The local offer is all local authorities are required to publish their Local Offer detailing the provision and services available in the local area. There are two key purposes of the Local Offer:
- clear, comprehensive, accessible and up to date information about the available provision and how to access it.
- to make provision more responsive to local needs and aspirations by directly involving disabled children and those with SEN and their parents and service providers in its development and review.
1) How does the setting identify children with additional needs or SEND?
When your child starts at Briary Preschool they will be allocated a Key Person and join a Key group - Honeybees, Dragonflies, Ladybirds, Butterflies and Caterpillars. Your child's Key Person will monitor your child closely through ongoing observations and assessments, following the ages and stages of development outlined in the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and other assessment tools, such as Every Child a Talker, your child’s Progress Check at 2 and any concerns you might share with us when your child starts with us. If your Key Person has any concerns about your child's development, for example they may be working below age expectations or experiencing difficulties with their speech and language development, they will share their concerns with our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) who will discuss this with you at the earliest opportunity with your Key Person. Some children benefit from further assessment and we work closely with a range of professionals, including speech and language therapists, paediatricians, health visitors and specialist teaching support.
We endeavour to identify any difficulties at the earliest opportunity so that we are able to support your child to reach their full potential.
2) How will I be informed/consulted about the ways in which my child is being supported?
From when your child starts at Briary Preschool they will be allocated a Key Person who will work closely with you and your child during your child’s journey with us. The Key Person will be responsible for planning for your child’s interests, observing, monitoring and assessing your child, contributing to their on-line learning journey and summative assessment. The Key Person will be closely observing the way in which your child engages with other people and their environment and will notice how your child explores patterns of repeated behaviour in their play – called Schemas, which are central to young children’s learning and development. We have an open door policy which means you can speak to your child’s Key Person at drop off and collection times where possible.
Formally we have three ‘open’ parent consultations per academic year, a chance to talk more extensively about your child’s progress with us, this includes a written assessment.
If your child is having a greater difficulty in learning than their peers or has a disability that hinders their learning, such as Autism, we will put in place targeted or personalised plan support, we will meet with you to set achievable targets for your child to achieve. The Key Person or adult supporting them will work on these targets, which are reviewed every 6-8 weeks.
3) How will the setting adapt the EYFS framework for my child's needs?
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum provides a framework for practitioners working with individual children from birth to five years old, which is differentiated to meet the needs of your child. This ensures that whatever age and stage of development your child may be at, they will be fully included, in order that they can strive to reach their full potential. This may include adaptations to the environment or targeted or personalised support as explained in question 2. The Key Person will differentiate the learning for an activity to ensure that your child’s preferences and age and stage of development is taken into account to enable them to make progress and enjoy learning through play. Every child is unique, for example a hand painting activity could be adapted for the child that hates messy play, to include different tools so that they do not have to get their hands messy. A child that is obsessed with water play, could be encouraged to learn by using water as their interest, but bringing the learning into it, such as fishing numbers or letters. These are just two examples, but differentiation is key to a child’s learning, adjusting to their learning styles is important, are they a visual learner, do they like to ‘do’ or can they sit and listen and follow instructions. All of these factors will be considered when adapting the EYFS framework to meet your child’s needs.
4) What teaching strategies does the setting use for children with additional needs or learning difficulties?
Briary Preschool use a wide range of different teaching strategies and approaches to meet the needs of the individual child. Experienced and skilled staff have undertaken specific training tailored to meet the needs of an individual child. The SENCo oversees the implementation of support for individual children with additional needs or learning difficulties and will identify training that may enhance your child’s learning.
Teaching strategies that have been used for children with additional needs or learning difficulties include:
· British Sign Language
· Visual Support
· Sensory Circuits for children with sensory processing difficulties
· Intensive Interaction
· Adult and child Interaction – Speech and Language Training
· Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)
· The ‘TEACCH’ Approach
· Individual Planning
· SENCO Training and liaison
· Individual and small group speech and language support
· Calm/quiet spaces
· Achievable targets
· Portage Liaison
· Pastoral support
5) What additional support does the setting provide for children with additional needs or SEND?
