Wellbeing in the Early Years sector
Our CEO, Chris Reid, recently shared his thoughts with Nursery Management Today about the importance of childcare providers implementing wellbeing initiatives in their settings. Plus, how this can not only have a positive impact on staff but the relationships between colleagues, parents and children too.
If you missed the original article, catch up below…
The mental and physical wellbeing of staff and children within nursery settings has always been an important topic on the childcare agenda, but it has arguably never had more of a focus than now.
With the COVID-19 outbreak having posed – and continuing to present – a wealth of challenges to the Early Years (EY) sector, more management teams are exploring ways to keep team morale high during these times of transition.
With nurseries reopening, there’s no doubting that there’s more to think about than ever before. Managing social bubbles, wearing personal protective equipment and minimising virus transmission risks are all among these newfound priorities, while simultaneously continuing to deliver high-quality childcare and education that supports child development.
Wellbeing measures could be work-specific – such as quick-fire group chats to share positive experiences and concerns – or could be more social, for example a weekly quiz to boost team camaraderie. But whatever it is, it needs to really make a difference in improving employees’ day-to-day.
Giving the gift of more time is a popular request – everyone wishes they could get more done. And this is why many settings are prioritising the digitalisation of some of their in-house operations, to minimise hours spent on lengthy paper-based admin and maximising the time available to focus on children’s learning.
But implementing wellbeing initiatives is not only crucial in helping childcare professionals to feel safe, supported and satisfied at work, it’s also the root of what fosters a wellbeing culture which extends outside the nursery setting.
If EY staff are physically and mentally supported, they will feel happier and more confident in the workplace – which will naturally have an impact on how they carry out their job. Children and fellow colleagues will typically be more engaged too, and parents will likely have less apprehension and greater reassurance about their toddlers being in nursery during these challenging times.