Thursday, 3 September 2020

Newsletter - 3rd September 2020

 Hello & Welcome Back!

We hope you have all had a lovely summer holiday and are ready for the new school year. We’d like to give a big welcome to all those who are starting with us over the next few weeks; we hope you all have a great time here at Springfield.


Important Dates for your Diary

Wednesday 7th October - Photo Morning

w/c 19th October - Cake Sale Week

Friday 23rd October - End of Term

Monday 2nd November - Start of Term

Saturday 28th November - Christmas Fair

Thursday 10th December - Christmas Celebration 

Wednesday 16th December - Christmas Party

Friday 18th December - Last day of term

Friday 18th December - INSET Day - pre-school is closed


Please note all these dates are subject to change and with potentially short notice.


Pre-School Post COVID!

The last few months have been very strange indeed and we were so thankful that we were able to re-open in June if only for a limited number of children. We are now able to re-open our doors to more children but are still required to follow government issued guidelines to keep our children, families and staff all safe.


Parents will have received via email our  ‘Parental Agreement’ that lays out some of the new requirements and changes to our pre-school life. It is vitally important that parents read, understand and agree to follow this agreement in order to secure their child’s place at Springfield.


It is also vitally important that pre-school has your up-to-date phone number (we should have a main number and at least one emergency contact number) as well as a valid email address. The majority of our communications will be issued by email. If any of your contact information has recently changed please email the correct details to springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk 


If you have any questions at all please speak with either Jayne or Julie; this is easiest via email springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk or by phoning between 9.00am and 3.00pm, Monday to Friday on 07960 983423.


Face Masks

We are not able to accept visitors into pre-school at the moment and this includes parents. Staff will be available to chat with parents outside while maintaining appropriate social distancing. If, due to extenuating circumstances, parents (or other third party persons) do need to enter the building they will not be allowed beyond the foyer area under any circumstances, an appropriate face mask MUST be worn at all times and surfaces should not be touched. Should a visitor, or parent, refuse to wear a mask when asked they will be refused admission.


Staff will not be wearing face masks unless it is deemed appropriate if a child becomes ill while at pre-school.


Session Fees

Invoices for all fees will be issued via email; all invoices are issued for the term up to the 23rd October and should be paid by the date stipulated. Payment should be made by Bank Transfer only.  Late payment of fees will automatically incur a penalty fee of £15 and continuous failure to pay fees will result in the removal of your child’s place from pre-school.  Please speak to Jayne regarding any payment issues so that this can be avoided.


Funded Sessions

All children aged 3 & 4 are eligible for the ‘Universal Entitlement’ of 15 hours funding per week and some children will be eligible for an additional 15 hours per week under the ‘Extended Entitlement’ scheme. All funding starts the term following the child’s third birthday; 


Birthday Date Term Funding will be Received


1/4 – 31/8 Autumn (September)

1/9 – 31/12 Spring (January)

1/1 – 31/3 Summer (After Easter)


We will be sending home an FE1 Funding Form for those children claiming funding and this must be completed, signed and returned as quickly as possible to ensure that we can process your claim correctly and speedily.


Please remember that in order to access the additional (Extended Entitlement) 15 hours per week you must register with the HMRC and have received a ‘30 hours’ code. Once you have this code you will need to  ‘re-confirm’ your status with the HMRC every 3 months. To find out more please speak to Jayne or Julie, or visit www.childcarechoices.gov.uk 


Funding is also available for some two year old children, parents are advised to visit www.childcarechoices.gov.uk to find out whether they are eligible and how to claim.


Staff Changes

Mel has decided to move onto pastures new and will not be returning to pre-school this September. We would like to thank Mel for all her hard work, time and commitment over the last 5 years, we will miss her lots but wish her every success in her new employment.


Tapestry

We would like to ask all parents to complete the ‘About Me’ page of their child’s profile; this is accessible via the Tapestry web page and not the app. Please remember that parents can complete ‘Observations’ too...this is a great way for your child’s key-person to know a little more about what you and your child get up to outside of pre-school. This can in turn help us to ensure that we provide the best possible activities and resources that are most appropriate to your child. 


