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CSSIW SASS part 2 and Quality of Care

CSSIW are this week sending letters out to all registered childcare providers in Wales informing them of the process they have to follow for part 2 of the Self-Assessment of Service (SASS) which includes the Quality of Care Report.  This has to be submitted online and is a regulatory requirement.  If you did not complete part 1 of the SASS last summer you now have to complete part 1 and 2 by the 28th July. Following the news story we published on this theme, in this blog you can find guidance and information on how to complete your SASS.

What is the SASS and what is it used for?

SASS is the Self-Assessment of Service Statement completed by registered childcare providers in Wales to provide CSSIW with information required to comply with relevant legislation.  Part 2 of the SASS will include collecting information on your Quality of Care Report.  The Registered Person or Responsible Individual for each registered childcare setting is required to complete and submit the SASS under the following legislation:

Regulation 16 of the Child Minding and Day Care (Wales) Regulations 2010, and

Section 44 of the Child and Families (Wales) Measure 2010.

CSSIW will use your SASS part two and your Quality of Care Review to assess your compliance against this and to assist CSSIW with the inspection of your service.

The information collected will help CSSIW inspectors to prioritise areas for further enquiry as part of their inspection planning. The information will also provide evidence of the quality of your service. Self evaluation is important to help you consider the best way to maintain and improve your service.

The inspector will use this information to:

  • Plan for inspection;
  • Influence what aspects of your service to prioritise and inspect;
  • Inform the number of inspectors CSSIW might send to inspect your service;
  • As evidence when CSSIW make judgements (and ratings) about your service’ and
  • Confirm that your registration details are current and correct.

 

What do I have to do as a registered provider of childcare in Wales?

You can only complete and submit SASS part two and your Quality of Care Review using CSSIW Online . You will need to log into your CSSIW Online account using the same details you used when creating your account previously.

Your username is your registered email address. If you do not remember your user name please email CSSIW or call CSSIW's technical helpline on 0300 025 6222 (English) or 0300 025 6111 (Welsh). Their support team will take you through a number of security questions and help you identify your user name.

If you have forgotten your password please use the online help link ‘can’t access your account’ and follow the online instructions to reset it.

If you do not have a CSSIW Online account, you will need to create an account to enable you to complete and submit SASS part two. A new activation PIN has been generated by CSSIW and is on the back of the letter that has been sent to you.

Providers will receive their letter about completing their SASS part two (and where relevant SASS part one) this week. CSSIW online system is now live - however, some providers may have been sent a letter containing a new PIN and will not be able to login to complete their SASS without creating a CSSIW Online account. CSSIW suggest that providers should wait until they receive their letter with details about what to do before trying to access CSSIW Online.

If you do not receive their letter this week (12th-16th June), please contact CSSIW on 0300 025 6222 (English) or 0300 025 6111 (Welsh).

If you believe you submitted part one of your SASS but did not receive an acknowledgement email from CSSIW when you submitted your SASS part one, unfortunately this means that your SASS did not submit at the time. As a result, your record has been marked as not submitted and will have to be completed again alongside part two. You cannot complete SASS part two or your Quality of Care Review without submitting your SASS part one first.

What happens if I do not complete and submit my SASS online?

If you do not  complete your SASS this may result in enforcement action by CSSIW and may have a negative impact on your inspectors’ judgement (and subsequent ratings) of the Leadership and Management theme of your inspection.

Who is exempt from completing a SASS return?

You will need to complete your SASS part two and Quality of Care Review regardless of whether your service is currently operating.

Services who have temporarily suspended their operations and informed CSSIW are exempt and do not have to complete the SASS. 

Services that registered with CSSIW after 1 July 2016 are exempt and do not have to complete the SASS. 

 

Can I use my SASS to notify CSSIW of changes to my registration or key events?

You cannot use the SASS to notify CSSIW of changes to your registration or key events.  You need to notify CSSIW of any changes to your registration or key events using their notification forms.

How do I upload documents to CSSIW online?

SASS part two requires you to upload two documents: your latest Statement of Purpose and Quality of Care Review. To upload these documents, follow these steps:

1. If you are using a computer or laptop, save the documents into the document library.

2. When you are completing the relevant section of SASS part two, click the ‘+ Choose’ button. Your document library will open. 

3. Locate and select the document to be uploaded.

4. The document library will then close and the information about the selected document will be displayed in screen, this will include the name of the document and the file size.

5. Click the ‘Upload’ button. By pressing this button, the document will attach to the SASS part two form. 
You have now successfully uploaded a document.

CSSIW have created a guide for you to use to support the upload of documents to CSSIW online.

If you have uploaded the wrong document before you press the 'Upload' button you can amend or upload a new version by saving another document over the top of the currently uploaded document. Please follow steps 1 to 5 above.

 

 

What happens after I submit my SASS?

Once submitted, you will receive a notification email from CSSIW. You will not be able to make any changes via CSSIW Online once submitted.   However, you will be able to do this by contacting the CSSIW helpdesk on 0300 025 6222 (English) or 0300 025 6111 (Welsh) for them to inform you what you need to do.

