“Returning to work is a scary experience leaving your precious child in someone else’s care for the first time but Elan made this so much easier through their friendly but professional manner. My son squeals in excitement as we leave the house for nursery.”

“Elan Nursery has changed our son’s life with their on-going input he has overcome significant behaviour problems associated with hearing loss. Utilising a range of expert advice and working closely with us the team devised a clear strategy for helping our son and protecting others. Despite obstacles staff remained positive and our son is happier and better behaved than he has ever been. Thank you Elan!”

"Elan is a fantastic nursery. All staff go out of their way to welcome and care for my three year old son. He is included and stimulated in a range of activities and is always happy this is a testament to how well he has been looked after by the exceptional nursery staff."

"Our son enjoys his time at Elan and it is obvious that he looks forward to it each day. He has developed in many ways. The staff are warm, friendly and caring towards the children and parents."

"The staff provide an exceptional level of care and attention to each of the children. The fact that my son spends most of his day smiling and being happy is testament to the care Elan provides. The range of activities, play and education facilities that they provide are outstanding and every parent I have met feels the same."

"Elan gave me the peace of mind whilst spending time away from my children. My children ADORE the staff and look forward to going to nursery which makes my life so much easier knowing I have to work. The staff are honest, approachable and compassionate and Elan management are flexible and caring in times of need."

"The care provided at Elan is outstanding. The staff are super and really know and understand the children. Communication between Elan and parents and their staff is excellent. It is a fantastic, well run and organised nursery."

"I have a well-adjusted, happy curious 2 ½ year old, as a working mum I can’t take credit for all of it! I see Elan as an extension of our home and am very grateful for the love and care they show my son. Nothing is too much trouble for them and my son thrives in the Elan environment."

"I feel the nursery is an extension to our family home. It is warm, nurturing and always buzzing with excitement. The staff always go above and beyond to make each child feel special and don’t ever rush time with us as their parents. I’m always in awe of the activities in place and how special everyone who works there are. We’re lucky to have such an amazing place."

"Focus of all staff is on the children. We feel engaged in our child’s development and when their has been concerns about our sons progress in language; he received one-one support. The environment is very open, supportive and perfect for our children’s development. We like the fact that there is regular dialogue on progress."

"The fact that Oliver gets so excited when we arrive at nursery says it all. Megan has been going for nearly 3 years and she loves it. Kelly and the team make it a warm and friendly place for children and parents. I would highly recommend it to any other people. The dedicated and professional team make it a wonderful place for children to grow and learn. We have never had any problems."

"Elan is an exciting nursery! It is always striving to improve and encourages a happy nursery for children parents and staff. It brings in resources such as languages, Yoga and Tennis. It makes the most of parent’s skills, occupations, interests or pets. Elan is creative and welcoming. The staff at all levels seem to genuinely know and love the children in their care."

"Elan has contributed enormously to the wellbeing and development of my daughter. The consistency of the routine, the bonding between different practitioners with my daughter as well as the help and support from everyone has been a breath of fresh air."

"The children love it and parents feel safe and happy leaving their children in such fantastic care. The staff genuinely care for the children, who are encouraged, taught and given both fun and educational games. Flexibility to support working families means I wouldn’t think of sending my children anywhere else."

"My two children have been happy and content at Elan and are delighted to return each morning. Dylan my oldest now at school has been given a good basis of phonics and understanding of basic personal and social development. Ewan continues to be guided in the same manner into a lovely wee boy."

"A warm and welcoming place for Frankie to strive and grow. Frankie loves being there, as do all of the children I see. Every effort is made to tailor activities around each child’s preferences."

See all our parents' comments

Local Offer / Inclusion

Perrymount Road site

"The staff at Elan work hard to ensure our son is supported and has access to extra help to encourage his development. By working closely with outside agencies and providing key workers who understand his needs, he has been fully integrated within nursery life. Dedicated one-to-one time has definitely had a positive impact, and the team's willingness to keep learning ensure his changing challenges are met. Thanks to the staff, most of all our son is just one of the gang, and loves taking part in all nursery activities with his friends."

Fletcher Roberts

1. How does the early years setting know if children need extra help and what should I do if I think my child may have special educational needs or disabilities?

