Morning/Afternoon Teas/Lunch

If children are at the centre during lunchtime (12pm) parents are asked to provide a healthy packed lunch for their child.

PLEASE NOTE: We are a nut free environment.


Children are most welcome to celebrate their birthday here at Otatara Preschool, with  Parents/Whānau being welcome to join us. If you wish to provide a Birthday morning/afternoon tea for the children, please do so in consultation with centre staff.


Your child’s portfolio will contain a variety of assessments as well as your child’s work which show the learning that takes place while they are here at Otatara Preschool. These assessments document your child’s developing  understandings about themselves and about the people, places and things in their life through taking an interest, being involved, persisting with difficulty, expressing their ideas and thoughts, and taking responsibility.

Assessments are guided by Te Whariki – the New Zealand Early Childhood Curriculum and reflect the holistic nature of children’s learning.

Attendance/signing in procedure

Upon arrival and departure of the centre, it is a Ministry of Education requirement that you sign your child in and out. Please ensure that the staff are aware of your child/children's arrival and departure, and feel free to talk to teaching staff at this time.

Also be aware that your child/children will only be released to the nominated "pick-up" people on your enrolment form, this is to ensure your child's safety. If someone else is to be picking up your child/children on a particular day, please fill in the consent form available at Reception and ensure that this form is handed over to staff to then ensure that all staff are informed of this.

Children are expected to attend for the times that they are booked, if you require more hours outside your booked hours, please contact the administration staff before hand to ascertain whether we have space and staff available. We will endeavour to accommodate you!

Late Pick-ups

Please ensure that you are at the centre to pick up your child/children by the enrolled pick-up time. If for some reason you are going to be late, please phone the centre as soon as possible to ensure that ratios can be maintained.

Repeat lateness will be charged for at the standard hourly rate. After 5.45pm, when the centre closes, a late fee of $1 per minute will be charged. Children will be cared for by a teacher until collected.

Minimum Enrolment

To obtain the true benefits of our programme, we require each child to attend for 12 hours per week, with a minimum of 4 hours per booking.

Permanent Cancellation

Three weeks’ notice is required if you are cancelling a permanent booking. Failure to do so will result in a cancellation fee equivalent to the full cost of your weekly booking.


Please notify us in advance if your child is going to be absent. Children are allowed 5 non chargeable days for absence per calendar year, this includes any reason for absence and illness, exclusive of the centre’s two week closure.

Please be considerate in your notification, keeping in mind that staff are rostered on to maintain ratios. Teachers are paid for public holidays, therefore if your child’s booking falls on a public holiday, you will be charged.

"Exclusive of the centre’s two week closure, when no fees are charged."

Accessing Information

For all inquiries concerning your child, please discuss these with your child’s teacher. Information concerning day to day operations will be located on the whiteboard in the reception foyer. All operational documents are located in the reception area. Parents are encouraged to contribute and assist staff with the review of Otatara Preschool’s Operational Documents.

Education Review Office (ERO) reports will be made available for reviewing when the report has been published and will also be available on the ERO website:

Operational Documents

Otatara Preschool’s operational documents are reviewed regularly. When Policies and Procedures are up for review, Parents/Whānau will be notified via email, newsletter and the notice board and are welcome to share their views and opinions.

Health and Safety/ Hazard Identification

Healthy children are happy children. Please read the Health and Safety policy as well as the Hazard Management information which is available in the Operations Manual at reception.

Infectious Diseases

Otatara Preschool will not admit or retain children in care who have any of the following: fever/high temperature, diarrhoea, vomiting or who have contracted an infectious disease.

Administering Medication

If your child requires medicine at Preschool (whether prescription or non-prescription) please discuss with staff and fill in the appropriate consent forms provided.


Otatara Preschool is required to keep a record of your child/children’s immunisation status. Please ensure that you bring a copy of your child’s immunisation certificate on enrolment, and keep us updated as they receive more immunizations.

Smoke Free Policy

Otatara Preschool is a smoke free zone and we ask that you do not smoke in the building or on our grounds.

Accidents or Injuries

Unfortunately accidents and injuries do occur from time to time with children. In the event of a serious accident or injury, we will make an immediate attempt to contact a parent and will take whatever steps are necessary to ensure the well being of your child. Our teachers hold current First Aid certificates. All accidents and injuries will be documented in an incident report, which parents will be required to read and sign.

Evacuation Procedures

We are well prepared in the event of an emergency, with an emergency evacuation plan being on display in the centre. We practice fire and evacuation drills monthly to ensure that we can respond quickly should we ever need to! The Civil Defence headquarters have been notified of our centre so we will contact us if necessary.

Complaints Procedure

Please familiarize yourself with our complaints policy. If you have concerns please follow the procedure outlined or if you feel your concern is unresolved you may wish to contact the local Ministry of Education at 78 Doon Street, Invercargill on (03) 211 3610.

What to bring

As the children are often so busy exploring their environment, there will be occasions where they sometimes get their clothing wet or dirty; therefore each child should have at least one spare set of clothing in their bags and also wear appropriate footwear to preschool. 

Gumboots are a really good idea to bring in winter. We also request that parents provide a named sunhat for their child; there will be sunhats available should your child forget their hat. All clothing should be named; the centre cannot be liable for lost personal items brought to the centre, including clothing. Lost property will be kept in a basket at reception.

Please do not pack a drink bottle as we provide cups and filtered water for the children to drink throughout the day.


Where appropriate, parents will need to provide nappies for their children. These will be labeled and stored for your child. Our staff will let you know when supplies are getting low and replacements are needed. The nappy changing procedures are displayed on the wall in the changing areas.

PLEASE NOTE: We ask that you supply your child with only Disposable Nappies while they are attending Otatara Preschool, as we do not have facilities to contain dirty cloth nappies.

Settling in Process

It is vital that children are exposed to positive learning experiences in an environment where they feel safe and secure. Effective and consistent settling in procedures will ensure that this is possible. Also family/whānau are encouraged to visit the centre before leaving their child in our care.

Environment Friendly

Here at Otatara Preschool we aim to be as environmentally friendly as we can by using enviro friendly products. We also encourage reducing, re-using and recycling.