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Our Nursery Provision

St Mary’s Nursery: our current provision arrangements

We currently have maximum capacity of 52 children in any session. In any given session, this number is made up of a combination of children who are attending for their ‘basic’ session (morning or afternoon) and others who are attending for either their additional free 2 ½ hours or for additional paid-for sessions. We have two main indoor classrooms and an outdoor area to which all the children have access throughout the session, though they return to their ‘base’ room for their story time at the end of each session.


How we offer the free entitlement to 15 hours’ nursery education, and additional paid-for sessions

  • We make a basic offer of either 5 morning or 5 afternoon sessions per week, with sessions lasting 2.5 hours (from 9 – 11.30 or from 1.00 – 3.30). This adds up to 12.5 hours.
  • If you wish your child to be considered for a particular session (morning or afternoon) for their ‘basic place’, please put your request in writing, stating your reasons, at the time of filling in your application form. We cannot guarantee to be able to grant your request but all information will be considered and we try our best to accommodate requests made because of work commitments, for example.
  • In addition to these basic sessions, parents are also offered one further free ‘extension’ session per week – running from either 10.30 – 1.00 if your child has an afternoon place, or from 11.30 – 2.00 if your child has a morning place. This completes your child’s 15 hours’ entitlement.
  • Children staying at Nursery for their free extension must bring a packed lunch* – we set up Yellow Room as a lunch room from 11.40 – 12.30 each day.
  • Parents also have the option, on their child’s extension day, to pay to ‘top up’ to a full day, or to tie in with school arrival/collection time. So, for example, a child could have a morning place with a free extension until 2.00 on one day, and then remain at Nursery until 3.30 (the time between 2.00 and 3.30 being paid for). Or they could have an afternoon place, with a free extension from 10.30 – 1.00 on one day, with parents paying for the time between 9.00 and 10.30.
  • We make a charge for ‘topping up’ to a full day on your child’s free extension day. Charges are reviewed regularly: currently the charge for this ‘top-up’ is £6.70 per day.
  • In addition, and according to availability of spaces, we also offer a number of additional extension places on a paid-for basis. So, for example (depending on availability), a child could attend for one full day a week using their basic 2.5 hours, their free extension and a paid ‘top-up’ on one day, and on another day could have a free 2.5 hours and then remain at Nursery for the rest of the day on a paid-for basis. On the other days the child would attend for just the basic 2.5 hour sessions.
  • We currently make a charge of £23.70 for each additional paid-for session (paid-for sessions running from either 11.30 – 3.30 for morning children or 9.00 – 1.00 for afternoon children). This cost is also reviewed regularly.
  • Invoices are issued and should be paid in advance at the beginning of each half term.
  • Extensions, free or paid, begin not earlier than three weeks after a child has started Nursery, as children need to be given time to settle into their basic session first, whether or not they have attended another setting previously. As with our usual settling-in period, staff will liaise with parents about when it seems right for the child to begin staying at Nursery for longer. More information about introducing your child to longer sessions will be given at the Nursery information meeting held in the summer term before your child starts, and during your home visit if you opt for one.