Starting school is a really exciting time and we want your child to enjoy starting school and to be ready to learn. As parents you know your child better than anyone else. In order for your child to be happy, relaxed and ready to learn we would like you to consider the following information.
If your child has a medical condition, such as diabetes or asthma, it will not affect their school place offer. We want you to feel confident that your child will be well looked after and safe if they have a medical condition so please tell the school about it. The school will need a health questionnaire filled in for each pupil and if necessary, the school nurse will be involved in developing a plan to keep your child safe in school.
If your child needs to be given medicine during the school day this can be given once the school has the information about your child's health from you.
Vision, height and weight
In your child's first year at school their vision, height and weight will be checked. The results will be sent to you. You will get more information about this check before it happens or find out more about primary school screening now.
If your child is not in a state-maintained school and your school does not offer vision screening then it is highly recommended that you take your child to a high street opticians for a free eye test. More information about eye tests.
Before your child starts school it is important that they have had all their vaccinations. These vaccinations are crucial in protecting children against preventable diseases and reduces the spread of infection to other children and adults. If you think your child is not up to date with their vaccinations, please contact your GP surgery to make an appointment.
There is a helpful timeline where you can see at what age your child’s immunisations are due, visit Children's health - South East London ICS (selondonics.org)
During the autumn term, you will be contacted by the school vaccination team about the flu vaccination for your child. This is offered every year to all children in primary school. The flu vaccine is given as a nasal spray; it is safe, effective and will to help protect your child against flu and prevent them getting sick with flu and needing time off school. It can also help protect them from other infections such as Strep A.
For more information about the flu vaccine visit Child flu vaccine - NHS (www.nhs.uk)
Further information about immunisations:
It is important for children to be brought to the dentist for a check every 6 months. You can view a list of NHS dentists in your area - remember that a visit to an NHS dentist is free for all children.
If your child has difficulty with speaking there is help available. If you think that your child might have a problem there are a number of signs to look out for, including:
- Not being able to speak like other children the same age
- Other people not able to understand your child as well as you can
- Not being able to talk about things that have already happened or will happen in the future
If you believe that your child might need some help in developing their communication skills please discuss this with your health visiting team in the first instance.
The ICAN website provides information about speech, language and communication skills.
Hearing: If you think that your child might have a problem with their hearing there are a number of signs to look out for, including:
- not responding when their name is called
- talking loudly and listening to the television at a high volume
- not able to say words properly
If you believe that your child might have problems with hearing then please contact Bromley's Hearing Screening Service
Usually support given to children earlier can help a child to be better prepared to start school. Find out about what being school ready means
Emotional health and wellbeing
Sometimes starting school can be unsettling, for parents as well as for children. It will help to talk to your child about the new routine that is going to happen when they start school.
Children’s brains struggle to function on little sleep, so getting a good night’s sleep is really important to help them manage the school routine – mentally and emotionally. If you have any concerns about your child’s emotional health you can contact Bromley Community Wellbeing Service for children and young people.
Information Advice and Support Service (IASS)
Offers free, impartial information advice and support in confidence for parents and carers of children and young people with SEN and/or a disability in relation to education, health and care services. More about the IASS service.
The Bromley Children Project is open to all families in Bromley and offers lots of services and support through the Children and Family Centres.
One of the aims is to help all children make the most of their time at school by empowering parents; there are lots of courses for parents to continue their own education and training and courses to help with parenting too.
The Bromley 0 to 19 public health service offers tailored guidance and support to families and partner services who work with children and young people, through health visitors, school nurses and the Family Nurse Partnership. Visit Bromley 0 to 19 and find tailored guidance and support for 0-4 years, 5-10 years and 11-19 years.
SEND (special educational needs or a disability) support
If your child has special educational needs or a disability (SEND) contact the professionals supporting your child to talk about successful transitions to school. Staff in your child’s Pre-school will also be able to help you arrange a meeting with your school during the summer term, so that you can discuss your child’s needs.
You will find further information on SEND from the Bromley Local Offer. The Local Offer pages provide information about local services, support and activities available to families, children and young people aged 0 - 25 years with special educational needs or disabilities in one place.