As an inclusive setting Little Rainbows welcomes enquiries for children who have special educational needs and/or disabilities. In order to help you make the decision if our nursery is right for you and your child we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions. Of course if you find there is something we haven’t answered please get in touch and we will do our best to help
Frequently asked questions for children and families with special education needs and/or disabilities
How will you know if my son / daughter needs extra help?
At Little Rainbows we are very experienced in identifying children with additional needs. We have a setting Special Educational Needs coordinator (SENCO) Kerry Maddock who will monitor the progress of every child and put in place additional planning and provision where necessary. All nurseries and pre-schools operate under the guidance the revised Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). This together with our assessment tools from Wellcomm and ICAN allow us to create a picture of typical development. Where a child is not within this range we will put into place additional support initially within the setting, where this support is not sufficient a referral can be made for external support from the local authority or from another specialist support service such as speech therapy. All steps are taken with full parental involvement and consent.
What should I do if I think my son / daughter may have special educational needs?
If you have any concerns about your child’s development please come and talk to us. Together we will be able to create a picture of your child and agree their strengths and areas for development. Where a particular need is identified we will put into place the appropriate support.
How will staff support my son / daughter person?
When a concern has been raised initially by the key person or parent it is brought to the attention of the SENCO who will formally assess the child and create a person centered plan taking into account the needs of the child and views of the parents/carer and key person. Where support is need from external professionals such as early year’s intervention officers, speech therapy or pediatricians a plan will put into place to access this additional support.
How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s/young person’s needs?
We believe in treating each child as individuals and as such we plan for their stage of development not their chronological age. This means that their next steps and learning goals are tailored specifically for them.
How will I know how my son / daughter is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s/young person’s learning?
There are times when it is not appropriate to use the developmental milestones as set out by the EYFS. In these cases we would use our simplified statements which demonstrate in more detail the smaller steps that need to be taken to reach the goals set out in the EYFS. In addition to the simplified statements a person centered plan will be created with the input of parents and careers. You are fully involved in this process and strategies are agreed to be used in nursery and at home. We can provide some resources to be used at home to support this process. All parents are invited to a termly parents evening which is your formal opportunity to discuss your child’s progress, however you can make an appointment at anytime to speak to your child’s key person and SENCO.
What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by you?
We have access to a wealth of external expertise from the local authority and the NHS such as early years intervention officers, speech therapists health visitors and pediatricians that can be accessed from both inside and outside the setting.
What training are the staff supporting my son / daughter with SEND had or are having?
Our setting SENCO is our owner manager Kerry Maddock who is qualified as an early years teacher. The setting has a strong ethos of staff development. Staff are highly qualified and have had specialist training with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) from Wirral autistic society and early language development from ICAN. We have many years experience of looking after children with a range of additional needs including epilepsy and cerebral palsy and where a child needs specific care that we have not been trained in we will ensure the correct training has been given prior to your child starting.
How will my son / daughter be included in activities outside the classroom including school trips?
We are an inclusive setting and take steps to include all children in planned outings and trips. Parents are invited to join us on these trips and input is always welcome.
How accessible is your setting environment?
Our Building is designed on a single floor and is accessible via two small steps at the front of the building. Handrails have been fitted at entrances and exits for safety and to encourage independence. Displays and equipment are at child height so that every child can enjoy the environment in their own way. We have close links with the local minority ethnic achievement service (MEAS) and have worked for many years with families whose first language is not English.
How will you prepare and support my son / daughter to join your setting, transfer to a new setting / school or the next stage of education and life?
All children and families have a period of settling in to the setting. This involves short periods of time prior to start where the child will become familiar with staff and routines and parents and carers can spend time with key people telling us as much as possible about their child. This information is then used to create personalised planned activities that will support your child as soon as they start. When transitioning to another setting a meeting can be arranged for the families, ourselves and future provider to share information to that will make the transition a smooth one.
How are your resources allocated and matched to my son / daughters needs?
There is no allocated additional/special needs budget. However in some circumstances it may be possible to apply for funding from the local authority to support reduced staffing ratios. Specialist equipment may be obtained from occupational therapy to be used in nursery where it is deemed necessary by a health professional.
How is the decision made about what type and how much support my son / daughter will receive?
The decision as to how much support can be offered to your child lies with the manager of the setting and is largely dependent upon current setting ability and local authority funding processes. Parents and carers are involved at every stage of the application and no decisions will be made without their input.
How will information about the child be circulated to all members of staff and who will be responsible for that?
Information regarding your child will be passed to relevant people on a need to know basis. This means that the members of staff who care for your child will have sufficient information to provide the appropriate care and balance of activities while allowing the more sensitive aspects of information to remain private.
Who can I contact for further information?
If you are considering if nursery is the right option for you and your child please feel free to come and have a look around. We have an open door policy and welcome visits at any time of day.