Wolverhampton day nursery ‘requires improvement’ but has positives

A day nursery in Wolverhampton has been rated as ‘requiring improvement’ following a recent inspection – despite a number of positive points in the findings.

Ofsted inspectors Karen Laycock and Jacqueline Coomer carried out the assessment at Sandhills Day Nursery, in Springhill Lane, Lower Penn, in January, with the results published this week.

The nursery is spread over two floors and has eight rooms; three baby rooms, three toddler rooms and two pre-school rooms. Each room has been designed and resourced for a particular age group.

The report said: “Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, parents are no longer able to enter the nursery and so leave their children with a member of staff at the entrance door.

“Children have adapted well to this routine and enter happily. Children demonstrate they feel safe and secure in the nursery. They develop strong bonds with the staff, who they go to for cuddles and reassurance.

“Babies learn to feed themselves and children enjoy nutritious, home-cooked meals, which helps to support them to make healthy choices. Children behave well towards each other and use good manners.

"Children are provided with plenty of opportunities to be physically active, indoors and outside."

The report added: “An incident had previously occurred in the nursery where a child was given food they are allergic to. The provider has taken swift action and effective and robust systems are now in place, to ensure that another incident of this nature does not occur."

But it said: “Staff do not share enough detailed information about children’s learning to enable parents to continue their children’s learning at home.

“Not all children are achieving to their full potential as the nursery management are not currently monitoring the ineffective assessment and planning processes.

“There are two separate rooms for the oldest children. In one of these rooms, not all staff plan activities that link closely to each child’s learning needs.

“Assessments of children’s learning are not used effectively in the planning process.

“This means that children are not always making the progress they are capable of, including the most vulnerable and children with special educational needs and/or disabilities.

“The oldest children demonstrate a positive attitude to learning and develop the attitudes and skills they need for their move on to school. They are active, enthusiastic learners, who are challenged in their learning and development,” it added.

“Staff ask questions that promote children’s thinking skills, make links to their prior learning and develop their language skills.

“Children enjoy being creative as they make a shape person using different cut out shapes that link to what they have been taught.”

The report went on to say that managers and staff have a secure knowledge of safeguarding and know the possible signs and symptoms of abuse and neglect.

It said: “To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should share enough detailed information with parents about their children’s learning to enable them to continue their children’s learning at home, review the arrangements during lunchtimes for children who do not sleep, so that they are engaged in meaningful play."

Despite the overall finding of the Ofsted inspection, the nursery has received significant positive feedback from parents, with glowing reviews posted on its website.

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