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Do you accept less than 15 funded hours?


nightingale1
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Hello,

I would really appreciate any views on this topic. We have some parents who only want to use 10hrs of funding with us for their 3yr olds. This is difficult as we obviously need to do the same amount of paperwork for all the children - but this is financially difficult as we need to take on even more children to fill places - which in turn leads to more paperwork. Does anyone else have this problem or say that parents have to do at least the full free 15hrs?

 

Thank you!

 

 

 

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Hi

I take children doing 6, 9, 12 and 15 funded hours. I allow them to do what hours they prefer. I have always offered flexible hours to families as parents have other commitments, visiting family, working, children going to activities during the morning such as swimming, Beefit, etc and they don't want to take up the full 15 hours. I accept their choice and just do the paperwork.

V

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Yes it is a problem but its parents choice at the end of the day. I use PRAMS so no paperwork involved. When I invite parents to see their child's progress I do point out to them that children need to spend time socialising first and settling in before they will move forward in their learning.

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Not sure under the terms and conditions you are allowed to make any stipulations about being accepted for a place and as others have said parents may do as they choose . You could though limit how many 3 and 4 year old funded children you take if you can "sell" those places to full fee paying children not using any government funding.

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Thank you for your comments, just wondering are you all day nurseries? And may I ask Bubblejack what does PRAMS stand for? Surely you have to observe, plan for and monitor all your children's progress.

Well I am a packaway term time only setting.

PRAMS is a progress and monitoring system which you can use as is Tapestry which is an online Learning Journey. If you go to the top of the page you will see logos for both of these systems which has been devised and designed by the great people who run this Forum. If you click on the logos you will get a demonstration as to how they work and how little it costs.

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Yes, our sessions were only 2.5 hours, so children could have six sessions of entitlement. They took any number they wanted - most had all six, but some didn't want all six. There's one at the moment only taking one, because there are no more as the preschool is full

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No we are flexible. We do prefer children to do at least two sessions with us, purely for the attachments and social side. We only have one child who is doing one sessionsession with us, but it is working fine for her. Most of our families take all their funded hours.

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We are preschool setting and in preschool year I do insist children do 4 or 5 3 hr sessions. I find that this does really give the children the opportunity to build up friendship patterns to work together and there are other developmental advantages although it is late, I've had a long day and can't think.

I will admit that it does mean that it means we have less children on role and that means that we have a manageable number of key children, fewer parents to email & other administrative advantages.

If I have a parent who insists on less then I do have to think about the child if I think they will cope with fewer then I have taken them.

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Very simply....................you cannot insist that funded children use ALL of their entitlement. We are very flexible and offer whatever the parent wants, though we suggest that one session may not suit their child, as it is a long gap between sessions. We only have one child currently who comes for just one and she is a non-funded child

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Agree with Narnia , personally I don't see how it affects paperwork as funding takes 10 mins , PDF emailed and then returned , all done online , our policy is we ask for minimum of 2 sessions for continuity but this applies to all funded or not.

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In our area with a shortfall of spaces, we try to offer as many of the children as we can the opportunity to attend. So we have children accessing 1,2,3,4 and 5 sessions.

On the whole many doing 3 or 4.

In an ideal world of course it would be so much easier to have a smaller cohort of children doing full sessions, less journals to complete etc, but this wouldn't work in our area I'm afraid. :(

 

On that note of too many children and not enough spaces for pre-schools and nurseries. How are other LA's combatting this.

Are you privy to surveys taken in you LA of data regarding, this like LA's do for schools?

Interested to hear your views.

Edited by Fredbear
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Thank you everyone. Very interesting. Lashes2508, as Fredbear says, it's the learning journals (not claim form submissions) that make taking on more children tricky. Also I feel that you have to limit the number of key children to make paperwork manageable for the team (even if you have spaces to fill...).

We have children that have started with 6hrs then increased but since having my own daughter I have noticed a large number of nurseries that do not allow you to take just your free hours. They simply deduct the 15hrs as a meagre subsidy off your monthly fees. In our borough we are audited and need to clearly show that we offer the free hours with no other stipulations. Very frustrating for us to do the right thing and struggle to cover costs whilst others "get away" with this practice. Maybe that is for another thread!

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Agree with Narnia , personally I don't see how it affects paperwork as funding takes 10 mins , PDF emailed and then returned , all done online , our policy is we ask for minimum of 2 sessions for continuity but this applies to all funded or not.

Your funding takes 10mins...can you cpme and do mine please,with 76 children and 17 columns on the LEA's online spreadsheet,,,,takes me a day if undisturbed.....

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Your funding takes 10mins...can you cpme and do mine please,with 76 children and 17 columns on the LEA's online spreadsheet,,,,takes me a day if undisturbed.....

Ah sorry tish , we only have 39 on role hence why and not all in receipt of funding , we are struggling to fit in the extra hours for those hitting 3 yr funding but come September it won't be a problem and nightingale1 - 17 columns !!! Feel for you , ours is much simpler ,

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Can I just check if in school nurseries parents can be refused a place unless they agree to take 15 hours?

I have a parent query and not sure of the legalities of it

This happened a few years ago in our area. A family only wanted 3 mornings and so the school said no - family complained to whom I don't know (LEA?), but they did end up getting what they wanted - don't think school were too happy, Outstanding school that could fill itself 10 times over! It was a couple of years ago though so things may have changed.

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I didn't think we could stipulate a minimum number of hours as parents allowed to opt for shared care. LA seem to look for flexibility for parents. We have children who use funded hours at childminder because they are working parents and then may come to us for 3 hours because their child will be going to the local school. They either use funded hours for this or pay our fees because we are cheaper than the childminder.

 

I'm not sure whether parents can split their funded hours between LA schools/nurseries and other settings so that may be where the claiming the whole 15 hours comes from. Not sure????

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  • 2 weeks later...

a lot of these questions can only be answered by your own lea's . each area has a different code of practise . We are allowed quite a lot of freedom with our lea as long as we are clear about what we are up to and how the invoicing works.

As to 'getting away with things' nightingale...i'm afraid i know of lots of settings (both full day /sessional and school) who flout the rules continually but my motto is what goes around comes around! if they choose to ignore guidelines they will eventually get their comeuppance!

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'As to 'getting away with things' nightingale...i'm afraid i know of lots of settings (both full day /sessional and school) who flout the rules continually but my motto is what goes around comes around! if they choose to ignore guidelines they will eventually get their comeuppance! '

Very well said fm - this drives me to distraction - hopefully Kent's new auditing methods will put paid to this in my area!

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