Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Do I need to make an appointment to look around?
No, we welcome visitors both existing and prospective parents – so you are welcome to visit us at anytime. We do request you avoid between 12pm and 2pm when it is our busy lunch time.
What are the ratios of adult to children?
The current Ofsted recommended ratio in the baby rooms (under 2’s) is 1:3, the toddler rooms (2-3 years) 1:4. The pre-school rooms is 1:8 or 1:13 with an Early Years Teacher. Our out of school clubs are on 1:12. However, at the settings we often operate with a higher ratio of adults to children which enables us to maintain our reputation of providing high quality early years provision.
What qualifications do your nursery staff hold?
Our staff hold various childcare qualifications such as NNEB, Level 3 Childcare and Education, Level 2 or 3 in Children’s Learning & Development and in Playwork, BTEC in Nursery Nursing, First Aid, Child Protection, Designated Safeguarding, Equal Opportunities, Additional Educational Needs, Management training, Early Years Education degrees and graduate level Early Years Teacher qualifications. Over 95% of our staff have achieved a recognised early years qualification (50 % is the norm within children’s nurseries).
How do I register my child for a place at the Nursery?
Please complete and return the Registration Form & Parental Agreement which can be downloaded from your sites own page.
Do you have a settling in period?
Yes we have a comprehensive settling in process to ensure your child is fully relaxed and happy in their new environment. Our nursery registration fee of £50 (non refundable unless a space cannot be found) entitles you to a programme of up to 4 visits as a minimum, and we will work with you if you feel more is needed. The club registration fee of £40 entitles you to one settling visit.
My child is 3, when are they entitled to receive the Nursery Education Funding or Early Years Free Entitlement?
All 3 and 4 year old children are eligible for the 15 hours of Nursery Education Funding (NEF), sometimes known as Nursery Education Grant (NEG) or Early Years Free Entitlement (EYFE), the school term after their 3rd birthday. They can claim up to 570 hours per academic year (38 weeks) or if attending all year round can have it spread over 51 weeks. Please speak to the Nursery Manager for further information.
How do I claim 30 hours ‘free’ childcare?
The process for claiming the additional 15 hours of childcare is different than the first Universal 15 hours. We have more information about that on our 30 hours funding page.
Does my 2 year old qualify for any funding?
From September 2014 around 40% of 2 year olds become eligible for 15 hours funded education. Those from most deprived areas receiving places first. There is information on your local authority’s website about eligibility in your area. To find out more from the Department of Education click here.
Do you accept childcare vouchers?
Yes we accept childcare vouchers from many providers such as KiddiVouchers, Fideliti, Edenred, Computershare, Busy Bees, Care-4 and Sodexho PASS plus many others. If your employer uses a different provider, your Nursery Manager will be able to make the necessary arrangements. We will also be taking part in the new Tax Free Childcare scheme from HMRC, starting in 2017. Once this is introduced the Employer Voucher Schemes will start to be phased out for new entrants (from April 2018).
What help can I get with childcare costs?
The Government offers a variety of ways to support childcare costs and they have a website that allows you to see what might work best for your family it is called Childcare Choices. Please do go and have a look and work out what is best for you.
30 hours Childcare
You can register for both the Tax Free Childcare scheme and the 30 hours on the government website. The eligibility criteria is similar for both and it is all explained on their page. You do not have to take both schemes if you are better off using Tax Credits rather than the Tax Free Scheme they you can just register for the 30 hours. We always recommend that you do your research and work out what is the best way for your family.
Do you open for Bank Holidays and holidays?
Our nurseries are open 51 weeks a year, during which time full fees are payable. On Bank Holidays and over the Christmas period we are closed. We also close for our staff Training Days. Fees are still payable during closures with the exception of 1 week at Christmas which is not charged for
How often do you review your fees?
From September 2017 our fees are now reviewed and changed when necessary in January each year. We go through a structured process where we look at the costs of operating the nursery and any changes to national wage rates. If we feel that the operating costs have risen we will then increase the fees accordingly. You will receive notice during December of any fee increase, with the first month of the increase being January.
Do you take the children out for trips?
Yes on occasion your child may go on trips to the park, museums or other places of interest. These trips will help extend your child’s learning and are well planned in advance. You will always be advised of these trips before they occur.
How do I know about my child’s daily routine?
At the end of the day, your child’s key person will feed back information about your child’s day. For the babies and younger children, this will include information about their sleep times, mealtimes and nappy changes. The key person will feed back information about activities and experiences that your child has been involved in. If the key person is not there, the backup key person or another nominated staff member will be available to share that information with you. We are also introducing electronic diaries for children which will give you instant access to their daily diaries.
What is a Key Person?
