Policies

Policy statement

Meadow Brook Playcare is a not-for-profit charity to support the early development for all children under 5 in our community.

It is essential that we have a balanced budget and have no outstanding debts.

 

Admissions

Waiting list:

The number of children attending nursery is regulated to ensure that correct staff: child ratios are maintained. If there is a space on the required sessions in the room most appropriate to the child’s age and development then a place will be offered immediately, otherwise the child will be placed on a waiting list. 

When managing the waiting list, siblings and length of time on the waiting list is considered.

The waiting list is also used as a ‘pre-booking’ – where many parents in this area will ask to have a space some time in advance (for example, the Parent/carer will contact us when the child is 2.5 years. To reserve a space for the term after their 3rd birthday when they are eligible for funding).

Registration:

Once a parent/carer has agreed to attend our setting, a non-refundable registration fee of £25 is due to the nursery at time of registration (Unless already registered within the nursery or using only the government free allocation). An invoice will be issued for the registration amount and only when money is received will the child have their place confirmed.

 

An induction session and settling visits must be completed before a child can start nursery.  At the induction, you will meet the Nursery Manager or Deputy Manager and your child’s Key Person and Room Supervisor.  They will talk to you about the nursery your child’s individual needs, routine and likes/dislikes. Parents/carers must complete and sign our contract and parental consent forms. Settling visits will then be booked for you and your child to have some ‘stay and plays’ to support transition before their first session.

Conditions of Admission:

  1. A non-refundable registration fee of £25.00 is due to the nursery at time of registration (Unless already registered within the nursery or using only the government free allocation)

  2. A minimum of one month’s written notice, with signed acknowledgement from a member of nursery management, must be given when your child is leaving the nursery, via letter or email.

  3. You agree to adhere to the policies and procedures in place at Meadow Brook Playcare and all items stated in this registration form.

  4. You are aware that Meadow Brook`s opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday to Friday, with the exception of bank holidays. We are open for 50 weeks of the year closing for 1 week at Christmas and New Year and 1 week at Easter.

  5. You acknowledge that Full fees are payable for sickness, holidays and any other absences that occur, excluding the weeks where we closed.

  6. Our Invoices are sent out on the 1st of the month and must be paid within 4 weeks of date of invoice to which they refer, by cash, cheque or direct debit. Where a payment hasn’t been made by the 5th of the following month, a £10 charge will be incurred and added to the following month’s invoice

  7. Any extra sessions that you require will be added to the following month’s invoice.

  8. Continued non-payment of fees may result in us requesting that you remove your child from nursery.

  9. Fees are reviewed annually by the Manager and Committee, we reserve the right to alter these with one months’ notice.

  10. You understand that Meadow Brook Playcare are obliged to report any instances where we believe a child is being neglected or abused to the relevant authorities.

  11. Meadow Brook Playcare specifically request that your child does not bring their own toys to nursery/ preschool. If they do bring toys in, Meadow Brook Playcare accept no responsibility for loss or damage to these items.

  12. You confirm that the information that you have provided is accurate and true. You understand and agree to the terms and conditions set out in this document and authorise Meadow Brook Playcare to claim free entitlement funding on behalf of your child.

  13. You agree that the information that you have provided can be shared with the local authority and Department for Education, who will access information from other government departments to confirm my child’s eligibility and enable the provider to claim Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP) or Disability Access Fund (DAF) on behalf of my child.

2018 Fees, Charging and Overdue Payments

Fees are paid by:

  • Those who attend that are not entitled to Early Education Funding.

  • Those who book sessions/hours additional to their Early Education Funding.

 

Procedures:

  • Meadow Brook Playcare will raise invoices monthly. Invoices are issued on the 1st of the month and full payment is expected within 4 weeks. (By the last day of the month).

  • Parents/carers have the option to pay weekly or monthly. By BACS, Cheque or Cash.

  • We accept childcare vouchers.

  • If payment is not received by the due date, Parents/careers will be issued with a reminder letter.

  • Payment plans can be agreed at the discretion of the manager if a family is unable to make payments.

