Stepping Stones Pre-School

Stepping Stones Pre-school logo

Charity based preschool which celebrates its 50th year this year. We have a great team of qualified, friendly staff.

Funded and non funded places available for 2, 3 & 4 year olds. Open 8.45am - 3pm term time only offering morning, afternoon and all day sessions. We also offer a lunch club everyday costing £4.50.

Please feel free to contact us for a visit.

This setting has signed up to offer Tax Free Childcare.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Claire Smith
Contact Position
01189429492 01189429492 07907361965 07907361965 07780705916 07780705916
Stepping Stones Pre-school - website
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Where to go

Stepping Stones Preschool
1, Dunsfold Road
RG30 4NP
Directions to RG30 4NP

The preschool entrance can be found at the rear of the building by following the pathway around the right hand side of the building leading to a set of blue doors. 

Time / Date Details

When is it on
Monday to Friday 09:00 - 15:00


£15.00 Non funded 3 year olds  Per Session
£18.00 Non funded 2 year olds  Per Session
£4.50 for lunch club 11.45am-12.45pm  Per Session


Wheelchair access
Other notes

We consider ourselves to be an inclusive setting and will endeavour to take children with a varying level of additional needs. We work closely with the SEN team at Brighter Futures For Children and have a great relationship with family workers and portage. 

We offer parent support groups once a half term where parents can come in and chat to other parents in similar positions. We also invite various professionals to the meetings to try and answer any questions parents or carers may have.

Inclusion Information

Wheelchair access
We have access to a disabled toilet
Special Needs provision
Special Needs Experience
We would try to accommodate full or partial one to one care if extra funding can be obtained. We also employ an independent speech and language therapist who works with the children who have diagnosed or possible additional needs. Our SENCO has over 15 years experience of working with children with additional needs, both personally and professionally. She works closely with all children, and their families, who have suspected or diagnosed SEN. She has a vast experience of completing paperwork and referrals for all professionals including CAMHS and EHCPs. As well as our SENCO we have 2 SEN assistants, although all staff receive training on SEN. We have created a separate room to carry out interventions and also have a fully functioning Sensory room which is accessed by all children.
Provision for special dietary needs
We are very stringent on ensuring children only have food set out in their dietary requirements. There are clear signs in both of our rooms , including pictures of the children incase we have new staff or volunteers who may not be familiar with names, stating all dietary requirements.
Can make special cultural provisions
We endeavour to cover all celebrations, customs and traditions relevant to all children within our setting.

Childcare Information


Immediate vacancies
Possible vacancies contact pre-school

Funded Places

Has 3 & 4 year old funding
Has 2 year old funding

30 Hours Extended Entitlements

Additional 15 hours of *Free* childcare offered
When are the additional 15 hours available? (e.g. Monday to Friday, 8am to 1pm)
Monday to Friday 12pm to 3pm
How many places are available for the additional 15 hours to meet the 30 hours childcare
Intending to provide 30 Hours?
Registered to provide 30 Hours?
30 Hours Partner Summary
As well as offering it ourselves we currently work in partnership with various childminders to enable families to receive the 30 hour entitlement in a way that suits their needs.

Opening Times & Facilities

Opening Times
Opening Times
DayOpening TimeClosing Time
Monday 08:45 15:00
Tuesday 08:45 15:00
Wednesday 08:45 15:00
Thursday 08:45 15:00
Friday 08:45 15:00

School Pickups

Offers school pickups

Ofsted Information

Ofsted URN
EY275967Link to latest Ofsted inspection report 
Inspection history
Inspection History
29/11/2010Inspection (Early Years Register)Satisfactory
07/10/2013Inspection (Early Years Register)Inadequate
11/09/2014Re-inspection (Early Years Register)Inadequate
12/01/2015Re-inspection (Early Years Register)Good
10/03/2017Inspection (Early Years Register)Good

Local Offer

Contact Name
Claire Smith
Contact Telephone
0118 9429492
Contact Email
Local Offer Age Bands
Early Years (0-4 years)
SEN Provision Type
Download more Local Offer details

Early Years Private, Voluntary & Independent Settings


Stepping Stones Pre-School is run by a voluntary committee and first opened in 1972. The setting was registered with Ofsted in 2001. It operates from its own premesis in Dusfold Road, on the site of the old Meadway School, in Tilehurst, Reading. Children have access to an 2 enclosed outdoor play areas, 1 grassed garden and 1 hard standing area for the use of bikes and scooters. The pre-school serves the needs of families in the surrounding area although it has no official catchment area.

