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Thursday Tip: The Correct and Consistent Use of a Visitor Book in your Early Years Setting

The correct and consistent use of a Visitor Book in your service is a requirement under the Child Care Act 1991 (Early Years Services) Regulations 2016 and the Child Care Act 2018 (Early Years Services) (Registration of School Age Services) Regulations 2018. The Act states that ‘All persons entering an early years setting must be approved by an employee and each person must sign in and sign out of the building. The register must be stored for one year from the date it has begun (Regulation 24 (3 &4))’. It is also referenced as one of many safety procedures in our most updated Child Safeguarding Statement.

All visitors to your Early Years service must complete a column of the Visitor Book before they enter the care rooms during operational hours. Visitors include non-employees of the service such as Inspectors (TUSLA, HSA, DES), Mock Inspectors (Canavan Byrne), work experience/placement students, volunteers (should a firefighter, garda, vet or dentist, for example, pay a visit). The time of entry is an important piece of information to input accurately, as well as the time out. The visitor book should be accessible at a location in your service where you are most likely ro remember to use it on entry and exit.

At the Early Years Shop a Visitor Record Book is now available and allows all visitors to the Service to sign in when they arrive and sign out when they leave. The book contains 20 entries per page and has 100 pages per book. The information that must be collected on a visitor record includes Date, Name, Company, Contact Details, Time In, Time Out, Reason for Visit, Authorised by. The Visitor Record Book allows for all of the above. Why not mount a holder to the wall at eye level inside the main door or in the office? Label the holder with a clear conspicuous sign such as; ‘ALL VISITORS PLEASE SIGN IN AND OUT’. Insert an A4 piece of card to allow you to discreetly cover other visitor’s information when inviting people to sign in and out.