Trained and qualified staff have knowledge and experience of children’s expected ages/stages of development. Regular observations are made by the staff and especially by the child’s Key Person. The setting’s INCO/SENCO would also make regular observations on the child, which would be used alongside those written by the staff in the child’s room. Development of all children is then plotted onto a group developmental chart and any concerns will then be seen. The child’s Key Person will build a relationship with the parents and time will be given for talks about the child. Twice yearly parents evenings are held, but daily chats can be had at drop off/pick up times. Appointments can also be made for parents to talk with the Key Person/Room Leader or with the settings INCO/SENCO person/Manager/Early Years Teacher. Staff can advise parents if they feel that outside agencies will be able to provide further support to either the parents or to the setting. The setting has a number of policies and procedures in place, including an Inclusion Policy that states that all children are given access to all activities that take place in the Nursery. (These may be adapted slightly to allow the child to participate)

Once the data gathered concludes that a child needs additional support INCO/SENCO will speak to the parents to discuss further steps which may involve outside agencies, further observations etc. Parents are always welcome to speak to us if they have any further concerns via email, phone, person or parents evening.

The nursery has had a vast amount of experience with children that have special educational needs including e.g Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down’s Syndrome, Aspergers and also children with behaviour and speech and language.

2. How will early years staff support my child?

Once a child has been identified as needing extra support, the key person will work alongside the setting’s INCO/SENCO person to produce plans that will help and support the child. If permission has been obtained by the parents to involve outside agencies, such as Speech and Language therapists, Inclusion Support Team,Portage, Behavioural Psychologists, and Occupational therapists, then other documents can be put into place such as Individual Plans, Behavioural Trigger Sheets. These documents will be shared with outside agencies, parents as and when necessary. The Key Person would be given time to liaise with the parents on a regular basis, as well as with the INCO/SENCO person. If needed the setting’s Child Care Director and the Health and Safety officer would also offer advice, especially with regards to funding that could be obtained to provide extra help or equipment for the child. Continual observations will be made to monitor the progress of the child, and regular updates will be made to any plans that have been made for the child. This also includes regular visits from outside professionals and feedback to the staff and parents from the agencies. Parents will also be invited to share information from home, or from visits they have had at home from outside agencies. A book could be shared between the setting and parents to share this information.

The INCO at the nursery will be overseeing and supporting the staff with any children with SEN. The INCO officer will be the main person liaising with other agencies.

The nursery always has more than one first aider on site at all times. Staff have also attended training on Manual handling of children, ‘Behaviour Management’, ‘Brainy Babies’, ‘Talk Talk, Talk’, ‘SEN Code of Practice’, ‘Let’s Get Talking’ and ‘Developing a Stimulating Learning Environment’.

3. How will the curriculum be matched to my child’s needs?

All staff in each room will have experience and knowledge of expected ages/stages of children’s development, and of the early year’s curriculum. All children have individual educational plans written for them 5 times a year. The observations written in the setting, along with information from the parents and form outside agencies will all be used to write specific plans for the child. A Next Steps in Learning (NSiL) will be written, and in conjunction with a Individual Plan will be used by staff to aid the child’s learning. All plans are then placed in the child’s Learning Journal. If the child has behavioural problems then a Trigger sheet will be used to record any issues that have occurred. Advice would be sought from a behavioural/educational psychologist, and again an Individual Plan could be put in place alongside the child’s Next Steps in Learning. All activities offered to the children in the room would be offered to the child, although slight alterations may be made to accommodate the child’s individual needs.

4. How will both you and I know how my child is doing and how will you help me to support my child’s learning?

Parents are able to access their child’s Learning Journal at anytime to see the plans made for the child along with the evidence gathered by the staff. They will also see any art work or photographs that would be a part of the evidence gathered. . We offer parents appointments a time to come and discuss/review your child’s progress that is suitable to both parties.

Parents can also be informed of workshops that are held in local Family centres, which offer advice on a number of topics
A home/contact book could be used if parents are limited to the time they can spend at drop off/pick up times. Telephone calls could be made if parents needed to talk about their child, or a specific appointment could be made to suit the parent’s needs. Copies of Individual Play plans/Behavioural Trigger sheets could be sent home for parents to mirror at home with the child. If outside agencies have observed the child in the setting, parents would be invited in to listen to the advice given and to share information from home with the professionals. If training is offered to the staff by any of the agencies, the parents could also be invited to join the staff at this time. Parents can also be informed of workshops that are held in local Family centres, which offer advice on a number of topics.

