I am on the waiting list, when will I have a place? How long is the waiting list?
We cannot estimate before the current term’s deadline if we will have places available for next term.
This will depend on:
- the number of children who stay or leave our nursery at the end of December (for January admissions)
- the number of children who stay or leave our nursery at the end of April (for May admissions)
- the number of children who stay or leave our nursery at the end of August (for September admissions),
- whether existing parents request to reduce or increase their child’s number of days or to leave at the end of term
- the choices of other parents registered before you on the waiting list.
When we offer places, we contact all parents on the waiting list in order – irrespective of the number of days they have asked for – this allows us to give you the choice to accept the days, or keep waiting until we have the right combination of days for you.
We appreciate parents would like to know so they can make suitable arrangements. Sadly it is not possible for us to know at this stage if and when we can offer you a place.
We do not disclose the number of children on the waiting list as it is very misleading for parents.
The number is usually quite high and it incorrectly gives the impression that it is impossible to be offered a place. However, experience over the years has shown us that many parents on the waiting list postpone entrance to the nursery, accept places elsewhere, or move.
We often have times when a new parent joins at the end of a waiting list, but is the only one who will accept a specific offer we have for a place.
This seems unbelievable to us, but it has happened enough times for us to no longer try to give an estimated offer date.
We advise all parents on the waiting list to join waiting lists of other nurseries as well. As soon as we have more clarity on when we might have a place, we will contact you.
Can I start later, any time other than the start of term?
Once we have offered places for the first month of the term we will start offering places for the next month, if we have any left. We ask parents to commit to the entire term, starting at the beginning of term. However we are happy to delay this until your child is old enough to start the nursery.
If you wish to delay the start any further, we would first offer the place to other parents who are waiting for a place and you would be kept on the waiting list for a later start date. But we are unable to guarantee we will have any places left then.
When does my child start on his/her first day?
We allocate start times and days carefully, to ensure that a manageable number of children start at any one time. If the allocated day is not suitable please notify the manager as soon as possible. We will do our best to accommodate your needs, but we may not be able to match your 1st choice day as we have a maximum number of new children we allow to start on the same day.
You have asked me to come for and stay with my child for 2 hours during the settling in period and then for us to go home together. Can’t I stay longer?
Sadly not. We realise this might not be convenient for you, however, it is really important that the first few days are positive for your child. Experience has shown us that a short first day goes a long way towards ensuring the first day is a positive and that your child will want to return again.
On the second day, please remain available as we may ask you to do so again. We can’t stress how important the first week is. The initial effort really pays off.
Can you make an exception to the notice period?
We are really sorry not to be able to make exceptions to this.
Parents are liable for fees for the whole term (irrespective of whether the child starts, leaves or reduces the number of days, etc.):
- We must be notified 12 weeks before the end of term for any changes, otherwise parents are liable for the whole of the following term’s fees.
- Parents commit to paying until the end of term, even if their child leave mid-term. Our staff salaries, rent and other costs continue every month, and for this reason we are unable reduce the fees if you leave before the end of term.
We do try to go out of our way to communicate this to parents, by putting it on our offer letter & acceptance form, in the Parent Policy Booklet, brochure, Year Planner, and including it on our monthly direct debit notifications.
Can my child move up in the next class during the year/next year? (Les Trois Oursons only)
The change of class is made according to the movement in the other groups. We look at the ages of the children every summer, and then can see what age range each class will have. Sometimes children move up together a class in September, but sometimes they will have two years in the same room – it depends on the overall age profile of the children in the nursery.
If all the oldest children leave at the end of the year, then of course all the younger children will move up a class. However, if some/many older children stay, as the youngest may well do – then not all the younger children will be able to move up a class.
When does the fee change for a child when they are 3?
The local authority pays the Early Years Funding for up to 15 hours a week for term time periods only for children who are 3. Their stipulation is that the child must be three before a certain date (see table below), so if a child turns three during the term, the discounted rate will only start the following term.
The date the discounted fees will apply will depend on the date your child turns 3 years old:
|If your child turns 3||The fees will apply|
|Between 01 January and 31 March||From May|
|Between 01 April and 31 August||From September|
|Between 01 September and 31 December||From January|
Do you accept children who do not speak English and /or French?
We accept children who do not speak English or French and we work in close partnership with parents to ensure the child will feel confortable in this new environment.
We ask parents to give us as much information as they can about their child and their home routine and also to give us a few key words in their home language (e.g. food, sleep, play, garden, book etc.) so we can use them if needed to reassure the child is they are a bit distressed.
We do not necessarily expect your child will speak much English or French, but learning to understand is a big step in the right direction. And every child learns at their own pace so we do not expect a child to speak after a set given time.
We use the one-person one-language system. So you won’t find our French speaker using English or mixing words in sentences. We aim for the natural usage of language.
We also use gestures and signing (Basic British Sign Language) and visual resources for support such as photos and pictures to help the child make links and learn vocabulary.