Some parents are viewing nurseries for the very first time and are not sure what to ask staff, so we thought it would be helpful for you to have an idea of some key questions to ask for information you may not have found on the website.
1. What are your registration details?
Ofsted are our governing body and our registration number with them is shown on each nursery in the entrance hall
2. How do you ensure safe recruitment of staff?
Seesaws has an effective system of checking the suitability of staff or indeed anyone who has regular contact with our children. This includes a disclosing and barring service check DBS; this check investigates whether anyone has any convictions, cautions or court orders that might affect their suitability to work with children. Also, we check qualifications and experience with references from previous employers and a character reference. DBS are regularly updated for staff and staff also sign up for an update service which always keeps this check up to date. External visitors also have a DBS if they are in contact with the children.
3. Do you offer funded places for 2, 3- and 4-year olds?
Yes, we do and most nurseries with a Good or Outstanding Inspection Report do as well. Proof will be required for two-year-old funding and parents will have to complete forms for 3-year-old funding each term.
4. What do I need to provide for my child whilst they are at nursery?
A change of clothing, in case of accidents; change of shoes if needed, wellies, sun hat and sun cream, woolly hat, raincoat, scarf and gloves – all season and weather dependant. Comforter if needed and own cup or bottles and nappies if required.
5. Do you accept childcare vouchers?
We do accept all forms of vouchers, but some may need to be registered. You may need some information such as Ofsted registration numbers from us to enable you to set them up.
6. What is a key person, and will my child have one?
All our children have a key person, this is a member of staff within his/her room who will act as the main point of contact and will write observations and monitor your child’s development. The key person will change from room to room and will liaise with the previous key person every time a child moves to ensure continuity. The number of children a key person has will depend on the number of children and staff in each room.
7. How do I pay for childcare?
Seesaws has many ways of paying, including bank transfer BACS (preferred method), cash, cheque, vouchers, and standing orders or debit card payments. We invoice you in advance of the month with invoices going out before the end of the month. Full payment for the month must be received prior to the child attending. Weekly payments can be made if they are also paid in advance. Funding for those eligible (2-year-old and 3 years plus) will be taken off the invoice so you can see how this works.
Extra sessions will be invoiced separately and paid upon issue.
8. What do the fees include?
Fees include for 0-2-year olds, all food, formula milk, weaning products, and creams (not sun cream or prescribed cream), plus all resources and art and craft materials. All external visitors and any trips arranged outside the nursery are also included. For funded children at 15 hours all meals, trips and external visits and visitors are included as are resources and materials. For 30 hour funded children there will be an additional £1 Charge per hour - £30 in total to cover meals, visits, visitors, resources, and materials. Extra sessions will be charged at either a sessional or hourly rate dependent upon timing required.
9. Do you offer a discount to parents placing more than one child at Seesaws?
Yes we offer a 10% discount for the second and third children if a child attends for 6 sessions or more. We also offer all our Public Services – NHS, Fire Service, Ambulance staff and the Police a discount on bookings. Nursery Managers will have more details.
10. How do you ensure the safety of children in your care?
Nurseries are required to carry out regular risk assessments in every room, the communal areas, kitchen, laundry, and gardens. Checks are taken whenever children use the outside space, every time. Medication given is recorded as are accidents and all are reported immediately to parents.
11. How do you manage children’s behaviour?
Seesaws has a behavioural policy for parents to view. We use positive methods only such as distraction, positive praise, and reinforcement. Staff will work with parents on praise charts and achievement steps. No threats or corporal punishment would ever be used in any circumstance and no child will receive criticism in front of peers or others. Praise works well and self esteem of the child is extremely important. Behaviour issues can suggest underlying problems so we have a range of specialist advice we can call upon and all our staff receive behaviour management training.
12. What happens if I am late collecting my child?
Seesaws staff understand this can happen occasionally as some things are out of our control such as traffic, appointments running over, etc. If you are aware this is going to happen, i.e. if you are stuck in a queue of traffic, we ask you to let us know as soon as you can, or arrange for someone else to collect your child. If this becomes a regular problem, you will be charged at a premium rate for time the staff have to remain at nursery with your child.
13. My child is starting potty training. Can you help with this?
Seesaws staff will help in all areas of your child’s development and we liaise with you about how you are handling this at home. Staff will work with you and the child, taking things at the child’s pace. We use praise and reinforcement with reward charts and stickers to help a child progress. Staff will never be impatient with a child who has an accident as this could cause real delays and problems with self-esteem. Parents should provide extra clothes during this time and staff will rinse dirty clothes out and put them in a child’s bag.
14. If my child is sick in the night or has a temperature, but otherwise seems fine in the morning, should I bring them to nursery as normal?
Seesaws has a strict policy on exclusion periods for sickness, temperatures, and diarrhoea. Children with these symptoms must be away from nursery for 48 hours from the last symptom. As we are at present going through a Covid-19 pandemic, any child showing symptoms of the infection must be externally tested before returning to nursery and then only if the result is negative. Nursery managers will have more information for parents of how children will be looked after if they show signs of this disease.
Whilst these are only a few of the most regularly asked questions, our staff are very knowledgeable and will be able to answer all your questions as you go round for a viewing. To get the most out of a viewing, be prepared to spend up to an hour in the nursery. You will have an opportunity to see all the rooms and meet the staff as well as ask many questions. Often the manager or staff will have answered any questions you may have during the visit, but you are very welcome to visit more than once if you need extra help or support. Seesaws has an Open Door policy during normal working conditions, which means you can turn up at the door without an appointment as long as you are prepared to take us as you find us, i.e. lunchtimes or sleep times are usually very busy or a chance that you will not see everything in action. We do not mind if you do not. Under the restrictions of the Covid 19 policy, we ask that you book a viewing appointment for safety reasons and for less risk to both yourself and those in the nursery. There will be hand sanitisers and masks around the building for your safety.