Stoke Primary School
Nursery Admissions and Induction Policy
Date reviewed by Governors
Date of next Review
Organisation - Changed times of sessions
Admissions - Changed 'Foundation Stage Leader to
Special Educational Needs - Changed 'School Education Officer (SEN) to
'Deputy Head Teacher'
LA Model Adopted
It is essential that nursery admissions are based on sound educational and administrative principles. This is particularly important in areas of the City where the demand for nursery places may exceed the provision available.
This policy is based on guidance published by Coventry City Council in 2012. Governors are asked to take this guidance into account when formulating their nursery admission policies. It is the Governors' responsibility to oversee the implementation of their nursery admission policies at school level. If required, Headteachers are asked to provide the Director of Children's Services with an up-to-date version of the school's Nursery Admissions Policy.
Although the Nursery Admissions Appeals process is not statutory, it follows advice from the Admissions Ombudsman on good practice in Nursery Admissions. It was approved by the City Council following consultation with Headteachers and Governors and approved by the Admissions Forum as guidance to schools.
Under the Schools Standards and Framework Act 1998, the Local Education Authority has to consult schools at least once a year on its overall admissions arrangements. The guidance on nursery admissions will therefore be reviewed each year in light of any changes in government guidelines and/or legislation. Under these arrangements the Authority reserves the right to discuss with individual Governing Bodies aspects of their admissions policy and its operation in practice.
Stoke Primary School Nursery has places for 26 children per 3 hour session. Morning sessions run from 8.30am until 11.30am and afternoon sessions from 12.30pm until 3.30pm. Children are expected to attend for all 5 sessions and to attend for the full 3 hours following an initial settling in period as required. The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum is followed.
A child may only have a place at one LA nursery. Where a child also attends a Private, Voluntary or Independent (PVI) sector setting, the child is not eligible for Nursery Education Funding in that setting as they have taken up their full entitlement (currently 15 hours per week) in our school nursery.
The criteria for allocating nursery places to children who live within the boundary of Coventry LA are for individual Governing Bodies to determine. They should be reasonable and non-discriminatory. They must not be on the basis of which school children are likely to attend after the age of 4, nor on the basis of their faith or denomination.
Consideration should also be given to the needs of transient children. Where there are more applications for a place in the nursery than the admission limit, places should be offered in accordance with an agreed criteria.
Parents can request a place for their child in our nursery at any time. They are asked to fill in a form giving details of their child’s name, address, date of birth, contact telephone numbers, information about siblings and preferred session. They are reminded that should their contact details change we will need to be informed. The information is entered onto a spread sheet by the office staff. The information is treated as confidential and kept in accordance with the Data Protection Act.
Children are admitted to nursery in the September following their 3rd birthday. If there are more applications than places then places are allocated in accordance with the priorities listed below. If places become available during the year these will be offered, following the same criteria, to children of nursery age, who either did not get in under the initial allocation, or who have moved into the area.
The Assistant Headteacher and another member of staff nursery teacher and Foundation Stage leader go through the spread sheet in March or after the Easter break and allocate places using the following criteria.
Parents are contacted by letter to check whether they still require a place and to invite them to visit the Nursery. A letter of confirmation will be given out during the visit and it will include an acceptance form, which must be returned by a given date in order to secure the place. Details of the Parents meeting held in the summer term and transition visits also included in this letter. If there is no response by the given date, the child’s name is removed from the list.
Following this process, those parents whose application has been unsuccessful will be informed. Their child’s name is kept on the waiting list and they are told that they can appeal in writing to the Chair of Governors should they wish to do so.
Parents whose children attend the nursery from outside the catchment area of the primary school are made aware that their child cannot be guaranteed a place at the school when s/he reaches school age i.e. the September following their 4th birthday. The following statement is included on the acceptance form which parents are required to sign.
A place at the nursery does not convey preference or priority for admission to the school to which the nursery is attached.
Special Educational Needs
If a nursery child has severe and complex special educational needs, the Deputy Headteacher is made aware of the situation so that the individual needs of the child can be met effectively.
Appeals for Unsuccessful Applicants
Where a parent wishes to appeal against the decision, this should be done
in writing to the Chair of Governors.
The Chair should convene a meeting of an appeals sub-committee (the panel to made up of 3 Governors who were not involved in the original decision of allocating nursery places), to act as the appeals panel.
The sub-committee must consider the parent’s appeal and determine whether or not the child is offered a place at the nursery.
The response should clearly demonstrate how the criterion have been applied, state the outcome, and how that outcome was reached.
A response should be made to the parent within 15 school days.
Headteachers and Governing bodies should be aware of the admission limit of the nursery and the consequences of not adhering to it in the event of a parent choosing to challenge the number of children on roll.
Detailed records of how each application is assessed should be retained in order that a consistent approach to the admissions process can be evidenced. The records may also be referred to should a parent appeal against the decision.
These details should be:
- Names of children listed in priority order.
- Place allocated (yes/no).
- Referenced to the criteria.
A parents’ meeting is held in the summer term during which information about the nursery and school is shared with parents. Uniforms and book bags are displayed. Letters giving home visit times and start dates are given out.
Parents are asked to bring their child’s birth certificate, parent ID and address confirmation details (to be copied and kept on file) to the meeting. At the meeting, parents are asked to complete the admission forms. Information is sent to those parents who cannot attend.
Children and parents are invited to come into the nursery for a stay and play session during transition day in July. This gives them an opportunity to meet staff and familiarise themselves with the nursery environment.
Nursery staff will conduct home visits (2 members of staff per visit) in September. Parents, together with Nursery Staff will complete the Nursery home visit form and will be asked to provide any missing information on the admission forms. The importance of regular attendance is emphasised.
Children start nursery in groups during the last weeks of September.