Choosing the right Nursery and Pre-School for your child is such an important decision, which is why we have compiled a list of FAQs to help answer those all-important questions. If you have any more questions, please contact the Nursery directly.
Nursery Manager: Mrs Lynne Baines (01245 236 144 | [email protected])
Admissions Registrar: Mrs Caroline Elder (01245 236 192 | [email protected])
Are you open all year?
Our Pre-School is Term Time only but with the option to sign up for our Holiday Scheme, which runs throughout the school holidays. Fees for attendance at the Holiday Scheme are available on request.
Our Nursery is open all year round (50 weeks) with the options of Term Time only or Full Time.
How are fees charged?
The registration fee for the Nursery is £125 and is non-refundable. The Acceptance Deposit of £250 is required to secure a place offered to a child. The Acceptance Deposit is returnable after the child’s last term, minus charges for extras incurred by the child during the final term, unless the child is removed without appropriate notice. Notice of withdrawal or cancellation of Acceptance is required, failing which fees will be charged in lieu of notice and the deposit(s) will be offset against these fees. Full details are provided in the New Hall School Terms & Conditions.
Children attend for a full day, with a minimum of two days per week in the Cedar and Sycamore classes and a minimum of three days per week in the Pre-School class (Hazel Class). Term Time only and Full Year options are available for children in the Cedar and Sycamore classes. The Pre-School class operates on a Term Time basis, with holiday clubs bookable and charged separately. This is pre-bookable only and includes a morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack and supper (if staying after 4.30pm).
Full Year fees are charged on an annual basis with an allowance for closure between Christmas and New Year, one week prior to the start of the full School opening in September and three further weeks for bank holidays and other family holidays, which may be taken at any time. Full year fees are payable in twelve equal monthly instalments due on the first day of each month. One month’s notice is required for cancelled places. Term Time fees are based on School term dates and fees are payable over a 9-month period form 1 August to 1 April. Extras are payable on a termly basis. One term’s notice is required for cancelled places.
Breakfast Club is included in the additional fee for attendance during extended opening hours between 7.30am-8.00am. This must be pre-booked. A supplementary charge of £30 will be made for late pick-up exceeding 15 minutes. Fees exclude nappies, wipes and formula milk.
Fees will be determined by the age of the child. Specialist lessons are included in Sycamore and Hazel Class. The fees include personal accident & dental accident insurance. Co-curricular Tennis, Swimming and Dance are available in the Pre-School. Details of the fees for co-curricular activities are available separately. Additional tuition will be charged to your account at the end of each term.
Regrettably, the Free Entitlement of 15 hours per week for children aged 3-4 will cease from September 2024. The current fees, inclusive of this deduction, are only applicable for the academic year ending August 2024.
Payment of fees is by direct debit only. Information to arrange a Direct Debit Instruction will be sent to you by the Finance Department. If fees are not paid by the due date, an interest payment at a rate of up to 8% over the Bank of England base rate will be added to your account. Childcare Vouchers are accepted for daycare in the Nursery.
Do you have a minimum session requirement?
Children may attend for a minimum of 2 full days per week in Nursery and a minimum of 3 days per week for children in Pre-School.
What are your hours?
A full day is 8.00am to 6.00pm. The earliest pick up is from 3.30pm. An extended day from 7.30am to 6.00pm is available at an additional fee. This must be pre-booked (subject to availability).
What is the earliest time I can pick up my child?
Many parents ask this! We follow the School timetable as a guide, so our structured learning ends at 3.30pm, which is in line with the Pre-Prep Division. Parents are asked to indicate what time they anticipate collecting their child when they register so that we can work out staff ratios and catering numbers for supper, which is served at 4.30pm. Children can be collected between 3.30pm and 6.00pm.
Can you book ad hoc extra days?
If we have the availability, then yes you can pre-book extra days. These extra days will be added to your invoice accordingly.
What do your fees include?
Fees include a cooked lunch and supper, as well as a morning and afternoon snack. Breakfast is included in the additional fee for attendance during 7.30am – 8.00am.
Do you cater for allergies?
We work closely with our Catering Department to ensure that all allergies are met and dietary requirements are catered for, where possible.
Do the children wear a uniform?
Our children in Pre-School wear a uniform (full details are available in our Parent Handbook on request). Our children in Nursery do not wear a uniform but are encouraged to wear practical clothing to allow them to fully participate in all activities. We ask that all children’s clothing is labelled and that they bring a pair of wellington boots to keep at New Hall for Outdoor Learning, visits to the Farm and muddy play in the garden! We also suggest bringing spare clothing for all children!
What will my child do all day?
Pre-School (Hazel Class)
We follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum that covers birth to the end of Reception. This is a play-based curriculum covering seven areas of learning:
- Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development (the three Prime areas).
- Mathematics, Literacy, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design (the four Specific areas).
