We are a community group, owned and run by the parents of the children attending the Playgroup and the staff. At our Annual General Meeting a committee is elected to administer and be responsible for the policies of the Playgroup but we love all parents to be involved and appreciate your ideas and help.
We belong to ‘The Pre-School Learning Alliance’ and Ofsted regularly inspects the Playgroup against the day care and nursery education standards. We run a key person scheme according to the Early Years Foundation Stage framework and rely on a close relationship between parents and staff. We are a friendly bunch so please approach us with any questions.
We are proud to say that we received a ‘good’ in all areas in our latest Ofsted inspection. You can see the report on our page on the Ofsted website or you can download a PDF of the report directly here - CPG_Ofsted_Report_Oct2012
We continually refresh our policies and procedures in order to maintain our operational systems; these are always available for review by parents – please ask a member of staff.
There is a regular newsletter for parents to keep you abreast of the activities we have planned every term and any news. Your child’s key person will also write a daily diary for you to take home and you are also welcome to see your child’s confidential assessment file at any time. We encourage you to read this and have a general chat with your child’s key person three times a year.
Sue Colston (NVQ level 4) is our qualified play leader. In addition we have two assistants, Sam Newman and Jackie Beacham (both NVQ Level 3). Su Appleton is currently training for level 3 CYPW.
Playgroup follows the Oxfordshire profile scheme and has a three-year cycle of educational themes. This scheme provides a continuum for children from the age of three to reception year. The play leader/staff produce session plans on a termly basis based on the individual requirements of your children and these will be displayed on the notice board in advance.
The play in each session is intended to focus on the following areas:
- Personal, social and emotional development
- Communication, language and literacy
- Problem solving, Reasoning and Numeracy
- Knowledge and understanding of the world
- Physical development
- Creative development
These areas of development are known as the Early Learning Goals.
A record of your child’s achievements, including photographic evidence, is kept by your child’s key person.
A book library is available for the children to borrow books on a weekly basis.
Old clothes are best for playing in but we do provide aprons for messy activities. Please provide your child with indoor and outdoor footwear, or wellies if it is wet or muddy! Chadlington Playgroup t-shirts, sporting our Chadlington Playgroup logo, are available to buy. Please ask a member of staff.
Children do not have to be toilet-trained before starting Playgroup. Please provide nappies and wipes for your children if necessary and explain any particular changing routines you have to your key person.
We would ask you not to arrive earlier than the entrance time as the play leader is busy preparing. Please also collect promptly at pick up time as children can get anxious if left waiting. If you cannot come yourself, please let us know who will come by informing the play leader and having this information written on the white wipe board in Playgroup.
Once your child has started Playgroup we encourage and welcome your comments on how the Playgroup is run. Should you wish to make a complaint a committee or staff member will help you through the procedure in confidence. Please note that committee meetings are open to all parents and your contribution would be gratefully received.
Closures in the event of bad weather
During the winter months it may on occasion be necessary to close Chadlington Playgroup due to severe weather conditions which might cause hazardous conditions for children. We will follow the principle that if Chadlington Primary School is closed due to bad weather, Chadlington Playgroup will also be closed that day.
Please check the Chadlington school website for details of closures. We will also try and put announcements about any closures on our Facebook page
You can also get closure information from the radio - in particular BBC RADIO OXFORD (95.2FM), HEART FM (102.6 or 97.4FM) or JACK FM 106.8 FM will normally broadcase a list of closures. If Chadlington School is not mentioned when the broadcaster reads the list of schools closed, keep listening, as the list is constantly being updated, but you should know by 8.30 am at the latest.
Fees - Policy for Parents/Carers
The fees are £11.25 for the morning session and an additional £3.75 for the lunch session. These are to be paid whether your child attends the session or not, unless under special circumstances and agreed by the Committee.
If at any time you wish to discuss your payment arrangements, or your child will be absent for an extended length of time, i.e. due to illness, please let us know and we will try and accommodate.
An invoice will be issued at the beginning of each 6/7 week term and should normally be paid by the end of that term. Cheques should be made payable to 'Chadlington Playgroup’ and direct transfers made to account no: 41820907 Sort Code: 09-01-55. Please include the child’s name as a reference.
Fees can be paid weekly, or in one complete payment.
In cases of financial hardship, where the parent has, or foresees, problems with payment the parent should submit a written request to the Chair. This will be treated as confidential. Each case will be considered individually and Playgroup reserves the right to waive or reduce fees as appropriate.
