Singapore preschools and infant care centres were given the go-ahead to reopen back in early June. But what exactly does that mean for your little ones? LAURA SIO, Infant Care Coordinator at the Australian International School (AIS), discusses some of the ways they are protecting the health and safety of AIS’s youngest students.
First things first
Before sending your child back (or if you’re considering enrolling them) to infant care, it’s important to check in with your paediatrician. They’ll be able to help you make an informed decision based on your child’s medical history and your family circumstances; plus, they can check if your child’s immunisations are up to date and that their growth and development are on track. During a pandemic, it’s essential to insure your child is in good overall health.
Back to school: What’s changed?
Once you’ve made the decision to send your child back to infant care, it’s a good idea to chat with your childcare provider. You’ll want to be comfortable with how the facility plans to clean and disinfect, screen children and staff for COVID-19 symptoms, and handle illness.
AIS’s Infant Care caters to babies aged two months through to 18 months, and has implemented entirely new processes and procedures. These include: on-arrival scanning of individual learners; staggered drop-off and pick-up times for children across the Early Learning Village; regular temperature screenings throughout the day; and also consistent, regular sanitising of hands, resources and touch points.
What has stayed the same?
Despite these additional health and safety measures, the way the AIS team nurtures and supports the emotional wellbeing of your child has not changed.
On their first day back after the circuit breaker, the reunion between children, peers and teachers was incredibly emotional. Many babies raced into their classrooms without even looking back to say goodbye to mum or dad. Of course, there were some tears and, understandably, some children who needed more emotional comfort, but this is something the team at AIS Infant Care excel at.
For many working parents, there’s nothing more comforting than knowing their child is being showered with love and care,d even when they are not around.
For most, the easing of lockdown restrictions and the reopening of schools and care centres is a welcome relief, but for some young people it’s not uncommon to feel worried or anxious about the transition back to “normal” life.
By acknowledging individual emotions and using affirming statements to offer a secure and calm space that allows children to release their feelings, AIS ensures all of the youngsters in their care are heard and understood, allowing them to experience emotions and to ultimately let go and move on.
The emotional support provided at Infant Care at AIS is based on their values of love, care and respect. It’s approach that’s seen their children settle back into group care with ease. Also, it has reminded teaching staff of just how capable, competent and resilient even the youngest learners truly are.
Find out more about AIS and contact the school at ais.com.sg.