Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Nurseries in the North East That Inspectors Say Are Just Not Good Enough; Four Nurseries in the Region Have Earned the Worst Possible Grade - Inadequate - since September Last Year

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Nurseries in the North East That Inspectors Say Are Just Not Good Enough; Four Nurseries in the Region Have Earned the Worst Possible Grade - Inadequate - since September Last Year

Article excerpt

THESE are the North East nurseries and playgroups which aren't up to scratch.

Inspectors have handed four childcare providers in the region the worst possible grade - inadequate - since the start of this academic year, with another handful described as requiring improvement.

All the nurseries on the list have had new Ofsted reports published between the beginning of September 2016 and the time of writing, in February 2017. The list doesn't cover childminders who care for pre-school children in their own homes.

INADEQUATE LITTLE STARS PLAYGROUP, SACRISTON, COUNTY DURHAM Slammed for leaving children thirsty and failing to ensure safe recruitment of staff, this is the only nursery on the list to be rated 'inadequate' on every one of Ofsted's four counts, as well as overall. On top of inaccurate and out-of-date assessments and poor supervision of staff, inspectors found that "children do not have access to fresh drinking water at all times". The manager hadn't developed effective systems to monitor some groups of children, while managers didn't prioritise the areas which needed to improve effectively. Inspectors did note, however, that staff were friendly, welcoming and reassuring, and that children made friends easily.

Seaton Delaval PRE-SCHOOL, SEATON DELAVAL, NORTHUMBERLAND This small nursery plummeted from 'good' to 'inadequate' because its poor systems for finding suitable staff were posing "a risk to children's safety and welfare". Teachers also didn't gather enough information about their charges when they joined the nursery to properly help them progress. But the manager did offer a good range of activities, and assess individual children well.

PRE-SCHOOL AND AFTER SCHOOL CLUB AT WHALTON SCHOOL, MORPETH This is another nursery which fell down because of its inability to give inspectors the information needed to check leaders were suitable, thereby putting children at risk. On top of that, checks on staff performance were "not rigorous or consistent enough" and staff didn't always make detailed enough plans for children's learning. Nonetheless, inspectors praised procedures for ensuring the nursery was safe and secure, and for dealing with any accidents. And diaries and "journey files" kept parents involved in their children's learning.

ST EDWARD'S PLAYGROUP AT COQUET PARK FIRST SCHOOL, WHITLEY BAY Like several others, this playgroup was unable to prove to inspectors that people were suitable for their roles, and thus couldn't prove that children weren't at risk. And managers didn't monitor staff well enough to help them improve their teaching. However, behaviour was "very good" and staff "support children well to become confident and motivated learners". Assessments were used well to identify where children needed extra help.

It has been brought to our attention that the playgroup has been reinspected and its latest Ofsted report is due to be published soon. …

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