hand, children will be instructed to cough or sneeze into the crook of their arm.

  • We will discourage children from touching their faces.

  • We will discourage children from touching each other.

  • Children will not be allowed to bring toys or games from home, and we ask that they bring only essential items with them to the Club.



  • We will ensure that frequently-touched surfaces, such as handles, door plates, light switches, table tops and toys are regularly cleaned with anti-bacterial spray or wipes, before, during and after each session.

  • We will remove items/toys that are difficult to clean.

  • In the Schools Out Clubs we will remove soft toys and soft furnishings, such as cushions and rugs.

  • We will restrict the sharing of toys and equipment between groups as much as possible. Any toys or equipment that needs to be shared will be thoroughly cleaned before being used by the next group.

  • Toilets and sinks will be cleaned before and after each session, and hourly while the centre/club is in operation.


Arrivals and departures:

  • We have amended our collection procedure, so parents will now collect their children from outside the Club.

  • We will use technology to help with this process - parents will text to inform us of their arrival, staff will get their child ready and then text the parent to inform them that child is ready for collection from the outside door.

  • If it becomes necessary, we will assign different collection points to limit the congregation of parents outside the Club.

  • A staff member will ensure that the child is handed over to the child’s parent/carer.



  • Visitors, e.g. delivery drivers will not be allowed to enter the premises.

  • Doors and windows will be kept open where safe to do so, to keep the premises well ventilated.


Movement around the centre/club:

  • Children will be put into groups of 15 when they first come to attend the club. As far as possible, the grouping will minimise the number of class years in and will be no more than two groups in any allocated space. These groups will be maintained whenever the children attend.

  • When indoors, groups will be separated into separate zones, different rooms/halls, floor markings to mark the separate areas.

  • When outdoors, groups will be based in separate zones, indicated  by colour

  • As far as possible, only one person will be allowed in the toilets at a time.


Activity planning:

  • We will plan activities that minimise contact between children.

  • Whenever possible, activities will take place outside.



  • A member of staff will prepare and serve food to each child, to reduce the risk of any contamination of food or serving implements.


Promoting good practice

We will promote infection control through the methods above, and in addition we will:

  • Ensure that all staff have received training in, and understand, our new procedures

  • Display posters and information to promote infection control

  • Ensure that adequate supplies of cleaning materials are available within the



  • Dispose of waste promptly and hygienically

  • Provide tissues and suitable facilities for their disposal.




We may need to temporarily close the Centre/Club if we have insufficient staff due to illness to run sessions safely.

In the event that we have a number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 associated with the Club, we may need to close if advised to do so by the local Health Protection Team in order to limit the spread of the virus.

If the Club needs to close, the manager will notify parents or carers as soon as possible. The manager will also inform other relevant parties, e.g. feeder schools, other users of shared premises, etc. The manager will also notify Ofsted of the closure.


Written in accordance with the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (2017): Safeguarding and Welfare Requirements: Health [3.44].