Local Authorities in England have a duty to set out in their Local Offer information about provision and services available in their local area across education, health and social care for children who have Special educational need (SEN) or a disability, including children who do not have Education Health Care Plans (EHC). We as a setting have created our Local Offer with information about what support our Pre-School can offer families with children who may have Special Educational Needs or Disabilities.
Our Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) is Siobhan Morley. Nicola Davy is the deputy SENCo. They are the best people to talk to if you have any concerns about your child’s development.
- Stonham Aspal Pre-School was established by a group of mums in 1981 in Stonham Aspal village hall. We then moved to a purpose-built building in June 2010.
- Stonham Aspal Pre-School is an inclusive, committee run Pre-School. We are based on the grounds of Stonham Aspal Primary School.
- A board of Trustees and Committee members have overall responsibility for the Pre-School.
- We have on average around 28-45 children (depending on which term it is) on roll and we take a maximum of 26 children each session.
- Each child is allocated a Key Person, enabling close relationships to form with each child and their families. Each Key Person has approximately 6-10 children (depending on which term it is) in their key group. The Key Person is responsible for the planning, provision, observation and assessment of each child in their key group.
- Each child has their own ‘Learning Journey’ profile which is updated weekly by their key person. This is a record of observations, photos, assessments and Progress Trackers of their learning and development.
- We also have a ‘Back-Up’ Key Person system to enable continuity of provision.
- We are open term time Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm. We also offer extended hours from 8:45 am to 3:15pm
- A separate provision of childcare (Wrap Around Care) is offered by the Primary School which runs before school from 8am-8:45am and after school from 3:15pm-6:00pm.
- We are committed to providing the best possible environment to enable all children to learn and develop. We value and celebrate the abilities and achievements of all of our children at Pre-School. We are a dedicated and hardworking team and are very proud to have achieved a number of awards. For example, we were awarded ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted on their inspection in 2011. We also achieved the Early Reading Connects award, Every Child a Talker award and an Inclusive Environment award.
Accessibility and Inclusion
- The building is on one level and accessible to wheelchairs throughout. All doorways are wide enough to accommodate wheelchair users.
- We have an Accessible toilet in the entrance lobby.
- All of our furniture, equipment and resources are of a suitable height and size, appropriate to the age group of children attending the pre-school.
- The Pre-School has modern furniture that can be easily moved to create different areas and spaces which are accessible to all children, including children who have Special Educational Needs or Disabilities.
- The Pre-School have all required statutory policies and procedures in place and these are reviewed annually by staff and committee members. They are then shared with parents and carers. Copies of all of our policies and procedures can be found on our website stonhamaspalpreschool.org.uk and paper copies can be found in the Pre-school entrance.
- Committee meetings are held once every half term. All parents, carers, staff and committee members are welcome to attend.
- Our aim is to ensure all written communications are clearly formatted and concise. For parents and families whose first language is not English, we will contact Suffolk Families Information Service who will help us seek an interpreter to attend meetings.
- We have Visual time tables displayed around Pre-School, using pictures and symbols and photographs to support children in understanding routines and supporting communication.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) In Practice
Every Child matters
There are five key outcomes that are universal for every child and young person, whatever their background, circumstances or needs. They are:
- Being healthy Enjoying good physical and mental health and living a healthy lifestyle.
- Staying safe Being protected from harm and neglect and growing up able to look after themselves.
- Enjoying and achieving Getting the most out of life and developing broad skills for adulthood.
- Making a positive contribution To the community and to society and not engaging in anti-social or offending behaviour.
- Economic well-being Not being prevented by economic disadvantage from achieving their full potential in life.
We as a setting promote each outcome through careful planning and everyday practice.
There are four themes of the EYFS that underpin all guidance. They are:
- A Unique Child All children are unique and constantly learn and all children can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
- Positive relationships Children learn to be strong and independent when strong, loving and secure relationship with parents, carers and/or key persons are formed.
- Enabling Environments An enabling environment empowers children to learn and develop, where their individual needs are met and partnerships between parent, carers and Key Persons are strong.
- Learning and Development All children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates. All areas of learning interconnect and are equally important.
The EYFS curriculum is made up of 7 areas of learning. These are broken down into 3 Prime Areas and 4 Specific Areas. All areas of learning interconnect and centre around the individual needs of each Unique Child.
The 3 Prime areas are fundamental, work together and move through to support the development in all other areas.
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development – Making Relationships, Self-Confidence and Self-Awareness, Managing Feelings and Behaviour
- Physical Development – Moving and Handling, Health and Self care
- Communication and Language – Listening and Attention, Understanding, and Speaking.
The 4 Specific areas include essential skills and knowledge for children to participate successfully in society.