5. What support will there be for my child’s overall well being?

Each room in the setting has at least one member of staff who holds a current Paediatric First Aid certificate. Some staff have also had training in ‘Health and Safety’, ‘Child Protection’ (Safeguarding) and in ‘Manual Handling’. If any children have medical conditions that require ongoing medication, such as asthma or eczema, then the setting will ask parents to fill out a Health Care plan which will be signed by the child’s GP allowing the administration of the necessary medication. Two staff members are always present when a child is given their medication to check that the correct dosage is administered. This is recorded and signed by staff at the time, and signed by the parents at the end of each day. Each setting is required to appoint a member of staff as their Inclusion co-ordinator (INCO) and Special Educational Needs co-ordinator (SENCO). This person may hold just one of those roles or both, and will often be the Behavioural Manager as well. Training is given for the staff to carry out these roles which will allow them to access any necessary help, support and funding, including help from appropriate outside agencies. Funding that is allocated to a child with special needs can be used to allow the room to appoint extra staff to help the child, or for specialised equipment that is needed for the child. It could also provide training for the staff and parents which would be beneficial to themselves and to the child.

The Health and Safety officer would be consulted if any equipment needed would be of risk to any staff or children. A risk assessment would be written and put in place. These could possibly be needed when staff are handling children, assisting children going up/down stairs, or when nappy changing is necessary. All staff in the setting have undergone a suitability check (DBS –Disclosure Barring Service). Our external doors to the Nursery are all number coded and have intercoms for parents to use on entry. Our garden is fully enclosed allowing all children access to an outside environment throughout the year. When staff are planning for the child, they will use previous observations made, taking into account the activities and resources that are of particular interest to each child.

6. What specialist services and expertise are available at or accessed by the early years setting?

The setting is required to have a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) who is given training which will allow them to have the knowledge needed to carry out the role. The training provides them with the information they need to refer any child to an outside agency and to access any funding that could be available for the child. We have several staffs who are fluent in another language such as Romanian, Sinhala and Danish. During the settling in sessions we encourage the parents to fill in an ‘Additional Language Form’ which helps staff communicate with children who speak other languages. Through observations and experience we can determine which services should be accessed for each child’s individual needs. For example Speech and Language therapy, Inclusion Support – who will provide the setting with an Early Years Advisory Teacher, Educational Psychologists, Behavioural Psychologists or Portage – who provide support for the child and the parents in the home, and offer training for the staff in the setting. Health visitors, Occupational therapists and Social Services are also services that can be accessed by the SENCO to provide help and support to the staff, the parents and the child.

A sensory bus visits the nursery each term, the bus has been divided into two halves, one with an information and seating point and the other set out as a ‘room’ with sensory toys including soft ‘touchy feely’ cushions, wall panels and fibre-optic lights.

The children in Toddlers and Explorers have the opportunity to visit the family centre every Tuesday Afternoon. The Family Centre offers us a large garden space with climbing equipment, slides, sand pits, swings and bikes. We access the toy library which gives us the opportunity to access a wide range of resources that support children with different needs.

7. What training are the staff, supporting children with SENCO, had or are having?

The setting’s SENCO has attended Makaton signing, Let’s Get Talking, Positive Behaviour, Child Protection (Safe Guarding), First Aid, Health and Safety, Manual Handling, Including all Children and The Role of the SENCO training. Other staff have also attended some of the above courses. An Occupational Physiotherapist has been visiting to give training to INCO and the Key Person of a child who has Cerebral Palsy.

8. How will my child be included in activities outside the early years setting including trips?

Our setting has two fully enclosed gardens which are accessible from two of our rooms via gently sloping ramps. This is accessible to all children who are walking, plus those who are in a buggy. If the child with SENCO has been allocated funding, this can be used to allow the child to have one-to-one with a member of staff when outside of the setting. A risk assessment would be carried out by the setting before any outing is made, and if necessary the parents could liaise with the setting to visit any potential outing venue. Permission is needed from the parents of all children before any staff are allowed to take them out of the setting. The developmental stages of the child would also be considered to see if the trip is appropriate for the child.

Weekly trips to the Family Centre enables us to access special equipment/toys to support children with SEN.

9. How accessible is the early years setting environment? (Indoors and outdoors)

The whole building is wheelchair accessible. We have two adult toilets in the downstairs reception one being a disabled toilet. We also have a working lift and have an adult high banister on the stairs and a children’s height banister at each side of the wall. Upstairs we have the children’s bathroom with 5 toilets, three changing units and one slightly larger toilet for wheel chair users. Downstairs in the Toddler room we have a bathroom with two changing units and 3 toilets.

All of our rooms have colourful displays on the walls (most of which are at the children’s level) and numerous pictures, displays and mobiles hanging from the ceiling. The displays include visual timetables and the use of Makaton signs and symbols are found in each room.

10. How will the early years setting prepare and support my child to join the early years setting, transfer to a new setting/school?

