Who we are
Early Years Service
Who We Are
The Early Years Service brings together the statutory and non-statutory duties of the Local Authority. It combines the functions previously undertaken by EY Locality Advisers, pre-school workers, EY finance, EY commissioners and the EY SEND service.
The aim of the service is to improve outcomes and reduce inequalities for all children aged 0-5 years, by:
- supporting the growth and development of the early years and childcare market to address gaps and support the sufficiency of high quality places for all.
- building the quality and capacity of early years providers across the maintained, private, voluntary and independent sector.
- having systems in place to identify and support children with additional needs as early as possible.
- providing a higher level of intervention for children with the most complex needs.
The Early Years Service includes the following roles:
Early Years Locality Leads x 3
Kim Nicholls, Justine Everett and Sue Williams
Working under the guidance of the Early Years Service Manager, Sarah Hylton, and alongside the Early Years Market Manager, their role is to:
- Lead partnership working in a designated locality to bring together all key partners to ensure a joined up, holistic approach to the provision of good quality child care and achieving good outcomes for individual children.
- Offer professional information, advice, guidance and support to settings and other professionals to ensure children in early years settings achieve positive outcomes – especially in line with Welfare and Safeguarding, EYFS and SEND frameworks.
- Manage targeted intervention, support and training for settings including implementation of the EY Intervention Programme, Childminder and SENCO training.
- Create and embed systems to monitor outcomes for children in early years settings to understand countywide and locality priorities.
- Design and model good practice and developmental activities which promote development, learning and inclusion.
- Manage a locality team to ensure that individual children, families, professionals and settings receive the support they need to achieve the best outcomes.
Each Locality Lead will manage 2 localities and may lead in specific countywide areas of work as below:
Kim Nicholls: Gloucester/Forest Lead.
Justine Everett: Stroud/Cotswolds Lead for SEN and disability.
Sue Williams: Cheltenham/Tewkesbury Lead for Safeguarding.
Early Years Lead Advisers x 7
Ruth Price, Nicky Bree, Catherine Hardwick, Bev Green, Steph Kirby, Sarah Cousins and Charlotte Smith
Working under the guidance of the EY Locality Leads, their role is to:
- Promote the early identification of need and the development of holistic assessments and support plans for children - developing and supporting the delivery of clear processes and pathways to enable children and families to access support early.
- Hold a caseload to include assessing, observing and reporting on a child’s ability to learn, develop and progress.
- Offer professional information, advice, guidance, training and support to settings and other professionals to ensure children in early years settings meet required outcomes.
- Develop and support models of partnership working across the locality to ensure a holistic and consistent approach to meeting needs.
- Design, deliver and evaluate training related to meeting children’s needs (including SEND) to a range of childcare practitioners to support inclusive practice.
- Support the implementation of the EY Intervention programme.
- Model good practice and developmental activities to parents and EY practitioners which promote development, learning and inclusion.
Early Years Lead Advisers are each allocated to a Locality in Gloucestershire:
Cheltenham/Tewkesbury: Ruth Price, Sarah Cousins.
Gloucester/Forest: Bev Green, Nicky Bree, Charlotte Smith.
Stroud/Cotswolds: Catherine Hardwick, Steph Kirby, Nicky Bree.
Early Years Advisers x 10
Cheralyn Randall, Jane Kirkland, Jo Bowden, Jane Reed, Tracy Collingham, Kerry Smith, Danielle Warren, Alison Davis, Sam Jackson and Kelly Higgs)
Working under the guidance of the EY Locality Leads their role is to:
- Hold a caseload to include assessing, observing and reporting on a child’s ability to learn, support required and levels of progress made.
- Where necessary, act as a lead professional including completion of Assessments and plans, arranging and chairing Team around the child meetings/reviews.
- Plan and provide quality play and developmental experiences for young children within the home, targeted community group or assessment place using the Portage model of intervention.
- Model good practice and developmental activities to parents and educators which promote development, learning and inclusion.
- Attend My Plan+ reviews for priority children to ensure that needs are being met, provide advice in relation to the need for additional resources including non statutory funding or to determine whether a statutory assessment is required.
