A Voice for the Early Years Sector in Surrey – Representing your views.
We are delighted to introduce you to the new Early Years Phase Council which was formally launched on 5 July 2018. This Council is comprised of an elected membership of representatives designed to capture the views across the maintained, private, voluntary and independent sectors of Early Years providers. The formation of the Early Years Phase Council (EYPC) mirrors the Primary Secondary and Special Phase Councils and replaces the Early Years Reference Group. This means that for the first time we have achieved equal status with statutory school age education which, I am sure you agree, is a really positive development.
The EYPC gives all stakeholders the opportunity, in partnership with our SCC colleagues, to support children and families on their journey of learning. It has a very broad representation from across the sector with members from maintained Nursery Schools, Childminders, PVI providers including pack away sessional settings and full Daycare settings. This offers us an opportunity to really understand the perspectives of the whole sector and ensure that we have a voice that represents all children under 5 when Surrey County Council seeks information and opinion in order to inform future planning and policy for future of Early Years.
The EYPC will work as a conduit to support wider consultation on a broad variety of issues and strategies including service delivery, funding and targeted priorities including SEND and social mobility. We will continue to have representation on Schools Forum, which is instrumental in deciding future funding policy. We will also have opportunity to meet with the SCC Director of Education at regular intervals, along with the Chairs of the other Phase Councils, to influence and input into future strategies.
Your EYPC representatives introduce themselves below and provide their contact details. This webpage will be updated regularly and we hope to send out newsletters and bulletins whenever we are participating in Local Authority consultations. We are all active professionals and you will see us at network meetings so please do approach us and introduce yourselves.
Sian Bath - Chair
Nurturing Childcare Ltd
I am a parent of 2 grown up children and have lived in Surrey for over 20 years. I am joint Director of Nurturing Childcare Ltd. I co-established the company in 2004 and have been instrumental in it's expansion from a single, 36 place preschool to 3 settings with over 218 children on role. We have a 60 place wrap around care preschool for 2-5 year olds (open 48 weeks, 7.30am -6pm), a preschool for 36 2-5 year olds and a baby / toddler room. I am qualified as an Early Years Professional and completed a Masters in Early Education at Sheffield University. I also helped set up and run St. Paul's Children Centre and am currently the coordinator. I have been part of the Early Years Reference group since its formation and have been the PVI representative for Schools forum for over 8 years. I am passionate about fair funding for all children in our education system and equality for all early years' children.
Jack & Jill Nursery
I started working at my setting in February 2007. I quickly completed my level 2 and 3 Early Years training as I immediately realised that this was my ideal job. I still love going to work and get such joy and reward from watching the children develop naturally and through the challenging activities and experiences that we offer. The nursery is situated in a recognised area of deprivation within Surrey. The families that attend the setting are very diverse, ranging from under privileged children to some from affluent backgrounds. The Nursery fulfils a multipurpose role and is viewed as being an integral part of the community infrastructure. I have nearly completed my Foundation degree at NESCOT and have found this both fulfilling and challenging. I have found that my new knowledge has been of great benefit to myself and my setting. I look forward to meeting the other members of the phase council in July and canvassing other provider's opinions on things that affect PVI settings.
Donna Harwood-Duffy - Vice Chair
Dorking and Chertsey Nursery School and Children's Centre
I have been the Head teacher of Dorking Nursery School and Children's Centre since 2013 and from September 2018 will be the Executive Head teacher across both Chertsey and Dorking Nursery Schools and Children's Centres. Chertsey and Dorking are two of the four Maintained Nursery Schools in Surrey. I am also a National Leader of Education and sit on Schools Forum as the Maintained Nursery School representative.
Brambly Montessori Nursery School
Eighteen years ago my business partner and I established Brambly Montessori Nursery School in Merstham. Fundamentally I have learnt that a successful team is one in which there is room and space for individuals to demonstrate their strengths. I realise that although policies and procedures are important, there also has to be room for flexibility and understanding for individual staff members, children and families. I have come to recognise that our responsibilities are as much towards families as they are to the children themselves.
St John's Nursery Group
I have been working in the Early Years Sector since 1997. I started as a child-minder and then moved to a nursery setting, where I have been the manager since 2005. The nursery is a term time nursery for 2 - 4 year olds and we are open 8am-5pm, offering breakfast, lunch and tea clubs as well as holiday club sessions. We accept FEET funding, 15 hour funding and the Extended 15 hours as well as various childcare voucher schemes. The nursery has expanded from a small session nursery to full day cover and due to open a second site in 2019. I have always maintained a passion for the early years sector. This passion combined with years of experience has enabled me to develop a setting where staff and children can grow and build on their own development and experiences. With the knowledge gained I have become the nursery SENCo, DSL and completed a degree in Early Years and a Level 5 in Leadership and management. My passion also extends to outside of the setting where I am a member of the Advisory Board for our local Children's Centre and now the Phase council. Networking with families and outside agencies is important as we as practitioners can help implement change and offer support which is crucial to the sector in providing for children's development.
