The Local Offer

SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS AND DISABILITIES (SEND) LOCAL OFFER – SKOOLS INN PRE-SCHOOL

The aim of our Local Offer is to provide families with information about what support is available to support disabled children and children with Special Educational Needs (SEN) and how to access it.

The local offer was first introduced in the green paper (March 2011) as a local offer of all services available to support disabled children and children with SEN and their families. This easy to understand information will set out what is normally available in nursery to help children with lower level SEN as well as the options available to support families who need additional help to care for their child. From September 2014, The Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Reforms place a statutory requirement on settings to make information available to parents about how we support children with SEND.

Skools Inn Pre-school is committed to the inclusion of all children. All children have the right to be cared for and educated to develop to their full potential alongside each other through positive experiences, to enable them to share opportunities and experiences and develop and learn from each other. We provide a positive and welcoming environment where children are supported according to their individual needs.

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The Setting

What the setting provides

Skools Inn is a full day care pre-school that caters for children from 2 to 4 years. The pre-school is open Monday-Friday, 8.30am to 3.00pm, 38 weeks of the year term time. It incorporates a breakfast and after school wrap around care service (Skools Out) from 7.30am through to 6.00pm. A holiday club operates during the school holiday periods from 8.00am to 6.00pm with the exception of the Christmas week, and Bank Holidays. The entire wrap around care is also attended by children from 8 local primary schools.

The setting is organised as follows:

  • Breakfast Club: 7.30am – School Drop-Off
  • Pre-School: 8.30am – 3.00pm
  • After School Club: 3.00pm – 6.00pm
  • Holiday Club: 8.00am – 6.00pm

The pre-school setting is registered with Ofsted to take 32 children. Although a free-flow building, the children are organised by age into two groups, though this is a flexible arrangement depending on the needs of the children. The younger children 2-3 years are within the Creepy Crawlies, and the older children, 3-4 years, that are progressing to school the next September are within Apple Class.

In addition to the support offered to the children and staff, the setting also has practitioners with additional responsibilities. These include; a named person with responsibility for supporting behaviour, a named person with responsibility for parental involvement, an equality co-ordinator, two nominated safeguarding officers and a SENCO. There is a deputy manager who supports the nursery manager in the running of the setting, along with two Supervisors. The manager has overall responsibility for the setting in conjunction with the business owner.

Accessibility and Inclusion

What the setting provides

THE BUILDING: The setting is housed in a purpose built dual story building. The building is wheelchair accessible from the main entrance and exit, and has a portable ramp which can be used to make other exits accessible. The building is accessed via a buzzer/intercom phone system linked to both the office and the main room.

There is one accessible toilet in the building. This is primarily an adult facility, but can be used for children if required. This room also houses the nappy changing area. There is a small storage area to the side of the front door which can be used for buggies, bikes or car seats.
The rooms and corridors are lit with LED lighting, although not often used as the setting has a lot of natural daylight. The walls are painted in a neutral cream colour, with the skirting and architrave in white. The flooring throughout, is a natural wood effect.

With the exception of the accessible toilet, all the internal doors are standard size. The kitchen has a viewing hatch style opening to both walls, allowing vision to both the main room and the back room. There are laminated paper signs which name the rooms and toilets.

THE ROOMS: All the rooms are illuminated by LED lighting, and there are roller blinds at all the windows. The walls are painted in a neutral pale colour, with display boards mounted at both adult and child height around the setting. The display boards are backed in bright colours to stand out from the pale walls. The floors are a natural wood effect. Rugs are used in all the rooms to make comfortable areas for play and relaxation.

Apart from the kitchen area, all the furniture is freestanding, so can be moved around and rearranged to make space for specialist equipment or to ensure the rooms are accessible for children using walkers or wheelchairs.

In the main room, which is predominantly used as the creepy crawly room, and the general free play room, there are low and high wooden tables with plastic chairs in different heights, a number of rugs used to make a book and circle time area, and a carpeted space complete with cushions and blankets used to make soft/comfortable areas.

Resources are suitable for ages 2 upwards, and include toys that light up, vibrate and make sounds. Treasure and heuristic play baskets are used to encourage and support play and exploration. Toys are stored in child height units. There are pictures and labels on the front of storage boxes to identify what is in them. Resources are organised into areas of provision.

Tuff spots are used to bring activities to floor level, with optional legs to adjust height. These are also used for sand and water play, or other malleable activities. Toys and resources can be borrowed from other rooms if they are more appropriate to a child’s needs or development.

The back room has height adjustable tables with both plastic chairs and a wooden bench. For children’s toys and resources, there is a unit with accessible drawers, and storage units, both at children’s height.

Photographs and labels are displayed on the front of boxes so it is clear what is in them. This room is also used for snacks and lunches, allowing direct access to the kitchen via the open hatch window.