- Support children with the transition to an appropriate educational setting when the need arises.
Early Years Advisers are each allocated to a Locality in Gloucestershire:
Cheltenham/Tewkesbury: Cheralyn Randall, Jane Reed, Tracy Collingham.
Gloucester/Forest: Kerry Smith, Danielle Warren, Kelly Higgs.
Stroud/Cotswolds: Jane Kirkland, Jo Bowden, Alison Davis, Samantha Jackson.
Early Years Market Management / Business Lead
Working under the guidance of the Early Years Service Manager, Sarah Hylton, and alongside the Early Years Locality leads, Sarah manages the Business support team including the Finance Support Manager and Childcare Officer. Sarah will still cover some aspects of previous EY work, namely the lead responsibility for the Bristol Standard and the childminder recruitment and training.
The main purpose of this role is to ensure there is sufficient high quality and sustainable EY provision for children across the county working with a wide range of stakeholders across the maintained, private, voluntary and independent sector plus:
- Growth of the early years market, engaging new providers and offering professional advice, guidance and support.
- Work with colleagues to secure early years funding contributions from developers to meet demand for childcare places in Gloucestershire.
- Ensure that priorities reflect national initiatives and are effectively implemented ie delivery of the 2,3 and 4 year funding.
- Provide regular returns to the Department for Education on Gloucestershire’s early years provision and capacity.
- Work with the Finance Support Manager and Finance Support Officers to ensure there are effective and efficient systems in place to ensure the timely payments to providers for state funded places
- Work with the Childcare Officer to offer professional information, business advice, guidance and support to settings and other professionals.
Working under the guidance of Sarah Spencer, Early Years Market Management / Business Lead.
To provide business support to early years providers across the maintained, private and voluntary sectors and:
- Support providers to reshape and create new childcare places in line with the council’s commissioning strategy including alternative governance, management and delivery structures.
- Work with providers to produce business plans which are aligned to the Council’s sufficiency strategy and their own business audit.
- Maintain effective analysis of early years outcomes to target those providers who are likely to require more intensive support and prioritise workload accordingly.
- Provide expert and responsive information, advice, guidance and support to early years providers on local and business needs.
- Work with colleagues to ensure that outcomes for children in early years settings inform countywide and locality priorities.
- Work with the Early Years Market Management / Business Lead engaging with other local authorities, national organisations and government departments, such as Department for Education, to ensure Gloucestershire County Council can demonstrate capacity is sufficient and sustainable, meeting its sufficiency duty and is compliant with all government expectations.
- Develop information, stakeholder engagement plans and training materials for providers to build their capacity, skills and knowledge.
Finance Support Manager
Working under the guidance of Sarah Spencer, Early Years Market Management /Business Lead.
To manage the processing of payments and receipts for Nursery Education Funding, Early Years grants and contracts and ensure families can access high quality provision plus:
- To establish and maintain programme monitoring and control procedures for processing payments and administer grants and contracts to providers of Early Years, Education and Childcare, accurately recording child placement and setting details and process payments within published time scales.
- To prepare and present reports on expenditure as required.
- To authorise and manage the payment of invoices from settings.
- To manage the development and day to day running of databases to ensure there are effective and efficient systems in place to ensure the timely payments to providers.
- Ensure clear and up to date information is available for parents and settings relating to changes in policies, guidance and practice.
- To lead the Finance Support Officers, ensuring an effective team structure is in operation to deliver outcomes.
- Work with colleagues to secure delivery of systems for managing any changes to entitlement funding as required.
Finance Support Officers x 4
Glynis Russell, Ben Mumford and Rico Phillips, and Emma Allsopp (Finance Apprentice)
Working under the guidance of Sue Bodenham, Finance Support Manager to administer Nursery Education Funding, EY grants and contracts and ensure families can access high quality provision, plus:
- Process and administer grants and contracts to providers of Early Years Education and Childcare, accurately recording child placement and setting details and process payments within published time scales.
- To ensure Nursery Education providers complete all necessary returns and analyse data to aid planning and monitoring provision.