Tapestry is also a great communication tool between pre-school and parents; staff can use ‘observations’ to let you know what your child is currently achieving and how you can help us to help them achieve their next steps. Parents can discuss their child’s development or anything else that they feel is relevant to their child’s time at pre-school.


Policies & Procedures

Our policies and procedures can be found on our website www.springfieldpreschool.co.uk these cover everything from safeguarding to absences to dropping off and collecting children to managing illnesses. Should you have any questions please speak to Jayne or Julie.


Parent Committee 

In order for pre-school to open its doors we need to have a parent committee in place. The committee are there to oversee the operation of pre-school, to assist the management team and most importantly organise and run our fundraisers. We need a minimum of 5 committee members and of these there are three named roles - Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer. Should you wish to know more about being part of the committee please speak to Jayne or Julie who will be only too happy to chat and pass on any relevant information.


Without the support of our parents Springfield would not be what it is today. The role of our committee is vital to ensure the continued growth and development of pre-school and is a role very much appreciated by all of us involved with Springfield.


School Photographs – Wednesday 7th October

We have a provisional date of Wednesday 7th October for our School Photographs Morning, however until we are contacted by Tempest Photography we cannot guarantee that this will be happening, nor do we know what COVID secure measures will be in place. As soon as we have any information we will let parents know.


Contacting Pre-School

You are able to contact pre-school between 8.45am and 3.15pm, Monday to Friday on 07960 983423. If you need to contact us outside of these hours then please use our email springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk and we will respond as appropriate. Or alternatively please use Tapestry to communicate with your child’s key-person and keep us up to date with any pertinent news or developments; this can be especially useful if parents have any developmental concerns, are starting potty training or have had a new medical condition diagnosed. By knowing this sort of information we can work with parents to ensure the best possible experience and outcomes for your child.


Please note that all staff work a variety of hours and may not always be available immediately. Staff should not be contacted via social media platforms as parents and staff are not to be linked via social media, unless there is a family or prior connection. Please note that Jayne does not work Monday or Wednesday.


Who’s Who at Home?

To help us know more about your child’s life, as well as to help the staff, we would like all parents to pop onto Tapestry and create an ‘Observation’ called ‘My Family’ and include photographs of the people who are important in your child’s life as well as anyone we may come into contact with. So please include photographs of those family members and friends who we could see at drop-off or pick-up at pre-school. Thank you.


General Reminders......

Name Labels - Please ensure that all of your child’s possessions are clearly labelled with their full name.  All bags, including lunch bags, should be labelled on the outside as we have a number of children that have the same style bag and the lack of a name can cause confusion for both child and staff alike!  If items are found unlabelled we will write names on with a black marker pen.


UniformAll children must wear a red top or jumper whilst at pre-school.  Tops with the pre-school logo are available at reasonable prices, please see Jayne or Julie should you require any items.


Red Book Bags - All children must have a red book bag that should be brought to pre-school each time they attend.


Clothing – It is imperative that children are sent to school in appropriate clothing.  Children should be sent prepared for the weather with appropriate outdoor clothing as we always try to get outside – whatever the weather!  Footwear should enable children to climb and move with confidence; ill-fitting shoes can spoil their fun when pursuing outdoor activities as well as cause unnecessary accidents.  Indoor clothes should enable a child to be as independent as possible, especially when using the toilet when time may be short! So please avoid using tricky belts or dungarees that could hinder a child’s attempts to get to the toilet on time. 


Absence – Absence due to holiday should be notified in writing/email in advance. Absence due to illness should be notified by text by 9.15am (morning sessions) or 12.15pm (afternoon sessions).  

All absences must be confirmed in writing.


Children’s Bags - Your child must bring a small bag/back-pack with at least two sets of spare clothes (including socks!) in case of toileting accidents or messy/wet play; please ensure that the bag is of a size that your child can carry themselves and is clearly labelled. 


