You can register your child at any age by completing our registration form. Your child will then be placed on our waiting list; places are allocated in receipt date of application form. You will be notified by telephone as to to whether your child has been allocated a place, so it is important to keep us up to date of any changes of phone numbers.
On acceptance of a place parents/carers and children are invited to come along to experience the setting, to meet the playgroup staff and to find out more about playgroup. We then ask you to fill in the relevant paperwork and ask as many questions as you like. All spaces are subject to availability and once a place has been offered to you and all relevant paperwork completed your place is secured at playgroup.
Our manager, Jackie Moore is responsible for the smooth running of the playgroup on a day-to-day basis and reports to the committee. A committee of volunteer parents/carers assist with managing the playgroup, each undertaking a variety of roles, the committee meet around twice a term.
Clothing and Shoes
We encourage all children to have clothing that is clearly named including any spare clothes which must be provided in a clearly named bag. Black plimsolls are ideal footwear for playgroup, especially when the weather is wet outside, as heavy outdoor shoes can cause damage to little fingers and our toys; wet shoes make the floor very slippery. Heavy unsuitable boots and shoes also restrict the safe use of climbing equipment and can cause harm to others, loose fitting open toe shoes can also cause injury whilst climbing too.
We have a nice bright colourful red uniform which consists of a t-shirt and sweatshirt carrying our own logo. Having a uniform helps children to feel part of our group and the colour hides lots of mess, encouraging participation in the best exploration activities. Our t-shirts and sweatshirts are available to purchase throughout the year as we always have plenty in stock. Our uniform is not compulsory.
When your child starts playgroup they will be assigned a Key Person who will plan for your child's individual learning, development and care. The primary role of the Key Person is to develop a plan for your child's development and to ensure that the plan is implemented. At intervals the Key Person will ask you about your child's interests and for your Knowledge about your child's development, after all nobody knows your child better than you do. The Key Person will use this information and the staff's observations to plan the next steps in your child's learning, to challenge and stimulate them. All the plans will be kept in each child's learning journal which is confidential. The Key Person will share this information with you at least once a term. However please feel free to see your child's learning journal or discuss your child's development at any time.
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Activities for the children include a Christmas party and a summer party. A summer outing is arranged for our children who will be leaving us to start school. Occasionally we may take a few children at a time for a short walk locally, maybe to the shops, Post office or just out and about to find things of interest; for example Autumn leaves, conkers etc. We have in the past arranged visits to the library, travelling by bus and visiting the airport by train. We would welcome any input you could offer, for example if you have a job, a hobby or maybe even a special talent you could discuss and share with the children, it would enrich their learning experiences. Please speak to a member of staff if you can help.
Parent and Carers Involvement
Like many other playgroups we operate a rota where parents/carers are invited to observe their child and participate with the running of at least one session per term. We feel that you will find this a beneficial experience, which will contribute to your child's education. This gives you the opportunity to take an active part in the playgroup to see what happens and to talk about afterwards with your child. Also the other children like meeting "Grown Ups". This is an excellent opportunity to go through your child's learning journal with your child's Key person.
Unfortunately, siblings or other children are not able to attend sessions whilst the parent/carer is helping.
Links With Schools
From time to time we arrange visits from teachers from both Pound Hill Infant School and Milton Mount Primary, these occasional visits help the children prepare for their transition to school and enable them to familiarise themselves with their new teachers, we also accompany children on visits to these schools for occasional play visits, assemblies and Christmas plays.
Starting at playgroup is obviously a big step in a child's life and the way in which a child responds will vary. Some will feel at home immediately, whereas for others it may take some time until they feel comfortable. We therefore encourage parents/carers to stay with their child, if necessary, until they feel confident in their new environment. We will work closely with you and your child to make the transition into playgroup as easy as possible. For the early stages settling into playgroup we will be led by how you and your child feel.
Currently children are entitled to receive free entitlement for playgroup sessions for the term AFTER their 3rd birthday. Each qualifying child is eligible for 15 hours free entitlement per week, for 38 weeks per year. Some children qualify for 2 year funding, each qualifying child is eligible for 15 hours per week for 38 weeks per year.
We also offer placements for children who qualify for the 30 hours free entitlement.
For children who have not reached the qualifying age, the fees are currently £5.00 per hour. Invoices are raised at the beginning of each half term. There can be no reductions or refunds if your child is sick or on holiday, this is to keep your child's place at playgroup secure.
Non-payment of fees after 4 weeks may result in your child's place being suspended.
We require one month's written notification if you wish to withdraw a child from one or more sessions, otherwise you will remain liable to pay the fees.
AGM And Fundraising
As Worth Park Playgroup is a registered charity, we organise lots of fundraising events throughout each year to boost vital funds, helping us to provide materials, resources and equipment for our children. We have a dedicated team of volunteer parents/carers who each give up a little bit of their time, using their own individual skills to plan and organise some very memorable fundraising events. We hold an Annual General Meeting (AGM) in October where all parents/carers are encouraged to attend, support us and hopefully will be welcomed onto our friendly committee. It is a great opportunity to get to know both the staff and other parents/carers. Our main fundraising events include our Christmas Fair and our Easter coffee morning raffle. We also distribute a variety of fundraising catalogues over the year which gives us rewards in the form of cash back or loyalty gifts which are used for raffle prizes.
At Worth Park Playgroup we aim for all children to become independent learners by gaining support throughout their development, enabling them the opportunity to reach their full potential at their own pace. Our on-going and regular planning sessions enable us to provide a wealth of opportunities for each child to build and expand their own knowledge, experiences and skills. We try to respond to your child's current interests when planning, because, as we know, children are much more receptive to learning when the subject matter interests them.
We follow the EARLY YEARS FOUNDATION STAGE within our daily routines and promote the PRIME and SPECIFIC key areas of development to enable us to encourage ALL children to make continuous progress throughout their time at Worth Park Playgroup.
PSE: Personal, Social and Emotional Development
CL: Communication and Language Development
PD: Physical Development
UW: Understanding the World
EAD: Expressive Arts and Design
Further information about the West Sussex Early Years Foundation Stage is available on request, a member of staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
We operate Worth Park Playgroup according to a range of policies and procedures, copies of all our policies and procedures are kept on display in the foyer at all times.
We continuously look forward to welcoming all new children and their families to Worth ParkPlaygroup.
Jackie Moore and the Worth Park Playgroup Team