Our two pre-schools have wasted no time in putting their plans in place for the coming academic year to ensure the quality of their service remains as high as ever.
Priorities will include reflection, planning, two year olds and health and well-being, which all stem from government initiatives or areas where the team feel they can best meet our children’s needs.
Acorn Pre-school Leader Sara Peache said: “To enhance these areas we will include the following: each two year-old on the programme will now be individually tracked along with goals and outcomes put in place on entry for both the child and parents and then reviewed when transferring onto the three year-old entitlement.
“Bexley Education Assessment of Needs will continue, when needed, to support families the best way we can and to direct our children/ parents to relevant outside agencies if necessary.
“Finally for now Fantastic Fridays will continue using the last Friday of each month to invite our parents to play and stay; so with planning complete and induction meetings for our new starters taking place, we look forward to what we feel will be a great year ahead.”
It’s all systems go at Arnott Pre-school too as Leader Claire Latham told us: “As soon as we came back we began home visits for the new children. We visited every family in their own environment in order to introduce the child’s key person and fill in the necessary paperwork before the children start with us.
“We were welcomed by each and every family and had a very pleasant visit with the key person talking and starting to build a relationship with the child while I helped the parents fill in the forms and gained important information that will help us develop our children.
“We find that the parents find it more comfortable in their own home and are more likely to share this information with us than they are in the setting environment when they have started with us. It also builds a partnership between the family and us so if there are any concerns further down the line it is easier to approach them.
“We always finish the visit with by taking a lovely photograph of the whole family together which the child will put in their journal when they start with us and they will also take to school with them when they leave so it shows the complete journey of their time with us from start to finish.
“Together with Acorn pre-school we have had training in Early Years Foundation Stage mathematics and science development provided by the “Learning Together” team to enable us to provide more exciting activities in these areas.
“This term two of our staff members are hoping to do a cookery course to enable us to promote healthy eating recipes to our parents and children and this will link in with our own healthy eating project where the children choose a healthy recipe a week each to make at home.
“We also hope to resume our Forest School and trips to our community garden this term to enable the children to explore the environment around them, learn how we grow healthy food and at the same time learn to appreciate the value of physical exercise.
“We will again be collecting food for the Thamesmead Food Bank for Harvest Festival and will be joining in with the festivities that will hopefully take place again for the whole community to enjoy in October.
“I will be attending Personal Social and Emotional development training in line with the Early Years Foundation Stage and we have applied for training in safeguarding across cultures and beliefs which we are also hoping to attend in October.
“Finally we have a visit from the dentist planned who will teach the children about dental hygiene and will show them how to look after their teeth properly.”
Our Pre-school Manager Tracy Norcott said: “Our pre-schools are popular locally, demand for places is high and both currently have waiting lists. I guess that alone demonstrates how high our service is regarded in the local community.”