A good old fashioned debate – To Pre-school or not to Pre-school?

Emmy LOVES pre-school, she has been attending for a while now.  She was 3 in February so now recieves her 15 hours of government funding.

Now being only just 3 I have NO intention of sending her to pre-school for all of those 15 hours – this is for a few reasons:

  • I am at home so would feel bad sending her to school when I’m at home anyway
  • She gets very tired still
  • We can still have playdays with our other pre-school age friends
  • There are far too many years to come when she HAS to attend every day
  • I enjoy having her here with me

I was advised by Emmy’s school to put her name down for the full 15 hours even though they know I have no intention of sending her to all of those 5 sessions. 

I have always make it very clear that she can not manage 5 sessions a week yet and we will build up gradually in our own time.

The school are fine with this, they are happy, Emmy is happy and this situation works for us.

I do give Emmy the choice too – She loves going so when I ask her in the mornings she will often say Yes she wants to go and we do.  I’m happy to be led by her and take her lead (although I do insist she goes at least twice a week).

Now I’m passing over to you to debate this one:
Am I wrong in putting her name down for all the sessions and not using them?

Points to consider:

  • I was advised to do so
  • The school isn’t full so I’m not taking a space which is needed by someone else

14 thoughts on “A good old fashioned debate – To Pre-school or not to Pre-school?

  1. My son is now starting funded hrs at pre-school ( we have been paying for 2 mornings a week so far).
    We started sending him as his speech and play skills were 'behind' (I'm not one for guidelines but I coud see myself that he was struggling and getting frustrated). Since he's been going he's gone from no words to hundreds and stringing sentences together!!
    We are sending him for 2 full days and a half day and personally I believe he needs it!! I love nothing more than having my baby boy at home with me but with my 7 week old, he often gets left to his own devices whist i feed or do bottles / nappies, so it's like his free time to play with others!!
    I also feel it gives me the time to spend with my daughter like I did with my son in those earlier years!!
    My son will also be starting primary school just after his 4th birthday so I felt it was a good way to get him used to more hrs away from us =( (yes I'm welling up writing that)

  2. Every child is different. My girls would have been quite happy to go everyday however my son is quiet and shy so a slow build up was essential for him. A mother knows what is best for there child 🙂

  3. My 3 year old goes 2.5 full days with another little one to think about it works for us and it works around both me and my husband working and it also allows the youngest to have some 121 time.

  4. My gut feeling was a harsh one – of course they recommended putting her down for all 5 session because then they get the money whether your child turns up or not, (but that might be entirely disingenuous of me and they may have been giving you the best advice for your child).
    On the other hand what a brilliant set up. I wish we could put Goblin down for all five days and then let him choose whether he goes or not. He'd love to do the odd extra day – at the moment he does two half mornings and a whole day. But the nursery is full so we don't have that option.
    I think if the nursery isn't full but is a good nursery, you are helping them out and your child gets the benefit of flexibility so its a win win situation. Thanks for sharing on SPP – I'm pinning to the pinterest board

  5. It is personal preference and what each individual child needs. My little one also turned 3 in February, she does go for her full 15 hours at playschool even though I am at home. I have to state this was her choice, I would quite happily have at home because it won't be long and she will be in school 🙁 However she loves playschool, gets all excited on the days she has lunch there and that's all the matters in the end isn't it, that our children are happy. + it means I get a bit more one on one time with her baby sister xx

  6. Very much own choice, you have to do what you believe is right for your child, you and the rest of the family. My daughter is very ready, she currently goes four mornings a week and from September will go for 5 mornings. We still have the afternoons together and find this balance just right for us!

  7. I think it's great that you take such a flexible approach and let your little girl build up to it in your own time. I hope I will be able to do the same thing when it's time for my little one to go.

  8. If the preschool is not full then it is helping them a great deal with their fees, and it means that you can chop and change when she goes, one week she may feel like doing extra hours and you have that choice

  9. We did exactly the same – a setting needs to know that you could need it at some point to cover the staffing etc…

    J started by doing 1 session a week and on his lead he went to 15 hours very quickly – however we do it over 3 days only which means I still get my lovely time with him before he heads of to school in September.

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