AUTUMN 2014 NEWSLETTER
And so another school year begins.
There are lots of changes happening this term with two children starting nursery, one starting reception, two new children joining us and others moving up a year at school. It’s going to be busy!!
Our Facebook page Ilana Hill Childcare has proved very popular; I try to put pictures of things that we’ve done on there as often as possible, if you have any suggestions about what else I could put on please just let me know.
Our topics for this term are UNDER WATER and MUSIC. If you have any photographs, musical instruments or experiences that you would like to share or add to our notice board please bring them in.
I am about half way through my Quality Improvement Award through Surrey County Council. I have found it quite hard to fit the written work into my spare time. The second section of the QIA covered four aspects of the Every Child Matters outlines that we follow namely, being healthy (healthy eating, physical development, emotional wellbeing), staying safe (a secure environment, keeping children safe, health and safety legislation), enjoying and achieving (high quality environment both indoors and outdoors, doing effective observations and keeping records, characteristics of learning, forest schools, interaction between myself and the children) and making a positive contribution (children are valued and included, working with parents and other professionals, being involved in the community, support settling-in and transitions, managing behaviour).
There have been more legislative changes to childcare in England and Wales this year mainly to do with safeguarding and equal opportunities and the introduction of Childminding Agencies. For more information about Childminding Agencies please go to http://www.foundationyears.org.uk/child-minders/. At the moment it is not a government requirement that all childminders join an agency, we can choose to remain independent and be inspected by Ofsted individually. This is what I propose to do. I was due an Ofsted inspection in December 2013 but they are running behind their 3 year turnover and are putting off inspecting childminders who received a good or outstanding grade last time. I could be inspected any day now or it could take another 3 years but I will let you know if I hear anything.
Thank you to everyone who collected Sainsbury’s vouchers for us again this year. The children chose to get a pop up tent with holes in for football scoring and throwing beanbags into as well as a Velcro throwing and catching set. I’m not sure if Tescos are running their schools and clubs vouchers again. They haven’t since 2012 but please collect them for us if and when they begin.
We are still supporting Wildlife Aid (www.wildlifeaid.org.uk). We get a quarterly magazine from them which is usually on the snack bar table if you would like to borrow it or have a flick through to see the good work that they do in helping our local wild animals. And we sponsor Billy and Apples through The Dogs Trust. We also get a newsletter from them every quarter together with letters from Billy and Apples which the children love to read.
Every child is entitled to 15 hours free childcare from the term after their 3rd birthday. This can be split between different childcare providers such as nurseries and myself. I will advise when you are eligible to receive this funding but in the meantime if you’d like to find out more go to www.gov.uk/free-early-education.
As always, thank you for your being awesome parents. Here’s to another year of happy childminding xx