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Early Help at Ripley Nursery School

Ripley Nursery School Early Help Offer


Our school will work with children and families and we will aim to:


Work to families’ strengths especially those of parents and child carers and take time to understand their needs fully.


Focus on preventing problems before they occur and offer flexible, responsive support when and where it’s required.


Build the resilience of parents, young people, children and communities to support each other.


Base all we do on evidence of both what is needed and of what works and be brave enough to stop things that are wrong.


We will know if our work in early help is successful if it delivers these outcomes:

Children and Young People...

Parents and Carers...



• Are physically and emotionally healthy

• Are resilient and able to learn well

• Are supported by their families, their community, and - when necessary - professionals to thrive and be successful

• Live in environments that are safe and support their learning and development.



• Are supporting one another in their


• Know where to get help if they need it

• Have trusted relationships with practitioners, neighbours and other


• Are well informed about how best to help their child develop, and motivated to make great choices.


At Ripley Nursery School, we have the pupils and families at the forefront of our minds and work hard to provide Early Help to our school community.  We provide Early Help through school; we work alongside a variety of agencies, provide support through the Early Years Hub and through the Ripley Cluster Family Worker. Our offer is embedded in our Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy; Early Help is part of a continuum of work in helping keep children safe. We also have a system to address any concerns in our delivery of the offer, and this is addressed in the schools complaints procedure. 

Early Help services aim to both provide advice and/or intervene where there is evidence of emerging needs with the objective of preventing escalation to higher level services.


PLEASE NOTE: Over the school holidays signposting for other early help support is available on our school website



If you are concerned about the safety of a child or you require urgent help or advice Call Derbyshire on 01629 533190.  



What is Early Help?

Early help is a way of getting extra support when you or your family needs it; getting help as soon as the difficulties start rather than waiting until things get worse.

It is for children and young people of any age. Help can come from all kinds of services and organisations who work together to support families. You might be using some of these services already and we want to make sure they are providing the right support for you and your family’s needs.


Why would a family need Early Help?

It could be that you are worried about your child’s health, development or behaviour, or perhaps because you are caring for a disabled child. Maybe your child is affected by domestic abuse, drugs or alcohol. Perhaps your child is a carer for other people.

If you think you might need some Early Help or would like some advice or support with something at home or at school then please contact:


Cathy Bednal  Headteacher and Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

Donna Brown: Assistant Headteacher/ Deputy Designated Safeguarding (DDSL)

Further Information


What does Early Help involve?


Early Help Assessment (EHA)

This could start from with a conversation between you and your child's keyworker about what is working well and also what you or your child may be struggling with. This conversation could lead to signposting to another agency, a shared strategy of support at school and home or a decision to begin a EHA. The purpose of the EHA is to get a full picture of the whole family, to consider what is working well and identify key areas for support. It is your choice to take part in this assessment and you can choose who else gets involved.


Every person and family is different, but an EHA will:

  • Help you see what is going well and not so well for your family;
  • Help you and others see what support you might need;
  • Create a picture of your family’s circumstances, which can be shared with your permission so you do not have to repeat yourself to different workers;
  • Help you to be part of the team of people working together on the same plan to get things going well again.

What happens after the EHA?

With your permission people from different organisations working with your family will share information and work together to support you and your children. This could be school, health visitors etc. and may be followed by a 'Team Around the Family' (TAF) meeting.


Why do I need to give my permission?

Your personal information belongs to you. Agencies cannot share your information unless you agree. Your information is protected by law.


What is a 'Team Around the Family' meeting?

The family and workers come together to make a support plan. This is reviewed at regular intervals to ensure that progress is being made for your family and that the right support is in place. At this meeting you choose a lead worker; you might choose the worker you see most often or the person you find most approachable. Your lead worker will arrange the review meeting and be the person you can speak to at any point about any concerns or issues you are facing.


At Ripley Nursery School we meet the needs of children through a variety of ways.


Step 1        Open to all families



Support offered

Open door policy

We are available to talk via telephone, email and socially distanced face to face meetings. Keyworkers communicate daily with parents and provide regular consultations with parents about their child’s progress and achievements.


Pupil voice

Our children feel safe in school and develop positive relationships with their key workers. Children understand that staff will listen carefully to them. They know that our staff take their views and  concerns seriously.  


Developing key skills

We use a developmentally appropriate  Personal Social Health Education curriculum which supports children and develops key skills, not only for school, but for life.


Step 2     Support for families



At Ripley Nursery School, EHAs help identify the specific needs of our children and families so that they can be assigned to the best interventions for their educational, social, physical and emotional needs.

The Head and SENCo manage the allocation of pupils to intervention and support groups, where available.



The Head and SENCo will liaise with and refer to appropriate medical and specialist teaching support. Implementation of the children with medical needs policy.


Family Resource Worker

We have access to an Early Help Hub in the locality and to the Ripley Cluster Family Worker.



We will work closely with all families to promote good attendance and engagement at school.



We signpost to other agencies and request support from other services:

  • Family Support Workers
  • Local Community Police Officers
  • Mental Health


Step 3   Further support from services for families.


The DSL will work with parents and children and family's services to organise additional support, this could include:

  • Children and families team
  • Multi-agency safeguarding team
  • Safeguarding children board
  • Social workers


For more information about useful Early Help sites take a look at the links below.

Confidential Counselling Service for young children


Derby and Derbyshire Safeguarding Partnership


Derbyshire Groups Directory


Derbyshire Information and Support Service for Special Educational Needs


Support for families suffering from domestic abuse

National Domestic Violence helpline: 0808 2000 247

National Centre for Domestic Abuse: 0844 8044 999

CARP: 0845 602 9035 providing advice for victims of domestic violence


Support for children seriously affected by someone else substance misuse


Resources to support positive mental health and well-being