- Literacy – Reading, Writing
- Mathematics – Numbers, Shape, Space and Measure
- Understanding The World – People and Communities, The World, Technology
- Expressive Arts and Design – Exploring and Using Media and Materials, Being Imaginative
- During the initial induction process, we offer home visits where the child can meet their Key person in familiar surroundings and the family and key Person can get to know each other. We offer settling in sessions where parents and carers are welcome and encouraged to stay. The settling in process can be very different for each child. For example, if a child has had difficulty separating from a parent/carer, their key person may suggest that parents/carers return after a short time, gradually lengthening this time, thereby reassuring the child. The Key Person will work very closely with parents and carers to establish the best settling in process for each individual child.
- Children develop at their own individual rate and in their own ways. Children are supported to reach their full potential whatever their stage of development. This is done by observing children, assessing their stage of development and planning next steps. These next steps could be experiences, opportunities, activities, resources and learning environments. Some children may require differentiated activities or adapted resources and additional support from adults.
- Key Persons use on-going observational assessments to establish each child’s stage of development and learning. Key Persons use information from the child’s ‘All About Me’ booklet, which parents/carers fill in during the induction process, to plan activities and experiences based on the children’s interests when they first start Pre-School. After the first six weeks, Key Persons complete an assessment depending on the child’s age (2 year assessment of the prime areas or 3 year assessment of the prime and specific areas). Progress Trackers are completed alongside the assessments. These are shared with parents/carers.
- Learning Journey’s are shared with parents and carers every half term, although parents and carers can request their child’s learning journey at any time. We hold parents’ evenings in the Autumn and Summer term to discuss the children’s development and progress. We are also available to meet and talk with parents at mutually convenient times.
- We believe children develop and reach their full potential through a school and home partnership. Our ‘Open Door’ policy refers to our approach to daily liaison with parents and carers and we want parents and carers to feel able to talk to their Key person or the Pre-School leader about any concerns, update records, or to share news.
- To enhance our provision of the curriculum we have regular trips and outings. We often visit the neighbouring farm to see the sheep, alpaca, and farm machinery. We also visit Debenham Fire station, the Church of St Mary & St Lambert and Alder Carr Farm. Two members of staff visit all trip destinations to carry out a full risk assessment beforehand and the trip will only go ahead if the enhanced ratios of one adult to two children are met. Further information can be found in our ‘Pre-School Trips’ policy.
- We also invite people from the community to come in to visit us such as the local police officers who bring their police car and other equipment. Other members of the community have visited such as a school crossing patrol officer, a bus driver and a dental hygienist.
- We work very closely with Stonham Aspal Primary School and often use their assembly hall for P.E sessions and group activities.
Identification, Differentiation and Early Intervention
- Ongoing observation and assessment is an integral part of the development and learning process at Pre-School. This means that any concerns about a child’s development or additional needs are identified quickly and steps can be put in place to support the child.
- If parents or carers raise concerns with their Key Person about their child’s development, the Key Person must raise this with the Pre-School SENCo. Who will put initial steps of support in place.
- Differentiated approaches are initially put in place such as adapting activities, resources, equipment and routines or breaking activities down into smaller, more achievable steps.
- The Key Person will discuss concerns with parents/carers and the Pre-School’s SENCo will suggest some strategies. If a child requires support from outside agencies such as a speech and language therapist, parental permission will always be sought.
- Key Persons will support children in their individual learning. The SENCo will assist Key Persons with putting strategies in place when writing, implementing and reviewing an SEN Action Plan.
- Special Educational Needs Action Plan (SEN Action Plans)
An SEN Action Plan is a way of planning specifically for a child’s additional needs. Targets are based on the child’s and parent’s views, and observation and assessment both within the setting and from other professionals. Strategies are planned to reach the targets and are monitored and reviewed approximately every six to eight weeks (more frequently if necessary). The child’s parents/carers and their key person/Pre-School Leader will sign and review the SEN Action Plan. Meetings between parents/carers, key persons and other professionals will take place where privacy and confidentiality can be maintained. Where a child has already had a Special Educational Need identified the key person and SENCo will work together with outside agencies to develop an SEN Action Plan and to ensure continuity of care.
- Education, Health Care Needs Assessments (EHC)
Where a child needs additional support to make progress in their learning and development, the parents and the setting can make a request to the local authority for an EHC. This is a legal process and you can find more details about this in the Local Authority based Local Offer https://www.access-unlimited.co.uk/education/special-education- needs/. The setting will share all information gathered about the child with the local authority and continue to support the parents/carers by sharing information and attending meetings with them.
An EHC is a detailed assessment that looks at a child’s Special Educational Need(s) (SEN) and the support that child might need to help them develop and learn. The Children and Families Act 2014 explains that Local authorities are responsible for carrying out EHC Needs Assessments. The assessment should collate information about what a child can and cannot do and the special help and support they need. The information should come from the child’s parents, the child themselves, Pre-School, and other professionals and agencies that support or work with the child. There is further information about EHCs in pre-school. The SEND Code of Practice 2014 sections 9.3 and 9.14 to 9.16 also explains more about the criteria the local authorities should follow.
