Ofsted inspect nurseries to ensure they are complying with the statutory framework for children’s learning, development and welfare known as the Early Years Foundation stage.
The key inspection judgements are:
- Grade 1 Outstanding
- Grade 2 Good
- Grade 3 Requires improvement
- Grade 4 Inadequate
The very best providers have been judged to have outstanding overall effectiveness. These are providers whose work with children have been found to be of outstanding quality.
“We are proud to report that all our nurseries have been awarded “Outstanding” in all areas of our provision. As always we strive to be the best!
Below are extracts from our reports. The full reports are available from the Ofsted website www.ofsted.gov.uk
- Extract from Ofsted report
Children 4 Most- Ashton Under Lyne
The overall effectiveness of the provision
The provision is Outstanding
The management team is inspirational, highly motivated and totally focused on delivering outstanding outcomes for children in their early years. Children flourish in the stimulating environment and make excellent progress in their learning and development.
The effectiveness of leadership and management of the Early Years provision – Outstanding
The outstanding leadership and management of the setting has resulted in a staff team who are passionate and committed to improving opportunities for children. The day to day organisation of the setting is excellent. The layout of the rooms enriches children’s lives and subsequently they thrive in a highly stimulating environment. Outcomes are clearly attributed to excellent use of resources including highly effective deployment of staff. A highly inclusive and very welcoming service is provided as adults support children and provide an enabling learning environment. Parents are made extremely welcome into the nursery by friendly and approachable staff. They are clearly relaxed as they chat with staff and take children’s work. Parents have excellent opportunities to become involved in their children’s learning including attending parent’s evenings to share children’s developmental records and to discuss their child’s progress.
The quality and standards of the early years provision and outcomes for children – Outstanding
Children blossom in the outstanding provision where the individual needs, interests and abilities are truly catered for. Children are provided with excellent opportunities to help them make progress across all areas of learning and development. They are confident, inquisitive and eager to learn. The planning for children is flexible as Key persons respond to individual needs. Staff actively support children’s learning and development and create a stimulating learning environment. Children have daily opportunities to experiment with a range of media and materials. They make marks with a variety of printing materials and practise pencil control with different writing materials. Older children are proud of being able to write their name. Children make substantial progress in their mathematical development. They learn to count and gain an awareness of adding and taking away. They enjoy using an extensive range of equipment which enables them to learn about shape, space and weight. Measuring jugs and water encourage children to learn about quantity and capacity.
A wide range of Outdoor activities stimulates children’s interest and curiosity and enhances their development in all areas of learning. A sports instructor visits the setting regularly to help children enhance their physical skills. Babies benefit from freedom to explore materials such as paint and use tools such as brushes and sponges to create and experiment.
“Overall children are highly confident very capable and display exceptional levels of high self-esteem in an environment that provides an outstanding commitment to quality care and learning.”
- Extract from Ofsted Report
Children 4 Most at Squirrels Wood
The Effectiveness of the Provision
The quality and standards of Nursery education – Outstanding
Overall the quality of the provision is outstanding. Children thrive in an inclusive setting which values the uniqueness of each child. The exceptionally well-planned environment and the provision of carefully focused activities meet each child’s individual needs extremely well. Highly organised leadership and management and exemplary partnership with parents support excellent outcomes for all children. Staff continually evaluate their practice and strive to improve upon the exceptional standard of care provided.
The Leadership and Management of the Early Years – Outstanding
Children’s welfare, learning and development are well supported by the highly effective leadership and management team. The superb organisation and excellent monitoring and assessment ensure every aspect of the provision is of a very high quality. The staff team are very well qualified and exceptionally motivated and enthusiastic. All children are valued and respected and have their individual needs met by the caring and knowledgeable staff team who recognise the uniqueness of each child.
Health and Safety is a high priority and children are protected by very good supervision and extremely thorough risk assessment.
Consequently children enjoy a very safe environment which is carefully planned to provide rich learning opportunities both indoors and outdoors.
The management team are very clear about the strengths of what is provided and areas they want to develop. They have well thought out action plans in place to support this and to reinforce good practice.
The Quality and standards of the Early Years Provision – Outstanding
Staff demonstrate an excellent knowledge of the Early Years Foundation Stage and are very effective in helping each child make as much progress as they can towards the early learning goals. A key person system is in operation and this enables every child to have their individual needs met by staff who know them extremely well. Planning develops through the daily observations and this ensures it is flexible and takes in to account the interests and abilities of all children who attend the setting.
Staff use the beautiful environment well to enhance children’s learning. Each room offers interesting and cosy spaces appropriate to the ages of the children. There is an abundant range of high quality toys, resources and equipment accessible to the children in each room to stimulate their interests and learning. The well planned and resourced outdoor areas promote a wide range of purposeful activities, such as digging and planting, making models with boxes and mark making using large brushes and water. Babies and young children excitedly explore a wealth of materials and sensory experiences such as splashing in the water or discovering the texture of shaving foam, experimenting with musical instruments and helping to water plants growing in the garden area.
