Use your own judgement about the suitability of a setting for your child. Only you can decide from what you have observed whether a provider will be sympathetic to your child's needs, and possess, or be willing to develop, the skills to support his speech.
When you have selected your childcare provider print off the information on this resource prepared for them about stammering in What your pre-school staff need to know to help your child so that they have information about your child's speech needs.
Apply for a place
It is important to start considering your application when your child has reached the age of two, as most settings accept application from that age group for entry at the age of three.
Childminders and Private Nurseries: Apply directly
Once you have made your choice you contact the childminder or nursery directly. It is important to do this at least twelve months in advance of requiring the place, as the most popular placements may be oversubscribed and you may need to apply to a number. Some private nurseries do select children after an entrance test that is intended to be appropriate to a young child's development. A parent must decide if their child will cope with that without undue stress.
Children's Centres and School Nurseries: Contact your local authority for information about admissions procedures in your area. These are based upon the guidelines of the Department for Education (DFE) but do vary.
These pre-school settings are local authority maintained and sometimes based in or near a primary school. Parents may feel that admission to one will make it easier to secure a place in the primary school later, but this is not the case, as the admission criteria do not usually permit that. However, a school nursery often does have the advantage of getting your child used to visiting the larger primary school for special events and this provides useful experience of being in a larger school.
A place in a state setting must be offered if one is available, and when it is oversubscribed then the published admissions criteria are applied. Parents should secure copies of the admissions criteria from the local authority and consider from the information provided whether their chosen nursery is usually oversubscribed. If it is then it is important to judge how likely it will be that your child is placed there.
As all these state settings have an obligation to consider the special educational needs of a child you should provide with your application any details of your child's development. When your child is stammering this should include any information about support from a speech and language therapist. The BSA can provide information about stammering to support your application for a pre-school place.
There is a procedure laid down for appealing against a decision on a pre-school place in a state setting. This is outlined in the information provided by the local authority. The BSA can provide information about stammering to support your appeal.
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Text for this page: Make your choice
Text for this whole section: Choosing your pre-school provider