Typically in cases where the family meets the criteria for free school meals, reduced fees would be offered at a rate of £7.50/£2.50 for the main session and lunch club respectively. However, subsidised places may be limited each year depending on the Playgroup budget, and the funding sources available to Playgroup.
Late and unpaid fees
A parent or carer having problems with payment should contact the staff or the Chair at the earliest opportunity. This will be dealt with in the strictest confidence. Playgroup is able to be flexible and make arrangements regarding fees. Therefore please contact us if you are experiencing difficulties in paying fees.
If payments are persistently late or unpaid after discussion and agreement with Playgroup as to a way forward, then regrettably Playgroup will no longer be able to maintain the child’s place. Parents will be given reminder letters for late fees and written notification if the child’s place is to be withdrawn.
Health and Safety
In the case of an accident all of the staff are named first aiders. The first aid kit is kept in the Playgroup cupboard under the sink in the ladies’ toilet. Please familiarise yourself as to where the first aid box is kept especially if you are acting as a parent helper.
A fire drill takes place every term. Our premises have been passed as safe by the Fire Prevention Officer, and have two fire exits. Please keep all fire exits clear.
In the case of a serious accident the staff will summon the appropriate emergency services and take what they believe to be the best course of action. We will explain the situation to the children and what course of action is being taken.
In the event of a child needing an ambulance a member of staff will accompany the child to hospital. Parents will be contacted as soon as possible.
If you feel your child is not completely healthy then please do not bring them to Playgroup. It is important that you do not bring children with any infectious disease such as chicken pox or German measles. In the case of sickness bugs please do not bring your child to Playgroup within 24 hours of the last episode. If you have done so unwittingly please could you inform the play leader as soon as possible.
If there are any changes to either your child’s medical details or your contact details as given on the registration form could you please inform the play leader.
Children sometimes tend to run around the large room. We discourage this because of the risk of accidents. However, children have the opportunity to run around during the daily outside play session.
Behaviour Management Policy
We try to provide a positive model for desirable behaviour so that all children know what is expected of them and are free to develop their play and learning in a safe environment. In case of misbehaviour, the playgroup leader will explain to the child that the behaviour is unacceptable and encourage more appropriate behaviour. The use of any sanction will take into account the child’s stage of development and will be reported to the parent at the end of the session.
Playgroup offers children the opportunity to learn and develop social skills - with gentle guidance and a few consistently applied rules, acceptable behaviour can be achieved by every child.
We ask that all parents/carers park on the Church Road verge at the bottom of the Bowls Club and walk up the path to playgroup. It is vital that we do not block Green Lane at drop off and pick up as residents must have access at all times. During very wet weather the verge on Church Road becomes very muddy, but please only use the Green Lane verge if absolutely necessary and please be considerate towards our neighbours when parking or waiting, even if it is only for a very short period.
Tax Credit & Childcare Voucher Schemes
There are two main ways of getting help towards paying for registered and approved childcare, these are:
- Working tax credit scheme
- Childcare voucher schemes
Working Tax Credit
If you work at least 16 hours/week, Working Tax Credit can top up your earnings and help with the cost of childcare. If you have a partner, they must also work at least 16 hours/week or receive a qualifying benefit to get help with childcare costs. Tax Credits are based on your family income, and will not take account of child maintenance paid to you.
You can get 70 % of your childcare costs paid for, up to a maximum weekly amount of:
- £122.50 a week for one child; or
- £210 a week for two or more children.
This childcare payment will be made to the person who is the main carer.
You cannot use tax credits and childcare vouchers for the same childcare.
To apply for tax credits or enquire, contact HM Revenue and Customs. You can contact them by phone - 0845 300 3900 (8am-8pm Monday to Friday, 8am-4pm Saturday), or you can visit their website at www.hmrc.gov.uk
Childcare Voucher Scheme
Childcare vouchers are one of the ways in which employers can help their employees with the cost of childcare.
For the employee, National Insurance contributions and tax do not apply to the first:
- £55 a week for basic rate taxpayers. The saving will be up to £933 a year
- £28 a week for the higher rate taxpayer. The saving will be £623 a year
- £22 a week for the additional rate taxpayer. The saving will be £606 a year
Each employed parent can claim these exemptions, so you could receive twice the saving.
Childcare vouchers can affect the amount of tax credits you are entitled to. You should always balance the savings of vouchers against the tax credit payments.
NB. Ask your employer how signing up to a voucher scheme will affect your pension or other employee benefits.