Welcome to Watford South Children's Centre Group

To be able to access all of the features on our website, we recommend viewing our website using the Google Chrome browser.

Children’s Centres provide a ‘one stop shop’ within your local community offering information and access to services for families and carers with children aged under five years and parents to-be. They aim to offer every child the best start in life.

Families, carers and parents to-be can benefit from a range of flexible services and support when they need it and in convenient locations.

You can find which is your nearest children centre by going on the Hertfordshire Children's Centre postcode checker.

Children’s Centres can help you with:

  • Breastfeeding Support
  • Information about early education and childcare
  • Family learning activities
  • Parenting Courses
  • Employment or training advice
  • Outreach and family support

We work with other professionals including, GPs, Midwives, Early Years Settings, Schools, Health Visitors and Job Centres.

Watford South Children's Centre Group covers the parts of Central and West Watford, offering services for approximately 2390 children under five.

The Pre-School Learning Alliance is the lead agency for the Watford South Children's Centre Group.

It comprises of 2 centres.

Services are delivered from these sites and other venues in the community.

Westfield Children's Centre Littlebury Children's Centre
Croxley View Littlebuy Hall, Mildred Avenue
Watford Watford
Herts WD18 6AE Herts WD18 7DY
01923 800003 01923 800003
Open: 9am - 4pm

 

 

Please note that Littlebury Children's Centre is now only open when services are running, please refer to our timetable.

Registrations

You can register by downloading a Registration Form and returning it to any of our centres or you can register online if you prefer.

Alternatively, you can pick up a form from any of our Children Centres.

Thank you for taking the time to register with us. This will enable us to keep you up to date about all the exciting activities and courses we have available to you.

Please follow this link to join Family Corner, the FREE parent club from Pre-school Learning Alliance- www.familycorner.co.uk

Hertfordshire Domestic Abuse Helpline

The Hertfordshire domestic abuse helpline is a confidential, free-to-caller signposting service for anyone affected by domestic violence or domestic abuse. Please click below to go to their website.

email: westfield@pre-school.org.uk

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About us

Meet The Team

The Senior Leadership Team:

Cheryl Betts, Watford South Children's Centre Group Manager, based at Westfield Children's Centre.

Nicky Mitchell, Senior Outreach leads the Watford South Children's Centre Group Outreach team.

Joanne Burgess, Senior Early Years Coordinator, leads the Watford South Children's Centre Group Play Team.

Snibs Brabham, Senior Data Coordinator, leads the Watford South Children's Centre Group Admin team.

The Outreach Team:

The Outreach Team are here to provide families with individual support. They also support the play team at groups and sessions and are often out and about in the community.

Ria Peart, Outreach Worker

The Play Team:

The Play Team run sessions for the Watford South Children's Centre Group at both Littlebury & Westfield Children's Centres and out in the community.

Alison Onslow, Play Coordinator

Katie Clough, Play Coordinator

Emma Pym, Play Assistant

The Admin Team:

The Admin Team based at Westfield Children's Centre, are there to welcome you to our groups and sessions, and provide admin support to the rest of the staff in the group.

Lisa Watkins-Price, Administrator

Naheed Asif, Administrator

Our Services

Pre-schools, Day Nurseries and Schools in our area

Pre-schools

Pre-Schools provide care and early education for children from 2+ years until they enter school reception

  • offer sessions of up to four hours

  • organised and run by private, charity or voluntary

  • ...
Read more

Baby & Toddler Groups in our area

We are working to update the information on this page.

Read more

Free childcare for 2, 3 and 4 year olds

...

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SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) - Local Offer

Changes in attitudes, law and practice over the last couple of decades has meant that most young children with special educational needs and disabilities now start their education in mainstream provision.  However, the system for identifying and meeting children’s needs has not always been...

Read more

Parent Information

...

Read more

Our Policies

Policies

Below you will find information on our key policies and procedures. Copies of the full Watford South Children's Centre Group Policies and Procedures are available on request from any of our Children's Centres.

Safeguarding...

Read more

Early Years Pupil Premium

Early Years Pupil Premium (parents)

What is the early years pupil premium?

Early years pupil premium is an additional amount of funding that pre-schools, nurseries, schools and...

