Please note that due to restrictions in place to combat the spread of coronavirus, we have had to make some adjustments to our normal procedures for welcoming new children to Pippins.
We would like to reassure parents that we won’t socially distance from children where it would cause them distress. Staff will do things slightly differently – for example, they will stand to the side of children more (rather than face-to-face), or they will sit on adult chairs to read a story (rather than sitting on the floor together). But if a child needs comforting, staff won’t hesitate to pick them up, if that’s what the child needs. The wellbeing of all our children is our number one concern – and that includes making sure they are comfortable, happy and having fun!
We have not been able to hold an Open Day this year, but we have worked hard to ensure our website is up-to-date with lots of photos and information about Pippins. We have also put together a Pippins Photo Book, called ‘Pippin the Bear Goes to Preschool,’ to help little ones get a sneak peek at our preschool and gain an understanding of what they can expect on their first day.
In place of our normal Home Visits, we are offering all families a Doorstep Visit, where two senior staff members will come to your front door or garden in their Pippins uniform to greet your child and go through the Pippins Photo Book with them. This will be followed up with a Zoom meeting, to allow you to ask any questions you may have about starting at Pippins.
The Department for Education has made it clear that we should avoid anyone besides regular staff members coming into the Pippins building. Unfortunately, that includes parents and carers. Therefore, we have had to adjust our Drop off & Collection procedures accordingly.
We understand that some children may find it difficult to say goodbye, and that’s perfectly normal. A member of staff will look after them, pick them up if need be, and take them into Pippins and help them settle. We know that this is hard on parents too! We’ll call you to let you know how they’ve settled, and if it looks like they’re just not going to settle, we will call and ask you to come and collect your child. If needed, we can work with you to implement strategies to help your child settle. Pippins staff are very experienced in supporting children to settle into a new environment.
This is a process that all children will experience at some point and, as each child’s needs are different, we will adapt our strategies to meet their individual needs. We have allocated extra staff for this time, so that children can get the support they need. We have been using similar drop off and collection procedures since the March lockdown, and the children have taken to it very well. We are ready to provide support for children if they need extra help, and we’ll of course keep you informed.
It is the intention of Pippins Preschool to provide a safe, secure and caring environment. Children and their families will be treated individually when planning admission to preschool.
We understand that starting preschool can be an unsettling time for both parents and children and should not be rushed. Therefore, we do not have a specific procedure to follow, as each child’s needs are treated individually.
Some children may settle straight away and can be left almost immediately, especially if they have experienced their siblings attending an Early Years setting or are used to being left without their main carers. Others may take some time to become comfortable.
New parents will be invited to attend a summer open day with their children to meet the staff, familiarise themselves with the setting and meet other parents and children. You and your child may also attend any session leading up to starting preschool to help with settling in.
Pippins is pleased to offer new families the opportunity to receive a Home Visit prior to children starting at preschool to help with the transition and settling in period. This will enable us to start building a relationship with you and your child and give us an opportunity to explain the settling in process and daily routine at Pippins. You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions, discuss any concerns or anxieties you may have, and share any personal information which will help us to meet your child’s needs.
On the first day we ask that you be prepared to stay for the whole session if needed, or for at least part of it. The Preschool Manager or your child’s key worker will help guide you as to how things are going. During the initial few weeks following we usually find that staying for the first half an hour and returning for the last half an hour works quite well and allows the time to pass quickly during the period of adjustment.
When the time comes to say goodbye, it is better to give a positive and cheerful farewell, passing on positive vibes to the child and making them feel secure. We don’t recommend sneaking off while they are not looking and specifically ask that parents/carers do not do this.
Pippins’ staff are sympathetic to the needs of you and your child during the settling in period, and we would always telephone if we thought your child was in distress and not showing signs of settling in.
The full transition & settling in policy wording can be viewed below.
|Transition & Settling In Policy|