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Desperately lost and confused on gov advice!

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by rosieh89, Jun 3, 2020.

  1. rosieh89

    rosieh89 New commenter

    Hi all, was hoping for a little input from others in possibly similar situations, as so many of us are unsure about how this is all going to work with the wider opening...

    So, the manager of a nursery I work at has informed us all that the government advises that children do *not* transmit the virus to other children or to staff. Therefore we do not need to worry, basically, when we're in work about our proximities with the children, and no PPE is to be worn (even for one member of staff who has been recommended she do so by her healthcare professional).

    I cannot find this anywhere in the government advice to early years settings, and questioned it, as I know there are many studies showing that children can transmit the virus to others even if they don't present symptoms or have very mild cases, the transmission rate is still there. I've since been quite strongly reprimanded and admonished by the manager for "creating panic" and was made to delete my (very mild and politely questioning!) comments asking about where in the advice it says so.

    Now - I don't really know where to go from here, because I don't want the staff there thinking they are not risking the health of themselves and their family members by believing that only the staff there have the chance of transmitting the virus to them. They are implementing 'bubbles' and are carrying out more cleaning than they would normally and limiting resources etc, but, it's worrying to me that they're being sold a potential falsehood on how at risk they are. It's absolutely great if they are still willing to of course, but I know many of them do have family members they might wish to still shield... If they knew the full story?

    Am I bang out of line here? I'm so lost on what the "right thing" is... My conversation with the manager made me feel like a complete conspiracy nut for questioning the gov advice (though it doesn't even look like it *IS* the gov advice - again making me feel a little unhinged !!) It's not a question of my own health, I know I can make my own decision about returning to work or not, it's that it's not allowed to be discussed as a group that worries me I think.

    Please help, any and all inputs would be greatly appreciated, just been feeling very stuck in my own little world (& my own little mind) about it all!

    SEBREGIS Lead commenter

    No, my understanding is that you are quite correct - children do not get virus as severely or transmit it as easily, but they are not immune, and they DO spread it. It sounds like your manager doesn't know quite what they are talking about, trying to maintain a brave face etc. Could they be under financial pressure to re-open?

    If you're in a union, then my advice would be to check with them ASAP.

    This may be of some help - its the NASUWT guidance on preparing Primary schools for students coming back.

  3. venusspecimen

    venusspecimen New commenter

    that's a VERY long question indeed! If you're concerned for yourself and your own family and wellbeing then escalate it as such. same for each individual involved, we cannot ever even presume to fight someone elses corner for them. it stirs up nonsense and bother when it might not even be required, but more to the point its not our business to stir it up. only deal with YOURSELF! you'll be aware of 'bubbles' now happening in settings. check into that and you'll see that indeed no ppe is required unless its for intimate care moments. Unless you are the manager of the place then it's not your concern how other people feel or dont feel about their situation or safety. you are not 'the voice'. i'd simply step back, deal with the FACTS not presumptions or hearsay or 'worries' etc and just do what is right and legal. we are only responsible for ourselves (and of course the children in our care) you dont need to take on everyone elses potential worries. i wouldnt go as far to say 'bang out of line' as you say, but simply just step back. its tricky enough lately, dont make it more tricky. just park the stress, escalate YOUR concerns about only YOU/YOUR ROLE to your manager and thats that. (unless of course you then need to escalate it further of course, i'm sure you wont). everyone knows what they ought to be doing. so long as YOU do, all is well. x keep well and be kind to yourself. x
  4. Corvuscorax

    Corvuscorax Star commenter

    This is a terrible situation to be put in. We all know this virus can be deadly, and yet you have a manager playing down the danger and trying to bully you into playing it down too.

    I hope you have the strength to stand your ground. Lots of people will have to, a;; around the country. If you don't feel safe, don't go in. And by safe, I mean objectively safe, not persuaded its safe by the force of personality of some bullying manager who isn't qualified to judge, and has an agenda. Contact your union now.

    Best wishes.
  5. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    What would you like to happen next? What is the situation?
    Are you opening soon and concerned that you shouldn't be? Are you already open but unsure if the arrangements are safe?
    What is your role? Are you responsible for staff safety? Presumably all staff are well aware of all the different scenarios and theories and have made their own decision about returning to work or not?

    You will definitely find people on here that will add to any panic and let you know that you are risking your life if you so much as open your front door, let alone go to work in a nursery.
    You will also definitely find people on here that will more or less agree with your manager and believe that a return to work is safe and social distancing is not needed.
  6. rosieh89

    rosieh89 New commenter

    Thank you all for such varied responses! It helps to hear as many different viewpoints as I can to get a better sense of where I sit on the scale.

    I guess - the policies they've changed and updated (so the additional cleaning and limiting resources) are fine, I'm glad they are taking steps, and wouldn't be terrified to be in there myself, I know that childcare obviously must be provided and would be willing to do so in the physical environment they're providing, as I myself am not on 'the vulnerable list'...

    So I think where my issues lie is mostly the policing of discussion and questioning of the evidence - if the manager is telling the staff that the government are advising that children don't spread the virus (for which I can find zero evidence that the government are saying so, and many studies that both prove and disprove it (helpful)) and I am forbidden from discussing this with other staff - is that ethical ?? I'm only just coming back into work from maternity leave so am only on a zero hours contract anyway, and from how I've been received in this situation I'm unlikely to be called back in again really. Can we really not question as 'lower' staff? It feels icky.

    I guess you're all right, I was straying from my own role though. I will... go back to my circle! If I wasn't happy with the measures taken in there I wouldn't go in, I can stand for myself fine. Maybe I also just needed to hear I wasn't a conspiracy nut and to hear from other people in nurseries, as I can't talk to my own at the moment! I appreciate all your replies, thank you. X

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