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Lunch club ratios


holt2007
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I'm going to call the PLA about this today but thought I would post on here as well to see what you knowledge people know !!!

 

We are planning to offer 2 lunchtime clubs a week due to parent feed back. We only open for mornings at present 9.15-12.15.

Our current thinking is that Lunchtime will be 12.15-1.15 and this will be a payable extra.

One of my members of staff has had a change in circumstances and can't do regular extra hours so I may be down to 3 staff on one of the days ( max 20 children)

My question - is a lunchtime club classed as different to a preschool session and so has a lower ratio ?????

It would be helpful it it was !!! but I assume not. I want to know before I make a definite decision on days.

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3 staff x 8 children would be 24 if they are 3 year olds. We do lunch club and were expected to have the same ratios as our normal session when ofsted inspected.(you only have to be available to work though not necessarily working with the children....depending on staff qualifications !)

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Same ratios at our preschool for lunch club. But we do only have 3/4 year olds attending so we could legally have 3 staff to our 24 children, but we don't choose too, with some children in the toilets, tidying up etc we have 4 staff in on those days.:)

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Yes

we have the same ratios and have 2,3, and 4 year olds so make sure we have the 4 -1 for the 2 year olds. When we only did 30 minutes we didn't get many two year olds because basically by the time they wash their hands and sit down there isn't enough time for them to eat their lunch. We have a 1 hour lunch club and it works much better

Anne

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Thanks for all you info.

I speak to our local area PLA centre and they are always v helpful.

We came to the same conclusion that ratio needs to be the same so question answered ! I like to have 4 staff per day anyway so would want to keep 4 but staff member joined saying they could do extra and now can't so abit of a pain !!

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Ours was an hour Anne, but ours all ate their dinner within 15 mins and then as it was the close of session for us there was a along time to keep them entertained with all resources except a book corner left to occupy them!

30mins is much more achievable for us - parents are never kept waiting for any who haven't finished, we must have very fast eaters in our area xD

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Hi

 

We have 5 staff for lunch as same need as a break (eating with children!) and some set up for the afternoon. If your staff have set up they are legally entitled to a break working more than 4 hours but mention that they can only drink tea in the set 15 mins and they soon go quiet again.

Also we are not keen on 2 year olds at lunch time as they can't sit down for 20 minutes and seem to want to walk about eating.

 

Also have you thought that parents might want to include the 4 hours in their free entitlement and not pay extra. Ie 3 x 4 hours plus a 3 hours per week and have a day off.

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We have looked into the 4hr then a break issue and it will work ok for us.

Diesel10 - committee are looking at whether we do it as an extra or as an add on funded hour. Will be a trial at doing it as an extra so well see what the new cohort of parents need are.

We only take from 2.5 yrs and this next term have many 3 yr olds starting so hopefully lunchtime will be fairly civil !!

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You may find that not all parents will want the extra time so will not need the 4 staff anyway.. we used to have about a 40% take up for lunch club when they had to pay , extending it as part of funded hours may see more staying, but financially it didn't work for us as we were all working more hours, paying more rent etc.. but no more income than before as they just swapped hours around rather than pay for them.. hence we kept it as an extra when only doing morning sessions.. this all changed when we went all day though we still found a lot less staying for the lunch club bit than attending the am or pm sessions ..

It is 6 hours before legally having to give a break.. and the break need not be paid time.. as with others our staff were all happy to join the children.. we gave them an opportunity to take a break away but they seldom took it,

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Yes, sorry I did get that wrong its 20 minutes if working more than 6 hours.

 

and yes inge is right, you won't get everyone taking it up. Depends whether parent / carers value the extra hour enough to pay for it and make a packed lunch. Although a lot will! If you know you only have x amount of staff you can set limits for the amount of children that can attend, although as inge said you have to have enough to make it financially worth your while. (unless you like eating your lunch with a room full of 3 year olds..... scissors for yoghurts, peeling satsumas, wiping bottoms, ... its all great fun)

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