St Jude’s Church Nursery aim to provide a safe, friendly, nurturing environment for all children and their families. All the children here are looked upon as individuals who develop at different rates, they are all given learning experiences to reach their full potential.

Children are allocated an experienced nursery practitioner known as a key person who can make effective observations and support a child’s next step. The key person will involve you when setting a new next step to ensure we work together in achieving this for your child’s development. At St Jude’s, we believe it is paramount to work in partnership with families, after all no one knows the child better than their parents! The key person will aim to form a strong relationship with the child and family while supporting them through the journey together. When planning for each child’s individual needs their interests are factored in too and these are also looked at when reflecting on the learning environments at the nursery. They can be adapted to meet the needs of the child. The nursery has a strong emphasis on offering a supportive role, as opposed to a more spoon-fed role, it can really help your children achieve and succeed! This is known as ‘scaffolding’.

Supporting a child with Special Educational Needs/Disabilities (SEND)

We have recently adopted a free flow system at St Jude’s Church Nursery which enables the children to access the areas of learning and development that interest them most. This approach allows them the time to complete activities and to move across all areas on offer in their own time and at their own pace. This system allows them to make their own independent choices in a safe and nurturing environment, where they learn and grow in confidence in readiness for school life.

If the key person has concerns regarding a child’s development and progress at nursery, we will invite you in to discuss this with our nursery Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo). The nursery SENCo may liaise with outside professionals to seek advice, this may be a Health Visitor, Speech and Language Therapist or an Outreach Officer.

If a child has been identified with a special educational need, then a Child Support Plan (CSP) would be implemented in partnership with parents. Adjustments may need to be made in the nursery in order to include the children in the environment and enable them to access activities on offer at the nursery. A child may start the nursery with additional needs already identified, prior knowledge can allow the staff to look at the special provisions available to support the child’s development along with a CSP and get a head start before they begin at the nursery.

Child Support Plans are reviewed (at a minimum) termly and made achievable using small steps to support the child. Children with SEND are continually monitored by the child’s key person and the nursery SENCo.

The nursery SENCo works closely with outside agencies for advice supporting children’s development, they can also offer specific training for staff to gain good knowledge and understanding in order to meet the needs of a child.

The early years foundation stage (EYFS) curriculum can be adapted to support a child with SEND, we are currently working with Portage SEND Best Practice Assessment Documents to ensure all children can make the best possible progress.  St Jude’s Church Nursery achieved the Portage stamp of approval after two members of staff completed training and the nursery SENCo built a portfolio to support the hard work staff deliver. St Jude’s Church Nursery were the first nursery in Portsmouth to achieve this.

For further information, please do contact us.