An Introduction for parents and carers of children new to Acle Pre-School.

 

Thank You for your interest in our Pre-School, we trust that you find the information helpful, please do not hesitate to contact us if there is anything further we can help you with.

Acle Pre-School is a community group with charitable status. We are members of the Norfolk Early Years Network and the Pre School Learning Alliance which supports and advises pre-school groups providing day care for the under 5’s. The group is part of the Norfolk Early Years Development Plan registered and inspected by Ofsted for Pre-School provision.  The Pre-School policies are available for you to read and we welcome your comments and thoughts on these.

The Pre-School is run by a voluntary management committee elected by our parent/carers.  It is the committee’s responsibility to take care of the Pre-school’s business and financial affairs, employ staff and make policy decisions on how the Pre-School should be run.  Parent/carers ideas and views are valued and we would appreciate your support in all aspects of the Pre-School’s activities. The Annual General Meeting is where the committee is elected and your support and attendance at this meeting will be especially appreciated.

 

We aim to provide a safe and happy environment where our children are encouraged and stimulated at their own pace to:

 

 

1. Enjoy new experiences and gain an understanding of the world they live in

 2. Experiment with a variety of activities, materials and media

 

 

3. Gain social and communication skills 

 

 

4. Learn to express themselves and develop language and pre-literacy skills

 

5. Learn pre-numeracy skills

 

 

6. Develop physical control and manual dexterity

 

Acle Pre-school encourages children to learn through play, allowing opportunities to explore, discover and revisit activities to reinforce learning. This allows children to build on self-esteem, independence and confidence, but above all we encourage children to have fun!

 

We actively operate an equal opportunities policy and welcome children regardless of race, culture, religion and disability. If your child has special needs, please speak to our qualified staff to ensure the smooth transition from home to Pre-school.

 

We work closely with Acle Primary School, so as and when it is time for your child to move on from us, we facilitate appropriate sessions and activities in conjunction with the Primary School to ensure this change is positive for the children.  For children attending other infant/primary schools, we will work with you to ensure this transition is positively supported.

 

We have a maximum of 26 children attend Pre-School each session. We have a staffing ratio of 1 member of staff for each 4 children under the age of 3yrs and 1 member of staff for each 8 children over the age of 3yrs.

  

The Pre-school room is arranged into themed areas where children can access resources and equipment independently or with staff support. Resources are age appropriate and include, amongst other items, books, sand and water trays, puzzles, arts and crafts, musical instruments and dressing up clothes.

 

Children are encouraged to explore, socialise and learn at their own pace in a happy and relaxed environment. Alongside independent play, the children are encouraged to join in with adult led activities such as singing time, story time, group games and circle time.

Our garden surrounds the Pre-school building and is divided into specific areas for the children to explore. Once the children have settled into each session, we open up the garden so the children can have free flow between the inside and outside areas

The outside resources are available for both independent and adult led activities. The children have access to water, sand, malleable materials and plenty of mud! We also provide activities for the children to take small risks to help them develop their ability to understand when something is safe or not.

 

The garden has three areas. The sensory garden allows the children to care for plants, dig flower beds and enjoy the multi-sensory surroundings. The physical garden has play equipment which allows them to develop their physical and imaginative sides by climbing on tyres, playing in the ice cream parlour, using the slide and rolling down the slope.  The patio garden is used for a variety of activities and allows for all year round outdoor play and is the ideal setting for water play, construction, messy play, bicycles, scooters, wheelbarrows and parachutes.

 

We endeavour to arrange a variety of Pre-school outings to take place during normal session times. These have previously included visits to the fire station, the library, Herondale and the ‘woods’ at the back of the primary school field. These take place in a safe and secure manner with appropriate increased adult to child ratio and risk assessment completion. We also arrange for people and activities to visit us at Pre-school to enhance and support the children’s development. These have previously included road safety teams, the local refuse collection lorry and the local police.

 

During play and activities, staff will make observations which monitor progress of the children and their individual interests. This knowledge is used to influence future learning opportunities within the early years curriculum guidance. These observations are recorded within each child’s ‘All About Me’ folder. We carry out appropriate risk assessments as required for the activities we undertake and implement any necessary precautions

 

Acle Pre-School provides early years education for 2 - 5 year olds for the following sessions: Monday - Friday:-

Morning session 9.15am - 11.45am

Lunch session 11.45am - 12.45pm

Afternoon session 12.45pm - 3.15pm

We also offer an early bird session, 8.45am - 9.15am


For a trial period during 2017 we are also offering extended hours to help support working parents, the sessions are as follows:


Rise and shine, 8.00am - 9.15am

Stay and play, 3.15pm - 5.00pm


Please contact the pre-school for further information.