Read more

Healthy Children's Centre

Hertfordshire COunty Council want people living in the county to have the healthiest lives possible.The Healthy Children's Centre Programme provides a systematic,...

Read more

Pre-schools, Day Nurseries and Schools in our area

Pre-schools

Pre-Schools provide care and early education for children from 2+ years until they enter school reception

  • offer sessions of up to four hours

  • organised and run by private, charity or voluntary organisations

  • pre-schools provide an ideal opportunity for children to mix with other children before starting school.

Day Nurseries

Day Nurseries provide care and early education for children from 3 months until they enter school reception.

  • open to suit an average working day

  • will always be someone to look after your child

  • offer flexibility of full or part-time places, child will mix with children of a similar age

For a full printable version of all preschools and day nurseries in the Watford South Children's Centre Group, please click on the link below:

pdf icon Pre-schools and Day Nurseries

Schools

Nursery Schools and Nursery Classes. Nursery schools provide care and early education for children from the term after their third birthday until they enter school reception.

  • open during school hours

  • children normally attend for morning or afternoon sessions.

  • children have an opportunity to mix with their peers

To apply for a school place you will need to use the Herts County Council On-Line Admissions.  For more information on the schools and nurseries in the Watford South Group area please use the following links:

Baby & Toddler Groups in our area

We are working to update the information on this page.

Free childcare for 2, 3 and 4 year olds

Free Early Education and Childcare for Two year olds

A number of children may be eligible for 2 year old funding for free places at Pre-school or Day Nursery. Childhood Support Services would like to promote the take up of free early education for two year olds. You can drop-in to any of the Watford South Children Centres and we would be happy to support you in your application. You can check if you can receive funding by going onto the eligibility checker. Try the link below.

The link to use is www.hertsdirect.org/parents

pdf icon Two year old free early education – myth busting

Free Early Eduction and Childcare for Three and Four year olds

All three and four year olds are entitled to 15 hours of free early education for 38 weeks of the year. This applies until they reach compulsory school age (the term following their fifth birthday). Free early education places are available at a range of early years settings including nursery schools and classes, day nurseries, play groups, pre-schools and childminders.

When can I get a free childcare place?

A child born in the period 

Will become eligible for a free place

1 April to 31 August

the start of term beginning on or following 1 September after the child's third birthday

1 September to 31 December

the start of term beginning on or following 1 January after the child's third birthday

1 January to 31 March

the start of term beginning on or following 1 April after the child's third birthday 

 

The 15 hours free early education entitlement can be taken flexibly, at up to two providers within the following limits:

  • the full 15 hours have to be taken over at least two days per week and a maximum of five days per week

  • a minimum of two and a half hours can be taken in one day

  • a maximum of ten hours can be taken in one day

For example, your child could have nine hours at a nursery class and six hours with a pre-school, day nursery, childminder or independent school over the course of two days or more, if both settings agree.

You can find providers offering free places by using the childcare directory. You can also check the Ofsted website for any inspection results.

 If you would like to apply for a school nursery place, you can find out more on HertsDirect nursery admissions pages.

For support in making your application for 2 Year Old Funding or a Nursery Place please contact the office on 01923 800003 to make an appointment.

SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) - Local Offer

Changes in attitudes, law and practice over the last couple of decades has meant that most young children with special educational needs and disabilities now start their education in mainstream provision.  However, the system for identifying and meeting children’s needs has not always been effective, and some parents have found it difficult to secure suitable provision for their children.

Local authorities must ensure that all funded early years providers in the maintained, private, voluntary and independent sectors, are aware of the requirement on them to have regard to the SEND Code of Practice (2014), and to meet the needs of children with SEN and disabilities.  When securing funded early education for two, three and four-year-olds, local authorities should promote equality and inclusion for children with disabilities or SEN.  This includes removing barriers that prevent children accessing early education, and working with parents to give each child support to fulfil their potential. 

Local authorities should meet these duties alongside other legislative childcare duties to secure information, advice and training, and provide sufficient childcare provision.

Please use the link to the Hertfordshire County Council Directory and click on the SEND Local Offer button where you will be able to view and search for more information.