  • If Payment is not received by the 1st of the following month a £10 late charge will be automatically added to the outstanding invoice.

  • Failure to make payments after the initial reminder letter could result in (non-funded) sessions being revoked.

  • Meadow Brook Playcare reserves the right to issue County Court Proceedings to recover fees and/or outstanding debts if no payment is received after 3 months of the first reminder.

  • Refunds will not be given for time off due to illness or any other non-attendance (except in extenuating circumstances and agreed by the Manager).

  • Where the Nursery is closed due to Bad weather, PD days or any reason on Meadow Brook’s behalf fee’s will not be charged.

  • 4 weeks’ notice is required for a decrease in sessions or withdrawal of a child.

  • Fees will be reviewed by the Manager and Committee on an annual basis. We reserve the right to alter these with one months’ notice.

  • A retainer fee will be charged at 20% of your weekly bill for those taking term time only. This is for those who are not entitled early education funding and those who book additional session/hours to their early education funding during term time.

 

 Late fees and extra sessions:

  • Please be aware that when parents or carers are persistently or routinely late collecting children then we reserve the right to apply a late collection charge. This will be £10 for the first 15 minutes or part thereof and then £5 per 15 minutes or part thereof after. This applies at the end of all booked sessions. If late collection is a regular occurrence this will be addressed by the Nursery Manager.

  • Any extra ‘one-off’ sessions must be paid for on the day of the session or can be added to the existing invoice at the manager’s agreement.

  • Families taking children out of Nursery for Holidays will be charged at half rate if 4 weeks’ notice is given. If notice is not given you will be charged at normal rate.

  • If parents have any queries with the invoice, please speak to Emma Howard the Early Years Manager or Stacey Wright Deputy Manager in her absence.

2017 Arrivals and Departures

Policy statement:

Meadow Brook Playcare’s Policy is to give a warm welcome to all children, parents and carers on their arrival. It is the responsibility of the manager to ensure that an accurate record is kept of all children in the nursery and that any arrival or departure to and from the premises is recorded in the register. Individual room registers will be kept in an accessible location for all staff. 

Staff will also take regular head counts throughout the sessions to ensure all children are present at all times. This is also recorded by the management team. Records of the daily registers will be kept by the setting.   

Arrivals:

On arrival, a member of staff will immediately record the child’s attendance in the daily register including the time of arrival and their own initials. Any messages passed on by the parents are to be recorded and shared with the staff in the child’s room.

If the parent/carer wants their child to be given medicine during the day by a member of staff they must complete and sign a medication form.  

Departures:

When a child is collected from nursery the key person (or most appropriate person in their absence) will complete hand over to the parent or carer and feedback any information about the child’s day. This might include information around meals, toileting, sleep and activities the child has been a part of throughout the day. If there are any medication, accident or other forms that require a signature then these must be signed before the child leaves the nursery.

If the child is to be collected by someone other than the parent/carer this must be indicated to a member of staff and recorded at the start of the session. The adult nominated to collect a child must be one of those named on the child’s contract.

Only adults aged 18 years and over with suitable identification will be allowed to collect the child. If the parent/carer arranges for someone else to pick up the child then there must be a password agreed and the child will not be released until the staff are satisfied that the child is in safe hands.  Staff will check this information before permitting the child to leave. If there is any uncertainty staff should make further checks by telephoning the parent / carer. 

If the parent/carer or nominated adult is going to be late to collect their child the setting must be informed as soon as possible.  If the designated adult is late in picking up their child without prior warning the provisions of the Late Collection and Uncollected Child Policy will be activated. 

 

Upon departure, the register will be marked to show that the child has left the premises and the time of departure will be recorded. Once the child has been signed out the staff will have no more responsibility for that child.

Adults arriving under the influence of alcohol or drugs the nursery’s prime focus is the care and safety of the children it cares for. If an adult arrives to collect a child and they are deemed to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs the Nursery Manager, Deputy Manager or the senior member of staff on duty will assess whether the child’s safety and welfare may be impacted if released into this person’s care.