 

Our staff are recruited for their enthusiasm and dedication to the care and development of children. All staff hold a childcare qualification and are trained in First Aid, Health & Safety, Food Hygiene, Risk Assessment, Early Years Curriculum and are checked with the Criminal Records Board. All staff undertake continuous training to development their skills. We promote the use of positive language and behaviour to encourage respect for adults and children both individually and as part of a group.

 

Staff work collaboratively to provide the highest quality care and education to all children during the session. Each child also has a ‘key person’ who is on hand to give special care and attention to a small group of children and is responsible for your child’s development record, the ‘All About Me’ folder.

 

The cloakroom entrance to Pre-school is where the children will start and end their sessions with each of them having a peg with their name and photograph for their bag and coat. There are wall-pockets for each of the children which is where we will put information to take home, including funding forms, invoices, our regular newsletters and children’s work from the session.  All key information is on the walls in the cloakroom and we will use the noticeboards in this area for communications about specific upcoming events as well the current day’s activities.

 

At the end of each session staff members are on hand if you wish to discuss your child’s day. We will hold regular parent/carer’s evenings for you to gain more detailed feedback from your child’s key person. Your child’s ‘All About Me’ folder is available for you to see the detailed observations staff have made and your child’s key person can take you through this.

 

The majority of the time the manager or deputy manager will be available at the beginning and end of the sessions if there are any issues you would like to discuss. If you would like a more in-depth discussion then please ask us to make you a specific appointment so there is appropriate time to discuss your thoughts.

 

The safety of the children is of utmost importance. When your child first joins us we will ask for names and photos of people who will be collecting your child. If your child is to be picked up by someone not on your list, we will need you to inform us of this in advance.

 

We provide a healthy snack for each child during the morning and afternoon sessions. Snacks include fresh fruits, raw vegetables, breadsticks, crackers, cheese, dried fruits, and bread and butter. We are able to cater for children with special dietary requirements, please speak to us about individual needs.

We provide drinks during snack time of milk or water and all children have a water bottle for each session they attend which is labelled with their name and photo.

 

If your child stays with us for lunch, a healthy pack lunch needs to be provided with an ice pack to ensure it stays cool while we store the lunches during the morning session. If you would like to send a toothbrush and toothpaste we encourage children to brush their teeth after lunch.

Some activities your child will take part in will be messy! We provide aprons for crafts and wet weather overalls for outside play; however, it is best to send your child to Pre-school in clothes which you don’t mind getting messy. We have Pre-school polo shirts available to buy which can be ideal.  A spare set of clothes is also needed (please clearly name all clothing). We encourage all children to wear plimsols or slippers indoors so we can prevent the outdoors being brought in! Your child will also benefit from having wellies, which can be kept under their peg, for when they are outside on wetter days.

 

If your child is in nappies or pull ups please provide enough for the session, including their own wipes. During the toilet training phase, we will support and encourage your approach to this and we have potties and steps available to help your child continue his or her routine from home.

 

Before your child starts with us, you are welcome to visit us as many times as you feel necessary to make your decision to join us. These visits are the ideal time to ask us as many questions as you have. We know this is an important decision for you.

 

When you’ve decided you would like your child to join us, you will have introductory sessions where you will meet with staff, your child can explore our environment and we can complete a care plan with you where you can tell us about your child’s like and dislikes and any special requirements.  

Starting Pre-School is a big step for your child (and you)! You are welcome to stay with your child during their first sessions until you are comfortable that they are settling in. You are also very welcome to call us during the session to check on how they are.

 

We encourage and support parents in being as involved as possible with Pre-school while your child is with us. Parent/carer’s are always welcome to help out during sessions. This involves interacting with the children, helping them with activities, reading with the children, playing games as well as helping staff in preparing snacks, clearing up, helping with coats and shoes and generally supporting the session to be fun and productive. There is a rota in the cloakroom for you to choose which sessions you would like to join us for.

 

If you decide to join us, you will need to complete a registration form and return this to us, together with a £10 registration fee. This will reserve your place with us but depending on when you would like your child to start you may not secure the day. This is  one-off-non-returnable payment.  Once we've received your registration form, we will contact you to arrange your introductory session. Before your child's first session we will need a completed admission form and a signed copy of the regulations and Parent/carer agreement.  We make every effort to keep fees to a minimum whilst not compromising on the quality of the care we are able to provide.  All fees are payable half termly,  in advance.

