Thornbury nursery has been turned around, months after ‘inadequate’ rating from Ofsted

A NEW management team at a nursery in Thornbury has been praised for achieving a ‘good’ Ofsted rating, just five months after inspectors said it was ‘inadequate’.

Little Acorns in Gillingstool had been criticised for being unsafe for babies and for allowing toddlers to run around in a “chaotic manner”, following an inspection in April.

Owners Just Childcare were issued with two welfare requirements notices ordering immediate changes.

An inspection carried out in September found the nursery has been turned around, and leaders now “have a good understanding of their responsibilities to keep children safe”.

Inspector Victoria Nicolson said: “The new manager and management team provide strong and effective leadership for the staff.

“They have used the feedback from the last inspection to ensure that all staff receive the support and guidance that they need to raise the quality of the nursery.”

The report said children “demonstrate that they feel happy and secure”, developing bonds with staff.

The inspector found that staff had a clear vision of what they wanted children to achieve, with an ambitious curriculum, highlighting language and communication skills.

She said staff knew the children well, regularly monitored their progress and assessed their development accurately, adding: “This helps them to swiftly identify where children may need extra help with their learning.”

The report said there was good support for children who have special educational needs or disabilities, and staff promoted healthy lifestyles and eating.

The inspector said: “Parents say that they are happy with the nursery and feel that their children are well cared for and receive good support with their development.”

To improve further, the inspector said staff should continue to build on good teaching to consistently challenge children, and use opportunities to teach them about different cultures and other people’s lives.

Nursery heading in a ‘positive direction’

Little Acorns is one of 60 nurseries across the UK run by Just Childcare.

After the previous report the company pointed to industry-wide staff shortages as one of the reasons for its troubles.

Just Childcare said it was proud of the Little Acorns staff team for their hard work over the past six months.

Regional business manager Rose Elkins said: “Their efforts have been instrumental in achieving this ‘good’ rating.

“We are also grateful to have such wonderful families who have supported the team and the nursery throughout this period of growth and improvement.

“Moving forward, we are very excited about the positive direction we are heading.

“We will keep building on this success and remain fully committed to providing the best care for our children.”