UPSTAIRS: This area can be used as an additional space for Apple Class. It is accessed via a carpeted staircase with a handrail running up the right side. There is an open plan space with resources accessible from pull out wicker baskets, and accessible shelving. There are two toilets and sinks, and appropriate height tables and chairs that can be folded away when not used to create extra floor space.

THE OUTDOOR CLASSROOM: This is a newly transformed area that allows the children a covered play area whilst outdoors. It lets the children access additional space, even when the weather is severe. It has a block shelving unit to store wellies, spare hats and scarves, along with adult resouces. There is a den type area that continually changes to meet the children’s interests, and other areas including a water area with drainpipes attached to the wall.

There is a double gate that encloses the outdoor classroom that can be opened on either side. One gate leads down some stairs to the play area, and the other gate leads down a gradual slope suitable for wheelchairs.

PLAY AREA: The outdoor environment consists of a large tarmac area, with a small turfed garden section, surrounded by plant pots and trees. There is a raised bed for planting. There is also a big wooden pirate ship that sits in a purpose built giant sandpit. It is possible to provide sand play in a tray for children who are unable to access the raised sandpit. Towards the top of the play area is a wooden activity centre with steps and a slide. Behind, is a fully fitted mud kitchen, with built in sink and cooker hob. Troughs filled with soil are accessible from different heights, and a water butt allows the children continual access to water. A variety of aprons are available to allow the children to explore their messy play.

Resources are taken out on a daily basis and are chosen and adapted to suit the needs of the individual children attending the setting on that day.

Identification and Early Intervention

What the setting provides

The Pre-School’s Assessment process
The pre-school tries to carry out a home visit to each child before they attend. At this visit, vital information is collated concerning a child’s needs e.g. does the child need additional support, are other agencies involved, do the family have a CAF, will staff require training to meet medical needs, along with any other personal information.

The Key Person carries out baseline assessments when a child has been attending the pre-school for several weeks.

  • Assessments are completed at key transitions and at additional times for those children who require extra support.
  • A final assessment is carried out in the summer term before a child goes to school (Transition Document)
  • The manager plots and tracks this progression and can identify any patterns in delay and any staff training. In this way extra support and the need for resources can be identified.

Children’s progress is closely monitored in our setting. Each child has their own learning journey which includes annotated observations of them in the pre-school, tracking information about their progress across the areas of learning and development within the EYFS. More detailed information about learning journeys and what is in them is shared with parents when their child begins attending our setting. This is to ensure parents understand what they are, how they are used in pre-school, what is in them, and how parents can contribute to them. Although a child’s key person is available to chat to parents at most drop off and pick up times, we make arrangements for the key person to meet with their parents at least twice a year in an individual parents evening, to look at their child’s learning journey and discuss both progress and any concerns. Additional appointments can be made outside of these times to discuss any issues in more depth and more confidentially than is often possible at pick up and drop off times. If a parent would like to arrange a meeting with their child’s key person, they can ask them and the key person will liase with the manager to make arrangements to be released from the group at a convenient time.

Parents can book appointments with their key person for our half termly ‘concern day’ which allows them the opportunity to discuss with us anything they are worried about from toilet training, to diet, or difficulties. These are additional to the twice yearly parents meetings, and express our initiative of “It’s good to talk….”

In addition to the child’s learning journey, we also undertake the 2-3 year progress check. The pre-school is a part of a Lancashire County Council (LCC) Pilot in Fleetwood for Multi Agency working in regards to the 2 year old checks. The manager has attended several meetings with Health, Sure Start and LCC to embed a partnership approach to carrying out the 2 year checks. Information is passed on with parents/carers permission and shared between nursery, Sure Start and Health Visitors to ensure early identification of needs and concerns. The 2 year old summary assessment which is carried out by the child’s Key Person is passed on to the Health visitor and the Health Visitor passes their assessment to the pre-school to ensure both are identifying the same stages of development and concerns. This is a requirement of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and is done for all children in this age group. The EYFS requires us to report to parents on their child’s 2-3 year progress check; discussing and identifying strengths as well as concerns. Where the progress check suggests that a child may be experiencing some difficulties or delay in their development this is shared with parents and options/appropriate next steps are discussed.

  1. For some children, the next steps may involve the key person targeting a specific area of development and planning additional opportunities for the child to have experiences designed to support the area of learning and development identified. This enhancement and targeting, links to the wave two interventions identified within our setting’s provision mapping. This would then be reviewed to see how the child has progressed and whether or not additional steps need to be taken to support the child’s progress and development.
  2. For other children, the next step may also include developing a targeted learning plan (TLP), where specific aims are developed with parents to support the child’s development. We may also discuss with parents whether it would be appropriate to refer their child to other services such as speech and language therapy with parental consent.
  3. Another next step may be to ask the local authority Inclusion Teacher to visit the child in the setting to provide some additional advice and guidance to practitioners to support them in meeting the needs of the child. This visit is called a ‘Request for Guidance’ which is only undertaken with parental consent. This may require the completion of an All About Me document with the family, and further documents if the child needs additional support outside of the setting.

