Charges for uniformed absence

Why we have to charge

Alison says that this charging policy is necessary to ensure child safety.  

The fee is fully avoidable by ensuring club staff are informed of any changes to the after school collection of their child by 2pm on the day of collection.  To do this please ring 01622 749773.

We had to put in a charging policy because on a daily basis children were going to friends or being collected by a relative, but we were not being informed of the change of plan.  These changes are a normal part of life and Harlequin certainly encourage that.  Also, when a child is unwell and does not attend school, we need to be informed if we normally collect them. 

Our problem is that when we were not informed that children do not require collection from school our staff spend up to 20 minutes looking for a child who was on our register to collect but who did not arrive at the agreed place.  Legally, we have a contractual obligation to account for that child’s safety.  If we don’t know where that child is and the school cannot find the child, the child is considered missing.  We are only supposed to allow for a child to be absent for 20 minutes before we call the Police!   This is the safe guarding of children policy for KCC, Kent Police and Ofsted.

Every day Harlequin staff were spending time looking for “lost” children, only to discover that most of the time they had gone home with someone and the parents knew about it.  During  this time any other children being collected have to go with Harlequin staff in search of the missing child. This is unfair to those children and to the staff as well as the school staff who, at the end of a busy day, are searching for the whereabouts of a child.  The occurrences of parents not informing Harlequin of a change in the collection of their child  became a huge hindrance to the functioning of the club.

The policy has been in place for over a year. Existing parents were informed prior to introduction.

I only introduce policies, procedures etc in a situation like this if there is an issue which is detrimental firstly to the children and secondly to the staff.  Policies take time to enforce and monitor and review.  

The policy is in place to ensure that the collection of every child is quick, efficient, safe, welcoming and friendly. We do not want children to be standing about bored or distressed, or going round the school looking for a child.  We don’t think this is an after school activity parents expect for their children?

Harlequin Ofsted reports

to view the reports click on the links below


In February 2013 we were inspected and awarded "outstanding" in every category.
Click the link to read the report: registration number EY333465

Tunbridge Wells

In February 2015 we were inspected as a new setting at our new purpose built clubhouse in Southborough, Tunbridge Wells. In May 2016 we were inspected, and judged 'Good' in every category.

Click the link to read the report: registration number EY486142

West Borough

WBS was inspected in November 2014 as a new setting.

Click the link to see conditions of registration: Ofsted Registration EY484111

Forest Pre-School

The Tunbridge Wells Forest Pre-School was registered in July 2016 as a new setting. In November 2018, we were inspected as a new setting, and judged 'Good' in every category.

Click the link to read the report : Ofsted Registration EY501163


Staplehurst was registered in June 2018 as a new setting.

Click the link to see the conditions of registration: Ofsted Registration EY561059

Ofsted website

Coxheath Ofsted report
TA Ofsted report

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