Changes - Please remember to let us know of any changes relevant to your child and their circumstances.  We need to know if your contact details have changed, of any allergies or medical conditions and any other circumstances which may affect your child during their time with us.


Policies & Procedures – pre-school operating policies & procedures are available on our website www.springfieldpreschool.co.uk 


Useful Websiteswww.foundationyears.org.uk has been developed specifically for parents of children aged 0 – 5 and provides lots of useful information and advice. For information relating to funding, child benefit and more please visit www.childcarechoices.gov.uk 


How to Contact Pre-School

Our phone number is 07960 983423 (Monday to Friday, 8.45am to 3.15pm) or email us at springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk 

You can also check our website www.springfieldpreschool.co.uk and Facebook page for up-to-date information. You can also find us on Twitter and Instagram.

Wednesday, 8 July 2020

September Intake

We are now taking names for children to start with us in September.

We are able to offer places for children aged 2, 3 & 4 years of age. Funding is available for all 3 & 4 year olds and we can offer the full 30 hours funding for those who qualify. We are also able to offer funding for those eligible two year olds.

If you're not sure what funding you maybe entitled to we recommend you visit Childcare Choices.

We are open Monday to Friday with morning sessions from 9.15am to 12.15pm, and afternoons from 12.15pm to 3.15pm. We can also offer full days with parents providing their child with a packed lunch.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions we are unable to accept visitors at this time but we have lots of photos and a short video on the 'Our Pre-School' page for you to see what we 'look' like. You can also meet the staff by visiting the 'Who's Who' page.

Please give us a call on 07960 983423 (9am - 3pm) or drop us an email at springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk to find out more about us and what we can offer you and your child.

Wednesday, 17 June 2020

Re-opening Newsletter

Hello!

This is just a short 'newsletter' to bring you up to date with life at pre-school following our partial re-opening on 15th June 2020.

First here are some dates for your diary;

Friday 17th July - Last day of Summer Term
Wednesday 2nd September - INSET Day
Thursday 3rd September - Back to Pre-School
Wednesday 7th October - Photo Morning
w/c 19th October - Cake Sale Week
Friday 23rd October - Last Day of Term
Monday 2nd November - Start of Term
Friday 18th December - End of Term
Monday 4th January - Start of Term

As we start to plan more for the upcoming academic year there will be more dates to add to the above list. 

Thank You
We would just like to say a big thank you to all our parents for bearing with us over these last few uncertain months and for working with us to enable a partial re-opening this week for those children most in need of childcare. Due to the guidance issued by the Department of Education and Derbyshire County Council we find ourselves having to adopt to new ways of working and with a limit on numbers of children able to attend. As we move forward and new guidance is no doubt issued we will do our best to keep all parents as up to date as possible.

We would also like to thank all those parents of returning children for their prompt response to numerous emails, understanding the need for our new parent agreement and for doing their part to help ensure that our new routines run smoothly; these are certainly unusual times we all find ourselves in and we appreciate everyone's understanding and patience as we get accustomed to our new pre-school life.

'The Ladies' are getting to grips with a different approach to how we do things and as we move along we are sure we will become more adapted to our 'new normal'. This does mean changes to our usual routines and activities with a greater emphasis on the personal, social and emotional aspect of our curriculum. This time is all about re-introducing the children to pre-school after such a long absence and giving them chance to play and interact with others.

Fees
Please note that as from September our hourly rate will be increasing to £4.50 per hour. All other charges remain unchanged.

Sessions for September
Please keep an eye out for an email confirming your session allocation for September; hopefully these will be with parents by the end of this week.

We are also now taking names for those wishing to start with us in September - please email springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk for more information.

Contact Information
It is vitally important that the information we hold for you is up to date and accurate. If anything has changed please remember to let us know as soon as possible; this includes phone number, email, address and emergency contacts.

Going forward we intend to issue all newsletters, invoices and any other communications via email it is vitally important therefore that email addresses are correct and that pre-school is 'marked as a safe address' to avoid emails disappearing as junk! Thank you.

Changes
It is also vitally important that parents let us know of any changes that may affect their child's time with us; allergies/medical conditions, changes to home life, involvement of doctors/social care etc.

