Frequently Asked Questions

Here we provide answers to some of the questions that we often receive from parents. Of course, if you can’t find an answer to your query here, please do talk to one of our team who are always happy to help.

General

Is Kennington Playgroup a charity?

Yes, Kennington Playgroup is a registered charity with the UK Charity Commission. Our charity number is 1017297.

How is Kennington Playgroup run?

As a charity, Kennington Playgroup is run under a governing document called a constitution. The constitution is a set of rules that provide a framework for the decision-making and management of the playgroup. Kennington Playgroup is managed by a committee of volunteers nominated by the parents, who together form the trustees of the charity and the ‘registered person’ with Ofsted. Staff are appointed by the committee to ensure the day-to-day running of the playgroup.

If you are interested in getting more involved with Kennington Playgroup, we would really welcome your input. Speak to a member of staff or a committee member to find out more.

Does the UK Government provide any standards or legislation that the playgroup must meet?

Yes, the government provides a set of statutory standards called the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) that all early years providers must meet. Speak to one of our staff if you want to know more about this framework.

What are the opening hours for Kennington Playgroup?

Kennington Playgroup offers childcare from 9am-3pm Monday to Thursday, and from 9am-12.30pm on Fridays.

The sessions are as follows:

Breakfast Club 8.00 – 9.00am
Morning Session 9.00-11.30 am
Lunch Club 11.30 -12.30 am
Afternoon session 12.30 – 3.00 pm

 

Admissions

How do I secure a place at Kennington Playgroup for my child?

To secure a place at Kennington Playgroup you will need to complete a registration form for your child, telling us which sessions you require for your child. Please email or phone us to request a form and find out if we have availability. If we have availability, you will then receive an offer for a place. To secure your place you will need to pay a deposit of £50.

While we try to offer all parents the sessions they request, this is not always possible and we do at times have to run a waiting list. Our waiting time will largely depend on the number of applications on the waiting list, the demand for playgroup places, the requirements of current parents and how flexible you are with your own requirements.

How do I pay the deposit to secure my child’s place?

You can pay by cheque, cash or bank transfer. Please make cheques payable to Kennington Playgroup.

When will I receive an offer of a place?

Kennington Playgroup will try to offer you a place as soon as possible. If a place becomes available it is offered immediately to anyone on the waiting list. Generally, however, children tend to start with us at the beginning of each term, and we aim to make offers for those places towards the end of the preceding term.

Do I need to commit to a minimum number of sessions?

As a community playgroup we feel that is important that we offer parents as much flexibility as possible, subject to availability. Parents can therefore select which sessions they require, subject to availability, with a minimum of 2 being requested.

Can I make changes to the number of sessions that my child attends?

Yes, but you will need to give us 6 weeks’ (or a full term’s) notice.

Can I book my child in for occasional extra sessions?

Sometimes parents may have occasion when they require extra sessions (e.g. hospital appointment).  We will assist if we can subject to session availability.  Extra one off sessions must be paid for in advance.  We are unable to swap sessions around.

Settling in

Can I visit Kennington Playgroup before my child formally starts?

Yes, please. We welcome all prospective parents at our playgroup, and think it is really important for you to come and see first-hand how we operate. Our wonderful staff would love to meet you and show you the play areas and learning spaces we offer, and give you and your child a chance to get more familiar with our setting.

Working in partnership

What is a key person/worker?

When your child starts Playgroup they will be allocated a member of staff as their Key Person.  The Key Person will be your child’s ‘special person’ while they are at playgroup.  They will spend time with you during the settling in sessions and ask you about your child’s interests and anything we should know.  They will plan a settling in routine with you, and will regularly speak to you about your child’s day and their general progress.  They will keep a record of your child’s development and use this to plan activities which your child is interested in and to provide them with resources which allow them to progress.  You are welcome to see your child’s records, please speak to their key person to arrange this.

Please speak to your key person with any information which may affect your child.  For example moving home, loss of a family member, sick pet – anything which may cause a behaviour change which we can support, and to be sure we are talking to your child about it in a manner you are comfortable with.

The key person may not be at every session your child attends, but all staff work in pairs – the other staff member will usually be at any sessions the key worker is not.  When allocating a key worker we naturally try to match your child’s sessions to those the key worker is at playgroup.

Over the School year you can expect to have 2 formal meetings with your child’s key person discussing their learning and development.

How can I get involved at Playgroup?

Playgroup recognises parents as the first and most important educators of their children, and staff work in partnership with parents to provide care and education for their child. There are many ways in which parents take part in making the setting a welcoming and stimulating place for children and families, such as:

  • exchanging knowledge about their children’s needs, activities, interests and progress with the staff
  • helping at Playgroup sessions
  • sharing their own special interests with the children
  • helping to provide, maintain and look after the facilities, equipment and resources
  • being part of the management of Playgroup
  • taking part in events and informal discussions about the activities and curriculum provided by Playgroup
  • joining in community activities in which Playgroup takes part
  • building friendships with other parents in Playgroup

Please talk to one of our staff or our management committee if you would like to get involved. We’d be delighted to welcome you!

Government Funding

Do I qualify for funding?

To find out you will need to read the Oxfordshire County Council guidance on free early education for 3 and 4 year olds, or you may qualify for 2 year old funding.

Is Kennington Playgroup registered to offer Free Entitlement Funding?

Yes. To find out more about this, visit the UK early years education funding page.

Child Development and the Early Years Foundation Stage

What is the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)?

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is a set of:

  • statutory standards – all early years providers like Kennington Playgroup must meet these standards in order to enable young children to make the most of their talents and abilities.
  • non-statutory guidance – the EYFS provides guidance to early years providers on how to ensure a quality early years provision.

What are the principles behind the EYFS?

The overarching principles of the EYFS are defined as:

  • Every child is unique
  • Positive relationships
  • Enabling environments
  • Children develop differently

At Kennington Playgroup these principles are embedded into our practice.

How do you ensure each child fulfils their potential?

It is our aim to provide a caring environment where every child may fulfil their individual potential through various planned and spontaneous activities.

The EYFS focuses on the following 7 areas of learning and development:

  • Prime areas – Communication and language; physical development; personal, social and emotional development.
  • Specific areas – Literacy; mathematics; understanding the world; expressive arts and design.

The child’s key person will be responsible for watching and recording your child’s progress within these areas, and will provide you with feedback. It is beneficial if we can also hear from you what they are doing at home.