Page 10 - Worthing Lifestyle Jul:Aug 2019
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  CHOOSING THE RIGHT NURSERY
Choosing the right nursery for you and your child is a daunting experience. It is vital that both of you are happy and confident with your choice of nursery to help ensure a positive early years experience.
Here are some frequently asked questions to help make the process of choosing a nursery easier.
How can I find nurseries in my local area?
There are a number of ways to search nurseries in areas local to you or your workplace/place of study including:
Local authority website - your local authority website will give details of nurseries in your area.
NDNA website - you can find nurseries who are NDNA members in your area.
Netmums - The Netmums website offers a tool to search for local nurseries.
The opinion of others - speak to other parents in your local area and use social media.
Visit more than one nursery before making a decision as important as this one. Doing this will allow you to see the range of nurseries available, some will suit yours and your child’s needs more than others.
What should I do to prepare before my visit?
It is important to know what questions to ask, what you should be looking for and the legal requirements a nursery should be following. If they have a website, brochure or prospectus, this can help you prepare questions and find what you need to know. You may also benefit from accessing their Ofsted inspection and complaints page to find out more.
What should I look out for when I visit?
Be sure to note your first impressions when you arrive for your visit and ask yourself questions such as:
Are there dedicated parking spaces, or somewhere you can pull in easily to take your child out safely?
How does the nursery handle their entry system?
Were they welcoming and polite?
Is the nursery clean and friendly and does it feel safe?
Are the children playing happily and are they engaged in their activities?
Are staff supporting children’s emotional and care needs?
Do the staff appear to be confident and caring?
Remember, you need to be fully confident about this decision so ask lots of questions. High quality nurseries will expect you to ask questions and respect your need to query their practice.
What are some potential achievements I can look out for?
Nurseries can achieve a variety of professional standards or awards which show their commitment to quality improvement. These can include Millie’s Mark, an accredited paediatric first aid mark that shows all
staff within the setting are paediatric first
aid trained and Champions programmes which show dedication to Maths, Literacy or SEND. There is also NDNA’S Quality Counts and e-Quality Counts mark which shows dedication to quality care.
Check their Food Standard Agency rating, this will show the cleanliness of food preparation areas. Five out of five is the highest rating.
Check if they are members of any professional organisations such as NDNA, organisations help them keep up to date with current issues, information and resources.
How should I make my final decision?
If you ask all the same questions in each nursery you visit, it will be easier to compare them afterwards. Make notes after each visit if you feel you may forget any specific or important details. You can refer to these later to help you make an informed decision.
If you have any reservations about any of
the nurseries you’ve visited, look elsewhere.
If you leave the nursery and have further questions, any good nursery will be happy to answer them over the phone, or welcome you for another visit.
How can I find out more about choosing a nursery?
For further information on choosing a nursery such as important questions to ask, information about staff ratios and the early years foundation stage (EYFS) and much more, visit www.ndna.org.uk and download the parent factsheet.
National Day Nurseries Association
Brighter thinking for early years
www.ndna.org.uk
Follow them on:
Facebook: ndna.org.uk
Twitter: NDNATalk
YouTube: NDNAUK
LinkedIn: National Day Nurseries Association
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