The clocks have gone back and now it is properly Autumn with bundles of colourful leaves around us. No doubt we’ll soon be feeling the depths of winter! We hope you’re cosying up in the dark nights and enjoying a brighter morning on your walk to nursery in the morning.
The ELC team – staffing
As Aberdeen City Council roll out the expansion across the city, there have been particular challenges regarding staffing.
Our current staff team that we have been allocated per Council staffing ratios are:
Senior Early Years Practitioner – Mrs Sarah Lemmon
EYPs – Miss Kirsty Anderson, Mrs Luda Barkovska, Mrs Rhonda Gauld, Mrs Morag Scott
EYP Modern Apprentice – Miss Ellie Fraser
ELC Support Worker – Mrs Justyna Grzonka
The team operates a rota system, so not all staff are in all day every day. Miss Anderson is currently absent (get well soon Miss Anderson), and with that and some other staff absence (including my own last term), there have been many members of supply staff coming to Hanover Street to support us and your children.
Some of the other people who have been helping have been:
Mrs Sarah Middleton (throughout the week)
Mrs Barbara Pilichos (Wednesdays)
Mrs Sandra Ceylan (Fridays)
Mrs Kathleen Massie (ad hoc)
We welcome Ms Anna Lewandowska who will continue to help us up until Christmas.
The ELC team – students
At Hanover Street ELC, we have Nigar Sultana from NesCol here completing an EYP qualification.
We will also welcome another student from NesCol, Jane Lin, at the end of the month. She will be here for more or the less the whole nursery year – some blocks of whole weeks, but mostly a Monday and Tuesday.
We thank you for your patience as we welcome temporary members to the team. We know this is unsettling for you as parents, and for your children. It is challenging for the team also – trying to embed routines, whilst welcoming and inducting new pupils with varying needs, new parents, and of course new staff too. To support consistency, we offer a few reminders and pieces of information:
Nutrition – Snack & Lunches
Snack is provided by nursery. This consists of milk, water and fresh fruit. This is provided by the Scottish Milk Healthy Snack Scheme.
Lunch is also provided. The lunch menus are available here and here. Again, due to ordering/stock issues, there may be change to this menu at short notice. The nursery staff will continue to inform you what’s available each day.
We have some children who are coming into nursery without breakfast. Please do try and have your child “breakfasted” before coming. We cannot provide cereal and snacks given from home – as you can understand, this is unfair for other children. If it’s been a whirlwind of a morning and children are particularly hungry, or need some food for emotional regulation, we will offer some fruit and milk/water from snack supplies. If dietary/medical requirements are required, we will of course support this.
*If money is tight and you need support for food, etc, please see a member of the nursery team – we have support contacts who can help with this.
Milk and water is available throughout the nursery day.
Milk and water are deliberately the choices given by our government nutritional guidelines to promote children’s teeth being healthy and strong.
Please support us with this – if you provide a water bottle for your child, consider NOT putting juice in. The children will drink the water if thirsty. Thank you.
Please keep toys at home. If your child needs a toy to support them coming into nursery (a transitional object), then please speak with the nursery team and this will be arranged.
Lots of hats, jackets, gloves, etc are starting to gather.
Please name all belongings.
We ask that as far as possible, all children are dropped off and picked up promptly. Nursery starts at 9am and finishes at 3pm.
We also have children with additional support needs who may have different starting and finishing times. Therefore, timetabling and managing staff and pupil learning activities happens in a specific timeframe.
Respectfully, please do follow requests – we have planned reasons for these.
Drop off and Pick Up Routines
Children line up round the back of the school, on the football pitch area. They are in their coloured groups with matching coloured spots on the floor (red, blue, green, yellow). Once your child has lined up, and confident and happy in line, please step back so we can clearly see the children.
At pick up time, children are picked up from the nursery garden area.
You may see the nursery children leave the building on their way to the garden area. Please do allow all children to come into the garden. Do not try and take your child early. This is for health and safety reasons – the team are forever counting the number of children to ensure no little bodies wander away!
Our routines support this – for example, as the ELC Class come out of the school building the boys and girls stop at the front door before going out to the playground, the children stay in the line until ALL children are in the garden. Any change in routine can unsettle the children, and practiced routines can be disturbed.
We have recently spent £950 on outdoor clothing, which we are awaiting delivery of. This includes outdoor suits, wellies and gloves. If for any reason, your child uses these, and has to go home in them, we do ask that they are returned promptly. This has been a big investment financially, which of course we aim to look after well.
As National Guidance for COVID is updated regularly, we are looking forward to inviting parents into the ELC building soon. This will take place in small groups to allow safety precautions such as social distancing to take place. More information will come about this when agreed.
Key Groups and Care Plan Meetings
Staffing pressures have caused a delay in arranging some care plan meetings. We apologise for this. We will be in contact with relevant families very soon to arrange this as staffing ratios allow.
Feedback and Evaluation
We will be in contact soon regarding some feedback about various things, as part of our self-evaluation calendar. Please do fill in questionnaires/comments. It adds to our evidence for celebrating successes and making necessary improvements.
|November 2021||December 2021||January 2022|
|Friday 19 November:
In-Service Day (School Closed to Children)
|Tuesday 14 December:
Children (for those whose parents have given permission) receiving flu vaccine
Tuesday 21 December:
End of term
|Thursday 6 January:
Start of Term
Thank you for your time in reading this newsletter!
I’m well aware I’ve asked for many requests, but I do, we all do, appreciate your help in these.
Miss Gillian Forbes, DHT 😊