On successful submission of your SASS, a PDF copy of each individual return will be available via your CSSIW Online account. You can open, review and save a copy of your returns for your records.  

 

What support is available for the SASS?

PACEY Cymru have produced additional guidance and information to support you on completing your SASS and many of the questions you may have are answered in this blog.  We would suggest you initially have a look at this to see if this provides the answers to any questions or queries you have.

CSSIW have developed a template and guidance to use to complete your Quality of Care Review. The template is optional, but for consistency we strongly recommend you use it.

If you need technical help using CSSIW's online service or have any questions you can email them cssiw.online@wales.gsi.gov.uk  or telephone them on 0300 035 6222 (English) or 0300 025 6111 (Welsh).

If you have other, non-technical questions about completing the SASS that have not been answered by reading the supporting information and are either a PACEY member or a registered childminder in Wales you can contact PACEY Cymru for further guidance and support by email paceycymru@pacey.org.uk or telephone 0845 8801299.  For other childcare providers support is available through childcare umbrella organisations Clybiau Plant Cymru Kids Clubs, Mudiad Meithrin, National Day Nurseries Assocation and Wales Pre-school Providers Association.

Guidance for questions within the SASS

Welsh Language – the ‘active offer’

What is ‘More than Just Words’ and the ‘active offer’?

‘More than Just Words’ is the Welsh Government’s strategic framework for the Welsh language in care services (2016-2019). The aim of the strategy is to strengthen the use of the Welsh language in care services.  

How do I know if the service is working towards the ‘active offer’?

An ‘active offer’ is providing a service in Welsh without someone having to ask for it. It means creating a change of culture that takes the responsibility away from the service user and places the responsibility on service providers. If you do not provide this you need to select 'no' to the question on whether you deliver the Active Offer.

For more information, visit the Welsh Government website and the CSSIW website

There is further information available for PACEY members on the Active Offer and the development of Welsh language in settings in the Welsh Language Development area of the members area of the website.

People at your service

If you have a childminding assistant who is resident at your service they should be showing on the 'People at your Service tab' which is pre-populated and you should also include them on the 'Staff working at your service' tab. If anyone is not showing who should be you need to contact CSSIW to discuss but still completre your SASS. However if you have a childminding assistant but they do not live at your service you just need to add them to the 'Staff working at your service' tab.

Staff working at your service

You are required to inform CSSIW about all the people associated with your service. For example, Registered Persons, child minding assistants, people who live at the service (and are over 16) and Persons in Charge (organisation providers only). CSSIW need to ensure that their records are accurate and up to date. Please note that this section will display the people at your service at the time of you starting your SASS part two submission.  

If the service you provide is open access play or sessional, you will need to use the information from when your service last operated.

CSSIW want to know how many staff work in non-registered roles at your service and what their current employment is.  If you are not sure which definition of employment best fits a role CSSIW have produced a list of based on information listed by the UK Government about contract types and employment.

If you have employees who are on maternity leave, paternity leave, a career break or long term sick leave you do not need to include them.

If you have have looked at the list of job roles provided on CSSIW Online and can not see the relevant job role lised you need to use the definitions listed on the Social Care Wales (and Skills Active Wales for play providers) websites and select the job role that best describes the role and responsibilities undertaken.

If you have more than one role at the service,  CSSIW want to know about it, so please ensure you list the information in the relevant area of the form. For example, as the Registered Individual you may have more than one role, so you will need to list both roles.

Importantly when you have added in a new job role to the system and put the number of staff against it you need to click on the 'tick' at the end of the row to have it added officially.  You can then go on to add in additional staff as needed repeating the process.

 

Statement of Purpose (SOP)

CSSIW want to see that you have updated your Statement of Purpose (SOP) for your service.  It is specifically required to be updated (as well as any associated policies and procedures) in line with the changes to regulation that took place last April for children over 8 years of age.  At this time you would have made a declaration to CSSIW that you updated your SOP to reflect any changes and so have to ensure that you upload an up to date version of your SOP to the system. 

PACEY members can access guidance on writing and reviewing your policies and procedures and statement of purpose in the members area of the website.

Quality of Care Review

CSSIW want to see that you have produced and uploaded your Quality of Care Review to the system.  Details on how to upload documents is given in the section above.   

Statement of Purpose (SOP)

CSSIW want to see that you have updated your Statement of Purpose (SOP) for your service.  It is specifically required to be updated (as well as any associated policies and procedures) in line with the changes to regulation that took place last April for children over 8 years of age.  At this time you would have made a declaration to CSSIW that you updated your SOP to reflect any changes and so have to ensure that you upload an up to date version of your SOP to the system. 

PACEY members can access guidance on writing and reviewing your policies and procedures and statement of purpose in the members area of the website.

Statement of Purpose (SOP)

CSSIW want to see that you have updated your Statement of Purpose (SOP) for your service.  It is specifically required to be updated (as well as any associated policies and procedures) in line with the changes to regulation that took place last April for children over 8 years of age.  At this time you would have made a declaration to CSSIW that you updated your SOP to reflect any changes and so have to ensure that you upload an up to date version of your SOP to the system. 

