Special Educational Needs and Disabilities – Local Offer

How does the early years setting know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs or disabilities?

The staff at Broadfield Nursery are qualified and very experienced in recognising children’s learning and development needs .  We observe and evaluate each child on a daily basis and use this information to plan a stimulating learning environment that supports children’s differing stages of development and informs our Learning Journals. Every 6 weeks the Key person (KP) will review all observations taken, and set out next steps for the forthcoming 6 weeks. These will be small developmental steps, which the KP feels the child can achieve within the 6 week cycle. We ask parents/carers to contribute to their child’s journal by informing us of their current interest and any updates from home, for example your child might dress themselves for the first time or start to write their name. We also complete the Early Years Foundation Stage Progress Check; this is for practitioners to complete for all their key children aged 2 – 3 years old. At Broadfield we review the children’s progress and support parents to feed into this by providing them with a summary sheet covering the prime areas.

Every term the KP will look at each child’s development, fill in their progress report and then base any next steps around these findings. If any parent/carer has any concerns regarding their child, we ask them to make an appointment to see their child’s KP. With agreement from parents/carers, we will contact the First team for their support, and work alongside other agencies.

How will early years setting staff support my child?

All our staff are qualified from level 3 to Qualified Teacher Status; we attend regular courses to develop their knowledge in the early years. We have a ‘Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator’ within the setting who supports staff, and takes a lead role in how we will support children, their families and the key person. The ‘Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator’  (SENCO) Natasha Paffett is also a trained Early Language Lead Practitioner. The KP and SENCO will attend all meetings with outside agencies upon their visit to the nursery. Staff will undertake any training recommended by the First team, and adapt resources and activities around each child’s needs

How will both you and I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?

Regular meetings will take place so that we can discuss your child’s progress, and how we both wish to move forward with their development. We will ask for your comments every 6  weeks within your child’s Learning Journal and you can inform us of any development through verbal communication, email , short letter or our Tapestry online learning journal. We can provide ‘Information from home book’, which will be used by yourselves and your child’s KP on a daily basis, so there is clear lines of information between home and nursery.

What support will there be for my child’s overall well-being?

On starting at the nursery we will ask you for all relevant information regarding your child’s dietary requirements, health and developmental needs. All staff within our setting are first aid and child protection trained. Senior staff oversee the administration of medication when prescribed by a doctor and we would ask parents/carers to fill in our medicine book when dropping off their child in the morning. We undertake risk assessments on a daily basis before the nursery is open to the children, to ensure that the nursery is safe, which continues throughout the day.

Staff follow our ‘Social development’ policy so there is good consistency within the setting. We support children with understanding their actions and help them come to their own conclusions with assistance from staff. We have ‘Golden rules’ within the nursery which the staff and children contribute to these allows a clear understanding of acceptable behaviour for all, for example kind hands and walking feet.

What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the early years setting?

At nursery we use the expertise of the First team who can support us and the family with any additional needs. Our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator attends regular meetings  SENCO network meetings with West Sussex County Council Early Childhood Services, and cascades any information to her colleagues.

We will work in partnership with outside agencies and will share information with them (with permission) and any other childcare setting. The nursery is based within the Broadfield Children and Family Centre, which has a wide range of professionals we can contact for guidance and support. We have a real commitment to working with other agencies in an integrated way, with the hope of providing the best support we can for our families.

We have had experience with –

  • Autism
  • ADHD
  • Fragile X syndrome
  • Speech and Language
  • Down syndrome
  • Gastric Transposition
  • Asthmatics
  • Cochlear implants
  • Allergy

What training are the staff, supporting children with SEN, had or are having?

Staff attend Early Years Foundation Stage training, and training recommended to us by outside agencies and pass their knowledge onto their colleagues. We contact the First team when additional support is needed and welcome Speech therapists, Play workers, Physiotherapists, Occupational therapists, Portage, Health Visitors and other agencies who will support the child with their development, and the staff with our professional development.

How will my child be included in activities outside the early years including trips?

All children who attend the nursery contribute to the resources and activities and this is noted within our planning. If additional staff or resources are needed we contact the FIRST team who may provide us with additional funding once an assessment has been made, and a development/play plan set, however we would endeavour to raise funds ourselves should we need to. Outings are arranged around the child’s interests and we ask for parents to fill in a consent form on starting at the nursery if they wish for their children to experience these trips. We have regular visitors to the nursery such as police, fire service, vets, and lots more which all the children enjoy. As part of Broadfield Children and Family Centre we also access their environment, which includes a sensory room which all children benefit from having access too.

How accessible is the early years setting environment? (indoors and outdoors)

Our nursery is open plan, there is a base area for 0-2 year olds (The Nest) that we use in terms of children’s individual development, this meaning some children access the bigger environment at an earlier age, where others may need more support and prefer the small surroundings of the nest, and both gardens are accessible. The nursery was built to be wheelchair accessible and the children have a disabled toilet area. We are fortunate that we have staff who speak a range of languages, we do ask parents/carers to translate words or research translations so we are able to display different languages within the nursery. Parent partnership is essential!

How will the early years setting prepare and support my child to join the early yeas setting, transfer to a new setting/school?

Children will be given settling in visits to the nursery, this is where we will get to know you and your child. How many settling in visits will be tailored to meet you and child’s needs, for example some children only need a couple and some children need much more .It’s really important we gather as much information we can to support your child’s transition into nursery, therefore before your child starts we will work with you to complete the information needed in Learning Journal. It’s important we get to know your child’s likes and dislikes in order to best support them within the nursery, for example if your child enjoys playing with certain toys we will ensure that these resources are set up during their visits.  We would ask for items from home to be placed in the bag for the child’s next visit which will help from a link between home and nursery.

If a child attends more than one setting then the key worker will fill in a form about the child’s interests and development at nursery and pass this information on to the other key worker, we would then ask for the same information from the other setting, ensuring a clear development plan.

When your child is ready for school we will invite their new teacher to our nursery where they can meet the child’s KP and discuss your child’s development and next steps. All Learning Journal information will be handed to their school once viewed by you, or if you prefer you can request to take them yourselves.

How are the early years setting’s resources allocated and matched to the child’s educational needs?

All areas of the nursery are well-resourced. Our Early Years Teacher (EYT) and SENCO take a lead role in selecting the nursery’s resources to meet the needs of the children who attend; therefore if there was a resource we needed we would raise the funds to purchase it where possible.  We use resources from our local toy library and arrange for additional resources to be used by the setting for any additional developmental needs.

Staff plan activities and equipment around the children’s developmental abilities to ensure all children’s experiences are full of learning through a play based environment.

How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?

The SENCO and your key person will work closely with the family and outside agencies to ensure your child is receiving all the additional support required. We do our very best to ensure all children receive the right support.

How are parents involved in the early years setting? How can I be involved?

We ask parents/carers to fill in our questionnaires and all suggestions are considered. We provide a newsletter via our website and hard copies on request .This will provide include information on upcoming events. Within our lobby entrance there is a comments and suggestions box. We are always developing mini projects and asking for parents to help in different ways from donating kitchen utensils for our mud garden to coming in and joining in an activity.

Who can I contact for further information?

If you wish to register your child at nursery then please contact the nursery we will be happy to assist you and answer any questions you may have. Our ‘Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator’ Natasha Paffett is on hand if you wish to discuss any concerns or development needs for your child.