Established in 1994, Leaside opened with an intake of 13 children and we have grown and are now able to take 38 children per session. We currently have 9 members of staff and we are very proud of our high teacher to child ratio.
The Kindergarten operates from Leaside Church Hall. This is situated in the main high street of Ware and is set back from the main road, accessed between the local shops. Our Kindergarten is open 5 days a week, 9am – 3pm.
The building consists of a spacious hall for the nursery age children and a smaller room for our pre-school children. We also have a garden for outside play and a kitchen where the staff prepare daily snacks.
In our pre-school room, our younger children are able to enjoy playing with a variety of equipment including role play, sensory play, mark-making, book corner and many different types of imaginative resources. We also have a messy area which includes sand and water play where staff work closely with the children. We use the hall for our nursery age children, creating an environment of structure and free play. We have a themed role-play area, a variety of table-top resources, a wide selection of construction resources, assorted dressing up, music and instruments, and a messy and creative area. We also have a safe, secure and well-equipped garden space which allows the children time to have fun and explore the outside.

We uphold the Fundamental British Values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs as set out in the Government’s Prevent strategy. This is reflected in our policies and our ethos of effective learning.

 

Admissions Criteria and Allocation of Spaces


Our admissions policy at Leaside is to make the Kindergarten accessible to children and families from all sections of the local community. We aim to ensure that all sections of the community have access to the Kindergarten through open, fair and clearly communicated procedures.

Places are allocated in the order on which they were placed on our waiting list but not before a child reaches 2 years and 6 months. Children under three will be offered a minimum of two sessions a week.

Three year olds will be offered 15 hours of session time as available, this is in keeping with current EYFS. These 15 hours will be funded from the government the term after the child’s third birthday. Prior to this, every 3 hour session will be charged at £16.50.

 

Children's Development and Learning

Leaside Kindergarten follows the criteria of the Early Years Foundation Stage (2021). There are seven development areas that form the building blocks of children's development; these areas are divided into two categories, prime and specific. It is the aim of these areas to scaffold learning onto existing knowledge.

Each child will have a Learning Journal which staff complete with observations made in achieving stages of each of the seven development areas. After a child starts at Leaside Kindergarten, the parent/carer will be invited into the setting after the child has had their first five sessions, in order to have an initial consultation with their child's key worker.

 

Following the Government’s response to the consultation on ‘The Regulation of Childcare’ published 13 February 2014, the EYFS statutory framework has been updated and will be in effect from 1 September 2021. Click here to read more details EYFS Statutory Framework