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Nursery rated ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted over child safety | #childsafety | #kids | #chldern | #parents | #schoolsafey

Inspectors from the education watchdog attended Stepping Stones of Sopley on Burnt House Lane, Christchurch on July 18 where weakness were found in both child safety and curriculum.

The nursery was previously rated ‘good’ in an Ofsted report in 2019 but have since fallen to ‘inadequate’.

The report stated: “Significant weaknesses in safeguarding knowledge and practice compromise children’s well-being.”

Inspectors found that children were happy, confident and independent, with access to a large outdoor area where they enjoyed exploring.

However, they also found that staff do not provide an ambitious curriculum and fail to move children on to the next stage of their learning.

“All children, including those with special educational needs and/ or disabilities (SEND), do not make the progress they are capable of due to the weakness in planning and behaviour management.”

The report stated that there were no systems in place to ensure staff completed statutory assessments and that progress checks for two year olds were not always completed or shared with parents.

As a result, staff were less able to accurately assess where children are in their development and how they need to be supported in their learning.

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“The manager demonstrates clear intentions for learning.

“However, staff do not understand how to implement the curriculum effectively or to make the best use of routines.

“For example, children experience large-group activities that have little impact on their learning.

“As a result, children become restless, and staff do not meet their emotional needs.”

Inspectors found that transitions in learning and environment were not effective, as staff failed to count children as the moved rooms resulting in some children not arriving at the next activity.

“This means that children are not always supervised effectively,” the report stated.

Despite this, Ofsted inspectors discovered that staff built good relationships with parents.

“Parents comment that staff are amazing and that their children have made progress since starting.

“They say their children are well supported in their move to school.”

Ofsted have since issued the nursery with a Welfare Requirements Notice, highlighting enforcement action to be taken.

The nursery had until August 1 to implement the improvements but an updated report is yet to be released.

Stepping Stones of Sopley declined the opportunity to comment on this report.


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