The Role of the Key Person and Settling In
Safeguarding and Welfare Requirement: Suitable People
Each child must be assigned a key person. Their role is to help ensure that every child’s care is tailored to meet their individual needs, to help the child become familiar with the setting, offer a settled relationship for the child and build a relationship with their parents.
We believe that children settle best when they have a key person to relate to, who knows them and their parents well, and who can meet their individual needs. Research shows that a key person approach benefits the child, the parents, the staff and the setting by providing secure relationships in which children thrive, parents have confidence, our staff are committed and the setting is a happy and dedicated place to attend or work in.
We want children to feel safe, stimulated and happy in the setting and to feel secure and comfortable with our staff. We also want parents to have confidence in both their children's well-being and their role as active partners with our setting. We aim to make our setting a welcoming place where children settle quickly and easily because consideration has been given to the individual needs and circumstances of children and their families.
The key person role is set out in the Safeguarding and Welfare Requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage. Each child must have a key person. These procedures set out a model for developing a key person approach that promotes effective and positive relationships for children.
We allocate a key person when the child starts.
The key person is responsible for:
Offering unconditional regard for the child and being non-judgemental.
Working with the parents to plan and deliver a personalised plan for the child’s well-being, care and learning.
Acting as the key contact for the parents.
Help to complete relevant forms with parents, including consent forms if needed.
Developmental records and for sharing information on a regular basis with the child’s parents to keep those records up-to-date, reflecting the full picture of the child in our setting and at home.
Having links with other carers involved with the child and co-ordinating the sharing of appropriate information about the child’s development with those carers.
Encouraging positive relationships between children in the setting.
We promote the role of the key person as the child’s primary carer in our setting, and as the basis for establishing relationships with other adults and children.
In the absence of the key person a parent/carer can speak to the supervisor or any member of staff with regards to their child’s learning and well-being.
Before a child starts to attend our setting, we use a variety of ways to provide his/her parents with information. These include written information (including our prospectus and policies) accessible on our website, displays about activities available within the setting, induction sessions meeting with parents and child.
During the half-term before a child is enrolled, we provide opportunities for the child and his/her parents to visit the setting.
We use the induction session to explain and check, with his/her parents, the child's registration records.
When a child starts to attend, we explain the process of settling-in with his/her parents and jointly decide on the best way to help the child to settle into the setting.
The key person welcomes and introduces themselves to the child and his/her parents during the child's first week where possible and looks after the child in the settling-in process.
We have an expectation that the parent, carer or close relative, If needed will stay for most of the session during the first week, gradually taking time away from their child; increasing this time as and when the child is able to cope.
Younger children may take longer to settle in, as will children who have not previously spent time away from home. Children who have had a period of absence may also need their parent to be on hand to re- settle them.
We judge a settled child to be when the child is familiar with where things are and is pleased to see other children and participate in activities.
We recognise that some children will settle more readily than others, but that some children who appear to settle rapidly are not ready to be left. We expect that the parent will honour the commitment to stay for at least the first week, or possibly longer, until their child can stay happily without them.
We do not believe that leaving a child to cry will help them to settle any quicker. We believe that a child's distress will prevent them from learning and gaining the best from the setting.
We reserve the right not to accept a child into the setting without a parent or carer if the child finds it distressing to be left. This is especially the case with very young children.
Within the first four to six weeks of starting, we discuss and work with the child's parents to begin to create their child's record of achievement.
This Policy was adopted by Sparklers Pre-School
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This Policy was approved by Sparklers Pre-School Committee
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