We use a progressive curriculum that allows us to follow the individual child’s interests whilst ensuring that the learning objectives are being met. We have weekly specialist subjects that are taught by teachers from other Divisions: Outdoor Learning, Music, Dance and P.E. The children are also able to take up co-curricular activities outside of Nursery hours.
A typical day in Pre-School
Children arrive between 8.00am and 8.45am. We have registration, followed by Dough Disco to get the children up and moving, ready to start the day full of energy! We have set times for the specialist subjects and dedicated time for phonics, mathematics, ICT and R.E. We are a Catholic Pre-School and Nursery, so this is an integral part of our day. We have a snack early morning and lunch at 11.45am. An afternoon snack is offered around 2.00pm, followed by a cooked supper at 4.30pm. Our structured learning ends at 3.30pm. Free flow access to our garden is available all day as we value the importance of fresh air and exercise!
Nursery (Sycamore Class & Cedar Class)
Children arrive between 8.00am and 8.45am and we have a circle time (registration) at 8.45am, which involves lots of beautiful singing and stories! Our children in Sycamore Class (ages 2-3) enjoy a day filled with a mix of structured learning and play. We begin to introduce the specific areas of learning more formally yet relaxed!
We follow the children’s interests and recognise the importance of schematic play (behaviour patterns). In Cedar class (1-2s), it is very much play-based, with the focus on just the three Prime areas. We need to build the foundations in this class in order for them to progress further. We develop a love of learning by providing exciting and fun-filled activities, such as cornflour gloop, shaving foam painting, water and sand play and lots of role-playing to develop their imaginations. We do lots of singing and storytelling to encourage language development. We often visit the Farm and the Library to take advantage of the amazing School grounds! We have children that are at different stages of development, with different needs, so our planning and approach is differentiated according to the needs of the individual child.
A typical day in Nursery
Morning registration with singing and prayers. Free play with a focused activity related to a theme or topic, arts and crafts, exploration. Morning snack, lunch at 11.30am, dedicated sleep or quiet time between 12.15pm and 2.00pm, afternoon snack and supper at 4.30pm. Between these timings, the day is filled with fun and stimulating activities to encourage language development, physical development and relationship building. The specifics are introduced softly so that the children are not even aware that they are being taught! The whole Nursery and Pre-School come together every Wednesday and Friday for Collective Worship.
Will my child be able to sleep?
Equally important is rest! We have dedicated sleep areas with individual mats, sheets and blankets. Our rooms have blackout blinds and sectioned lighting to allow for a quiet space. We follow a parent’s routine and wishes as closely as possible, and this means that we may have children sleeping at different times during the day, which is perfectly fine. We tend to find that once a child has settled into the Nursery routine, they naturally adapt to those around them and quite often follow a different routine to that at home. This becomes their ‘Nursery’ routine! The children are always supervised when asleep and never left alone.
Do you provide formula or nappies?
We do not provide nappies due to allergies. Children are all so different and parent preference is always best. For this reason, we ask parents to provide their own nappies and wipes and formula, if required. We ask that either cartons of formula are provided, or an unopened tin to remain at Nursery. Parents bring their own pre-sterilised bottles and we make up the feed and return the rinsed out bottles.
How do you settle children?
We offer an individually tailored settling-in process which builds up a child’s stay usually over a course of one to two weeks before they are due to start. We find that children settle much quicker without a parent present, whilst this can be a worry for parents, we find it more beneficial for the child. We encourage a positive goodbye and handover so that your child can see that you are happy to leave them. Your child will have a Key Person who will be responsible for their development and learning journey, and they will encourage positive relationships to be formed as early as possible.
What are your ratios?
Cedar Class has a ratio of 1 adult to every 3 children with a maximum of 13 children per session.. Sycamore Class has a ratio of 1 adult to every 4 children with a maximum capacity of 24 children per day. Hazel Class (Pre-School) has a ratio of 1 adult to every 8 children with a maximum capacity of 44 children per day. In Pre-School, the children are always split into smaller groups for specialist subjects, and small focus groups when direct teaching is occurring.
How do you communicate to parents? How will I know how my child is doing?
We provide verbal feedback at the end of the day, if practical to do so! We offer two informal parents’ ‘Drop-In’ evenings during the academic year. These provide the opportunity to discuss your child’s development with their Key Person and the Nursery Manager. We operate an open-door policy and actively encourage parents to ask any questions they may have at any time. There is no such thing as a silly question!
We utilise the Tapestry communication platform as a means of engaging with parents. Tapestry serves as an online learning journal, accessible via a downloadable application, allowing parents to monitor their child’s development through observations. Additionally, it features a care diary for tracking aspects such as food, sleep, and toileting for younger children. Upon a child’s departure from the Nursery division, parents have the option to download a PDF copy containing all observations recorded during their time. Furthermore, parents can conveniently upload photos and videos of home life through the app for sharing with the nursery.