Little + Co
Which studio should my child be placed in?
Children are generally placed in one studio for the entirety of the calendar year as in a school system. We encourage children to move through the studios in sequence; allowing children the ability to form strong social relationships with their peers and educators, as well as being given the opportunity to grow and develop in an environment they feel secure in.
Children are only eligible for their kindergarten funded year if they turn 4 years of age by 30 June in that year.
Whilst we use birthdates as an indication of where we will place a child, placement in a studio is not based solely on age and the age ranges provided for the studios are only a guide. Placement may involve several factors e.g. peer group, developmental readiness, individual needs etc. We are guided by the National Early Years Learning Framework for Australia which states:
“Belonging – knowing where and with whom you belong- is integral to human existence. Children belong first to a family, a cultural group, a neighbourhood and a wider community. Belonging acknowledges children’s interdependence with others and the basis of relationships in defining identities. In early childhood, and throughout life relationships are crucial to a sense of belonging. Belonging is central to being and becoming in that it shapes who children are and who they can become.”
Offers of Enrolment – Annual Process
We offer placements at our Service annually. We offer placements to commence on the first day of January which is not a public holiday or weekend each year. Placements commencing at other times throughout the year are only offered subject to availability.
Every year, we undertake a placement process for the following year between approximately June – July for existing families and from July – August for families new to the Service for the following calendar year.
Single Day Placements
We do not offer single day placements.
Commencement at Little + Co – The Orientation Process
Initially, prospective families are offered the opportunity to have a formal tour with the Approved Provider or Director. We strongly advise that you complete a tour to ensure our Service meets your expectations about what you are looking for in an early childhood environment prior to a decision to enrol.
Progression to the waitlist is contingent on the attendance of a tour.
Tours/ Play dates
Tours are offered outside of operational times (usually on a Sunday morning) out of respect for our enrolled children, families and educators and for the safety of the children in our care. We do not offer stay and play dates prior to commencement of enrolment for the same reasons. Whether a child will settle effectively in a new environment cannot be determined from one or two visits with a parent. Settling into a new environment for any child is a process and involves the formation of a strong and secure attachment to educators and that takes time. Successful transition for any child also relies on the establishment of a partnership between educators and parents.
Offer of Placement
Once a placement can be offered, we will contact the family and send a comprehensive enrolment pack. This comprises:
- A Welcome Letter and Fee Schedule
- An Offer of Enrolment
- Little + Co’s Standard Terms for the Enrolment of Children
- Think Outside the Box – Curriculum Statement
- Escorting Children Permission Form
- Direct Debit Form
Once documentation received has been completed and pre enrolment fees are paid within the allocated timeframe, we ask that the parent (s) contacts the Service to organise an enrolment interview with the Director. At that interview parent(s) will be given further information about the Service and where possible introduced to staff. The Director will answer questions, explain the communication systems used, where to find information on the program, policies and procedures; where to find out about the child’s day; what to bring, offer strategies for potential separation anxiety; how the staff roster works, and other pertinent information.
Educators will implement the Communication Policy and start building a partnership with the family by gathering information about the child’s personality, needs, preferences and home routines, and the family’s values and cultural background.
Please note: Settling in will be tailored to meet the needs of the new child having regard for the needs of existing children in that studio. Separation anxiety is very normal in young children and there are numerous strategies we can discuss and employ with you to help your child successfully transition.
Arrival and Departure
It is a requirement that all children be signed in and out of the Service on arrival and departure. We offer 3 session times from which parent/s can select:
- 7-6pm (11 hours)
- 7-5pm (10 hours)
- 8-5pm (9 hours)
Session times enable parents to maximise their entitled subsidy hours and for the Service to staff according to the number of children at different times of the day. In selecting a session time parents are obligated to drop off and collect their child each week within their nominated time frame. Only authorised people may drop off or collect children from the Service. Children may only be collected from the Service (for example, if a child is on an excursion, they may not be collected from the excursion).
Out of hours/ late fees
Additional fees will automatically be incurred by parents who drop off or pick up their child outside their allocated session. Please note failure to sign in and out correctly may also result in full fees being charged for the day.
As a matter of courtesy, we ask that if your child will be absent you contact the Service to let us know as early as possible.
We do not offer a fee reduction for holidays or absences by families in the same way that private schools do not offer a fee reduction for holidays or absences by families. Our staff are employed on a permanent basis and we are unable to synchronise their employment and leave arrangements with holiday arrangements of families.
Casual days are only offered to enrolled families subject to availability.
At Little + Co Early Learning we provide a full nutritional menu for the children which meets the nutritional guidelines set out by Nutrition Australia. We can cater for children with medically diagnosed allergies/food intolerances if a letter and/or action plan from a recognised medical practitioner can be provided. It is important that you note before accepting enrolment that we do not allow any food to be brought into the Service. If you let us know several days before your child’s birthday that s/he will be at the Service on his/her special day our chef will prepare a special healthy treat for the studio to celebrate e.g. fruit faces. Also, if you would like to celebrate a special cultural day with food please speak to our Director or your child’s Educator.
Children always have access to water, and we supply each child with a drink bottle. These drink bottles have been selected for several reasons e.g.
- to develop the children’s hand/eye coordination and foster self-help skills
- having regard to children’s dental health
- educators can easily monitor water consumption
- the ease with which they can be sanitised
- safety (no small, removable parts)
- fit perfectly into the bush kindy children’s carry bags
Bush kindy and other forays into the local community are a core part of the early education curriculum offered at Little + Co Early Learning. We believe that such excursions offer a variety of benefits for children including building confidence and resilience, connections with the local community, opportunities to build gross and fine motor skills, opportunities to work together with peers on projects and to have an awareness of their own safety and security and that of their peers.
Items required to bring
A bag large enough to hold treasured art and craft works, a sheet bag and spare clothing.
- A sun safe hat (all children are required to wear the Service issued hats) and drink bottle (these remain on the premises and are washed by us), sheet set, sheet bag and smelly bag (these must be sent daily and will be sent home for laundering)
- Nappies (up to size 4 for the younger studios)
The above items will be labelled with your child’s name and are issued for use for the duration of your child’s time with us. Items must be returned at cessation of enrolment in good condition.