The decision will be discussed with the adult and where required an additional named adult will be contacted to collect the child or referred to social care if this is not possible. If at any point a child is deemed to be at risk of harm then the Safeguarding Children Policy must be followed.

 

2017 Safeguarding Children and Child Protection

Policy Statement:

Meadow Brook have a responsibility for the welfare and well-being of all children in our care and we have robust procedures in place to keep them safe and protect them from maltreatment. We endeavour to provide a safe and welcoming environment where children are respected and valued. We are alert to the signs of abuse and neglect and we have a duty to the children, parents and staff to act quickly and responsibly in any instance that may come to our attention. We will work with children, parents, external agencies and the community to ensure the welfare and safety of children and to give them the very best start in life. 

Practitioners have a duty to protect and promote the welfare of children. Due to the many hours of care we are providing, staff will often be the first people to sense that there is a problem. They may well be the first people in whom children confide about abuse.  This policy lays out the procedures that will be followed if we have any reason to believe that a child in our care is subject to welfare issues including physical, sexual, emotional abuse or neglect.

The legal framework for this policy is based on:

  • Children Act 1989 & 2004

  • Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015

  • Childcare Act 2006

  • Data Protection Act 1998

  • Prevent Duty 2015

Roles and Responsibilities:

The setting will ensure that the Designated Safeguarding Lead:

  • is appropriately trained

  • acts as a source of support and expertise to the setting

  • has an understanding of LSCB procedures

  • keeps written records of all concerns when noted and reported by staff or when disclosed by a child, ensuring that such records are stored securely and reported onward in accordance with this policy guidance, but kept separately from the child’s general file.

  • refers cases of suspected neglect and/or abuse to children’s social care or police in accordance with this guidance and local procedure

  • develops effective links with relevant statutory and voluntary agencies

  • ensures that all staff sign to indicate that they have read and understood this policy

  • ensures that the child protection policy is updated annually

  • keeps a record of staff attendance at child protection training and makes this policy available to parents.

 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) at the nursery is:  Emma Howard

The Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead at the nursery is: Stacey Wright

 

To meet and maintain our responsibilities towards children, the setting agrees to the following standards of good practice:

  • to treat all children with respect

  • to set a good example by conducting ourselves appropriately 

  • to ensure staff are positive role models to children and other members of the team and never engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games 

  • to involve children in decision-making which affects them (taking age and development of children into account)

  • to encourage positive and safe behaviour among children

  • to be a good listener

  • to be alert to changes in a child’s behaviour

  • to recognise that challenging behaviour may be an indicator of abuse

  • to read and understand all of the setting’s safeguarding and guidance documents on wider safeguarding issues, for example, physical contact and information-sharing

  • to maintain appropriate standards of conversation and interaction with and between children and avoid the use of sexualised or derogatory language

  • to be aware that the personal and family circumstances and lifestyles of some children lead to an increased risk of neglect and or abuse

  • to raise awareness of child protection issues and equip children with the skills they need to keep themselves safe

  • to provide any form of manual or physical support required, as a last resort and to do so openly and appropriately, and to always consult the children and gain their agreement (taking age and development of children into account)

  • to establish a safe environment in which children can learn and develop, particularly in their confidence and self-esteem and to provide opportunities for achievement

  • to carry out risk assessment to ensure children are kept safe on our premises.

  • to ensure that we have control over who comes into the setting so that no unauthorised person has unsupervised access to the children.

  • to record the arrival and departure times of children, staff, volunteers and visitors.

  • to not allow a child to leave the setting with an adult who is not an authorised collector of the child without prior permission and a password being given.

  • Ensure staff are aware of the whistle blowing policy which enables them to share any concerns that may arise about their colleagues in an appropriate manner.

Email: office@meadowbrookplaycare.co.uk          Tel01728 604768          AddressMeadow Brook Playcare, The Meadow Children's Centre, Seaman Avenue, Saxmundham, Suffolk, IP17 1DZ

© 2019 Meadow Brook Playcare