Our Special Educational Needs policy provides the context for supporting children through these ‘next steps’, this is referred to as the graduated response. Our SEN policy is available to view in the setting.

In our setting we use provision mapping to identify ways in which we support all children in the setting. Provision mapping identifies what we provide for all children (wave 1), for children who require a little bit of extra input in a specific area (wave 2) and children who require more specialised or intensive intervention (wave 3). We use provision mapping to identify ways in which all children in the setting can be supported to suit their needs. Our provision mapping can be discussed in more detail if required with our SENCO.

Teaching and Learning Part 1 – Practitioners and Practice

What the setting provides

EYFS
Skools Inn Pre-School works within the framework of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). The children will work within this framework until the end of the school reception year. The EYFS has areas of development and learning that are split into Prime and Specific areas. The child’s Key Person is sensitive to the developmental needs of the child and will support them as they progress through their individual age/stage. Some children require extra support and may need activities adapting to accommodate their additional needs. All the children will receive the same opportunities and they all have a Key Person to ensure they build an attachment with a significant adult who can help them feel secure and safe to learn and develop. They plan activities that stretch and challenge the child. Staff get together to discuss planning for individual and groups of children. Observations of children identify what they enjoy and dislike and these observations and information from parents is used in planning for the child’s learning.

Parent and Child’s views
We value parents/carers input and partnership in supporting children’s development as they know their child best. We build up good relationships to find out their views and encourage them to give honest opinions about the support their child has received. We seek out the views of the children on meals, snacks and also the activities they would like to do. Children are asked open questions about the setting to identify how well they are settling in whilst at pre-school. Staff encourage children to be confident in expressing their views one to one and in small groups. Children are consulted about changes in the environment, what new resource they would like to see in pre-school and when evaluating planning for learning.

The local library, schools and Sure Start inform us by e-mail and flyers of any parent training event that are being held, so that we can signpost them to parents.

Teaching and Learning Part 2 - Provision & Resources

What the setting provides

Each age phase is provided with resources that are developmentally appropriate for that age group. We ensure there are resources available that overlap with the age phase below and above so that children who are developing more slowly or more quickly can access resources appropriate to their stage of learning and development. We use our provision mapping to help us to identify some of the resources and activities available to support children’s needs.

Where children require access to resources that are significantly different to the resources available within their age phase, we make arrangements to share resources with the younger or older group. Where children need resources that are not usually available in the setting, we endeavour to access these from loan facilities, support service or buy purchasing. We liase with parents and outside professionals to ensure resources are appropriate for the needs of the child.

All practitioners are encouraged to work with external professionals who visit children in the setting. Some will have more experience of this than others, but they are supported by the SENCO. For some children it may be the case that at specific times of the pre-school day, they require additional support. As a setting we will try to make reasonable adjustments to provide this. We also look to provide additional support flexibly using supernumerary staff if this is appropriate.

In our setting we like to plan trips and outings, and all children are included in these. We undertake risk assessments of the places we intend to visit and consider the needs of the children who will be visiting. We make reasonable adjustments when planning trips and outings to ensure the places we visit are accessible and meet the needs of the children attending our setting.

Additional Staffing: The pre-school has bank staff that regularly covers for staff when they are on leave or off sick. The bank staff also covers for staff to enable them to attend meetings, speak with professionals who are visiting a child and to give a key person additional time with those children who require extra support.

Partnerships with other Agencies to meet the needs of the child: The staff regularly liaise with Speech and Language Therapists to incorporate strategies to support communication. We work alongside the Inclusion Teacher gaining their expertise and advice. We have also liaised with several other services such as: Specialist inclusion Teachers, Dietician, Occupational Therapists, Education Psychologist, Health Visitors, Health Nursery Nurses, Reception Teachers, School SENCOs, School Transition Officer, Outreach Workers, Family Support Workers, Social Care and other settings.

Carrying out a home visit, working with parent/carers and finding out about their home environment ensures a holistic approach in caring for their child. The pre-school has undertook a ‘Parents as Partners’ course, which is part of the Creative Learning and Development Programme that is in line with the Lancashire Local Authority Early Years Quality Induction framework. The course has enhanced Skool Inn’s partnership with parents, developing concrete connections between the parents and the setting in supporting children’s learning and development. We have introduced home visits when a child is starting at pre-school as a result of undertaking the course.