If the child has been referred to have specialist help from outside agencies, the setting will liaise with these professional to ensure the child has a smooth transition to the new setting/school. Meetings can be arranged between the settings SENCOs to provide a plan of action. A transitional meeting will be held and will include all the outside agencies involved with the child, and will include the child’s parents and the settings SENCO as well. This will allow input from all services which will provide the new setting/school to obtain as much information as possible about the child. It will allow the parents to decide how often and for how long their child will spend when they first attend, especially if the child is a Summer term child with their birthday in the months of April/May/June/July/August. Local schools invite staff to take the child to the school to join other children who will be starting at the same time.

Other opportunities could be arranged for the child to visit on other occasions to help with their transition. The new school often supplies a booklet containing pictures of the school, the staff and the activities available. The teachers and SENCO of the new school could visit the child in the present setting to observe their behaviour and development in familiar surroundings. All children will be encouraged to be as independent as possible before transferring to school. This would include toileting, dressing themselves and socialising with other children.

11. How are the early years setting’s resources allocated and matched to children’s special educational needs?

Any funding allocated to a child would be carefully considered by all of the staff involved with the child’s care. Extra staff would allow more time to be spent with the child on a one-to-one basis. If Speech and Language therapy was accessed in the setting, staff could attend the session and continue the work with the child on another occasion.

Specialised equipment such as walkers or chairs could be purchased which would allow the child access to all available activities. Staff could access training such as Makaton signing which would provide more communication between the staff member and the child. Parents should liaise with staff in regards to any decisions made with equipment and training to give permission as to the suitability of the purchase for their child. Resources such as floor easels could be purchased if the child cannot access a higher easel, and adjustable tables can provide different heights for a child to access table top activities.

12. How is the decision made about what type and how much support my child will receive?

If staff have raised concerns about a child and these have then been discussed and agreed with the parents, then it can be determined as to how best the child can be supported. If funding has been made available then the support could include extra staff or equipment that would aid the child’s progress and development. Plans can be written for any child with regards to the child’s best interests. A child with speech or hearing difficulties may have developmental delays in some of the learning areas, and would therefore benefit from support in those areas.

Some children progress more quickly if they participate in small group activities, or in activities that take place in the morning, before a child becomes too tired. If a child is receiving help from an outside agency, then any advice given by the professional would be taken into account when making the decision about the support to be offered to the child.

Any plans written for the child can be shared with the parents and they can then use them with the child at home. The child would be continually observed by staff and these would be recorded and used to evaluate the plans when necessary. All plans would be regularly reviewed by staff, and new plans put into place. These would again be discussed with the parents and their comments would be taken into consideration.

Outside agencies would also visit the child to observe their progress and development, and feedback would then be discussed with staff and with the parents.

13. How are parents involved in the early years setting? How can I be involved?

When a child first attends the setting they will be allocated a Key Person to look after them. This person will build a relationship with the child and with the parents, which would allow for information to be shared whenever necessary. Staff allow for time to talk to parents as a child is brought into the setting at the beginning of each session, or when the child is picked up. Regular planning is written for each child, and parents are asked for ideas as to the activities their child is interested in, has just learned or is currently learning, or about extra curricular activities they may enjoy. Staff would use this information to help plan for the Next Steps in Learning for each child. A home contact book could be used by parents and staff to pass on information about the child, especially if something significant has occurred since the child last attended the setting. Parents are invited to the setting twice a year for Parents Evening, which allows them to look at their child’s Learning Journal. It also allows time for parents to discuss any concerns they may have about their child. Appointments can be made for parents to talk to the child’s Key Person at a time suitable to them, or if needed to talk to the Room Leader/Manager/Early Years Teacher or to the Child Care Director.

14. Who can I contact for further information?

The child’s Key Person should be the parent’s first point of contact to talk about their child. Other staff members who may be able to help would be the child’s Room Leader, the INCO/SENCO in the setting (Nicole Cosstick), the Manager (Nisanka Wickramarachchi), The Early Years Teachers (Nisanka Wickramarachchi) or the setting’s Child Care Director (Tanya Riches). Advice and support can be obtained by the setting from a number of different professional bodies; Inclusion Support - who would allocate an Early Years Advisory Teacher to support the staff, Portage – who provide help and support to parents at home, SALT (Speech and Language therapy), Health visitors, G.P.s, Local schools, Educational and Behavioural Psychologists, Occupational therapist, Social services, and Children and Family centres – who offer a variety of drop-in sessions and workshops for parents on a variety of topics.

Information about the setting can be found on the setting’s own website – www.elannursery.com. The Local Authority’s Local Offer will be found on their website – www.westsussex.gov.uk. All settings will be providing their own Local Offers and links to these should be available through the West Sussex County Council website.