It operates Mondays to Friday, term time only, from 8:45am to 3pm. Morning sessions run from 8.45am-11.45am and are for 3 & 4 year olds, afternoon sessions run from 12pm - 3pm and are primarily for 2 to 3 year olds. We do offer a small number of flexi funded spaces for 3 & 4 year olds, allowing them to stay for all day sessions. We also have 24 spaces accomodating the extended entitlement. There is a lunch club that runs daily for children attending the morning sessions, which runs from 12pm-1pm, but must be pre-booked in advance.

The preschool is registered on the OFSTED Early Years Register. The morning sessions can accomodate 50 children across two rooms and the afternoon sessions can accomodate 16 2year olds and up to 30 3+year olds, again across two rooms. The pre-school committee employs 14 staff including the Manager and Deputy Manager. All staff hold appropriate early years qualifications and first aid certificates or alternatively are working towards them. 

We like to think of ourselves as a homely setting with a family friendly approach. 

We operate with a no catchment policy so are happy to take children from any area and we accept children who are entitled to the 2 year old funding.

We are an incluse setting and will endeavour to accept children with varying levels of additional needs. We also have access to a disabled toilet and facilities.

Updated May 2022

1: How does the setting identify children with additional needs or SEND?

We operate with a key person and secondary (or buddy) key worker system to assess and monitor all of the children in our care. Each key worker is responsible for a small group of children on whom they will carry out observations, keep learning journals and plan next steps. Information is monitored and shared amongst staff especially if concerns have been raised. 

The key person, and SENCO if necessary, will work closely with parents/carers to identify how learning can continue at home.


(SENCO- Special Educational Needs CO-ordinator)

 The setting has appointed a senco who attends all training available. 



2: How will I be informed / consulted about the ways in which my child is being supported?

We use the 'DOJO' platform to complete our daily diaries.

Each child has their own personal learning journal which is completed by their key worker on a regular basis. This will monitor a child’s development as a individual.

All staff have a Key Worker email address, which parents/carers are welcome to email at any time to arrange a meeting, discuss a strategy or offer any ideas relating to the preschool.

Parents are invited to optional termly meetings with their child's key worker, where their child’s development and next steps for learning are discussed and parents have the opportunity to offer any ideas and suggestions regarding strategies to enhance their child's . They will be informed immediately of any concerns regarding their child’s needs.


3: How will the setting adapt the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum for my child's needs?

Equity Vs Equality

Every child is treated as an individual so all activities and daily routines will be adapted to meet each child’s needs by using observation and assessment tools to ensure all children’s next steps are realistic and achievable with a time scale to review.

All activities on offer are inclusive and provide children with the opportunity to further develop their skills and discover risk and problem solving in a safe environment. 

We will use advice and strategies from other professionals when completing an EHCP.



4: What teaching strategies does the setting use for children with additional needs or learning difficulties?

When concerns have been raised by either parents of staff regarding a child's development, a form will be completed and submitted on the Children's Single Point of Access (CSPoA) with the permission of the parents. The form will then go to triage to consider the best form of intervention for the child. Parents will be kept updated at all times of any information received.

When an additional need has been identified we take advice from the relevant health care professional to achieve the best possible outcome for that child.

We use strategies that are tailored to individual children including:

Visual timetable 

Behaviour Management plans

STAR charts (Setting, trigger, action, response) to identify patterns of behaviour

Support from professionals

Now/next boards

Photo labels on toy boxes

Visual support cards

Attention Autism Programme (the bucket)

Leading by example

Verbal Support

Wobble chair

Weighted blankets

Small group focussed sessions

1:1 focus sessions

Access to the SENtipede room for small group interventions

Access to the sensory room

Movement breaks

5: What additional support does the setting provide for children with additional needs or SEND?

