Am I entitled to a free place or do I need to pay?
2 year olds
Some 2 year olds are entitled to funding, details of eligibility can be found at https://info.westberks.gov.uk/freechildcare2. If you are not entitled to this funding, the cost per session is £11.
3 and 4 year olds
All children are entitled to 15 hours funding per week from the term after their 3rd birthday.
You can attend Pied Piper Preschool before this and pay £11 per session.
How do I apply for funding?
Once your child has started at preschool, you will be asked to sign a declaration form and the preschool claim the funding on your behalf.
How many hours will my child be able to do per week?
Younger children with more than one academic year before they go to school are offered 9 hours per week over 3 mornings (Monday, Tuesday and Thursday). Children in the last academic year before school are offered 12 hours per week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday afternoons and Friday mornings).
How do you settle children into preschool?
Our induction process starts with a home visit, where we collect information about your child that will help us settle them into preschool and will also offer the opportunity for you and your child to meet staff prior to them coming to preschool. You will be given a ‘welcome day’ date to come to preschool where we are flexible on what happens but recommend that parents stay for a play then leave for a short time. On your next visit we hope to follow the preschool routine but we liaise with parents if this is not suitable for the child and adapt our procedure when necessary.
What do I need to bring for my child each day?
Please bring a bag with a change of clothes and nappies if your child wears them. It is important that all items of clothing are labelled. We also ask you to bring a named bottle of water (no juice or squash please) so your child can help themselves to a drink during the session. Don’t forget to send them in weather appropriate clothing – sun hats and cream already applied in the summer and wellies and coats etc. in the winter.
What is a key person?
Each member of staff has a group of key children – they aim to build a positive relationship with their key children and build their knowledge about them by recording observations and assessing their learning and development during their time at preschool.
How do you ensure my child’s safety at preschool?
Your child’s safety is our priority, we have a clear safeguarding policy in place and staff have appropriate training and guidance to ensure this is followed. All staff and volunteers are DBS checked and all staff are first aid trained. We work within ratios set out by Ofsted, which is 1:4 for two year olds and 1:8 for 3 and 4 year olds. We have four staff available during each session which means we usually work to a higher ratio than Ofsted recommend. We do our best to avoid accidents but if your child has an accident at preschool, we treat them and keep a written record which is shared with you at the end of the session.
What stage of toileting should my child be at in order to attend preschool?
All children are individuals and toilet training happens at different times for different children. Children in nappies are welcome at preschool and we will change them when necessary during the session. We support children with all the stages of toileting, from help with dressing and handwashing to encouraging independence in preparation for school.
Can you support children with additional needs?
All children are welcome in our preschool. If a child has additional needs, we will do our best to offer them a place with us. Our local offer gives further information https://directory.westberks.gov.uk/kb5/westberkshire/directory/localoffer.page?localofferchannel=0
What happens if my child has an allergy?
We will ask for information regarding allergies at our home visit and this information is fed back to all staff to make them aware of the allergy. Children with food allergies are given an allergy card to ensure they are only given suitable food at preschool.
What if my child needs to bring in medicine?
If your child is on regular medication, we ask you to provide medicine to keep at preschool and complete a form to give consent to administer the medicine in your absence. If a child is prescribed medication for an illness that they need during the session, we will ask you to complete a form at drop off time to give us consent to administer the medication. We can only administer medicine that has been prescribed by a doctor.
What should I do if my child is sick?
If your child cannot attend preschool, please call to let us know and we can offer advice on exclusion periods. We follow guidelines set out by the Public Health in their ‘Infectious Diseases’ publication. If your child becomes unwell during the session, we will call you to inform you and ask you to collect them.
What if I can’t pick my child up from preschool?
During registration, we ask you to provide details of people who can collect your child from preschool, along with a password they can use if they have not been to preschool before so we can identify who they are. You can also give permission for other people to collect, as long as you inform us. If you are going to be late picking your child up, please call us to let us know.
Can I bring in a treat for my child’s birthday?
When it’s your child’s birthday we like to help them celebrate by singing Happy Birthday to them and encouraging them blow the candles out on our birthday train. Some parents like to bring a small treat or cake for their child to share out with their friends at the end of a session. We ask that this be kept to a small treat that can fit in our birthday basket.