Welcome to our
Prospective Nursery Parent’s
Virtual Open Evening
Normally our school operates an ‘open door policy’, unfortunately however, due to the impact of COVID, we are unable to invite prospective parents of Nursery children into school at this time. We know that children achieve more when parents and school work together, so with this in mind, we have created a selection of resources to give you an insight into school life here at Sandford Hill.
Our A-Z of starting at Sandford Hill Nursery
Parent/Carer Video Meeting Request
If you have specific questions/concerns that you would like to discuss with a member of the Nursery staff, then please complete the form below and we will get in touch to arrange a virtual meeting.
FAQ’s and Mythbusters
FAQ's and Mythbusters
Making decisions about starting Nursery can be a really difficult time for parents/carers with lots of conflicting information being shared leading to unanswered questions and confusion. So please find below a number of questions we have been asked and our responses, to try to help you make the best choice for your child. If you have a question that isn’t answered below then please do get in touch and we will add it to the list.
School Nursery or Private Nursery – which is best for my child?
Sandford Hill Primary School motto is ‘Thoughtfulness and Respect’ and these qualities are evident throughout the whole school, in all the staff and children, starting in the Early Years. Because of this Sandford Hill has a very caring ‘family’ feel to it. In fact, we have many children at our school whose parents also came here! In terms of your child starting their journey in education, they will not gain a better start to their schooling. All our early years staff are very experienced practitioners with children of their own and they treat the children in their care just as they would their own children. They have seen many year groups pass through the school and even as the children leave the school to go onto High School, they are not too old to have a hug off their first Nursery teachers! Educationally and socially the children make amazing progress through their Nursery year with activities planned by a qualified teacher and delivered to stimulate, enthuse and challenge the children, whatever their starting point. In addition, these activities are shared with parents/carers through the school blog http://sandfordhill.schoolblogs.org/category/eyfs/. This means that you can keep in touch with what your child has been doing each week.
I live out of Sandford Hill Primary’s catchment area – can I still send my child to your school?
Yes you can. Parents/carers can apply to send their child to any school of their choice and providing there is a space and they promise to get their child to school every day, then the catchment area does not matter. See more information about criteria for places below
If my child comes to your Nursery, what are the chances of them getting into your Reception class?
As Nursery education is not compulsory and parents/carers can send their child to a school nursery class, a private nursery or keep them at home, there is no guarantee that if your child attends our Nursery classes that they will automatically be given a place in the Reception class. How the places are allocated can be seen below. Clearly every year the number applying and where they live will be different, but as a matter of interest: – In 2017, 33 of the 60 Reception children were from within the catchment area; – In 2018, 23 of the 60 Reception children were from within the catchment area; – In 2019, 17 of the 54 Reception children were from within the catchment area; So as you can see, over the last 3 years, there has been a trend for more children to be getting places from out of the catchment area. Again, this is not a guarantee for future years
Does the school have any say in who comes to Sandford Hill Primary?
No. For the Nursery and Reception places, Sandford Hill Primary do not have any say at all. The admissions team at the Local Authority allocate the places to children using the criteria below.
How are Nursery and Reception places allocated to children?
If there are more places wanted than there are available then the Local Authority Admissions Team children are allocated to the school using the Admissions Policy criteria: Where there are more applications for a Nursery/Reception setting than there are places the following priorities will be used, in order, to allocate places:
1. Children in the care of the local authority and children who were previously looked after but ceased to be so because they were adopted (or became subject to a residence order or special guardianship order).
2. Children living within the catchment who have an elder brother or sister at the school who will still be attending at the time of admission.
3. Other children living within the catchment area of the school.
4. Children living outside the catchment who have an elder brother or sister at the school who will still be attending at the time of admission.
5. Children who live nearest to the school as determined by a straight- line measurement from the front door of the child’s home address to the main entrance of the school.
Once the year group admission number is reached, a waiting list, based on these criteria, will be held until the end of September of that academic year.
Does my child have to go to a specific nursery to get a better chance of getting a place in a Sandford Hill Primary School Reception class?
No. The admissions team at the Local Authority allocate the places to children using the criteria above. Other factors like which Nursery they went to previously makes no difference.
Does my child have to be out of nappies before they can start at Sandford Hill Primary?
No. We accept children who are still in nappies and we work in partnership with parents to toilet train children. Therefore, we ask that children wear pants, not nappies, when they come to school and we ask that they are brought with a supply of clean pants for changing. We have 100% success rate of all children being dry within the first 3 weeks with us.
What would you do if my child accidentally soiled themselves?
All our Early Years staff are very experienced practitioners with children of their own and they would never leave a child wet. What they would do, is change your child as many times as is required while they are toilet training. This might mean you need to supply a lot of pants to school though!