Chatham Nursery School Birth to Five Transition Policy

Providers must plan and organise their systems to ensure that every child receives an enjoyable and challenging learning and development experience that is tailored to their individual needs-EYFS legal requirements. 


Childrens lives are more hectic than ever before. Going to a setting for the first time, moving from one to another or moving within the setting are seen by many people as a normal part of a child’s life. Yet all these changes are milestones for children and can have a definite impact on development. They are exciting times but they can also be times of uncertainty in terms of expectations, procedures and faces as yet unfamiliar. Getting transition right for every child is essential and involves children, parents and practitioners working together. Smooth transitions support a child’s personal social and emotional development, every aspect of learning and the future success of every child. Transitions are of the highest quality when focused around the needs of the child.

At Chatham we believe that a transition period is good practice and must be implemented for all children whether they are starting at the centre or travelling through. In fact, each child’s transition is seen as a process and not a single ‘event. Families are treated as individuals.

We recognise that forming emotional attachments takes time and care must be taken when parents and children may-be going through their first experience of separation.


Supporting transition from home to nursery 

The Parents are valued as their child’s first educator and all parents are given equal attention in the setting. Throughout this document the term parent is used to denote a child’s parent or main carer.

  • For all new children parents will be informed of the settling in procedure This is carefully linked to the emotional needs of the child.
  • There is a clear welcome procedure which includes recording essential information through the registration form as well as information from parents about their child’s needs, likes and development.
  • Before starting, parents are encouraged to visit nursery with their child in order to begin to build trust between the setting and the family. During this time photographs can be taken, with permission, these can be added to the display next time they come.
  • Parents are invited to nursery with their child to stay and play.
  • There is a Parent Noticeboard which displays photographs of our enabling environment. This is easy to read and translated for families whose first language is not English.
  • Parents are always informed about any decisions made to support their child.
  • Parents are kept informed of their child’s progress throughout the term through termly meetings, two year old assessments and regular dialogue with key person.
  • We recognise that some children may need a personal/transitional object from home to support them emotionally.
  • We invite parents to supply photographs of their child and family to make a display or special book for the child. These help the child to keep home and family in mind and to remind them that they are held in mind by their families, as well as showing that families are valued.
  • For those parents joining our setting for whom English is an additional language, or who may be in need additional communication support, we will arrange support from the appropriate source this could include staff, member of our school community or outside agencies.


The Key Person role in securing smooth transitions for our children. 

  • Before their child starts nursery both child and parent will be introduced to their key person and will spend time getting to know each other during their visits to the setting.
  • The key person supports parents in filling in all forms including the ‘All about Me’ booklet.
  • For the younger children the Key Person will be informed via a daily diary and the Learning Journey.
  • Key Person ensures that all transition information is shared with breakfast club/after school club as appropriate.
  • Key person will ensure that there is something in the environment that reflects the child’s home and interest.
  • The key person will know the child best and will be aware of their likely emotional needs. They will also have knowledge of the child’s routine at home and can reflect this as far as possible to the routine of the nursery.
  • When it is time for the child to move on within the setting the Key Person will ensure that this is carefully planned and will accompany them to their new room for as long as the child needs.


Transition within the setting 

  • Assistant Head teacher /Manager to discuss with nursery staff which children are ready to move on to the next room.
  • The child’s Key Person, Manager of the Centre and the Assistant Head teacher will discuss the move with the parent. If the parent is in agreement the transition procedure will be explained.
  • Manager or Assistant Head teacher to inform parents or a change of days if this is applicable.
  • Manager or Assistant Head teacher will inform receiving room and ask them to identify who will be the child’s new key person.
  • Current Key Person to complete a Transition form. Copy to be kept in child’s file.
  • Current key person to prepare the child’s learning journey and Assessments and pass to new Key Person or to Parent if the child is moving to school.
  • New Key person to introduce themselves to the parents.
  • The child to be introduced to their key person and into their new environment gradually.
  • The setting ensures that were possible routines are similar as well as language to label objects and segments of the routine.
  • The child’s need for a transitional object will be supported.

When children are moving from another setting 

  • Support as above
  • Encourage previous setting to make a book for the child’s new setting.
  • SENCO will co-ordinate with link person from the school.
  • Class teacher will be invited to nursery to meet the children, share children’s learning journey and speak to staff.
  • Assessments passed on to new setting by key person. Key person given the opportunity to liaise over children’s

Monitoring and review 

This policy was agreed and implemented on 6th July 2023 and is due
for review July 2024