For parents of disabled and/or special educational needs children (SEND), it can be a daunting task deciding whether to send their child to a specialist nursery or a mainstream one. At Little Acorns Day Nursery, we understand this struggle and endeavour to support parents with their decision at every step of the process. Our range of childcare services includes a toddler nursery, preschool, and a Saturday morning club.
Nurseries are a great way for your little one to learn how to socialise with other toddlers, but if they have additional needs like a learning difficulty or physical disability, you may be more concerned about your child’s wellbeing.
Mainstream nurseries have a responsibility to be inclusive of children of different abilities. At Little Acorns, our childcare professionals make sure that we speak regularly with parents, specialists, and special educational needs coordinators to identify a child’s needs and assess how to meet those needs properly. All children require different levels of care regardless of ability, so we always approach each child’s needs with care, this means emotionally and physically adapting to suit the child’s needs.
Nursery staff are well-equipped to monitor the development of your child with SEND, with proper training, staff will know what areas of difficulty to watch out for and how to assist with growth and development. Assigning staff members to oversee and coordinate the special needs policy of the nursery, as we do at Little Acorns, also ensures that the commitment to inclusivity is consistently at the forefront of how the nursery is run.
At all times, nursery staff should promote a positive perspective on inclusion and diversity which will help SEND children feel valued and included. Where they can, staff should make children aware of role models or different abilities, creating a positive and nurturing environment for them; books and videos are ways that nurseries may choose to display representations of mixed abilities for toddlers to look up to.
Communication between the nursery and parents is essential, especially where a SEND child is concerned. Some parents may wish to split their child’s daycare between a mainstream nursery and a more specialised nursery; communicating is the best way to ensure the child gets the most out of both daycare experiences. Your nursery should relay any concerns, and also make sure to give feedback on any positive progress.
At Little Acorns, our childcare professionals in Eastleigh and Hedge End are experienced in providing childcare for a range of abilities and needs; this means that we know how to adapt our practices to accommodate every child. Our facilities and activities are as inclusive and accessible as possible, and we are always looking for new ways to improve through training, etc. You can read more about our Special Educational Needs Policy here. We welcome parents of SEND children to contact us to find out more about what we can offer to your little one to make sure that they have everything that they need for happy and healthy development.