Claiming a Funded Place for your Child

If your child turns 3 between 1st April and 31st August then they will become eligible for a government funded place from September. 


All children aged 3 & 4 are entitled up to 15 hours of Universal Funding per week, with some children entitled to a further 15 hours of Extended Funding per week (often referred to as ‘30 Hours Funding’). We advise all parents to visit www.childcarechoices.gov.uk to find out what they are entitled to and how to claim it. It cannot be stressed enough how important it is that parents find out this information and action it promptly. Without correct codes, obtained within specified deadlines, parents may find they miss out on their full entitlement. The deadline for applying for the '30 hours Funding' for the first time is 31st August 2020.


Parents who already claim the Extended Funding are reminded of the importance of re-confirming your ‘30 Hours Code’ every 3 months as failure to do this will result in the funding being withdrawn.


We will need all parents claiming funding to complete an FE1 Funding Form which will need to be signed. We are currently assessing the best way to do this under the current circumstances.


Transition to Reception Year

We are in touch with most of the local schools with regard to which children are moving where. Ordinarily schools would be visiting us during this term but as this is not possible this year, we will liaise with them over email and phone. We would advise all parents of children leaving for Reception Year to look at Derbyshire's Ready for School - https://www.derbyshire.gov.uk/education/early-years-childcare/ready-for-school/ready-for-school-in-derbyshire.aspx# We are confident that all our school leavers are achieving all of these 'keys for unlocking school readiness' and more besides.


Should you have any questions regarding moving into Reception year please email (springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk) or use Tapestry to chat with your child's keyperson.


Tapestry

Parents are encouraged to share with pre-school the activities that their children are getting up to at any time. Tapestry can also be used as a means of communication between parent and keyperson. We will be issuing a link to all parents in the coming weeks so that you can download your child's learning journal for the last academic year.


Any questions please drop us an email 🙂


Thank you

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

Newsletter - 25th March 2020

Hi all,

We just wanted to take the opportunity to write to all our parents/carers and their families and say 'Hello'. We hope that everyone is well and is staying at home as much as possible.

It was a really hard decision to close pre-school last week and it was not one taken lightly. Like lots of businesses out there we want to make sure that the safety of our staff and children is paramount whilst at the same time ensuring the long term future of our pre-school. This is a delicate balancing act as we are sure you can all appreciate, but we strongly believe that the only way we are going to get through this situation is by pulling together, staying home as much as possible and supporting those businesses who may need it the most for when this is all over.

We have had very little information from our county council and have only been provided with the daily government updates for the education sector. We are in direct contact with the very few key worker parents that we have at Springfield and would like to thank them for their understanding and patience at this time.

As this is an ever evolving situation we will attempt to keep everyone updated as and when we have information to share, but we have to presume that we will not be open for the foreseeable future.

But we can keep in touch with each other. Parents can create their own 'observations' on Tapestry; let us know what you have been getting up to as well as asking questions and we will do our best to get back to you.

If you have found any good online resources that maybe beneficial to other parents then please let us know we can then share via email and our Facebook page.

https://www.twinkl.co.uk/ is a great source of free activities

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLyCLoPd4VxBvQafyve889qVcPxYEjdSTl - Joe Wicks is doing PE classes each day

https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCU05kJzPa-6fzHJ8_lMm00A - Pennine Gymnastics with a special pre-school workout

https://www.familycorner.co.uk/ - ideas from the Early Years Alliance

Please send any ideas/links via email to springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk and we will share from there. Please do not post direct to our Facebook page as unfortunately these will not appear in our timeline, so email or message on Facebook and we will share to the page for you.

Please take lots of care, and look after your familes.

See you all soon, sending love and hugs.

Jayne, Julie, Katie, Sylvia, Sarah, Mel, Sarah & Suzanne

Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Update

We are in ever evolving times and our routines could change with very little notice. We ask all parents to please ensure that we have your correct contact details and to check both this website and our Facebook page for regular updates.

