1. The Nursery manager and staff should have the personal qualities and character required to relate well to children and their parents. Factors to be considered are enthusiasm, dedication, energy and a commitment to the idea of putting children and their welfare first at all times.

2. When selecting staff, the NCNA guidelines on the selection of Nursery workers are relevant and should be referred to. Nursery workers should not have been convicted of any serious offence, particularly offences involving bodily injury or sexual abuse. They should not be restricted from looking after or working with children in day or residential settings.

3. It is recommended that staff selection should be a formal procedure involving at least two adults. It is essential that at least one relevant independent referee be sought and that written references be checked.

4. All staff should be over 18 years of age and should hold a relevant childcare qualification. A wide range of such qualifications is currently available on a full and part-time basis through VECs, third level and private colleges and voluntary organisations. For staff who are not qualified, management should facilitate their training either through day-release or by encouraging staff to participate in one of the many training courses available in the evenings.

5. Staff should be encouraged to update their skills and knowledge through participation in service training on a regular basis and management should facilitate this as far as possible.

6. Staff duties should be clearly defined by management and a negotiation forum e.g. regular staff meetings, should exist in order to ensure that opportunities are provided to discuss and clarify issues related to duties and conditions.

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