Frequently Asked Questions
What do I need to bring to pre-school with me?
Please ensure that ALL items brought into pre-school are clearly named to avoid loss and confusion!
All year round: A spare change of clothes in case of toileting or water play accidents (we do have spare clothes but it is always nicer for your child to fit into their own clothes). Please ensure clothing is suitable for the weather. Open toe shoes are not permitted due to health and safety.
Belts: To avoid accidents, please only send your child in wearing a belt if they can undo it.
Wellies/raincoats: Autumn/Winter. Sunhat: All sunny and warm weather.
Snack: A small healthy snack (no nuts please), stored in a named container.
Lunch (if applicable): A healthy balanced lunch, containing some sort of carbohydrate i.e. sandwich, pasta etc in a named container/lunch box. Please insert ice packs in the summer months.
Water: We encourage children to drink when they are thirsty. Please send in a suitable named bottle.
Book bags: Please send in every day.
Special Books: These can come home and back into pre-school as often as you like.
Comforter: If your child requires a special toy, blanket etc please allow them to bring this with them as a comforter.
Sun cream: In the summer months we ask that sunscreen has already been applied prior to sending your child to pre-school.
Long hair: We request that long hair is tied back to avoid the risk of head lice.
How do I settle my child into pre-school life?
We recognise and understand the anxieties for both you and your child when starting at pre-school. Some children will settle in on their first visit and others will take a little longer to get used to their new environment. To support you and your child when settling into pre-school we offer two visits free of charge. A staff member will contact you a few weeks before your child's official start date to discuss convenient times for you both to visit us and become comfortable with your new environment. Parents stay with their child during this visit time, where all information relevant to starting pre-school is given. These visits enable key staff to introduce themselves and start to build relationships.
Why is there so much paperwork to complete?
It is of the utmost importance that we obtain as many relevant details about your child as possible to ensure his /her welfare at pre-school. During your visits your key person will provide an information pack to be completed and returned to us at your child's second settling in visit. This pack will contain details such as personal contacts, emergency contact details, family information, medical details and forms which require your signature to confirm your authorisation regarding various aspects of the care we provide. The key person will be happy to assist with the completion of paperwork and answer any questions you may have.
How does the pre-school communicate with parents?
Effective communication is central to building good relationships between parents and the pre-school staff. We find that face to face communication is best but we also have other ways we communicate with you to complement this i.e. via newsletters, phone calls, email, notice board etc. We also have a planning book which is available every day to view and add comments.
Can parents get involved with pre-school events and influence the running of the pre-school?
We aim to be an integral part of the community and hold regular events such as stay and play days, fun days and charity fundraising activities. We invite parents and children to these events and welcome the assistance of parents in organising these activities. We welcome any suggestions or feedback from you regarding all aspects of the pre-school. We welcome your comments and suggestions via our post box, parent surveys, and planning book and informally through discussions with the staff In addition we ask new parents for their feedback after their child has been with us for three months, via a new starter survey.
How often will my child go outside?
Fresh air is very important, and we aim to go outside every day. We are developing free flow to the outside area. In addition, we take children on outings in the local area so they can learn about their communities and have access to a wider range of learning experiences.
How do you plan for and assess each child's learning?
Our staff members are trained to plan for and meet children's individual learning needs. Staff observe their key children and identify strengths, development needs and interests and build on these through the weekly plans. Our planning book is available for you to look at, comment on or add ideas to at any time. Each child's Key Person is responsible for completing an Individual Learning Journey for them. This is an assessment of your child's progress and allows staff to record achievements against the seven areas of learning outlined under the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework . This also helps staff to understand how your child needs to be supported and enables them to share information with you about your child's progress at pre-school. The planning book reflects the children's current interests and we value your opinions and ideas on how to develop their learning further. You can write in the book or add post-it notes. Your child's Special Book shares learning achievements and interests at home and Pre-School.
What happens if my child has an accident at pre-school?
Little Acorns has at least three trained Paediatric First Aiders on site at all times. All staff are required to update their training every three years. Sandra Jensen is also a trained general nurse. If your child has had an accident at pre-school you will be informed when you collect your child and you will be asked to sign the accident book. Should your child have an accident whilst at pre-school which requires further medical support you will be contacted immediately and the necessary action taken. In extreme cases, this could involve calling for the support of a paramedic.
What if my child requires medication?
The pre-school staff are able to administer various medications subject to authorisation and safeguards. This includes the administration of long term medication such as an inhaler and external medications such as creams.
How do you manage children's behaviour?