Hertfordshire County Council is undertaking a survey so they can evaluate the support they currently offer to the families of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).  They are seeking the views of parents, colleagues providing early years education (childminders, day and maintained nurseries) and colleagues working within support services (therapists, Paediatricians, Integrated Services for Learning staff, for example).  The results of this survey will inform future development of early years SEND services. That means they will be able to offer better support to children, their families and pre-school workers.  To take part in the survey please visit: https://www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/microsites/local-offer/news/early-years-send-review.aspx

Parent Information

pdf icon Pregnancy & Beyond - Your guide to Childrens Centres and other services available to you and your family.

 'What to Expect, When' is a booklet designed to help parents/carers find out more about how their child is learning and developing during their first five years.

Children develop more rapidly during the first five years of their lives than at any other time. This booklet has been written to help parents know what to expect during these vitally important years by focusing on the seven areas of learning and development which are covered in the Early Years Foundation Stage.

pdf icon What to Expect, When - a parent's guide.

 

My Baby's Brain

We already know that parents are the most important things in children’s lives, but recently we have discovered something even more amazing... we have discovered that how a parent behaves around their baby in the first three years of the baby’s life has a significant impact on how their baby’s brain develops. This is the foundation of how the brain will work as the child grows up and becomes an adult, so if a baby’s brain develops healthily they are more likely to be happy and successful as older children and adults.

Childhood Support Services (CSS) has produced a new My Baby’s Brain film that shows the five to thrive in action and the importance this has in giving children the best start in life. There are two versions of the film, one audio and one with text; you can find the films on the http://www.hertsdirect.org/services/edlearn/css/mbb

 

We would like to remind parents of young children of the importance of the MMR vaccination.  Pregnant women should make sure that they are protected before they become pregnant or make sure they are vaccinated soon after their baby is born.

It is never too late to have the vaccine if you haven’t had two doses.

If you would like more information about MMR please visit www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/pages/mmr-vaccine.aspx

Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board (HSCB) are running a conference to help Hertfordshire parents safeguard their children. The conference will take place on 14 October 2017 at Hertfordshire Development Centre.

 Please see the attached flyer for more information.

Our Policies

Policies

Below you will find information on our key policies and procedures. Copies of the full Watford South Children's Centre Group Policies and Procedures are available on request from any of our Children's Centres.

Safeguarding Children Policy and Information

Early Years Pupil Premium

Early Years Pupil Premium (parents)

What is the early years pupil premium?

Early years pupil premium is an additional amount of funding that pre-schools, nurseries, schools and childminders will be able to claim to support the development and learning of eligible three and four year old children.

What benefit will it be to my child?

The pre-school, nursery, school or childminder that your child attends will receive an additional amount of funding to support your child’s development. They will work with you to decide what they should spend this funding on. It may be training for the staff to help them to support your child better or they may buy some resources to assist your child’s learning.

Who is eligible for the funding?

Children will attract early years pupil premium if their families are in receipt of one of the following benefits.

  • Income support
  • Job Seekers’ Allowance (Income-based)
  • Employment & Support Allowance (Income-related)
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • The guaranteed element of the State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit based on an annual gross income of no more than £16,190
  • Working Tax Credit run-on

How do I find out if my child is eligible for early years pupil premium?

Every term you will have to sign a parent declaration form at your child’s setting. The parent declaration has a section that asks for your surname, date of birth and national insurance number. These details are needed to check to see if your child is eligible for early years pupil premium.

I am not the child’s parent but I am their main carer. Are they eligible?

The following groups of children are automatically eligible:

  •  children who are looked after by the local authority
  •     children who have left care through a special guardianship, adoption or residence order.

If the child you look after falls into one of the above categories there is no need for an eligibility check to be performed and you will not need to complete the early years pupil premium section of the parent declaration form. You just need to let the setting know about your child’s circumstances.

My child is adopted, are they eligible?

Yes. There is no need for an eligibility check to be performed and you will not need to complete the early years pupil premium section of the parent declaration form. You just need to let the setting know about your child’s circumstances.

For further information please speak with your child’s setting and they will talk you through the process to claim this additional funding and explain in more detail how the funding can support your child or click here.