From today we will no longer be allowing parents into the pre-school building during drop-off and collection; this is to reduce the number of people together in close proximity at one time. We will also be applying hand sanitiser to all children upon arrival at pre-school.

If you, your child or a family member have a new dry, persistent cough or a temperature then you should follow the government guidelines and remain at home for 14 days.

Any child who develops any of the above symptoms whilst at pre-school will be sent home immediately and should remain away from pre-school for 14 days.

We would like to thank all our parents for their co-operation and understanding during these unprecedented times. With lots of unknowns ahead these are concerning times, not only for the safety, health and well being of all but also the financial implications and impact that may come our way. Our aim is always to provide the best possible childcare and education for your children in a safe and stimulating environment and we will do everything in our power to ensure this continues whatever comes our way.

Sunday, 15 March 2020

Important Notice

At the moment we are in unprecedented times as the country begins to take stock of the situation around Coronavirus - Covid-19.

Here at Springfield we want to do everything in our power to ensure that everyone is safe and healthy. We respectfully ask that parents, carers, children and those who ordinarily drop off or collect children follow the most recent government advise and stay away from pre-school if they have a dry, persistent cough or high temperature. We would also ask that anyone who has recently returned from a country with an infected area also remain at home.

We are currently receiving daily updates from Derbyshire County Council via the Department of Education and will endeavour to keep everyone as up-to-date as possible with what maybe a quickly developing situation.

We will, as always, encourage high levels of hygiene with staff and children and would ask that this be replicated at home. Hand washing is vitally important and children should be made aware of this without scaring them.

Parents will be advised of any developments via text alert, our Facebook page and this website. It is therefore imperative that if you have changed your mobile phone number recently that you let us know.

Sunday, 1 March 2020

Newsletter - Settling in at our New Building

Well, we have completed our first week in our new building and we would just like to thank everyone for supporting us through this transition.

Everyone involved in the move has worked extremely hard and we are really pleased with how everything has gone. A big thank you to Lou for loaning us her van, to Aaron for the use of his van and extra manpower and to all the staff and their partners who did an amazing job to get everything moved in only a matter of hours!

Now we are in there is going to be a period of settling-in and getting used to the building, it’s layout and how that affects our routines and procedures. So we really appreciate parents ‘bearing with us’ while we iron out the wrinkles and tweak as we go along!

So just a few things for parents to be aware of;
  • We are not currently using the area to the side and rear of the building; both areas need some work before we can happily use them. Plus we are still waiting on Erewash Borough Council to give us the go-ahead on where we can site a much needed storage unit. So please ensure all children are prevented from accessing these areas.
  • The area to the front of the building is a mixture of grass and hard paving; at the moment we are NOT using the grassed area due to the wet conditions as well as the siting of a ‘memorial tree’. The children have been told about this and have been amazing at avoiding the grass! We would ask parents to avoid the grass as well and ensure that their children when with them do the same.
  • Memorial Tree - as just mentioned in the grass area to the front of the building there is a tree planted with a plaque. This is in remembrance of a former guide leader and we would ask parents and their children to be respectful of this.
  • Spare Clothes - please remember we DO NOT have any spare clothes at pre-school. Please ensure ALL children are sent with at least two changes of clothes; this is in case of both toileting accidents or getting ‘messy’ during water and investigation play. If a child needs a change of clothes and has been sent without any spare we will have to contact parents and request that dry/clean clothes be brought in. 
  • At the end of the afternoon session parents are invited into the main room to collect their children. Please give due care and consideration to other parents as well as the staff whose main priority at this time is ensuring the safety of all children. Parents should refrain from calling out or beckoning to their child as this can be distracting to other children and staff alike. Our main priority is to ensure that the correct child and parent are reunited safely and efficiently.
  • Suggestions - if you have any comments or suggestions (good & bad!) about the new building and the knock-on effect on our provision then please let us know. You can speak to either Jayne or Julie or better still drop us an email at springfieldpreschool@hotmail.co.uk. We will take on board all suggestions and use these to ensure that we can continue to provide the best possible care and education for your children.