The staff of child care and preschool facilities come into contact with confidential and personal information about children and families. In order to make sure your family's personal information is kept private and used in a professional manner, it is important to ask the staff members about their confidentiality policies. Confidentiality agreements are an essential component in establishing this trust.
Confidentiality agreements should be established by child care facilities in order to ensure that confidential information regarding children, families, personnel and operations records are used only as required in the performance of employment duties. One of the primary responsibilities of the child care organisation is to keep this information confidential and privileged at all times.
The benefits of establishing a confidentiality agreement impact families and staff. Such agreements aid teachers and directors in developing a positive relationship with parents, which helps establish trust and a continuing partnership with families. It is essential that families know their information will only be accessible to and used by authorised individuals for the benefit of their child. When parents and child care staff are respectful and mutually work toward bettering young lives, the children (and families) will see significant benefits.
Child care staff should be trained on the confidentiality agreement by the director before beginning employment. By signing the agreement, the employee agrees to adhere to professional behaviour and understands that failure to not abide by the policy will result in disciplinary action. Employees should be refreshed on the agreement annually or as needed if additions or modifications are made.
Tips for Parents
When enrolling your child in an early education program, be sure to read the organisation's handbook and enrolment paperwork thoroughly. If no mention is made of the employees' expectations on confidentiality, it is important to ask the administration if they implement a confidentiality agreement with their staff. A client's right to privacy should be prioritised by the administration; make sure you are comfortable with the center's policies and that all your questions are answered.
If you are still unsure of your child care center's policy on confidentiality, request to speak with the director. It is important to consider whether or not the employee signs an agreement to maintain confidentiality. If a confidentiality policy is not implemented or if an agreement is not signed by the child care staff, communicate your concerns to the director. He/she may consider implementing a more deliberate approach to confidentiality with the staff. When you take your rights seriously, a good director will implement procedures to ensure you are comfortable and your information is secure.