1. How does the nursery know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs?

    The nursery carries out continual observations on each child, both spontaneous and planned. Tracking observations are also done to determine levels of interaction and behaviour. Termly  assessments are completed in order to ascertain appropriate levels of development and learning. Termly speech and language checks are made on each child using the East Sussex Monitoring Tool. Initial baseline assessments are completed on entry to Owlets and the two year checks are completed with parental involvement. There is much parental communication on entry to the nursery and parents complete All About  Me information booklets and checklists to highlight developmental milestones. The nursery is familiar with supporting children with emotional and behavioural issues, speech and language difficulties and various levels of autism.


    1. How will nursery staff support my child?

    Each child is allocated a key person with age-specific training and experience. Parents are invited  to discuss their child’s needs and development and to be a part of the drawing up of Individual Education Plans. The SENDCO provides regular weekly “nurture times” with  individual children to specifically work on their targets. Sessional diaries are completed throughout the term to pinpoint developments or concerns. We provide a wide range of resources and activities to support all levels of learning and requirements. Where necessary, we engage additional support from a range of professionals with whom we work closely. Any referrals to Early Years support services are always done in conjunction with parents. We also maintain close links with our local Children’s Centres and encourage parents to make use of relevant courses, e.g. Language Through  Play.


    1. How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

    Age-appropriate planning is done weekly by key workers, with individual targets being addressed. Activities are both simplified or extended where necessary. Individual “next steps” targets are determined with parents during termly consultations. The nursery has visual prompts throughout, including individual PECs cards/timelines to suit different children’s needs. Owlets accesses specialist services and provides specific resources where required.


    1. How will both you and I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?

    Staff hold termly parent consultations to look through learning journeys, review previous targets, set new “next steps”, explain  assessment findings and discuss any issues that have occurred. We write monthly key worker letters to parents to explain what aspects of learning will be covered and suggest activities which may be done at home to support learning. The nursery provides information booklets for parents on subjects such as Letters And Sounds, The Early Years Foundation Stage and Helping Your Child At Home. We set up regular “Stay And Play” sessions where parents come and spend a morning working alongside staff and children. The nursery offers parents evenings to discuss transition to school and answer any questions.


    1. What support will there be for my child’s overall well being?

    Personal, social and emotional development is the main thread which holds the curriculum together in Owlets. Routines are important to ensure well-being and there are specific snack-times, nappy-changing, outdoor play etc.  Staff are highly skilled and develop close relationships with the children and their parents and we have good levels of communication. Our policies regarding sick children and medicines are strictly adhered to and acknowledged by all parents/carers. Medicines are stored away safely and information on individual medical and dietary needs is kept in the staff kitchen area. Children have direct access to drinks at all time. A rigorous Behaviour Policy is in place and we have good links with the behaviour team at Early Years. We are currently drafting children’s consultation forms so the children can contribute their own views on their care and well-being.


    1. What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the nursery?

    Nursery staff are continually updating their practice and regularly attend both in-house and external training sessions. Staff use documents from the THRIVE programme to support safeguarding procedures. We have completed behaviour and emotional support training. Owlets accesses support from and has links with local Children’s Centres, speech and language support and the team at Early Years Teaching and Support service.


    1. What training have the staff supporting children with SEND had or are having?

    The SENDCO has completed training and feeds back up to date information to all staff regarding policies/procedures. Staff have had specific age-related training regarding child development. Staff have basic Makaton skills but would like to access further training. Staff have attended training on the THRIVE programme and all have child protection training and behaviour management skills.


    1. How will my child be included in activities outside the nursery including school trips?

    Thorough prior planning is always done before activities are undertaken outside of nursery, with a detailed risk assessment completed by staff. Parents are consulted as to possible venues and are encouraged to attend with their children. Our Educational Visits Policy is well adhered to and staff meet with accompanying parents before any trip to provide an itinerary and explain safety procedures.


    1. How accessible is the nursery environment?

    Owlets is situated on the 1st floor and  there is currently no wheelchair access although we have received several quotes regarding stair-lifts. In our literature, all parents/carers are made aware of this. There has been some training on supporting children with English as an additional language and working with Travelling families. We have an updated Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy. Visual support appears in all our rooms.


    1. How will you prepare and support my child to join the nursery, transfer to a new setting or school or the next stage of education and life?

    Parents/carers and children are welcomed on an initial visit and provided with a full prospectus and information. A thorough “welcome pack” is prepared and “All About Me” forms completed by parents. A minimum of two taster sessions are required with parents and more arranged if necessary. Photo-books to aid transition are currently being prepared by staff. We create links with other settings to pass on assessments, learning journeys etc. We have close links with local schools and invite teachers in to spend time with us. Staff also visit schools with children and attend meetings with special needs co-ordinators. We also provide our parents with Transition To School booklets and hold a parents evening to answer questions and give information regarding transition.


    1. How are the nursery’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?

    We currently receive no funding for our children with additional needs. We make our own resources, specific to the needs of the individual child, e.g. speech and language games/booklets, Language bags,, time-lines, emotions cards, heuristic play boxes, light tent… In previous years, any funding we received was allocated  to support employment of Individual Needs Assistants (INAs) and purchase needs-related equipment.


    1. How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?

    Whatever decisions the professional support team have made, we try to follow through with appropriate measures.

    Based on our Individual Education Plan( IEP) tracking we make the decision, with parents, regarding early intervention and what support is needed. Referral forms are always completed with parents/carers.


    1. How are parents involved in the nursery? How can I be involved?

    There is an open-door policy each morning at Owlets and parents are encouraged to chat to key workers about any concerns or achievements. We provide home-to-school books which are used for two-way communication for busy parents. Our website and Facebook page is easily accessible and updated regularly. We provide monthly newsletters and key person letters for parents to stay up- to- date with what is happening in the nursery. Regular coffee mornings and stay-and-play sessions are also features of the nursery. We send home questionnaires at different intervals to find out how successful our communication is.


    1. Who can I contact for further information?

    Parents/carers can contact their child’s key person at any time. The Manager, Samantha Roddick is available at the nursery every day.

    Detailed information about the nursery  is available on our website which includes our Local Offer.

    Information about local services is available on the Local Authority website.


    This offer is accurate now, but services are regularly reviewed and could change. All information will be updated as soon as possible to reflect any new service offer.