Carol is our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) and her role is to co-ordinate the support for your child in the preschool. Carol will liaise and work closely with you and your Key Person to ensure that your child’s needs are met and to provide advice and support to the family. Carol has worked at the preschool since 2006 and has a wealth of expertise and knowledge, guiding the support for your child in preschool and the transition to a mainstream or specialist placement in school.
Getting it right for your child is our main objective; we want them to be happy and enjoy preschool, feel nurtured, grow in confidence and make progress in their learning and development. Every child is unique and is treated as individuals.
As an Early Years Provider we are able to access various sources of funding to enhance and support your child, if we agree that they would benefit from additional support at preschool. We are able to access support from the Specialist Teaching and Learning Service who can work with individual children to help the preschool to work on specific targets with the child. The funding currently available:
Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP)
This provides extra funding for 3 and 4 year old children whose parents are in receipt of certain benefits or who have been in care or adopted from care. It provides an extra £302 a year for the preschool for any child receiving 15 hours of the Early Education Entitlement. It can be used to support children’s school readiness and is particularly useful for children who have a development delay or SEN need or disability, to purchase resources to enhance their learning. We have used EYPP to fund day trips for disadvantaged individuals and to provide an in house animal encounter and resources tailored to an individual child.
Disability Access Fund (DAF)
The DAF is additional funding (£615 per child per year) for funded 3 and 4 year olds who are also in receipt of child Disability Living Allowance. The DAF supports us to make reasonable adjustments to our provision and can also be used for specific training or to fund additional adult support for that child.
Special Educational Needs Inclusion Fund (SENIF)
SENIF enables us to support and enhance the provision for our funded SEN children and secure better outcomes for them. For example, a child with sensory processing difficulties may benefit from taking part in a daily sensory circuit supported by a skilled adult. A child with speech, language and communication difficulties may benefit from structured language sessions each day to work on targets set by the Speech and Language Therapist. Every SENIF application is different and is tailored to address the needs of the child. We can apply for SENIF with parental consent, our SENCo Carol will guide your through the process in supporting the application.
6) How will the setting monitor my child's progress and how I will be involved in this?
The Management and SEN team work closely with your child’s Key Person to monitor the on-going assessment of your child’s progress, learning and development, tracking data three times a year at the end of Term 2 (Oct/Nov), Term 4 (Feb/Mar) and Term 6 (June/July). Your Key Person will produce a report called ‘My Unique Progress’ which summarises your child’s progress over the seven areas of learning outlined in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum. This system of monitoring and tracking ensures that any risk of delay in one or more areas of learning, is picked up at an early stage.
We operate an online learning journey for your child, called Tapestry. You will be provided with a unique pin number to access the learning journey which can be shared with two family members as well. You will be able to contribute to your child’s learning journey, upload photographs and comments if you wish of days out or special times with your family. The learning journey is fully interactive and allows you to view every observation and photograph made by your Key Person and the age and stage of development your child is at. The learning journey can be accessed on a smartphone or tablet as well and is great for working parents.
If we have identified that your child may be at a risk of delay or may need additional support, your Key Person will talk to Carol our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) to discuss what we can do to improve outcomes for your child. Carol will arrange a convenient time to talk to you with your child’s Key Person to discuss any concerns you might have. Please do not be alarmed or worried, we just want the best for your child and sometimes they may need a little support during their journey with us.
7) How do you ensure children with additional needs or SEND can be included in the same activities as other children, including trips?
We are a fully inclusive provision and strive to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that every child is able to access the same activities, opportunities and outings that are open to all children. Every child is unique and is treated as such.
Each year we plan an outing, which usually involves coach travel. We have enjoyed welcoming children with Autism, cerebral palsy, hearing impairment and Down’s syndrome to enjoy a lovely day out with their family and friends. Prior to the trip our Health and Safety Officer will visit the venue and make a full and detailed risk assessment which can be shared with parents. The risk assessment will assess the accessibility and suitableness for children in our care.
8) How accessible is the building for children with mobility difficulties/wheelchair access?
Our preschool is situated in the grounds of Briary Primary School, which has a disabled bay for blue badge holders dropping off and collecting children. We are situated in a lovely log cabin to the rear of the car park. All of our entrances, exits and internal doors are wheelchair accessible, accessed by ramps with handrails in and out of the building. There are no steps. The building boasts hard wooden floors throughout with no door frame trip hazards. We have a fully accessible disabled toilet, with mobility aids and a pull string alarm for emergency assistance required, we have changing facilities.
