Parent Handbook

Thank you for choosing a place for your child/children at Amber’s Attic. This handbook aims to inform you about some of the important details regarding the nursery, its day to day running and explains how you and your child can gain a happy experience during your time with us.

Our aims are to provide quality care and education for all children attending the nursery. Work in partnership with parents and carers to help children play, learn, achieve and grow. Enhance the wellbeing of the local community Offer a service that positively promotes equality and diversity.

We are open between the hours of 8.00am and 6:00pm to accommodate working parents/carers needs. However we do offer an early bird session from 7.30am to 8.00am that incurs an extra charge of 2.00 per session booked. Please ask for more details. We only close for bank holidays and for 1 week during the Christmas period.

We endeavour to be as flexible as possible and offer care on a full time, part time, sessional (nursery grant and limited term time only places) and occasional basis and we also provide before/after school care plus a holiday club.

Bringing and Collecting Children

We ask that parents/carers do not bring their child/children before their specific allocated time and that they collect their child/children on time. This is to ensure staff ratios are adhered to at all times. Unfortunately we will need to charge a fee if you are unable to pick up your child before 6:00pm to enable staff overtime to be paid.

Charges

Between 6:00pm and 6:15pm - 2.00

Between 6:15pm and 6:30pm - 5.00

Between 6.30pm and 6.45pm - 10.00

After 6.45pm parents will be charged 5.00 for every 5 minutes they are late.

We never allow your child to be collected from nursery by a person that we do not know. If on the odd occasion you are unable to collect your child and none of the named, authorised people can collect them either, then you must inform a member of the management team and preferably bring a photo of the new person who is to collect the child. Also a password system is in place and this can be implemented through arrangement with a member of the management team. Please do not ask us to allow anyone under 16 years of age to collect your child from Amber’s Attic.

Please also be aware that we will implement the non-collection of a child procedure, if you fail to collect your child. For everybody’s wellbeing the procedure of non-collection of a child will be followed from 7.00pm, where no contact has been made between Ambers Attic and parent. If we believe that any adult is under the influence of alcohol or any other substance, then in the interest of your child’s safety, we reserve the right to refuse to let the child leave the premises and will expect alternative arrangements to be made. In exceptional circumstances it may be necessary to involve the police and/or Children’s Social Care.

The Nursery Day

The nursery organises the day so that the children participate in both child led and adult led activities that aim to stretch their minds, language and ability. These take into consideration the individual needs of each child and their differing energy levels throughout the day

All children have the opportunity for outdoor play which contributes towards their good health, physical development and knowledge of the world around them. Plans for the room’s activities are always on display and please ask a member of staff to explain them in more detail if you wish.

Key Person

Your child will be allocated a key person within the room and this enables continuity of care, a smooth transition and for the key person to build a sound relationship with you and your child. The key worker will settle you both into the nursery routines. They regularly assess your child’s progress against the Early Years Foundation Stages (EYFS explained further in this handbook), so as to provide appropriate learning opportunities and keep a learning journey of that progress. You can ask to see your child’s file at any time. Parents/Carers evenings will be held twice a year where you will have the opportunity to speak in more detail with your child’s key person about your child’s achievements. We promote positive working in partnership with parents/carers and will implement activities for you to do within your home as an extension of the learning done at nursery and equally, interests from home will be integrated into the daily activity at nursery.

Settling In

Children take time to settle into new surroundings and get to know new people. We expect that you will spend some time in the nursery with your child during this settling in period. If your child requires a comforter during this time please feel free to bring it with you at each visit.

This time will give you the opportunity to speak with your child’s key person and complete all the necessary paperwork. You will also have the opportunity to familiarise yourself with our policies and procedures.

There are no time limits imposed and please feel free to stay with your child as long as you feel is necessary. We find that a gradual admission works best and perhaps by the second visit it may be fine for you to leave your child for a short period. We have CCTV in rooms so you can request to watch your child for a while for your peace of mind if you wish to.

Learning Journeys

The nursery keeps a record of achievement for each child. We work in partnership with you as parents/carers to gather information and celebrate achievements so as to gather a true picture of your child’s journey. Your child’s key person will work with you to keep this record and gather information about your child’s needs, interests, activity and achievements. As part of the learning journey, the key person will complete observations, both planned and spontaneous, as evidence of your child’s learning and achievements. All information gathered helps inform planning of individual activities that aim to maximise each child’s potential.

Parent/Carer Partnership

At Amber’s Attic we aim to provide a high standard of care and provide your child with a range of activities to maximise their individual potential. We ask that all parents/carers take an active interest in their child’s development by regular discussions with the key person or any member of the staff team. Please share with your child’s key person any activities you may have done over the weekend or any achievements your child has reached so that we can celebrate and include topics into the activity at the nursery.

If you feel you would like to participate in particular activities at the nursery then please see a member of the management team. All the staff sees themselves as co-workers with you in providing care and education for your child. There are many ways in which you can be involved with-in the nursery and we welcome you to…

Exchanging knowledge about your child’s interests with the staff.

Share your own hobbies, interests, career with the children.

Taking part in events and curriculum activities.

Coming along to parents evenings.

Join in community events held within the nursery.

Build friendships with other parents at the nursery.

