Childcare Office

Students and Volunteers Policy

We believe that a placement for a student or volunteer (hereby ‘Volunteers’) at the Cambridge Universities' Holiday Playscheme (CUHP) is a valuable opportunity to build experience while learning about working within a childcare setting. Equally, we appreciate the positive contribution that such committed and enthusiastic people can bring to our Playscheme.

The needs of the children are paramount at CUHP so numbers of students and volunteers will be restricted at any particular time.

The Playscheme Co-ordinator has overall responsibility for supervising and supporting students and volunteers while they are at CUHP.

All students and volunteers must submit character referees, and have up to date Enhanced Criminal Records Bureau Disclosure checks before they begin their placement at CUHP.

The Playscheme Co-ordinator will have formal agreement with students and volunteers at the start of the placement, which will agree hours of work, dress code and expected behaviour within CUHP. This agreement will also detail what the student or volunteer can expect from CUHP. Students and volunteers must read and sign the conditions of work before accepting or making a commitment to voluntary work.

Students and volunteers on placement should not be included in the Playworkers ratio (for children aged below 8 unless) unless they are aged 18 or over (17 for EYFS). In this case, they should be attending as a regular volunteer and deemed to be competent.

Regular supervision and feedback sessions with the Playscheme Co-ordinator, Site Co-ordinator or Playworker will be established as a means of monitoring progress.

Students will be encouraged to discuss their individual learning needs with the Playscheme Co-ordinator when they start at CUHP and at regular intervals during their placement.

Students conducting child studies beyond CUHP normal activities (i.e. conducting a survey or a group based activity) as part of their course will need to obtain appropriate written consent from the parents of the children concerned via CUHP.

CUHP will ensure that students and volunteers undertake the full induction process given to permanent Playworkers, as set out in CUHP's Playworker Induction procedures.

Volunteers will be allocated a Playworker mentor who will support them and their needs while at CUHP.

While on the placement, students and volunteers will be both allowed and expected to participate in all aspects of work at CUHP, unless otherwise instructed. Volunteers can attend Playworker meetings and be encouraged to contribute ideas and share opinions.

  • We will ensure that we have up to date Employers' Liability Insurance and Public Liability Insurance, which covers both students and voluntary helpers.
  • We require students and volunteers to adhere to our Confidentiality Policy.
  • We co-operate with students' tutors in order to help students fulfil their academic requirements.
  • We communicate a positive message to students about the value of qualifications and training.

Policy reviewed 14 December 2011.