'Inadequate' Newquay nursery praised by Ofsted after revisit
EDUCATION watchdog Ofsted has praised the action taken by a Newquay nursery in the wake of a damning report by one of its inspectors.
The Cornish Guardian revealed last week that First Steps had been judged as "inadequate" – the lowest grade – over its handling of an incident six months ago that saw a staff member "inappropriately restrain" a child.
Inspector Jayne Pascoe issued a 'Welfare Requirements Notice' to ensure safeguarding children procedures and training are in place, following her inspection on June 27.
Her report on the pre-school, which has 93 places and 220 children on its roll, was published on October 1, although an inspector revisited on September 17.
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Last week Ofsted informed directors Elaine Williams and Julie Elsworth it was happy with the measures that had been introduced, and complimented staff on their "commitment to improvement".
The pair hope the news means the nursery can move on from the incident, and reclaim their previous 'outstanding' status at the next inspection, due to take place within 28 days.
In a statement to parents, they said: "We would like to take this opportunity to say how much we and our staff have appreciated the overwhelming support that we have received from all of our families during this difficult time."
They quoted from a letter, sent by Ofsted, which outlined the improvements made at the nursery.
It stated: "Staff members have received good quality training to ensure they fully understand and know how to implement the safeguarding policy and procedures. Consequently staff members are confident to take appropriate action to promote children's safeguarding and welfare at all times.
"You have made good use of advice provided by the local authority and other external agencies. Additional training has provided staff with enhanced skills to promote good behaviour within the setting and in particular for children with challenging conduct.
"All required records and documentation are maintained and meet requirements. Strong commitment to maintain continuous improvement is evident and well supported."
The nursery's directors did not divulge any details on the incident that took place, but said last week that related staffing matters were dealt with "many months ago".
They added: "The welfare of the children in our care is the key priority of all staff at First Steps. We are, therefore, very happy to reassure everyone that the actions we have taken mean that we were able to quickly learn from this incident."