Medicines

We ask that children who are prescribed antibiotics are kept off nursery for at least 48hours so as to minimise cross contamination to other children. It may be possible for prescribed medication to be administered by a member of the management team on completion of the relevant paperwork. Unfortunately it is not possible for us to give Calpol and other non- prescribed medicines. We suggest that if you feel your child is well enough to attend nursery, you give any dosage to your child prior to arriving. If the symptoms persist during the day once the initial dosage has worn off then we will ring you to inform you of your child’s illness persisting. Parents are asked to refer to ‘exclusion periods for communicable diseases’ as appropriate and we reserve the right to telephone you to ask that you collect your child if we suspect a communicable disease is evident. Unfortunately we are not able to reduce fees for illness unless your child is ill for a long period of time (4 weeks or more).

Emergency Contact Details

Please will you keep us updated on any changes of name, address and telephone numbers (including mobiles), listed on your child’s application form. It is essential that we have the correct information so we can contact you in the event of an emergency. All personal information is kept confidentially.

Security

In the interest of child safety, we ask that all parents/carers ensure they close all gates and doors on entry and exit from the nursery. We have installed a security system on doors for your child’s safety and to prevent unauthorised access. Please do not let any other person into the nursery with you once you are buzzed in.

Prams, Pushchairs and Car Seats

If you wish to leave any of the above equipment at the nursery during the day, then please label it clearly with your name and leave in the designated storage area located just outside the front door. Sorry but the nursery accepts no responsibility for any items left in this storage area.

Clothing

For the comfort and safety of your child please ensure he/she:

Brings a complete change of clothes every day in case of accidents. These should be in a bag with the child’s name clearly marked on it and hung on your child’s peg outside their room. PLEASE DO NOT BRING IN A PLASTIC CARRIER BAG IN THE INTEREST OF CHILD’S SAFETY.

Wears comfortable and appropriate footwear.

Brings a pair of wellingtons for outdoor play.

Does not wear jewellery.

Brings an outdoor coat.

Has a hat, scarf, gloves etc for cold weather outdoor play.

Has a sun hat, sun cream etc for hot weather outdoor play

Please remember to label clearly, all articles with your child’s name.

Your child will be encouraged to participate in all kinds of activities such as sand, painting, water, playdough, gloop etc and on these daily occasions your child may return home looking like they have enjoyed themselves thoroughly! So please don’t send them in their Sunday best clothes!!

Nappies and Bottles

We ask that you provide nappies, wipes and formula milk for your baby/child. These will be personally labelled and will not be used for other children in the nursery. We will inform you of low supplies in good time to replenish your stock.

Meals and Snacks

Amber’s Attic provides breakfast, lunch and a lighter tea. We also provide healthy snacks throughout the day. A sample of the menus is displayed on the information board in the reception area. If your child has an allergy to any particular food or has any specific likes and dislikes, please inform your child’s key person. We provide a healthy and balanced diet that works to provide the 5 recommended portions of fruit and vegetables each day. We do not provide sugary drinks or food but water is available continually throughout the day. We ask that parents/carers do not bring juices or sweets etc to the nursery for their child except on very special occasions where we celebrate together.

Holidays

If you are planning a family holiday that means your child will be absent from nursery, please inform a member of the management team and your child’s key person. Unfortunately we cannot reduce fees during holiday absences.

Outings and Visits

During your child’s time at the nursery he/she may go off the premises on a variety of outings or visits that enhance his/her learning. You will always be asked to sign a consent form prior to this excursion and no child will be taken off the premises without this consent. If a vehicle is used for the trip they will have relevant insurances, correctly fitted seatbelts and car seats and all adults will have the relevant vetting and barring clearance.

Funding

Every three year old child is entitled to funding from the government enabling free access to an early education place for 15 hours per week, at a setting of their choice. This funding starts from the term after the child’s third birthday and continues until they go to school. Some two year olds can also get funding towards a 15 hour early education place but this is not a universal offer and is dependent on meeting certain criteria. Please ask a member of the management team for further information or contact us and we will be happy to help.

Ofsted

The nursery is inspected by the Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED) regularly and a copy of their reports can be found on their web site, www.ofsted.gov.uk or by following this link.

CLICK HERE

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A hard copy is available for all parents/carers to read and can be found in the reception area.

Complaints

There is a complaints, compliments and comments procedure in operation. If a parent/carer feels they have concerns about anything at all then please discuss in the first instance with your child’s key person. If the issue is not resolved then bring it to the attention of a manager where concerns will be dealt with in confidence. Management and staff can be approached at all times no matter how big or small you feel an issue maybe. We feel that by discussing your concerns/complaints with a member of staff then most issues will be addressed, however if you feel we have neglected to rectify the issues to your satisfaction, then you have the option to put your complaint into OFSTED.

Staff

Please feel free to ask about staff’s experiences and backgrounds within the childcare field and we will be happy to discuss these if you are interested. You are also welcome to look at staff qualifications and training if you wish. Photographs and descriptions of staff members are located around the setting for your information.

Policies and Procedures

Policies and procedures are discussed at settling in visits so you can familiarise yourself with how the nursery operates and what you can expect from us as a setting. Policies and procedures are displayed around the setting so you can access these at your leisure. If you require a copy of any of the policies then these are available on request.

Lastly

Thank you for taking the time to read this information which we hope has been of some use. If you need further clarification on anything within or you wish to make a comment or suggestion, then please do not hesitate to speak to any member of staff.