At Young Friends we firmly believe that children benefit most from Early Years Education and care when parents/carers and daycare settings work together as a cooperative partnership. The importance of parental partnership cannot be understated. With the support of our children’s families, we are able to provide a link between children’s nursery and home lives which in turn further promotes positive outcomes for children.
The Young Friends aim is to:
Support parents as their children’s first and most important educators. Involve parents in Nursery life and their children’s education as much as possible.
Support parents in their own continuing education and personal development with regard to striving for the best possible outcomes for their children.
At Young Friends we have a warm and welcoming open door policy. Our parents/carers are very aware that they are always welcome in the Nursery. They are supported if they wish to stay for a while to see what their children experience whilst in our care, ask questions, get to know the team, and talk about and look at what their children have done. Ultimately we recognise the vital role that parents/carers play in the development of their children and treat them with the total respect that they deserve.
- PARENT PORTAL – The parent portal provides families with direct links to all of our policies and procedures. Through the portal, Young Friends families have exclusive, password restricted access to videos and weekly updates, our events calendar, nursery song links, recipes, and much more.
- SOCIALS – We have two large annual events: Christmas mulled wine evening and the summer bbq/sports day. These events are a time for parents and staff to come together in a relaxed environment and build relationships with all of our families here at Young Friends Nursery and Nature School.
- PARENTS’ CONSULTATIONS – Every term (3x), we run a parents’ afternoon wheN families spend 10-15mins with their child’s key person and discuss how they are developing. Staff share a summative assessment of their child’s progress with parents as well as a report detailing the next steps they will be working towards with the children.
- TAPESTRY – Tapestry is an online journal system with restricted access to staff and parents only. Initial login details are provided during settling sessions. Staff upload observations in the form of notes, pictures, and/or videos. The observations generate an email alert to parents, who then use their unique password to login and view their child’s observation.
- SOCIAL NETWORKING – Young Friends has Facebook, Instagram and Twitter profiles, sharing current nursery news, photo updates, and providing another point of contact for both current and prospective families. The team have equal ownership of our Instagram feeds so they can post all sorts of pictures of what they are doing any time. Please follow us!
- INFORMATION BOARDS – We keep a daily record of details of children’s ‘vital statistics’- what they have eaten, when nappies were changed, when they had milk,exact times they have slept etc. on the daily registers for each group. Parents are encouraged to look at these when they pick their children up
- QUALITY OBSERVATIONS – We make regular quality observations of each child which inform individual planning in accordance with the Revised EYFS. We do our first detailed observation as soon as they have settled and this forms a starting point for all of their individual planning. Parents are really welcome to see and discuss these observations on their children whenever they wish.
- QUALIFIED TEAM – The team at Young Friends is made up of qualified and really friendly people. They are always ready and willing to arrange meetings with parents – formal or informal whenever they wish/is convenient for both parties.
- QUALITY FEEDBACK – Young Friends prides itself on giving excellent quality feedback to parents after each and every session. The general ‘what they got up to’ stuff is posted on Tapestry to leave more time for individual feedback for each child. We train all our team regarding this when they first arrive. We feel this is an intrinsic part of the individual care that we offer. We also believe that this cooperation between parents/carers and Nursery staff stems happy, secure children that are willing and keen to take risks and therefore maximize their learning.
- REGISTRATION INFORMATION – We provide information on registration regarding all aspects of our care. We provide a detailed leaflet for joiners which points you exactly to where to find all the information you will need during your time with us.
- DIGITAL PHOTO SCREENS – The hallway has a photographic displas in the lobby updated regularly so parents/carers can see what their little monkey’s have been up to at places that they don’t see much in the flesh – like all of our Nature Kids experiences (the beach, allotment and sports sessions) etc.
- PARENT NOTICEBOARD – There is a regularly updated parent noticeboard on the way into the nursery with upcoming events, the current menu and other interesting and important information.
- CHILD ILLNESS AND WELL-BEING – With all of this communication coming from our direction we expect the same from our families in order to best meet the needs of all of our children. Families should understand that we will keep them posted if their child is simply not happy or having a really off day because of being either under the weather’ or upset about something in particular. We are hear to ensure the children are happy and if this is just not possible at the setting we will ask for them to be picked up – not because we don’t want them but because we want them to be having a nice time. Being at nursery and not enjoying it has a negative impact in the long run and we want all children to think of nursery in a positive light. Our families tell us when there are changes in family circumstance or an unfortunate loss or equally important something happy like a new baby or new pet – this helps us provide for the children and understand their needs.
- PLEASE COME IN – We welcome our parents into the nursery to see how the nursery day runs and what kind of things their children are doing. This year we have set aside a couple of weeks when parents can book times where they can come and observe their child’s group. This is a lovely way of families really getting to know what goes on in real nursery life!
- FAMILY INPUT PLEASE – We do many activities where parents are asked for their input. For example this year we are putting on various themed weeks that parents can, and do, get involved with. We are having a ‘When I grow up’ week and also ‘Around the World Week’. Our most recent recent ‘Around The World Week’ was an absolute smash. Pretty much all of our parents with other cultures in their families got involved and came in and did something e.g. reading stories in other languages, cooking food from other countries, dancing and much more it was just amazing. We have also done a ‘Science and Nature Week’, a ‘Health and Well-being Week’ and an ‘Eco Week’and we had many suggestions and offers of help from our wonderful helpful parents and carers who just love to get involved.
- We welcome suggestions from our parents and carers through this site, emails and verbally too. We post recent suggestions and actions in the parent portal and also put them up in the parent lobby so our families know they are being listened to.
- We carry out termly questionnaires which we record to see what is successful and what we can work on. We have recently moved to ‘Survey Monkey’ which we are hoping will prove to be an efficient way of gauging our families views and how we can improve.
- We ask for parents to write suggestions for ‘Team Member of the Month’ and compliments and comments’ by writing on the provided paper in the hall and popping them into our box. We announce these with prizes during our monthly team meetings.
- We have list of staff training sessions in the hall and we also put them onto our events calendar so parents and carers can keep on top of staff development that we provide.
- We have a board in the lobby that shows our parents and carers who is with their children every day. It is updated each morning according to who is in, off, at training etc. It’s important they/you know who is with their little ones!