Reviews

What the setting provides

A parent/carer can speak to their child’s key person when they collect or drop off their child. When this isn’t possible, or when a more detailed discussion is required, a suitable appointment will be made asap. Each child has their own Learning Journey, which contains observations and information on the child relating to the EYFS. Pictures and observations link to the Prime and Specific areas, and the next steps show the progress they are making. This is all tracked against the EYFS, and gives the key person a clear idea of the child’s development across the ages. This information is also used across the whole setting, to ensure we are covering all the areas needed for each individual child to develop.

The 2-3 year olds have a take home sheet, which contains information regarding nappy changing, sleeping arrangements, and food eaten at snack and lunch times. In addition we do offer home link books if a family would like one.

Families have the opportunity to inform their child’s key person of their child’s interests or news by filling in an “Ask me….” Sticker, which is placed on the child, and promotes conversation between the child and key person about a topic outside of pre-school.

Parents can book appointments with their key person for our half termly ‘concern day’ which allows them the opportunity to discuss with us anything they are worried about from toilet training, to diet, or difficulties. These are additional to the twice yearly parents meetings, and express our initiative of “It’s good to talk….”

Within the setting we offer various days for members of the family or wider community to come and join us. These include mother’s day crafts, grandparents story week, stay and play sessions, and visits from paramedics and lollypop ladies.

Transitions

What the setting provides

Before children start attending our setting, we arrange a home visit with the family. This allows a comfortable experience for the child to meet the manager within their environment, and lets the family discuss their child’s individual needs confidentially. There is a special bag taken which includes an All About Me booklet for the family to complete, a home visit bear, and an example of our uniform and personalised bag.

We then encourage parents to bring the child for visits, though we appreciate that this is not always possible. Initially this may just be for the child to have a look around the setting with their parents. We plan with the parents some opportunities for the child to visit the pre-school and spend a short amount of time with the age phase they will be joining. We have a settling in policy which is shared with parents when they register their child with us. The manager will talk to the parents about their child’s preferences for a settling in period and will try to meet these needs as best as we can.

We have a comprehensive transition policy and procedure which we follow when children are ready to move age phases, leave pre-school to attend a different setting, or move on to primary school. This is available to parents within our setting. The policy and procedure includes additional factors that may need to be considered when supporting the transition of children with additional or special educational needs, to ensure this is as smooth as possible.

We have an open door policy and parents are able to drop in to the setting at any time, or call to make an appointment, for a more detailed discussion. Parents are also advised they can phone the setting if they are worried and just want to check in on their child!

Staff Training

What the setting provides

Most practitioners in our setting are qualified to Level 3 and above. Both the Manager and the SENCO are qualified to Level 7 holding Early Years Practitioner Status (EYPS).

We have a regular programme of supervision and appraisals for all practitioners. We value opportunities to support their further professional development and they are encouraged to seek and are provided with opportunities for this. Safeguarding and CAF online training is part of the staff induction. The pre-school has monthly staff meetings to incorporate in-house training, sharing ideas and discussing new government initiatives.

Within our setting we have staff who have completed or are working towards the following training courses relating to Additional or Special Educational Needs.

  • ‘I Can’ Speech and Language Accreditation
  • Hanen Speech and Language Programme
  • Cache Level 3 in Speech, Language and Communication
  • All are Paediatric First Aid qualified
  • Epilepsy training
  • Epi-pen training
  • Behaviour management
  • Health and Safety
  • Making sense of Special Educational needs
  • Step into Quality Award

The pre-school practitioners have had on the job experience; and worked closely with the Inclusion Teacher and Specialist inclusion Teachers to support children who have had the following needs: Visual Impairment, diagnosed Behavioural difficulties, Speech, Language and Communication difficulties, Physical difficulties. The pre-school practitioners have also worked with dieticians to support children with allergies and complex daily needs (PKU), including medical conditions, such as Asthma and Epilepsy.

As a setting we also seek to support practitioners to further develop their knowledge and understanding of a range of additional and special educational needs. Practitioners have access to a wide library of resources and books. These are also available for parents to borrow.

We also make use of the local authorities e-learning modules to further training, and Sure Start centres to access further information and training.

Further Information

What the setting provides

We have an open door policy and parents are able to drop into the setting at any time. They
are also able to contact us by phone/email if they would like to check on their child or for a
discussion.

If further information is required you can contact the Manager or SEND-CO by telephone or an email to the
setting.

All contact with practitioners can be carried out on a daily basis. However, if discussions are of
a sensitive nature an appointment can be made with the setting manager. We will endeavour to
address them as soon as possible.

As a setting we have a procedure for dealing with complaints. This is available on request. However we also have suggestion/compliment book by the parent/carer notice board which is readily available to parents/carers.

CONTACT: Sue Strachan SEND-CO
Faye Scott MANAGER
Mandy Woolford OWNER

PHONE: 01253 876500
EMAIL: [email protected]