Summer 2018 Newsletter

3rd May 2018 

Dear Parents, 

We hope that you all had a lovely Easter break. Once again, congratulations are due to everybody connected with the pre-school - staff, parents, carers, childminders and children - who have all contributed to make our pre-school outstanding.


A big thank you to the fundraising committee for all their hard work and also to parents for their generosity.  We would also like to ask if you know of any company who would be willing to match fund our sponsored bounce event on 22nd May.


Sponsored Bounce
We will, once again, be holding a sponsored bounce on the morning of Tuesday 22nd May. Full details and sponsor forms are available in the main foyer.


Coolings Nursery Visits
These were a great success and we must mention the generosity of both Coolings and Sutton Seeds for providing resources for our sunflower competition.
Beekeeper Visit
We are very lucky to have Mr Tom Kirsch visiting our school on Wednesday 23rd May to talk to the children about bees.  They will also have an opportunity to taste some honey so could you please let us know if there are any allergy concerns with this. Also, we will be selling honey at  £6.50 a jar, £2.50 of which will be donated to the pre-school.


Reptile Razzmatazz
We have arranged for a visit from Reptile Razzmatazz on Tuesday 10th July, with a display at 9.30am for children attending the morning session and another at 10.30am for all other children.


Hayes Village Fair
This year’s Fair will take place on Saturday 9th June. We will be running a tombola and football stall and volunteers will be needed. If you are able to spare half an hour on the day, a list of times will shortly be on display in the foyer. Thank you in advance.


AGM/Coffee Morning
This will take place in the new hall at 9.30am on Tuesday 26th June together with a coffee morning for all parents to enjoy. We would encourage as many of you as possible to come along to this event, siblings are welcome at the ‘get-together’.


Teddy Bear’s Picnic 
On Friday 8th June children who normally attend on that day are invited to bring along a teddy bear from home (clearly labelled with their name!) to take part in a teddy bear’s picnic. This will take place in the garden, weather permitting.


Fire Brigade Visit
A visit from the Fire Brigade is planned for the children on Tuesday 5th June. This will be held in the car park between 11am and 12 noon. Children who do not normally attend on that day will be welcome to join the activity during that time if fully supervised by their parent/carer. In the event of the Fire Brigade being called out on an emergency they will be unable to go ahead with this visit.


Sports Day
This year our sports day will be on Tues 12th June. This will take place in St Mary’s Rectory Garden and all children attending will need to be accompanied by an adult. Thank you. A separate note will follow nearer the time with full details.


Sunflower Competition
Thank you to those of you who have purchased your sunflower growing kits. Please provide your photos and measurements for the judging on Friday 6th July.


Leavers’ Only  - End of Term Performance
The play will take place on Tuesday 17th July at 10am in the new hall. Children who do not normally attend a Tuesday morning session are invited to participate. The older children (those based in the main hall) will all be allocated a part in the play and can attend from the usual time, 9am. We will be requesting a dress colour code, depending on their part, details of which will be given nearer the time. The younger children will get the opportunity to watch the play during session time.


Parents’ Meetings/Reports to Parents
The annual parents’ meetings will take place over two weeks commencing 18th June and 25th June. Parents of children moving onto Primary School will also receive a written progress report. You can, of course, at any time, approach your child’s key worker with any concerns you may have.


Primary School/Phonics Training
In the coming months, we will be concentrating on preparing the older children for the transition to primary school and continuing with basic phonic training.


Warmer Weather
As the warmer weather approaches, please ensure that children bring in a sun hat, clearly labelled with their name, as we will be making as much use of the garden and outdoor equipment as we possibly can. Please also ensure the children are wearing suncream on the hotter days - for your information, we are not permitted to re-apply suncream.


The Friends of St. Mary’s have set up a Facebook page for parents. In order to join this group, please search ‘friends of St Mary’s Pre-school’ and send a request to join.



Guidance Notes
Important changes have been made with regard to funding if a child is absent from Pre-school for more than 3 weeks due to either holiday or ill-health. The new Guidance Notes can be viewed in the Foyer and a copy has also been placed in the Policies file.


Lunch Club
The lunch club runs on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays each week. There are a very limited number of places available should anyone wish to use this facility as a ‘one-off’. We require 48 hours notice and the cost is £5 (payable up front or on the day). Please ensure that you DO NOT include any products containing NUTS in your child’s packed lunch. Thank you.


Accident Book (Child Protection Policy)
If any child sustains an injury at home or on their way to pre-school, please inform a member of staff on arrival so that a record of the incident may be noted in the appropriate accident book. Parents will then be required to sign an acknowledgement of this.


Water Bottles
May we politely remind you that drinking bottles brought in from home to allow children access to water during the pre-school session must contain water only and NOT SQUASH or any form of flavoured drink. Please also ensure your child’s bottle is named. Thank you.


Please note that, following a necessary change in the group’s policy, children must not return to the group for 48 hours after a bout of vomiting and/or diarrhoea. 


Mobile Phone, Photography & Internet Policy
As you are aware from the prospectus, the group holds a number of policies/procedures, copies of which can be requested from any member of staff. In addition to these, a new policy has been written to ensure the safeguarding of all children with regard to the use of mobile phones, photography and computer systems (including the internet). This clearly states that ANY PHOTOGRAPH TAKEN ON PRE-SCHOOL PREMISES (including those taken at the end of term performance) IS NOT PERMITTED TO BE PLACED ON FACEBOOK OR ANY OTHER SOCIAL NETWORKING SITE. Failure to comply with this will be taken very seriously.


Church School Hall’s Car Park
May we politely remind you yet again that the Old Church School Hall’s car park is strictly for the use of STAFF ONLY. However, the privilege of using the Rosary Church Car Park remains, thus enabling you to drop off and pick up your children safely


Toys from home
We do not encourage children to bring toys from home into playgroup as, unfortunately, these often get mislaid or broken. This is with the exception of ‘comfort’ toys for the new/younger children to help them settle during their first few weeks in the clubroom.


Shoe Recycling
We will be continuing the shoe recycling scheme until further notice and would be grateful for donations of any old shoes (in pairs). Please hand these to a member of staff. The group receives a small donation each time the box is filled. Thank you.


Collection of Children/Going Home Book
Just a reminder that if a child is going home with someone other than his/her usual carer, the ‘going home’ book will need to be completed with full details. If, during the session, plans change and someone other than the usual person is collecting your child, please telephone the group on 020 8462 7663 or 07903 030991.


Contact Details
Please ensure that the group is informed of any new addresses/telephone numbers to enable us to contact the correct person in case of emergency.  If you have access to email, please provide us with an up-to-date email address. This allows us to contact you in the case of closure due to adverse weather etc. It is extremely important that our records are kept up-to-date.


Speech and Language ‘Drop in’ Clinic
Details of the Speech and Language ‘Drop-ins’ for children under the age of 5 are as follows:
Blenheim Children and Family Centre
Blenheim Road
Kent BR6 9BH
Tel: 01689 831193
on the first Friday of the month, between 9.30 and 11.30am.
Burnt Ash Children and Family Centre
Rangefield Road
Kent BR1 4QX
Tel: 020 8697 4503
on the third Thursday of the month, between 9.30 and 11.30 am.  

No appointment is necessary, as a maximum of 12 children will be seen on a ‘first come first served’ basis. This service is available to families who have not already been referred to speech and language therapy services. 

As you are aware from the prospectus, the Group holds a number of policies. Copies of these can be requested from any member of staff. 

Finally, should you have any concerns, please feel free to contact me.




Jo White

Group Leader