Healthy Children's Centre

Hertfordshire COunty Council want people living in the county to have the healthiest lives possible.The Healthy Children's Centre Programme provides a systematic, structured and evidenced based approach for all activity provided by the children's centres and thier linked partners.

Useful Links for the Healthy Children's Centre Programme

West Herts breastfeeding support group:  http://westhertsbreastfeeders.org/

Alternatives Watford Pregnancy Crisis & Support: http://www.alternativeswatford.co.uk/

As One Enhanced Mental Health Support: https://directory.hertfordshire.gov.uk/kb5/hertfordshire/directory/organisation.page?id=DalBBILPmkE

Telephone number for the Mental Health Helpline: 01438 843322

Telephone number for the Mental Health Team @ Colne House: 01923 837148

Bumble Club for Children with Learning Difficulties (Under Five): http://www.watfordmencap.org.uk/parents_and_carers/children/bumble_club_under_5s

Watford Kids Hub – supporting parents and carers of children with disabilities or additional needs living in Hertfordshire: www.kids.org.uk/hub

Herts Stop Smoking Service: https://www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/services/Health-in-Herts/Smoking/Stop-Smoking-Service.aspx

 

Events

Here is our NEW Spring Timetable showing our services and events from Monday 8th January to Friday 29th March 2018.  

For a printable version of our timetable please click here.

There will be no sessions running during week commencing 19th February to 23rd February 2018.

In addition to our regular timetable we also have the following sessions coming soon!

World Book Day

We would like to advise that the use of mobile phones and personal devices / cameras is not permitted in the Watford South Group of Children's Centres or at any of our activities.

INTRODUCING A CHARGE FOR SOME OF OUR GROUPS

For many years now we have only asked for voluntary donations to attend our groups and services held at our children centre's and we have been very grateful for all you have given to the centre.

However, as our budgets get smaller we have had to take the tough decision of either charging for our groups or making cuts to our timetable. We hope that you agree that we really didn't want to lose any of the groups we offer and so we are introducing a small charge at the following groups.

We will also be asking for a refundable deposit to secure a crèche place. We are doing this because lots of parents book a crèche space and then don't turn up. This is frustrating as we only have a few crèche spaces on offer and we don't want to stop those who genuinely need and want a space from attending.

Baby Massage - £20 per course (£5 per week for a 4 week course payable in advance)

Creches - refundable £10 deposit to secure a crèche space (this money will be refunded if you attend)

There will be charges for other courses or events such as First Aid, Childcare and the cost of these will be advertised on our posters.

Please be aware that the money we charge is not a profit, it is helping towards the cost of providing the group.  For example - did you know that as well as the food donations we receive it costs us nearly £300 per month to provide snacks and refreshments for you and your children at the centre!

We hope you understand and support our decisions to help keep our children's centre services running. If you have any other ideas how we can fundraise to support our groups then please do speak to a member of staff and let us know!!!!

Booking Information

For all sessions priority is given to parents living in the Watford South Children's Centre Group area. We ask for a voluntary contribution towards sessions run by the Children's Centre Group. Some commissioned services may incur a charge. However, free and subsidised places are available to eligible families living in the Children's Centre Group area. Please contact the office for further information on 01923 800003 or email wesfield@pre-school.org.uk

Contact us

Please find our maps, useful links and policies;

Westfield Chldren's Centre

Croxley View

Waford

Herts WD18 6AE

01923 800003

westfield@pre-school.org.uk

Littlebury Children's Centre

Littlebury Hall

Mildred Avenue

Watford

Herts WD18 7DY

01923 800003

westfield@pre-school.org.uk

 

Useful Links

Support for Parents and Carers

  • www.postnatalillness.co.uk Hertfordshire post natal illness offers support and advice to you or your partner.

  • www.bliss.org.uk Bliss is the special care baby charity which provides vital support and care to premature and sick babies across the UK.

  • Hertfordshire Domestic Abuse Helpline is a confidential, free-to-caller signposting service for anyone affected by domestic violence or domestic abuse, telephone 08 088 088 088 or visit www.hertsdomesticabusehelpline.org/

Financial Advice

Croxley View
Watford
Herts
WD18 6AE
United Kingdom
Tel: 01923 800003