In the last blog we discussed the importance of maintaining records for the children in your care. Today we will discuss one of the most important documents – the child information sheet.
In addition to the basic information as to the name of the child and the name of the parents and guardians you will also need the home address of both parents or guardians (don’t assume that they both live together), employer name and address for both parents and guardians. Ask for the cell phone number of both parents or guardians and the home phone numbers and employer phone numbers.
Who is the child’s doctor and what is the phone number and address of the clinic in the event of an emergency. Take a photo copy of the child health insurance card for an emergency and note on the child information sheet and keep with the child’s file. Note the last time the child had a physical and if the child has any special health problems that should be acted upon while the child is in your care. You should also have written permission to have the child receive medical treatment in event the parents are not available.
What is the status of the child’s vaccinations? There is a lot of controversy regarding vaccinations in the news however should you or should you not not allow an unvaccinated child in your program. What ever you decide that information should be conveyed to all the parties involved. If you are going to have children without vaccinations then be sure all parents, guardians and staff are aware of your decision. Ask for a photo copy of the child’s most recent immunization card for your files when requiring vaccinations.
Who are the emergency contacts in the event that a parent or guardian is not able to pick up the child? You should have the emergency contacts name, address, phone number and the relationship that they share with the child..
List every person who is authorized by both parents and guardians to pick up the child and require identification before releasing a child from your care.
Is there anyone who is specifically denied permission to see the child? In cases where a parent or another family member is denied contact with the child it is important that you have detailed documentation and copies of legal documents in the child’s file that support this claim.
Finally, include basic information about the child from eating habits, napping, interests, activities, note other children that live in the home with the child and any other information that will help you and your staff to understand the child better.
In our next blog we will be discussing the importance of incident reports and when to use them and why.