- The SENCo works closely with parents/carers, and staff to plan appropriate support and all members of staff will be involved in the process of supporting the child.
- In some cases we may apply for Higher Tariff Needs Funding to enable us to support the child with special resources, equipment or additional adult support.
- Nicola davy has overall responsibility of the management of all aspects of Pre-School, including SEND. She gives responsibilities to the SENCo, key person’s and other members of staff but is still responsible for ensuring all children’s needs are met.
- Siobhan Morley (SENCo) has the following responsibilities
–Ensuring all staff members in Pre-School understand their responsibilities to children with SEN, and Pre-School’s approach and strategies to identifying and meeting Special Educational Needs.
–Supporting and advising members of staff.
–Co-ordinating all support for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.
–Developing the SEN Policy to ensure all children receive high quality, consistent support to meet their needs within Pre-School and to ensure the SEN Policy is followed through within everyday practice.
–Ensuring parents and carers are involved at every step of their child’s learning and development, decision making, planning ahead and reviewing how their child is doing.
–Keeping parents and carers informed about the support their child is receiving.
–Liaising with all outside professionals who may be involved in supporting children such as Health visitors, Speech and Language Therapists and Educational Psychologists.
- All staff working as a Key Person are experienced and have a thorough understanding of the Early Years Foundation Stage and children’s learning and development.
- Our ratios are one adult to four children aged two to three, and one adult to eight children aged three+.
- Activities are planned based on the individual needs, interests and learning characteristics of each child. All activities, resources and equipment are risk assessed beforehand.
- Where a child requires additional support in accessing activities and resources, additional staff would be sought to increase our ratios.
- We work very closely with outside agencies such as children’s centres, Outreach Officers, Speech and Language Therapists, Educational Psychologists, Health Visitors and other Early Years settings a child might attend. We encourage parents and carers to share learning Journey’s between settings to establish continuity of care. Parents and Carers are kept informed at every step when working with outside agencies.
- With permission from parents and carers, we use dual placement communication books if a child attends another setting. We also make courtesy calls to other settings children attend around once a term.
- All permanent staff attend Paediatric First Aid, Food Safety and Safeguarding Children training. Further opportunities are available to staff to attend other training courses based on their roles within Pre-School. All training is certified by approved governing bodies.
- Key Persons are always available to discuss any issues with parents/carers, at the beginning or end of sessions, or via email, phone or pre-arranged meetings after sessions if that is more convenient.
- To ensure smooth transitions into Primary School we receive visits from the Foundation Stage teachers at Stonham Aspal primary school on a regular basis in the term before children start Primary School. We will make contact with other schools and their reception teachers to arrange visits if children will be attending another School.
- During the Summer Term a member of staff accompanies the children on their transition visits to school.
- Key Persons prepare Transition Passports in advance of children starting primary school. These are given alongside the Learning Journey to The Reception Stage Teacher/s so they can be aware of each child’s needs, stage of development, and any particular interests.
- The Pre-School Leader or a Key Person will meet with the Foundation Stage Teachers to discuss children’s individual needs.
- The Pre-School leader, SENCo and Key Person meet with the Reception class teacher/s and Primary School SENCo to help them prepare for the children’s needs and any Special Education Needs, Additional Needs and/or disabilities.
- We attend special events at Stonham Aspal Primary School, such as watching the Reception class Christmas performance and we join them for Harvest Festival and sports day. This helps the children to get used to the school environment.
- In the Summer term we visit one of the small classrooms with the children moving on to school to help them get used to the new environment. we provide a variety of resources and activities during these short visits such as story sacks, letters and phonics, number, shape and colour resources and group turn taking games. The children then join playtime on the school field before coming back to pre-school. We have received really good feedback from parents and carers about how this has helped their children prepare for their transition into school.
- If children are going to be attending another Primary school, we make contact with the reception teacher to invite them to visit. A member of Pre-School staff will also visit the Primary school where possible.
- For further information please contact Nicola Davy, Pre-School Manager, who is always happy to discuss with parents/carers any queries, problems, worries or concerns they may have.
- Key Persons are happy to discuss and listen to any issues parents and carers may have either at the beginning or end of every session. Should parents require a meeting with their Key Person or the Pre-School leader, pre-booked appointments can be made for a mutually convenient time.
- We hold open days at Pre-School for all families and prospective families. The regularity of these depends on demand.
Ofsted June 2015
“highly professional relationships with other agencies ensure prompt, well targeted intervention
and support for vulnerable children and those with special educational needs and/or disabilities. Strong
links between the pre-school and school enable children to take part in regular activities at school,
prompting their confident move into full-time education.”
parent comment – “I would just like to say a massive Thank You for everything you’ve done for him the last 2 years. he went from someone who cried when I had to say bye, to a little boy who adores Pre-School and is sad when he can’t go on the weekend. Thank you! I am so please how he has been going over to school and how comfortable he is there. Thank you all for being so brilliant. Thank you, thank you, thank you!”