Policies and Guidelines
Community playgroups are informal opportunities to come together to play and to socialise with other families. In order for a group to run smoothly and to ensure everyone is aware of general expectations we have developed the following policies.
All children and families are welcome at playgroup. Mt Colah Uniting Church does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, disability, religion, sexuality or gender identity. All children and adults who attend playgroup will be treated with respect and dignity.
New members are important to ensure a playgroup continues to grow and thrive. All playgroup members are responsible to help make new families feel welcomed and included.
Garden Playgroup and the surrounding area is a smoke-free environment. Please do not light up at playgroup.
Scalding can be a serious problem if babies and young children are exposed to hot liquids like tea and coffee. Hot drinks should, wherever possible, be in safe, insulated and securely lidded containers.
Swearing and offensive language
Children learn behaviours by watching their parents and carers and often repeat what they hear and see. Please use respectful language at playgroup and refrain from using swearing and offensive language, even when talking with another adult.
Research has found that children respond to positive reinforcement far better than negative actions. Never strike a child or children in your care, and never attempt to discipline someone else’s child. If you notice behaviour that you are concerned about, have a quiet word with the parent in a non-judgmental, supportive manner. Remember your child may come to someone else’s attention at another time.
If you think a child is at risk of harm from abuse or neglect, contact the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111.
Supervision of Children
The parent or carer who brings a child to playgroup is responsible for supervising children in their care while at playgroup. Where a parent/carer cannot keep a child in their direct line of sight (e.g. while feeding a baby or accompanying another child to the bathroom), seek support from another member to make sure their child has an adult who is aware of their wellbeing and safety.
Help out and pitch in
Garden Playgroup is run by volunteers for other parents and carers. If everyone at playgroup helps out, no one person is burdened with an unacceptable workload. If you have a passion or skill that you can bring to the group, discuss with the coordinator and see if it can be incorporated into the group activities.
Mt Colah Uniting Church advises parents/guardians to note:
- Decisions about immunization and immunizing a child are wholly the responsibility of parents and guardians. Therefore, any attendee of Garden Playgroup may or may not be immunized.
- Mt Colah Uniting Church supports the NSW Public Health Act 2010, that children will not be enrolled in an education and care service unless the child is fully immunized for their age; or has a medical reason not to be immunized; or is on a recognized catch-up schedule. However, these regulations do not apply to playgroups as playgroups are not Approved Services under the Education and Care Services National Regulations and National Law.
- Mt Colah Uniting Church advises that any attendees with known infectious illnesses, visible symptoms of illness, that are feeling unwell, or have been in contact with someone exhibiting any of the aforementioned, should not attend playgroup. If a playgroup coordinator observes an attendee displaying visible signs of an infectious illness, or appearing generally unwell, they may respectfully request the attendees withdraw from the playgroup session.
- In the case of an outbreak of an infectious illness within the group, every effort will be made to notify other members to enable appropriate protection and response.
For information about early childhood immunization in NSW the following website may be useful.
Strengthening vaccination requirements for child care – Immunisation programs (nsw.gov.au)
Covid Safe Plan
As per current Mt Colah Uniting Church Covid Safe Plan
As per Mt Colah Uniting Church emergency procedures
Facebook Group Guidelines
1. The purpose of this group
This group is only for people who attend Mt Colah Garden Playgroup. The purpose of this group is to exchange information, ideas, updates about events and playgroup excursions and other relevant community news.
Users are expected to respect and protect the rights of others, and Facebook have laid out rules specifically for what that means: http://www.facebook.com/terms
3. Respecting others
Please be polite and respect other people’s views. We will not tolerate rudeness or abuse. Any libelous or unpleasant posts/comments will be removed. Examples of the types of posts that will be removed include:
• Profane, defamatory, offensive or violent language
• “Trolling”, or posting deliberately disruptive statements meant to hijack comment threads or throw discussions off-track
• Attacks on specific groups or any comments meant to harass, threaten or abuse an individual
• Hateful or discriminatory comments regarding race, ethnicity, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation or political beliefs
• Spam, link baiting or files containing viruses that could damage the operation of other people’s computers or mobile devices
• Acknowledgement of intent to stalk an individual or collect private information without disclosure
• Commercial solicitations or promotion of a competitor
• Violations of copyright or intellectual property rights
• Content determined to be inappropriate, in poor taste, or otherwise contrary to the purposes of the forum
Please be aware that parents may not want photos of their children to be put on Facebook and it is illegal to post images of children without the parent’s consent. If you want to post photos, please ensure you have written permission from the parent first and please do not tag people in photos on this page.
This is not a rule per se, but when we join a group, we join a community – a place for chatting, receiving advice and helping others. Of course, you can just ask things and receive advice. However, it is nice if you can pay it forward by answering questions and joining in discussions occasionally.
6. Thank and Like
If you ask for help with something, it is good etiquette to like the answers you receive, or to say thankyou in a comment to everyone who answered. They have taken the time to help you, so it is polite to take the time to thank them. You don’t have to thank everyone individually but a thank you comment every twenty or so replies is appreciated.
7. Read as well as Write
Try to take a few minutes every time you visit to scroll down the latest posts – you may find some useful information, be able to help someone, and find that someone asked the question you were going to ask just before you came in.
8. Moderation and Admin
This group is moderated by the Playgroup Coordinators through Mt Colah Uniting Church. If any issues arise or you have questions or concerns, please send an enquiry through the Garden Playgroup enquiries page at http://mtcolah.unitingchurch.org.au/playgroup-welcome/.
Last updated April 2022