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Council promises ‘unsafe’ Westbourne Early Years Centre will improve after highly critical Ofsted report

PUBLISHED: 17:19 07 August 2017 | UPDATED: 17:25 07 August 2017

Westbourne Early Years Centre in Bride Street. Picture: James Morris

Westbourne Early Years Centre in Bride Street. Picture: James Morris

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An Islington Council-run nursery has been shamed in an Ofsted report, after the inspector claimed: “Staff do not always know how children get injured.”

Westbourne Early Years Centre, in Bride Street, was given an “inadequate” rating – lowest on a scale of four – in its report released on Saturday.

As well as “poor” supervision of children, the nursery was also slated for the quality of its learning provision. Inspector Karinna Hemerling said children “do not make enough progress in readiness for school”.

The nursery, which registered last year and employs 14 staff, has 52 kids on its books. The town hall said a new head had been employed and it hoped improvements would be made.

Ms Hemerling’s report reads: “Although staff conduct daily risk assessments of play areas, they are not effectively deployed to supervise children. Staff do not always know how children get injured. As a result, children are not always safe. This means the provider is also in breach of the Childcare Register requirements.

“Staff do not provide parents with accurate information about injuries and accidents involving children at the nursery, which compromises children’s health and safety.”

She continued: “Staff working with pre-school children do not ensure that all children have ongoing assessments of their learning and development. There are considerable gaps in assessments of pre-school children’s learning, showing that staff do not plan challenging experiences based on their learning needs. Children do not make good enough progress.”

The nursery’s single strength was described as providing enjoyable activities for toddlers and babies, including building sandcastles and “exploring the texture of sand with their hands”.

A council spokesman said: “Islington’s nursery schools and council-run nurseries provide an important and nurturing first step into the world of education for hundreds of young children.

“Obviously we are disappointed with the inspector’s findings. But there is a good and highly experienced team now at Westbourne and we already have plans in place to make the necessary improvements, including making sure children at Westbourne are safe. We are confident inspectors will find a much-improved nursery when they return in a few months.”

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