Children are supported to become confident and eager learners. They benefit from the freedom to choose resources and activities and use their imagination freely to express themselves. Labels around the room help children to understand that print carries meaning and children are keen to demonstrate their knowledge of letters and numbers. Children love to ‘write’ and spend time writing letters, labelling work and making shopping lists. This is extended when the children go into the local community to post their letters. Children count confidently and use mathematical language while playing, demonstrating a real understanding of number, shape and size. Children experience many opportunities to express their creativity. They freely experiment with paint and other media such as ice cubes, glitter and shredded paper, and use their imaginations very well as part of role play when they pretend they are ‘going on a bear hunt’ in the nurseries woodland area. They participate in highly stimulating activities which help them learn about the natural world and life cycles. For example, they explore the garden area and hunt for bugs and insects, excitedly bringing indoors the worm or slug they discover to observe more closely.
Children are very responsive to the praise they receive from caring staff and their behaviour is very good. They readily respond to the ‘tidy up song’ and help to put equipment away correctly and clean the tables in preparation for lunch. Staff’s consistent approach and clear explanation ensure children learn right from wrong and the consequences of their actions. This is helped through the use of visual symbols.
The nursery provides healthy and nutritious meals and snacks and the individual dietary requirements of each child are meticulously documented. Everyday routines such as snack time are used very well to encourage children to engage in conversation, express their own ideas and learn about healthy food and good hygiene procedures and routines.
- Extract from Ofsted report
Children 4 Most at Flowery Field
The quality and standards of the early years provision
The provision is outstanding
How well the early years provision meets the needs and the range of children who attend – Outstanding
Teaching is exemplary. Staff are tuned in to children’s interests and use this knowledge to clearly target learning. Parents are viewed as integral to children’s learning and development and are fully involved at every stage. Parents can take home books from the nursery library and resource bags, which enables them to continue their children’s learning at home. Outstanding progress is achieved by all children because staff use their understanding of individual children’s needs, gained through close observation, to provide stimulating and imaginative resources to enhance their learning and development. Staff have a superb knowledge of how children learn. They provide children with first hand experiences and ask good questions which promote their critical thinking skills. Children have continuous access indoors and outdoors which allows them to play where they learn best.
The contribution of the early years provision to the well-being of the children- Outstanding
Children display their enjoyment and confidence as they thrive in this inspiring nursery. Very close bonds and attachments have been formed with each other, staff and especially their key person. Staff have a detailed understanding of children’ individual needs because they build excellent relationships with the parents. Children are highly motivated to learn and they confidently choose resources to play with and learn from. This is because all staff are extremely enthusiastic in their approach and give opportunities to explore using an excellent range of resources. Children’s confidence is fostered through the calm and fun interaction of the staff. Staff encourage the use of good manners throughout the day which promotes children’s respect for each other
The effectiveness of the leadership and management of the early years provision- Outstanding
The inspirational management team achieve excellence in all aspects of the provision, including sustaining the highest levels of achievement for all children. They motivate the staff and manage performance and professional development exceptionally well. Staff update their skills and knowledge through frequent staff meetings and excellent access to regular training. This results in a highly skilled and dynamic staff team, who demonstrate a first rate knowledge of their roles and key responsibilities within the curriculum. Recruitment procedures are robust and the nursery has effective systems in place to ensure staff are suitable to work with children. The regular appraisals and supervisions provide each member of staff with a detailed action plan so they can continuously improve their practice. These processes allow managers to check that staff remain suitable to work with children. Staffs passionate and exemplary approach to promoting children’s education is demonstrated through the high quality support and challenge, which they provide for all children.
Quality Counts – Quality Assurance Scheme N.D.N.A.
This scheme promotes high standards of care and education in day nurseries and incorporates the investors in children kite mark. It is a scheme above and beyond Ofsted requirements. The award marks the childcare provider out as special and helps us build on the unique provision our settings provide. The scheme is a very thorough and in depth process that takes 1-2 years. It ensures nurseries examine how they may improve every aspect of care and education they provide. After building up a portfolio of evidence this is then sent to an assessor. This assessor then visits the nursery for a day to examine practice. The assessors evidence is then put to an accreditation panel where a judgement is made as to whether the nursery has passed.
There are three levels awarded:
Level One – Indicates a level of quality above the national standards
Level Two – Indicates a high level of quality
Level Three – Indicates an exceptional level of quality
We are happy to say that our established nurseries Squirrels Wood and Portland Street Ashton-Under-Lyne nursery have both achieved Level Three an exceptional level of quality. We are also very proud of our younger sister nursery Flowery Field who have also achieved Quality Counts at Level Two. Our newest provision is working towards this scheme.
Quality Standards Framework Award
The Quality standards framework is made up of requirements identified by Tameside Early Years Development and Childcare Partnership which aim to ensure provision is a) of the highest quality and b) is above the standards required by Ofsted. We are very proud to have achieved the Quality Standards.
Investors in People Award
We have achieved our ‘Investors in People award. This is an award which is earned by supporting the development of our staff team, which helps us achieve our aims and objectives and improves performance.
The assessors thought the nurseries were wonderful and said after interviewing the nursery team that they had never been anywhere like this before where there were no negative comments made and that the Management were seen as an extension of the team.
Some of the report was as follows:
- The morale of the staff was excellent
- Managers support staff development and positively reinforce good performance through various forms of recognition procedures. People believe they are a “team” and a “family.”
- A strong commitment for the implementation of development activities across the entire business to promote skill improvements. Management are “hands on” with an “open door” approach.
- Promoting from within has had a positive effect on staff morale and retention.
Praise was also given to other areas including communication, performance reviews, recognising peoples contribution and equality of opportunity.