 

 

3-4yr olds and some 2yr olds receive government funding. We can accept company childcare vouchers and our care is part of the WFTC childcare element. Fees are payable for the sessions which your child is registered for, even if some sessions are not attended. Our staff and committee members are always available to talk about any financial matters or concerns about our fees. Fees are higher for under 3’s because of the higher staff ratios needed.

 

In order to keep fees as low as we can, we charge enough to cover our regular running expenses. We aim to hold several fundraising events throughout the year which allow us to buy new equipment and hold outings for the children. We apply for grants to supplement our income which helps provide additional staff training.

 

If your child requires medication (prescribed by doctor only) during the session, please inform us in writing giving all relevant details. We will also need you to sign our medication record. Medication will only be given by the supervisor of the session.

 

If any accidents occur whilst your child is with us, we will record this in our accident book. We will ask you to sign that you have understood what has occurred and what action was taken, if any. If it’s necessary we will contact you at the time of the incident. All our staff are first aid trained and in the event of a medical emergency we will take appropriate action promptly.

 

All information held by Acle Pre-school is in accordance with the Data Processing Act 1998. More information about this can be found at www.dataprotection.gov.uk or on request from the preschool. Please also see the enclosed privacy notice information.

 

Opening Hours

Acle Pre-school is open from (8.45 if an early bird) or 9.15am – 3.15pm during term time. Our terms will run, where possible and practical, in line with Acle Primary school terms.

 

Admission

We cater for children aged from 2yrs until they reach school age.  We are permitted by Ofsted to have up to 26 children per session. Once sessions are reserved, any changes need to be requested in writing.  We usually keep one space per session free in case of a child needing emergency childcare.

 

Arriving and leaving

All children must be handed to us and collected from us by an authorised adult who we have been previously advised will be taking responsibility for your child. We reserve the right to refuse to handover children to unknown parties until we have had appropriate authorisation from their parents/guardian.

Prompt arrival and collection for sessions is appreciated and necessary to avoid extra fees being incurred. It is the parents/guardians responsibility to ensure the Pre-school have up-to-date contact details for them.

 

Termination of contract

One weeks written notice is required if a child needs to be withdrawn from Pre-School.  This will enable us to complete a transition report and update your child’s ‘All About Me’ folder ready for you to take home.

 

Illness

If your child is ill, please do not send them to Pre-School until symptoms are gone. This is especially important for contagious illnesses. If your child has suffered from sickness and/or diarrhoea you will need to keep them off for 48hrs after the last bout. This will aid recovery and prevent spreading illness. Please call us if your child isn’t going to attend Pre-School due to illness.

 

Clothing

Please label all clothes, we cannot accept liability for loss or damage to clothing. Spare clothing is required for each child. Please provide suitable clothing for indoor / outdoor play including coats, wellies, sun hats etc.

 

Fees

Fees are payable half termly, in advance. Payment by cheque/cash  is normally required, although we can make arrangements when this isn’t practical. Extra, non-regular sessions used within the term must be paid for in advance or on the day.  We aim to keep our fees low but reserve the right to review them as required. In the event of non-payment of fees, we reserve the right to allocate these sessions to other children. After two reminders of non-payment of fees we will take the matter to the small claims court.  Long periods of absence may lead to sessions being offered to other children, please keep us informed if this is likely to be the case, e.g. in periods of long term sickness, so that we can make arrangements which suit all parties concerned. In the event of illness, prepaid sessions can be reimbursed on presentation of a doctor’s note.


2016 fees (subject to change)

Under 3 = £12.00 per session

Over 3 = £11.00 per session

 

Complaints

We take any complaint very seriously and we have a set procedure for dealing with any complaint swiftly and confidentially. Please address any concerns to; Manager, Fletcher Room, Fletcher Way, Acle, NR13 3RQ

 

 

For a copy of our Welcome Pack, Addmission & Regisration Form, please email us your email address at: [email protected]  we will forward you a copy, or call us,     tel: 07920 840221 or pop in to see us.    


FUNDING

Your child is entitled to 15 hours a week government funding the term after their 3rd Birthday.

Come and see us to see if you are entitled to 2 year old government funding for up to 15 hours per week. (see attached 2 year old funding leaflet below).