9) How will you support my child's transition to a new setting or school?
Briary Preschool has a robust transition plan with excellent collaborations in place, ensuring that your child’s transition to mainstream or specialist school is a smooth one.
As part of the Coastal Alliance we meet with all of the local schools and teachers are invited to come in and meet your child in the preschool environment as part of their transition plan. For children with SEN or additional needs, Carol our SENCo will organise an individual transition meeting with the school SENCo, class teacher and yourself, to discuss the support that your child has had at preschool, their level of learning and development and how best they can support your child in school, including any additional funding that may be required.
For children who are transitioning to Briary Primary School, we work closely with the Early Years Department who allow us to take your child for accompanied short visits to their new classroom during July. We try and make a minimum of 3 visits and during the visit we will show them the layout of the school and important areas such as the toilets in the classroom, the coat pegs, dining hall and PE area. This has greatly reduced any anxieties for the child and the teachers have commented how settled the children are in September who have made these visits.
All children are issued with a short social story on their new school. Children with SEND or additional needs will have a more detailed social story on their new school to help them prepare during the summer break.
During Term 6 we focus on school readiness in the preschool environment:
· School uniform dressing up role play
· Stories on going to school
· Weekly PE sessions, getting them use to changing out of their uniform into a PE kit
· Teacher visits.
For children transitioning to Briary Primary School, we finance a school dinner experience during July, so that your child can experience having a school dinner in the dining hall. Children are accompanied by their Key Person and preschool staff, who sit with them during the meal. They collect their own meal on a tray, take it to the table to eat it and then help to clear away the plates. Children have loved this and we are now in our third year of providing this experience.
With parental permission we also pass on to school a report called ‘My Unique Progress’ which charts your child’s learning and development progress with us since they joined and includes their likes and dislikes, any allergies or medical information and information about any additional support they may need.
10) We assess the overall effectiveness of our SEN provision in a range of ways:
· Through parent consultations/evaluations- your opinions really count!
· Through an annual monitoring visit from a Special Educational Needs Monitoring Officer from KCC to inspect the preschool and how we support children with SEND and additional needs. They look at the overall impact any funding has had on enhancing outcomes for individual children.
· Through the Specialist Teaching and Learning Service who support individual children accessing SENIF funding (please see Q.7)
· We have a weekly staff meeting to discuss any concerns about individual children.
· Our SENCo and SEN staff attend regular updates and attend a SENCo forum meeting once a term.
· Training and Development – all staff access training relevant to their role to support and enhance children’s learning and development.
11) Please contact Briary Preschool on Telephone Number 01227 742050 or email us at email@example.com. Our staff will be happy to send you a registration form, in the post or via email or please feel free to drop in and pick up a form, you could arrange to have a look round at the same time. Our Managers will be happy to give you a guided tour and answer any questions you may have.
12) We hold three formal parental consultations where any feedback can be shared, we usually have a parent questionnaire available and a comments book – ‘How well are we doing?’
More importantly, we have an open door policy where you can make an appointment at any time to discuss any matters with your child’s Key Person. You can ask to speak to our Management Team if you would like to talk confidentially about any matter. Our SENCo is available to support and guide you. Please remember that we are here for you as well as your child. Sometimes you just need a listening ear and a reassuring chat.
You can access our complaints policy in the parent pack that you were given when your child started with us, or you can view it on our notice board.
We would love you to become part of our preschool family and join our friendly committee, to help shape the future of our preschool, as a charity committee run preschool, legally we have to have parents as part of the committee. This means attending a meeting usually three times a year. It sounds daunting but really it isn’t and we would love you to get involved. Please talk to us to find out more.
We also have a fundraising committee as part of collaboration with Briary Primary School, called ‘Friends of Briary’; we are always looking for volunteers to help out with organising or running events with us. You may have some great ideas and hidden talents; we would love your support as we are reliant on the funds we receive from fundraising.
We also run regular Parent coffee mornings where you can drop in for a chat, we usually have a theme and try and arrange for a health visitor or professional to pop along too to share information. Last year we held coffee mornings on phonics, literacy skills, fussy eaters, toilet training and speech and language.