It is imperative that children have set boundaries of behaviour for their own safety and the safety of their peers. Negative behaviour often occurs when the child's basic needs are not being met. We have a named person who has overall responsibility for guiding staff and parents with issues concerning behaviour. This individual keeps up to date with legislation and research on behaviour guidance strategies and has access to relevant sources of expertise on handling children's behaviour. Our aim is to promote good behaviour and ensure that all children are provided with love, care, security, adequate rest, the freedom to explore, a positive self image, suitable adults as role models, consistency in their treatment, suitable boundaries, opportunities for self expression and learning. Under no circumstances will there be any form of physical punishment in our pre-school. The children in our care will never be subject to humiliation or labelled as 'naughty' and staff will endeavour never to raise their voices. Individuality is encouraged and the children are taught by example. How will you ensure my child feels included at pre-school? We are committed to promoting equal opportunities and all children within our care will be treated with equal respect irrespective of class, ethnic origin, gender, disability, race or religion. We are fully committed to an active equal opportunities programme with regard to our staff and the care of children within the pre-school. Wherever possible those designated disabled or disadvantaged will be considered for a place, taking into account their individual circumstances and the ability of the pre-school to provide the necessary standard of care. Should any person believe that this policy is not being totally complied with they should bring it to the attention of the Pre-school Leader.
How will you ensure my child is secure?
To enable us to monitor people entering the building the pre-school has a secure entrance system and visitors must ring the bell. In the event of anyone other than the parent collecting a child a password previously agreed with the parent must be given. Identification will be requested by the staff member assigned to supervising children leaving. All members of staff who do not recognise a person will ask them their full name and who they have come to collect. All visitors must sign the visitor's book and be accompanied at all times. It is vital that all parents inform us of any personal changes to their or their child's personal details, particularly emergency and collection contacts.
Special Needs: We endeavour to meet every child's individual needs and aim to include all children regardless of any special needs, whilst ensuring the needs of other children will not be disadvantaged. We aim to have the resources available to meet the needs of every child in our care. We work closely with parents, providing them with information, and assist in the care and understanding of their child's needs and/or developmental programme. We will also liaise with the appropriate multi-disciplinary teams to formalise the assessment and identification of the needs of the child. Little Acorns has an Inclusion Coordinator (INCO), who is fully trained in the Code of Practice for the Identification and Assessment of Special Educational Needs.
What happens if I am late collecting my child or am unable to get to the pre-school before closing time?
If, for any reason you are running late please call to inform us. In the unlikely event that you are unable to collect your child from pre-school at the agreed time, and no contact has been made to inform us, then every attempt will be made to contact you using your listed emergency contact numbers. If after one hour we have not contacted you, we will commence our procedure for non collection of a child, which may involve calling the police or social services. A member of staff will remain with your child at all times.
What are the key points regarding fees?
Invoices are due on the 1st of each month, in advance, with payment due by the 10th. You will be charged for bookings regardless of whether the child attends that session or not. Refunds or replacement sessions are not available for unattended sessions. Late collection: Late collection of children will be charged at the rate of £10 per 15 minutes or part thereof. Notice period to leave or reduce sessions: We require one months' notice of the intention to cancel or reduce a child's sessions. If one months' notice is not given the outstanding fees are payable.
Who should I speak to if I have a concern?
If you have a concern regarding the pre-school this should be raised immediately with the Leader or Supervisor.. They will listen and endeavour to work with you and the pre-school team to reach a resolution. The matter will be recorded as either a concern or complaint, depending on the circumstances. You can also raise a compliant with Ofsted by contacting them on 0845 404040.
What are Childcare Vouchers?
A childcare voucher is a scheme some employers offer to help working parents save on registered childcare costs. Childcare vouchers are not means tested and are available to all working parents whose employers operate childcare voucher schemes. These schemes can save you National Insurance and income tax as a set weekly amount can be deducted from your salary and used to provide childcare vouchers for the same amount. This amount is deducted from the gross salary and is exempt from National Insurance and Income Tax. We accept vouchers but will need to register with your chosen provider.
For further details visit http://www.hmrc.gov.uklleafletslir115.pdf.
What is Nursery Education Grant?
The government introduced the Nursery Education Grant to provide a free early education place for most 3 year olds and all 4 year olds. A grant may therefore be available for your child. The amount available per child changes from year toyear depending on government funding. The pre-school will be able to confirm the current amount to you and to explain how the system works.
For more details visit the Direct Gov website: http://www.direct.gov.uk
Little Acorns Pre-school
Eversley Village Hall
Glaston Hill Road
We can now be found on Facebook, please note the above logo is not a link.
To join you will need to go to the search field on Facebook and enter - Little Acorns Pre-school, Eversley. It is a closed group so once you have requested to join it will be approved provided you are a current parent of our pre-school. The page will be used to provide up to date information, up and coming events and any special activities that have taken place.
Dates for your diary:
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Little Acorns Newsletter Spring 2020 (1)[...]
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