Out of school clubs care for children aged between 4-16 (some cater for children from specific age groups within this range). They operate from a variety of locations, including school premises, village halls and community centres. A list of these clubs is available at www.bathnes1bd.org.uk
Out of school clubs that are open for over 2 hours and cater for children must be registered with Ofsted and are subject to inspection. Clubs that run in a community centre or village hall require Ofsted registration in their own right, if they run as part of the school they may be covered by the school Ofsted registration.
Open in the morning before school, if they are not based at school premises then staff escort the children to school.
After School Clubs
Collect children from school and take them to the provision. They usually operate between 3.00pm and 6.00pm during term time. You may wish to ask the club how they manage the pick ups from schools. Some may charge extra to cover escorts.
Usually operate between 8.30am and 6.00pm during the school holidays.
What do they provide?
Out of school clubs and holiday playschemes offer a wide range of activities for children and a quiet area if the children just wish to relax. Most clubs have an outside play area. In addition, holiday playschemes may offer trips and outings.
Where the provision is solely before/after school care or holiday provision for children who normally attend Reception class (or older) during the school day, there must be sufficient staff as for a class of 30 children. It is for providers to determine how many staff are needed to ensure the safety and welfare of children, bearing in mind the type(s) of activity and the age and needs of the children. It is also for providers to determine what qualifications, if any, the manager and/or staff should have. Providers do not need to meet the learning and development requirements in Section 1. However, practitioners should discuss with parents and/or carers (and other practitioners/providers as appropriate, including school staff/teachers) the support they intend to offer. (Taken from the 'Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage' 2014)
Cost and allocation of places
Out of school clubs and holiday playschemes vary in cost and may be reduced for families on low incomes or for groups of siblings. Clubs often have waiting lists and tend to work on a first come first served basis.
Ofsted have a voluntary register which will promote quality and may enable parents and carers to access the child care element of the tax credits. For further information on the voluntary register please visit the Ofsted website and for more information about tax credits, including the childcare element please visit the hmrc website.
Issues to consider
- Will your child be able to cope in a large group out of school?
- Will your child have space and quiet to complete any homework set?
- Are you happy with the transfer to/from school that the club provides?
- Do you have an alternative person to collect your child in the evenings if you are delayed?
- Are you happy for your child to attend all the outings? These may incur additional cost.
- Would your child enjoy the structure of a holiday playscheme?
If you are looking for an out of school club please look at www.bathnes1bd.org.uk