The staff/child ratio depends on the age of the child. The regulations state the following:

Under 2

 1 staff member to every 3 children

2 – 3 Years

1 staff member to every 5 children

3 – 5 Years

1 staff member to every 8 children

This is the minimum requirement but we always have at least one floating member of staff to cover.

Staff may have NNEB or equivalent i.e. HNC or SVQ 3 or are working towards this. Some staff also have PDA in Early Years or a BA Child and Youth Studies or have or are working towards BA Childhood Practice degree through UHI. Ankerville Nurseries are also affiliated with the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) and delivers Level 3 in Social Services Children and Young People Award. All staff are mentored initially by a long serving member of staff and all staff are First Aid trained. They also attend other courses relevant to their work. As an organisation we are committed to the continuous development of all our staff.

All our staff, care, domestic and office, undergo enhanced PVG Disclosure checks before they are allowed to be involved with the children. In addition, two personal references and a medical check are taken up prior to starting work with Ankerville Nurseries. All the toys and equipment in the Nursery are of a high quality and regular Risk Assessments on equipment and procedures are carried out to ensure everything is maintained to the highest standard. We carry out termly Fire Drills with the children, so that they become familiar with the routine, and should we have an emergency, we will be able to clear the buildings quickly and safely. Should your child be collected by a someone unknown to staff, (relative, friend etc), staff must be notified immediately, when they will then give you a password to give to this person . We will not release a child to anyone unless we have confirmation from the parent that it is okay to do so. All children’s areas can only be entered with a member of staff. Ankerville Alness is monitored by CCTV cameras in the garden areas and in the front hall.

Children are offered a range of different activities throughout the day, which will include creative play, activities to help with numeracy and literacy, construction and problem-solving, story time, dance and movement, rest and relaxation. There will also be plenty of opportunity for free play to allow children to be inventive and use their imaginations. A copy of our weekly plan is available in both halls and reception area. Children are observed and assessed against nationally recognised educational standards following the Curriculum for Excellence.

Children have their breakfast when they arrive in the morning which consists of a cereal or porridge along with toast, a bagel or a crumpet  and some fresh fruit with some milk or water to drink. At lunch time, the children have a freshly prepared homemade dish along with either some soup or a pudding. They are offered water to drink. We follow the “Setting the Table” guidance when planning meals. In the afternoon, Children are offered a carbohydrate based snack which always includes either a piece of fruit or vegetable and either milk or water to drink. 

Yes, we ask parents to provide nappies, wipes and cream. We cannot use any products on your child that you have not provided yourself. We will let you have a few days notice when they need replenished.

If your child is taken ill at the Nursery, we will contact you immediately. Our staff is trained to give First Aid for minor injuries and we have comprehensive Policies and Procedures in place to deal with more serious emergencies. Should your child have sickness or diahorrea we have a 48 hour exclusion from nursery from the last bout. Also if your child has an unexplained rash or a sticky eye they should not attend.

If your child misses Nursery due to illness, unfortunately no refund can be made. In the interest of the other children, it is important that your child is well before returning them to the Nursery. If a child is sick or unable to attend their Nursery session, it is essential that you phone and let staff know the reason for absence before 9:30 am. After this time, staff will phone to inquire about your child’s whereabouts and will use emergency contacts if the home number is unsuccessful. If your child’s absence is still not explained the manager will contact the Social Work Department.

Sometimes parents are unavoidably delayed. Please let us know as soon as possible to avoid unnecessary concerns. Arrangements will be made to look after your child until you arrive. In the event that you are consistently late, we will make an additional charge to cover staff costs. If a child has not been picked up at the end of the day and parent/carer cannot be contacted nor the emergency contact, 30 minutes leeway will be given then the Social Work Department will be contacted to give advice.

We always want to hear if you or your child is unhappy with any aspect of the Nursery. Please raise any concerns you have with the individual Managers or Mrs Carol MacRae who will endeavour to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction if possible. Should you still be unhappy, you can take your complaint further by contacting the Care Inspectorate.

We are open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. each day. All nurseries are closed for two weeks over Christmas and New Year, also May Day. Other holidays also apply.

Please contact us for more information on our fees. 

We have a robust Covid 19 policy and detailed risk assessment.

If you have any other questions that aren’t covered here, please do not hesitate to get in touch.