We would complete a referral to ensure there is the relevant health care professional to work alongside and support us, the child and their family.

The senco would provide support for the key person where needed to put together IDPs (Individula Development Plan), an EHCP (Educational Health and Care Plan), other support could include portage, SALT (Speech and Language Tharapist), health visitors and if possible Inclsuion funding would be sought to employ additional staff.

We also employ an independent Speech and Language Therapist who visits the setting weekly to carry out SALT assessments and to work alongside staff in delivering additional support to children with identified SEND



6: How will the setting monitor my child's progress and how will I be involved in this?

Every child will have their own learning journal, including monthly progress tracker and a termly development tracker. We use the platform Class Dojo to add photos and share information with parents.

All keyworkers have individual work emails which parents are free to contact them on directly, we find this is extremely useful especially if a child is brought in by a childminder or other family members.

We also invite parents into the setting where they have the opportunity to watch their children during a session, read stories, take part in activities etc.

We appreciate that a parent knows their child better than anyone so any information they have to offer is appreciated.

Parents are invited to Termly Shared Learning days where they are involved in their child's play, learning and experiences. 

7: How do you ensure children with additional needs or SEND can be included in the same activities as other children, including trips?

Activities will always be adapted to make sure that no child is ever excluded - we would always encourage parental help and advice.

We operate well within the Ofsted ratio guidelines and often have a spare member of staff, we also have regular volunteers so there is always an adequate number of staff to assist children with SEND.


If we arrange trips risk assessments are carried out and a higher staff ratio will ensure that all children can participate.


8: How accessible is the building for children with mobility difficulties / wheelchair users?

We are accessible to wheelchairs being one level and spacious rooms and we also have access to a disabled toilet.. 

9: How will you support my child's transition to a new setting or school?

We have a transition co-ordinator who visits each school to obtain information regarding their daily routine, information about the school setting etc. We then implement changes within preschool routine towards the end of final term to prepare each child individually.

We also inform the school of any relevant information regarding each child which we feel will be useful for the child’s transition.

Stepping Stones staff were part of the Transition Workshop and helped to create a Transition form that would be useful to all childcare providers.

This year we are trialling a Transition Meeting for parents to share advice and support, if popular it will become a yearly meeting.

10: How does the setting assess the overall effectiveness of its SEN provision and how can parents / carers take part in this evaluation?

We, as a setting, are run as a committee so we invite parents in for regular meetings to obtain any information and ideas which they feel would assisit us in operating more effectively.

The senco, manager and key person will have regular meetings concerning individual children. Regular parent/ carer meeting to discuss their Childs progress and to discuss any concerns. We insure our inclusion policy is updated regularly.

Staff regularly attend training courses and our SENCO keeps up to date with all new policies, procedures and strategies.

We have recently become members of the National Portage Association so have access to tools to assist us.

11: Who should I contact if I am considering registering for a place at the setting?

Manager Claire Smith

or Deputy Manager Toni Bristow

on 01189429492

 or  email at

12: What arrangements does the setting have for feedback from parents / carers, including compliments and complaints?

We have a book for any compliments, suggestions or ideas from parents. Our open door policy ensures you can speak any member of staff at any time.

If parents wish to make a complaint they have access to our policy and procedures folder allowing them, and us, to follow the correct procedure, these policies and procedures can also be found on our website

Also available on our parent’s board is the ofsted complaints poster.

The preschool send out regular quality assurance questionnaires which can be filled in and returned, anonymously if parents/carers wish.




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This information has been collected from third party providers therefore the Reading Services Guide, Reading Borough Council (RBC) and Brighter Futures for Children (BFfC) cannot accept responsibility for the accuracy of this information and recommends that parents, carers, young people, residents and professionals check with providers regarding DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service) and OFSTED registrations and CQC registrations. Information collected by Reading Service Guide; is used solely to implement and supply the Family Information Service (FIS), Special Educational Needs & Disabilities - Reading's Local Offer, Adults & Carers Support Group and Reading Youth.


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Family Information Service 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2

SEND Local Offer 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2 0118 937 3777 OPTION 2

Adult & Carers Support 0118 937 3747 0118 937 3747
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