1. How does Happy Hours Preschool know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs or disabilities?

    If your child has already been diagnosed with special educational needs or you have concerns regarding your child’s learning and development please speak to our SENCO (Special Educational Needs Coordinator).  All children within our pre-school are regularly observed during their play and daily activities to enable us to assess and plan for their individual needs. We use “Development Matters in the Early Years” guidance to help us support each child. Sharing our observations and assessments with you (Parents/Carers) and learning about what your child does at home also supports their learning and development. Staff are trained to work with all children in their early years and have supported children with speech and language, promoting positive behaviour, visual impairment, autistic spectrum disorders, social communication, English as an additional language etc. and we will access further specialised training if required. 

  2. How will Early Year's staff support my child?

    Your child will be allocated a “Key Person” when they start preschool. The Key person has particular responsibility for a few children within the group and will ensure that each child’s needs are catered for and their records are maintained. She will work closely with you and our SENCO (and outside agencies when required), to develop an individual play plan for your child at least once a term. The Key person will use the individual play plan to ensure that your child’s needs are supported during each session by herself or another member of staff. We are a committee run pre-school and the committee organise and release funding to provide additional training or purchase special equipment/toys that may be needed.

  3. How will both you and I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?
    We have an open door policy and parents are welcome to come in at any time. If the key person is available you will be able to speak to her and if unavailable you can speak to the SENCO or make an appointment. You are always welcome to contact us by email or phone if you are unable to come in. We have a parents meeting once a term where you can discuss your child’s learning and development with the key person. Your child is observed regularly and progress is monitored through regular planning. Your child will have an individual learning plan every 6/12 weeks and you will be invited to a meeting to discuss his/her progress and be involved with planning the next steps. This planning will show what we can do to help your child within the pre-school and what you could do at home to help support him/her. We use the Development Matters ages and stages which suggest a typical range of development for children.

  4. What training are the staff supporting children with SEND, had or having?
    In order to ensure that the provision of care is co-ordinated and appropriate, one member of staff is designated as the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO). Karen Howes is our appointed SENCO at Happy Hours Preschool; she takes the lead in communicating with both parents and the relevant organisations in developing a plan to support your child in our setting. She has attended specific training courses which support those children in the setting with special educational needs. 

    We encourage all staff to access the Training courses whether Statutory or “Expression of Wishes”. All staff are qualified within Early Years or are currently studying for these qualifications. 

  5. How will my child be included in activities outside Happy Hours Pre-School including Trips?
    All children are welcome to attend trips we usually notify parents through our newsletters/posters and communication through Key Workers.  We hold weekly staff meetings; where we will discuss trips/outings and ensure that all children can be included.  Risk assessments are completed.  We ask for as many parents as possible to help take their children on the larger/whole pre-school trips, however on the smaller local outings we will have an increased Staff: Child Ratio.

    All appropriate contact details, permission slips, first aid/medication will be taken with us.  All children wear “contact bands” with the preschool details on.

  6. How accessible is Happy Hours Pre-School?
    Happy Hours Pre-school is within the Community Centre in Broadfield. The building is fully wheelchair accessible being on ground level. Changing facilities are done on a changing mat on the floor in the ladies toilets. The setting is set up to meet the use of wheelchair users with plenty of space between tables and floor activities. We have visual timetables and booklets to support change of routine and settling in called “All About Us” We have visual posters with photos supporting routines. We have multi language posters to support children with English as an additional language (EAL). We are using Say it and Sign it within the setting. Activities will be adapted to meet children’s needs. Our outside area is accessed through the main room, with a “soft play” surface. (Wet Pour) and is all on one level.

  7. How will Happy Hours Pre-School prepare and support my child to join the pre-school or transfer to a new setting or school?
    Happy Hours Preschool will offer an initial visit, plus taster sessions for your child these will be either with or without you, dependant on your child's need.  You will also meet your child’s key worker along with the Senco/Inco during these visits you will have the opportunity to discuss any requirements and the possible involvement of other agencies such as FIRSTWhen transferring to another setting or moving on to school, the preschool will invite the Key Person/Teacher and INCO to attend your child’s sessions at preschool to help them become familiar with them and to discuss your child’s strengths and needs. Your child’s Learning Journal,  IEP’s  and any other information that may be relevant to your child will be passed on to the new setting giving them the time to make necessary plans for any changes they may need to make.If the FIRST Team have been involved they will also help with the transition to school and remain involved until the end of the first term at school.

  8. How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?
    If Happy Hours has been informed before your child starts preschool at the registration/Open Days that there are additional needs, with parental permission we will be able to access all areas/teams that have been involved in your child's life so far and continue the necessary support. However through the observation process linked to the EYFS ages and stages of development and in discussion with you, the Key Person/Senco will identify what support is needed. Ongoing partnerships with you, other professionals - including FIRST and ourselves will support the decision making process. IEPs (Individual Educational Plans) will be written which will allow all involved to monitor your child's progress. Our Senco will attend meetings with other professionals in order to support your child.  Staff meetings in preschool will also allow her (Senco) to update the staff on any changes or support that is going to be offered and will be put in place within our setting. 

  9. How are parents involved at Happy Hours Pre-School? How can I be involved?
    We are a committee run preschool and welcome involvement from all parents, we hold termly meetings and ask parents to attend.  We welcome parent/carer input whether you come to a Stay and Play session, committee meeting or talking with the Staff. Your child’s Learning Journal is available for you to look at and contribute to.   We also list the activities daily that your child has access to and again welcome your comments on these. We send regular newsletters, along with holding several Family Extra Curricular activities throughout the preschool year.

  10. Who can I contact for further information?
    If you require further information then please have a look at our website www.happyhourspre-school.co.uk where you will find contact information addresses.

    Ena Cartwright is our Supervisor along with Karen Howes our Senco/Inco.

    You can also pop in for a chat during school term time, Monday to Friday 9:15am - 3:30pm.

    If you visit the West Sussex website on www.westsussex.gov.uk you can find additional information about the FIRST team, the Family Information Service (FIS) and other agencies; or you can telephone the service on 01243 777807


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