Our responsibilities for the role of the key person is laid out in the EYFS. “Each child must be assigned a key person. Providers must inform parents and/or carers of the name of the key person, and explain their role, when a child starts attending a setting. The key person must help ensure that every child’s learning and care is tailored to meet their individual needs. The key person must seek to engage and support parents and/or carers in guiding their child’s development at home. They should also help families engage with more specialist support if appropriate” (EYFS: 2017: Section 1: 1.10: p10) This Key person requirement falls in the Learning & Development section of the EYFS.
My child has an allergy. How can you ensure they do not become exposed?
When you register you will be asked for general information. During your settling visits we ask you to complete a permissions form where there are a number of questions about allergies. If your child has an allergy, you will be asked to complete these allergy questions that will highlight the allergen, the symptoms if they are exposed and treatment required. We then also have a procedure where we complete a number of forms for the kitchen and room staff. All staff who are working with your child on any day will be made aware of the allergy. All staff have paediatric first aid training and where an EpiPen is required staff undergo additional training if required. Through our procedures, we feel that the risk of exposure to the allergen will be unlikely.
What will my child eat at nursery or Club?
We consider it our collective responsibility to provide children with a healthy diet and lifestyle and it starts here. Breakfast will consist of a healthy option such as non-sugared cereal, toast or fruit. We provide children with healthy snacks and drinks in both our morning and afternoon sessions. Hot lunches are either provided or can be purchased separately. We also provide guidance on healthy lunch boxes. Our afternoon snacks are not designed to replace a child’s evening meal at home and therefore are limited to what we consider is a healthy amount of food for snack purposes. If you wish your child to eat more in the late afternoon before going home, then we would ask that you make provision for this yourself. We are unable to heat any food up for children over the age of 2 yrs.
What does my child need at nursery?
We will be able to supply your child with most things but you might want to bring in their own drinking cups until they are used to ours. We ask that anything you do bring is clearly marked with your child’s name, including clothes and bags. Spare clothes should also be in a named bag.
Can my child bring toys and games from home?
We request that your child does not bring personal items including toys and electronic games into the nursery. This is because it can cause problems with sharing and security. Bright Kids cannot accept liability for loss of, or damage to any property that is brought onto the premises without their knowledge. If children do bring in items we will ask them to be surrendered and given back to parents on collection.
Who can I speak to if I have any questions regarding my child’s care and I don’t want to talk to the Nursery Manager?
You can talk to Emma Beard our Head of Operations at Head Office on 01527 452430 or email her on firstname.lastname@example.org and she will be happy to deal with your enquiry. Alternatively you can contact our Chief Executive, Tricia Wellings on email@example.com.
How do I make a complaint?
It’s often best to talk to us first if you have a problem. However we do have a Complaints Policy that outlines the steps you need to take to make a formal complaint. You will also find details of Ofsted’s complaints number on display in all the nurseries.
What happens if my child gets bitten?
We do not see biting as acceptable behaviour but we understand that younger children do bite. This may be because they are teething, frustrated, exploring using their mouth, asserting their independence, and wanting to gain control, maybe of a toy, or they could be stressed. It may also be because they want to gain attention. Biting can become a sensitive issue, both for the parent of the biter and the parent of the bitten child.
We always follow our Behaviour Policy, which sets out our procedures quite comprehensively. We work with both sets of parents to minimise incidents and whilst we appreciate it can be very stressful for parents, these incidents are usually short lived, do not remain in the memories of children and can be explained as a natural part of development for some children. If you do have concerns then we urge you talk to your key person and your manager.
What happens if my child is sick?
We ask that when your child is sick you do not bring them to nursery – to help prevent the spread of infection. We will not accept a child into nursery who is running a temperature. When the cause of illness is sickness or diarrhoea we ask that you child stays away for 48hrs after the last bout of illness. For specific illnesses we have a set of infection control guidelines that advise us of exclusions and we follow these. Unfortunately, we are unable to refund any fees due to your child being ill.
What does the nursery do about medications?
We have strict policies and procedures about the types of medicines we are allowed to administer and our Parent Guidance is available to download. Our full Medications Policy is also online or can be viewed in the nursery. You may also download a Medication Form here to complete before you come to nursery.
What happens if there is a fire?
Thankfully not something that happens often but in the event of a fire we follow our fire evacuation procedures which we practice several times a year. We keep records of these and they are inspected by the Fire Officer at regular intervals. We are able to empty all of our buildings in under 2 minutes and have sourced other local buildings to take care of the children whilst we contact all parents to come and collect in the event of a real emergency. Regular fire drills are undertaken to practice exiting the building.
How do I know my child will be kept safe?
Safeguarding is of paramount importance to us and an aspect that is highly regulated by Ofsted and the local authorities. All staff undergo safeguarding training every year and we have a Designated Safeguarding Person at every setting who audits all of our safeguarding procedures. These procedures include everything from recruiting staff, greeting visitors at the door, ensuring passwords are in use to making sure the equipment is safe to use. All of us have responsibilities in this area and the best form of safeguarding for children is combined vigilance at all times. If you have any concerns or issues then please speak with the Nursery Manager in the first instance.