Get your after school club ready for the new school year
With September almost upon us, parents are busy getting their kids ready for the new school year. Similarly, managers of after school clubs have plenty on their plate to get their clubs organised. Here are some of the tasks you’ll want to look at before the bell rings for the first day of term.
Create a schedule for the new term
Many clubs will be working out the schedule for the new term, including the activity sessions that take place each day and the member of staff responsible for running them. Even if your club has an established set of popular activities, you may wish to mix things up with some new ideas for the term ahead. Some alternative activities you may wish to consider include photography, street dance and public speaking.
You may wish to review your pricing and determine if any price increases are necessary due to rising costs.
Train new staff and help them gain the necessary qualifications
As you will likely be aware, all staff working with young people and children in the UK need to have specific qualifications in order to meet Ofsted requirements.
The exact requirements for qualifications depend on your childcare provision and whether your club is on the Early Years or Compulsory Childcare Register. You may need to check if you need to get additional staff child protection training. Your local authority which should be able to advise you about the courses available in your area and what funding is available
All staff and volunteers will need a DBS check, which checks an individual's criminal records to ensure they are safe to work with children. It costs £18 to obtain from the UK Government and you should receive the certificate within 14 days. There should also always be at least one member of staff on site who has a paediatric first-aid certificate.
Ensure your records are up to date
Now is a good time to ensure all your childcare records are up to date. You may wish to archive records of children who are now too old to attend your clubs and ensure all existing records have up to date information. If you are a Pembee customer, you can ask for certain field data for your existing attendees to be cleared so that parents have to enter this again next time they make a booking for your clubs. This ensures accuracy for important information like allergies, emergency contacts etc.
Promote after school club to parents
Ensure to contact any schools you operate in to make sure details of the after school club are communicated to parents.
Some clubs we’ve spoken to have a lot of new children joining so are sending out an information sheet to the parents so they have full details of the childcare provision available. You may also wish to do your own email marketing, for help with this see our post on Introduction to email marketing for group activity providers. If you accept tax-free childcare payments, make sure to promote this and encourage parents to check if they’re eligible for the scheme. You can point them to the Help paying for your Childcare government webpage.
Good luck with your after school club and the year ahead. If you have any tips or ideas you wish to share with other readers feel free to leave them in the comments below.