This policy covers all staff of Buckden Day Nursery. It is intended to provide guidance in areas where personal relationships overlap with working relationships and to ensure that individual members of staff do not commit acts of impropriety, bias, abuse of authority or conflict of interest and do not lay themselves open to allegations that they have done so.
The Nursery values and relies upon the professional integrity of relationships between members of staff and in the staff/parent relationship. In order that Nursery business is conducted and perceived to be conducted in a professional and proper manner it is necessary to distinguish between, and take account of, personal relationships which overlap with professional ones.
In the context of this document, a personal relationship is defined as:
• a family relationship,
• a business/commercial/financial relationship or
• a sexual/romantic relationship
1.. Relationships between staff and parents
Buckden Day Nursery believes that the professional relationship between a parent and a member of staff is vital to the wellbeing of the child. The relationship is based on trust and confidence. In this context a professional relationship is defined as one where there is an ongoing care role. Each child is entitled to equality of treatment and it is important that a personal relationship between a member of staff and a parent is not perceived by others to prejudice that equality of treatment.
Staff are strongly advised not to enter into a sexual/romantic relationship with a parent. Further, staff should not enter into a business, commercial or financial relationship with a parent which could compromise, or could be perceived to compromise, the objectivity and professional standing of the relationship.
We recognise, however, that such relationships may exist when a member of staff is appointed or when a parent enrols their child, or that a relationship may develop between a member of staff and a parent during the time the child attends Nursery. Where a member of staff has a professional role in relation to a parent with whom (s)he has a personal relationship, it is the responsibility of the member of staff to inform his/her Manager, in order that alternative arrangements may be made.
2 Relationships between members of staff
Although the existence of a personal relationship between members of staff does not necessarily constitute a bar to the employment or promotion of either party, staff should declare to the Management any personal relationships which may give rise to a real or perceived conflict of interest, trust or breach of confidentiality.
Where a personal relationship exists or develops between members of staff who are in a supervisory or Management relationship at work, they must not be involved in recruitment, selection, appraisal, promotion or in any other management activity or process involving the other party. Additionally, staff in a personal relationship should not work together in any circumstance whereby a conflict of interest, breach of confidentiality or unfair advantage may be perceived to be gained from the overlap of a personal and professional relationship. In any such circumstances, the relationship must be declared in confidence, to Management. The manager to whom the information is disclosed will then make alternative arrangements and confirm them in writing to the individuals concerned. If it is considered unavoidable to inform other members of staff about the relationship in order to explain a change in arrangements, this will be discussed with the individuals concerned, before it is disclosed.
3. Declaration of personal relationships where they overlap with professional roles
Staff who are uncertain about whether they should take action regarding a personal relationship, are invited to seek guidance in confidence, from the Managers or Proprietor.
A case whereby any personal relationship as defined within this code, is not declared and results in an unfair advantage or disadvantage to either of the parties to the relationship (be they a member of staff or a parent), will be considered a serious matter and may lead to disciplinary action.
While not a bar to employment with the Nursery, applicants for employment may be asked to declare any personal relationship with existing members of staff or parents