Peter Pan Nursery & Forest School, Woking
I have a wealth of experience and a passion for Early Years Education having worked in the sector all my working life, a total of thirty-three years. I have a BA Hons in Early Years Childcare and Education and am proud to be an Early Years Professional. I own and manage Peter Pan Nursery and Forest School on Littlewick Common in Knaphill and alongside managing a team of ten I regularly engage in activities with the children both in nursery and out at our Forest School sessions. Peter Pan is a term time only sessional preschool offering morning sessions, lunch club and a school length day. We offer full forest school sessions too with two forest school trained practitioners.
I am the Centre Manager and SENCo at Challengers Pre-school in Guildford, and we sit in the voluntary sector. As an organisation, Challengers supports disabled children and young people from 2yrs-25yrs. We have pre-schools in both our Guildford and Farnham play centres. I have worked with Challengers for 4 years, managing the pre-school for 3years. I have a BA (hons) in Childhood Studies: Early Years and a post graduate diploma in the Applied Psychology of Intellectual Disabilities.
Major Carol Miller MBE
I'm currently employed as the Unit Welfare Officer at the Army Training Centre Pirbright which is the Army's largest Phase One Training establishment. I've been in post six years and the role is very varied dealing with all aspects of providing welfare support for Recruits in Training and our permanent staff, support staff and their families. One of my roles is I am Chair Person of our Pre School; Peter Pan Pre School which is located on camp. It is a setting that takes up to 77 children; mixed civilian and military. It is a role I am passionate about hence volunteering for this Early Years Phase Council. I have been in the military for 42 years joining originally as a Chef. I worked as a Chef and a Trainer for 21 years and then was commissioned as a late Entry officer and in the latter 21 years have worked in HR, Logistics, Recruiting and Ops. I am married with one son who plays Professional Ice Hockey. Hobbies include reading, keeping my two springer spaniels under control, riding my horse and travelling the world.
The Little Sweethearts Montessori
I started my childminding journey when my daughter was small, alongside being a foster carer to teenage placements. This led me to do further training, and after achieving my Diploma in Social Work, I spent six years as a Children and Families social worker. In 2007 I returned to childminding and set up the Little Sweethearts to provide childminding as a high quality, home based childcare option. I hold an NNEB certificate and an International Diploma in Montessori Pedagogy. My love of the natural world and the benefits that this can bring to children led me to become a Level 3 Forest School Leader and we incorporate the Forest School approach into our services.
I was part of Surrey's Childminding Network and achieved the Quality Improvement Award and The Little Sweethearts Montessori has just has gained accreditation under the Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board (MEAB) scheme.
Leela Sivaloganathan- Jones
I am the owner / manager of 2 term time pack-away nurseries in the Cobham area - Little Angels. After graduating from university with an IT degree and working in the financial services industry for many years, I was drawn to a more meaningful career, where I felt I could make a real difference.
I retrained in Early Years, first volunteering, gaining my level 3 qualification, followed by my EYPS qualification and have now been working in this long undervalued sector for 8 years. My philosophy is simple, to embed core values in the Early Years. I am a champion for inclusivity as evidenced by the wide ethnic and special educational need mix of the children in our settings. Indeed this philosophy and practice was recently recognised when our Cobham setting received an outstanding rating from Ofsted.
A previous member of the Early Years Reference Group in Surrey, I have been vocal about the issues faced by small providers and have never been afraid to challenge proposals to ensure that providers, parents and children from all sectors of our society are fairly supported. With the significant recent changes in government funding of early years places (30 hours model), there has never been a more important time to fully engage with Surrey to represent the views / needs of providers, parents & children, and I sincerely feel that my experience and ethos make me ideally placed to make a real difference on the Early Years Phase council. More importantly I am prepared to offer my time!
Fetcham Village Pre School
I have been working in early education for over ten years; I have a degree in early childhood and have been a Pre-school manager for 8 years; my previous and current settings are both rated Outstanding by Ofsted in every area. I am passionate about empowering 'Early Years teaching'. Early yeas is a profession with a massive female majority, I feel it's overlooked, undervalued and underfunded. Early years is extremely important, alongside parents we create the foundations for all children's education. When children get a positive start, a pathway is created for future academic success and life achievement. This is essential, the experiences children have between 0-5 will shape their adult life and behaviours.
You can contact any of the members to give them your comments about providing funded early education for 2, 3 and 4 year olds and they will feed it back to the group.
Donna Harwood Duffy
Dorking Nursery School
Maintained Nursery School
Leela Sivaloganathan- Jones
Little Angels Pre-School
Nurturing Childcare Ltd
Extended Pre School
Wood Street Village
Fetcham Village Pre-School
Carol Miller MBE
Peter Pan Pre-School
Brambly House Montessori School
Peter Pan Nursery & Forest School
Jack & Jill Nursery
Extended Pre School
Pre School (SEND)
Extended Pre School