PACEY members can access guidance on writing and reviewing your policies and procedures and statement of purpose in the members area of the website.

CSSIW have developed a template and guidance to use to complete your Quality of Care Review. The template is optional, but for consistency we strongly recommend you use it.

PACEY members can access guidance on writing their Quality of Care Review in the members area of the website.

Policies and Procedures

CSSIW want to know which key policies and procedures you operate within your service. Tell them which policies and procedures you have in place for your service and when they were last reviewed.

Some of the policies may not be relevant to your service. Where a policy is not relevant to your service you will be asked to indicate why this policy is not relevant, for example the staff disciplinary policy is not relevant as they do not employ any staff at the setting.

PACEY members can access guidance on writing and reviewing your policies and procedures in the members area of the website.

Environmental safety information

What environmental safety information needs to be included in the SASS and Quality of Care Review?

CSSIW want to know that appropriate safety checks and risk assessments are being carried out to ensure the service environment is safe for children.

You need to confirm that you carry out regular electrical safety checks.  PAT testing is not required by childminders but you do have to ensure you are following good practice for electrical safety.  You need to be clear in how you ensure the safe use of electrical equipment.

For settings that have burning appliances HSE guidance states

'Safety of non gas appliances (oil, wood, coal burning appliances) and chimneys- Carbon monoxide can be produced by any combustion appliance, including those that burn fossil fuels eg oil, wood and coal. If you have one of these appliances you should make sure that it is serviced and maintained by a competent person and the chimney is regularly swept.'

You will need to confirm you have done this within part two of your SASS.  It is also good practice to have a Carbon Monoxide Detector in each room where you have a burning appliance.

You need to confirm you have considered and risk assessed what will happen in the event of a fire and carry out regular fire drills. 

RIDDOR  requires the Registered Person or Responsible Individual to record and report certain serious workplace accidents, occupational diseases and specified dangerous occurrences (e.g. near misses).  You are also asked to provide a statement on how you comply with the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH).

Childcare services are required by law to ensure systems are in place to reduce risk and harm to children and adults from hazardous substances. For example, everyday use of bleach, paint detergents can be harmful to children. Services must ensure controls are in place to mitigate risk and include details if someone in the service is COSHH trained.  Thnk about what you you do reduce risk etc in your response.

Food standards and hygiene

CSSIW look at your kitchen during their inspections and will ask you food hygiene questions to ensure that you comply with the National Minimum Standards.

However, CSSIW are not responsible for enforcing food safety and health protection legislation or providing guidance on infection control.  The Food Standards Agency is responsible for this.

If you provide food as part of your childminding service, you must register with your local authority as a food business. You are responsible under food law for ensuring that food is prepared, stored and handled in compliance with the food hygiene regulations.

If you are providing any food  to children in your care then you must be able to demonstrate that your practices and procedures when handling and preparing food are safe and you have this written down in the form of a food safety management system/record. This means that you have thought about the hazards involved in preparing and cooking food and have placed some ‘controls’ around these areas to make sure that food is safe. These procedures must be in place permanently and any documents/records relating to your procedures must also be kept up to date; such as ensuring meat is cooked thoroughly, or that food is stored at the correct temperature – but you have to document these checks and say what you would do if the controls are not met.

Part two of the SASS asks if you have a food safety management / recording system in place.  The safer food better business pack for childminders (see below) has been designed as a food safety management and recording system for childminders.  If you are following guidance and keeping records up to date then you can state you have a food safety management / recording system in place. CSSIW may request evidence of this during your inspection.

Further information can be found on the Food Standards Agency website including a Safer Food Better Business pack for childminders. The pack gives simple, straightforward advice on food safety, including information on cooking, cleaning, chilling, feeding babies and children, and looking after a child with a food allergy.  You can also contact your local authority environmental health team for further advice if you are unsure of your responsibilities under food law or have concerns about providing food safely.

Food Hygiene Ratings

Once registered a local authority officer inspects a business to check it meets the requirements of food hygiene law. The hygiene standards found at the time of inspection are then rated on a scale. At the bottom of the scale is ‘0’ – this means urgent improvement is required. At the top of the scale is ‘5’ – this means the hygiene standards are very good.                 

Some types of businesses, like childminders in a private dwelling, are exempt to being rated but they will continue to be subject to food hygiene requirements.

In Wales, unless exempt, businesses must by law display a sticker showing their rating in a prominent place and consumers are also able to view the rating on the Food Standards Agency website.

Unless you are exempt, local authorities in Wales are required to notify your food hygiene rating within 14 days from the date of their inspection.  To help ensure FHRS is fair to businesses, it has been designed to include a number of safeguards. These are an appeal procedure, a 'right to reply' and an opportunity to request a re-visit when improvements have been made.

PACEY members can access further information relating to Food Hygiene in Wales in the Food Hygiene Factsheet

 

 

 

 

 

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